Remember those halcyon days, before the megabuzz about The Avengers, or the slew of trailers for Prometheus, when The Dark Knight Rises was the only film of summer 2012 that mattered?  Well, things of have become a little more complicated since then, but not anymore—the third and final trailer for The Dark Knight Rises is officially the most dramatic, jaw-dropping spectacle we’ve seen this year.  Let your goosebumps begin in 3…2…1…

The first big relief of the trailer?  Bane’s voice is now totally comprehensible, after preview audiences (and these ears included) had a bit of difficulty understanding the villain’s muffled speech during the first IMAX preview of the film’s prologue.

Elsewhere, we finally get to see more Catwoman, who definitely appears to be an ally of Batman’s , and it also seems that Bane kidnaps Batman/Bruce Wayne at some point and locks him in a prison.  Meanwhile, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Morgan Freeman, and Gary Oldman all look at things in shock and surprise.

Most interesting, though, is the thread of melancholy that runs throughout the trailer.  From the poignancy of the quiet opening, to the moment when Catwoman asks Batman why he’s sacrificed everything and he indicates there is one more thing he has to give (his life?), there is definitely an air of finality to the piece.  Oh, and then there’s The Bat, Batman’s personal plane, which may be the coolest thing you see all year.  Check it out:

The Dark Knight Rises is set for a July 20, 2012 release.  If you can make it until then without your head exploding, good luck.

What do you think of the trailer?