With his 80th anniversary coming up, what does his legacy mean to you? Where do you rank him as a comic hero?
I love comics and the superhero genre in general but Batman is who I owe everything to as a fan! I got hooked on him in 1989 at 4yo and still am at 33yo. Most of my life, my biggest fandom has been comic books and centered around The Bat!
One summer night in 1989, my parents took me to see Batman and even I was just 3 or 4yo, I was instantly amazed and awe of the character. I already liked other things but the film had my attention from start to finish. After that, I wanted any Batman merchandise as much as possible and then a few months later came Batman’66 reruns into my life. Very different than Batman’89 but I still enjoyed everything about Batman, Robin and the show.
1992 came. My dad took me to see Batman Returns on opening day afternoon. Loved it of course and I had heard about comic books by that point and so the next day I begged my parents to take me to a comic shop. They did and I was instantly star struck and my fandom was boosted quadruple when I saw Batman on tons of stuff including books. My parents bought me a bunch of issues and that weekend I read them like they were the bible!
Late 1992, Batman: The Animated Series and X-Men Animated Series were everything to me each week. Slowly started getting into Superman and others because of comics, films and shows but to this day…I have Batman on the brain the most!
I’ve enjoyed the legacy so much from comics to films to t.v. shows to video games to merchandise to just him being a cultural icon.
I have many favorite heroes and villains but yes Batman was, is and always will be my hero!
I’m really new to the whole comics scene. This last summer I started reading Batman because I thought it would be a good introduction into the world of comics. The New 52 “Court of Owls” storyline kind of got me hooked. I started reading some of the classic Batman storylines, and came to see the “Long Halloween” as my favorite. So even though my connection to Batman is much less reminiscent, I hope that one day I’ll look back on all of the newer things (books like Batman: White Knight, and tv shows like Gotham) with a similar fondness that you seem to have
Welcome to the Batman mythology! He’s been around for 80 years and I am confident he will be around for another 80 years. Lots to explore with so many versions and you may be new but have already started do that’s cool
Thank you for sharing your story!!
I am only a bit younger than you but couldn’t say when exactly I first saw Batman the character, I remember growing up on Batman TAS, I would watch it every night after school and I had (still have) all the vhs tapes. I remember getting Batman Returns toys in my McDonalds Happy Meals and Batman And Robin clear glass mugs from McDonalds, I still have all this stuff strangely. I know you remember these things too!
Batman, as a character is an ultimate form of hero but with 100% humanity. I never saw Batman as selfish like some other people but I have always seen him as selfless. One major thing to consider here is that since Bruce is a human and a billionaire, he could stop being Batman at any time so it’s a bit different from metahumans/mutants and aliens.
Now as an adult, I’ve learned to appreciate Lego Batman which gives Batman a whole new demension to his character. It’s refreshing, honestly.
Lastly, Batman spawning the Bat-family and a slew of amazing heroes and villains, I’ll never forget Gotham City and New Gotham Detroit.
That’s awesome. I really enjoy reading other people’s stories and yes I had the same McDonald’s goodies lol
I was watching reruns of the Adam West Batman even before I can remember. For all my life, Batman has been a symbol of everything that’s worth aspiring to. He’s heroic, selfless, dedicated, intelligent, and skilled. I’ve gotten through a surprising number of difficult situations just by saying to myself “Batman wouldn’t give up.” Even in more complex portrayals, when he does the wrong thing, you can learn from his mistakes. On a more selfish level, nothing makes me happier than a good Batman story, and so I owe the character a lot personally.
One thing I forgot to mention is that I grew up so inspired by Bruce Wayne/Batman. I knew I couldn’t be a vigilante like him and so I wanted to be like him in appearance and personality wise.
I’m latino but white and have black hair. So I’ve always had short black hair and usually am clean shaven because of Bruce. Always been more of a loner and serious because of Batman and at first I forced it during my childhood but then it became natural to me and is who I still am now in real life naturally because of that early inspiration
I also adopted the no guns and no kill codes. In video games I go crazy with guns but in real life I’ve never had a desire to have one and wouldn’t take a life.
I studied martial arts because of Batman but I admit I like other styles such as boxing and kick boxing as my personal fighting style
Would anybody else like to share?
Nevel liked the character
Not for everyone i guess. That’s fine
It’s the fact that Bruce is a vigilante who in many cases works against the corrupt police of Gotham (depending on the story, etc) so he’s technically also a criminal. Even though he’s experienced the utmost tragedy and carries it with him every day, he still goes out every night trying to make the world a better place. He doesn’t always make the best decisions, he’s not morally infallible, he doesn’t have that unattainable strength or powers like most superheroes do. His problems are worldly problems, about overcoming the desire for revenge and the danger of slipping into that darkness surrounding your life. It resonates very strongly with me.
Batman to me, means just that. Anyone can be the Bat. Someone just trying to make things better, by protecting the weak or punishing the guilty depending how you look at it.
Batman is the ultimate non-powered, human, skull cracking ass kicker in the DC Universe. He’s also a great embodiment of perseverance and working hard to achieve one’s goals.
Batman got me into DC and was my favorite character for years and years. Conversely, it’s been years and years since he was my #1 but he still has a special place in my heart and always will.
For me, Batman means contrast. Batman is always a complete 180 from the characters I love in the DCU. He is often portrayed dark and gritty. He provides a needed crosspoint to God like characters like Superman and Wonder Woman. These characters also always seem optimistic and sunshiny, whereas Batman is more of a realist. While I am not a huge Batman fan, I am more than willing to state he serves a purpose in the collective DC Universe and it would be lessened if he didn’t exist. Also so many of my favorite characters wouldn’t exist, as I love and enjoy all his villains and side characters. I don’t have reading Batman memories or even memories of watching the movies or TV shows as a kid. I always connected with Diana and Wonder Woman on a much deeper level. Batman though still is a great character that is needed.
I can write an entire essay about what Batman means to me… but I’ll keep it short, Batman means inspiration and hope that even in a chaotic world that constantly beats you down and shows you cruelty you don’t have to be that way as a response. Makes me emotional just thinking about it. Ily Batman!
Batman means putting culture into perspective. He is the only fictional (and hell, probably non-fictional) character to be in continuous monthly publication with a new story every month for 80 years. No one else comes close to that streak. Sure, Sherlock Holmes and Shakespeare have been in continuous publication for longer, but, not a new story every month.
Follow Batman and see culture, not even just pop-culture unfold, generation to generation.
Just take a look at the first Ra’s first appearance in Batman #232 (6/2/1971, page 19, the top three panels) “Witness it – FURY held in rigid check until now…explodes. These are no brutal beings! There is a part of their hearts that despises violence…but they are a product of their era, even as are you! The horrors of three wars and deep personal tragedy have shaped them! So violence lives within them…and given the occasion, it can become and icy, remorseless vengeance.”
In 1971, it was true, three separate long, bloody wars had been waged in less than 30 years. This is still less than 30 years before Pearl Harbor. Most people you knew or met had been touched (family and/or friends) by one or more of those wars. That one page gives not just the context of Batman (and Robin) but the reflection of the world around their readers too.
That one page…three panels, and as someone who remembers that time first hand, are a chillingly reminder of exactly what that time was like.
That’s just one page from one Batman comic over the span of 80 years, and pages like that showed up more than once a year, for 80 years. It’s an astounding feat.
Batman isn’t just the most important character in DC comics, or comics in general, but in all of fiction. Stop and think about that for a moment.
You can not be “the world’s greatest detective” and not be observant. Batman has continually opened my eyes to the world around me for decades.
20yrs my life but a really extreme rough patch. I immersed myself in Batman The Animated Series and it helped direct me to the road back to happiness. It also re-fueled my passion for comics too boot. I’ll always have warm memories of that period my life.