Heath Ledger as the Joker in "The Dark Knight" was a remarkable study in character and actor dedication and I would never detract from this man's performance.
However, the entire story of "The Dark Knight Rises" is just a better story from all angles. The complex character relationships leave nothing left untied. Not to mention an awesome hint of "a little birdy" in more to come.
Many jokes circled the internet after the huge box office takings of "The Avengers" that Batman had a lot to live up to, and I have already stated my opinion.
In the "Avengers" movie, five men and one woman did a fantastic portrayal of heroism, however in "The Dark Knight Rises" this same job was accomplished and exceeded by only two men.
I am constantly amazed by the performances of Tom Hardy in movies such as "Inception," "Warrior" and "This Means War." He can do cute, sexy, hardass, terrifying, and adorable! What more do you want in an actor.
I say, go see "The Dark Knight Rises" because the story is brilliant, engaging, terrifying and heart rending. It is the best of the Dark Knight series!
I also say, keep an eye out for Tom Hardy in the future and just go see anything he is in. It will be worth it.