Saturday, October 15, 2011

Batman - Superhero With No Superpowers

  While I probably should chalk my affinity for the Caped Crusader up to the fact that I grew up in the nineties and that's when a lot of the Batman movies were in circulation, not to mention all the animated series, I can't attribute it entirely to that. 

    Yes, Batman has the cool gear, the cool house, the cool cars, and the really attractive dates, but there's more to the Batman than his toys (the dates, of course, are excluded from this category). While I continue to defend Batman against Superman lovers and even Spiderman, Hulk, or other superheroes, I do understand why they prefer those guys to Batman. Bruce Wayne is one wealthy dude. We'd all be superheroes if we had unlimited means and resources to create Batsuits and utility belts and Batmobiles. But I don't think that's the whole story. 
    While those things are incredibly handy (citywide sonar, anyone?), Batman can hold his own without them. The reason he has these things is because he doesn't have a superpower. If Batman was impervious to bullets like the Man of Steel, he wouldn't have to spend all that money on a fancy Batsuit. If Batman could repel down buildings and swing through them like Spiderman without his suit or anchors, he could leave those things in the car. But the thing is, Batman didn't come from an alien planet. He didn't get bit by a radioactive spider. He wasn't born with any genetic mutations that gave him a new ability. And he isn't a bad science experiment that turns green and huge when he gets pissed off. Batman is a regular man. He just happens to have a lot of money. 
Taken from NY Times Online
     But in spite of that, he still finds it necessary to fight evil in Gotham City, however hazardous to his health it may be. He could be one of those wealthy guys that just holes up in his mansion, afraid to go out with so much funky shit going down in the city, worried he might get blood on his $3000 shoes. But he isn't. He is the only guy in that whole city brave enough to go out there, and lucky enough to have the resources to combat people who are hurting Gotham's citizens with noxious gases, mind-control devices, or just a general bad attitude. 

    So, say what you want about the Dark Knight, but you have to admit, where would we be if we didn't have Batman? We'd be bored out of our minds criticizing the old Superman movies (and the new ones) and wondering why they bothered to make 4 Spiderman movies, not to mention a musical. Batman is just a better conversation piece, and the movies aren't bad either (movies meaning Tim Burton's Batman films and Christopher Nolan's films--the other ones sort of fail, on so many levels). 

How about you? Which were your favorite superheroes? Or did you have any favorites?
Share in the comments.


Outnumbered said...

Batman is pretty far up there for me, I have the collector series Batman:HUSH volumes 1&2 on my bookshelf and they are pretty prized possessions.
I think it's more of a literary thing for me though...Batman's story is much more poetic that many novels I have read.

Constant Writer said...

I agree about the poetry of the Batman legend. A lot of comics were just never focused on the darker, anguished side of life in the way that Batman is. They were written for young adults and kids, so the focus was on kid problems and solutions. Batman has more character development, I think, than a lot of comic heroes, which makes him and his story more poetic.

+Constant Writer

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