Ben Affleck at Comic-Con. As expected, as predicted, he went there and did his job. A few self-deprecating remarks here and there, looking weary, which elicited compassion, and talked about how he was perfect for the Batfleck role because he’s a “burnout”. Textbook. Then again, as Sarah told me, Hall H at Comic-Con is the easiest crowd to win over. You just have to show up. And he did. With his wedding ring, sort of.

The ring was there at the beginning of the presser. By the end of the event the ring was gone.

What goes through your mind when you’re working, in front of a crowd of hundreds of nerds, and suddenly you feel compelled to remove your ring? Gossips can sometimes make a situation bigger than it needs to be, I get that. But this? Considering all that’s happened, and how much is riding on Affleck to pull his sh-t together, how he himself must be self-casting in the role of embattled, grizzly underdog right now, this has some implications. If it was intentional though, he’s an amateur, which is embarrassing considering he’s a gossip veteran. If it was motivated by emotion, well that’s telling too, because that infamous Affleck push-pull, angel on one shoulder, devil on the other, is clearly still in play.

While Ben was in San Diego, Jennifer Garner was photographed in Atlanta this weekend with the kids. And wearing the wedding ring. That’s a gift for the tabloids too. Because at some point the narrative will be that reconciliation is a possibility. Is it? Is this her ultimatum? Sort your f-cking ass out because you’re looking at the abyss right now and I’m ready to walk. He responds to that kind of motivation. It’s a challenge for him. What happens if he wins though? The cycle just starts all over again.