Alright, we’re approaching the end of Batman vs. Superman. This is the last half Bat boys and girls. This time around, we’ll be reviewing the Justice League of America novel Tower of Babel. Written by the incomparable Mark Waid, who is best known for his legendary run of the Flash which revitalized the character and created Bart Allen in the process. In this story, Ra’s Al Ghul is up to his usual eco-terrorist ways. In an attempt to prevent the Justice League from stopping him, he swiftly takes them out of the picture by using contingency plans prepared by Batman. The team must come to grips with Batman’s betrayal as well as for understanding his reasons for having plans to take any of them out, if necessary. Though this is clearly a full Justice League team takedown, this definitely counts in our showdown. Now, let’s get to it.
Batman-Batman’s motivation for this is that he prepared a contingency plan for Superman, and the other JLA members, should any of them ever go rogue. Pretty good motivation, despite the typical paranoia on Bruce’s part. Point.
Superman-Superman has no motivation in this fight. He is more concerned with stopping the Demon’s Head than with protecting himself, as usual. Ever the boy scout. Point.
Batman-Has taken incredible preparation in order to defeat Superman, in this case. Point.
Superman-Has no preparation. He has no idea about this contingency plan. No Point.
Batman-Considering Batman’s motivation, I’d say he’s fairly cautious, and wary on this one. Too bad it wasn’t him that enacted his contingency plans. Point.
Superman-As usual, he is not cautious, wary, nor vigilant. He’s completely unaware of the contingency plan. No point.
4) Abilities/Gadgets Used
Batman-His weapon against Superman is a form of red Kryptonite that has mutating effects. One of these effects is that it makes Superman’s skin transparent, and is thus absorbing the sun’s energy into his organs and muscles. He’s literally overwhelmed with power. Point.
Superman-His own physiology is working against him on this one. No point.
Batman-Batman isn’t even present when Superman is affected by this attack. Despite the awesome fact that Batman didn’t need to be there to beat him, it was unintentional. No point.
Superman-The Sun itself is working against him in this case. No point.
6) Allies/Rogues Involved
Batman-Batman’s one-time father-in-law (sorry if you guys didn’t know that, but it’s true!) is the only rogue from the Dark Knight’s rogues gallery that is, technically speaking, aiding Bruce in carrying out this plan. Since this is not an actual joint effort and because al Ghul managed to break into the Batcave and steal these plans, Batman has no real aid. No point.
Superman-On the other hand, Supes has no allies. Despite this being a JLA book, as is typical for Clark, he’s off on his own. Point.
7) Is the story memorable?
Batman-Batman’s paranoia is what makes this story so amazing. The very idea that he has a contingency plan to take out every member of the JLA, including members of the group at large, is brilliant and Mark Waid definitely knew how great a story this needed to be. Point.
Superman-His response towards Batman’s contingency plans falling into the wrong hands, let alone that he has them in place, reminds us as readers why Batman has such plans and that even Superman can get pissed off. Point.
Ok, the final tally is as follows.
|Is the story memorable?|
|Overall Round Winner
So Batman wins yet again. Our next round will be looking at Superman/Batman: Torment.
Posted by Chris Gering