Happy New Year, fellow readers and visitors of the TheBatmanUniverse.net. While every year promises to be even better and special then the last, I feel that 2014 is of particular importance. This is because our much beloved and enduring Dark Knight turns 75 years old. This is quite a monumental milestone and one of the ways I am going to be celebrating is by explaining why I love Batman.
While the usual chatter will point to his origin, or the fact that he is human, I am going to point to a different reason as to why the character resonates with me. I think that simply Batman is one of the most flexible characters in all of fiction, if not the most. By this, I mean he can be put in nearly every genre that is known to storytelling and be able to be compelling as well as true.
And I think this can be clearly be seen by the sheer history of the character. In every era, Batman has survived and has represented something of that era whether its a dark, pulpy hero in its early inception or the the man who can go toe to toe with cosmic evils that have come to define him of late.
But also at the same time, while the character has always been interesting, his universe is something that is of equal value. I have been rereading Knightfall recently and despite his lack of panel time in the later volumes, his presence, ideals and universe still exist are just as fascinating.
His character is unique too, he exists between gritty realism and comic book idealism and the contention between the two is interesting to read. In fact if one wanted to categorise him in the latter then his utility would be the same as what the best of science fiction or fantasy do.
This being, taking a situation or issue that permeates our current age and dress it up in heightened environment in order to examine it. But even if you were to categorise him as a gritty crime fighter in a realistic environment, then he would merit would still not be any shorter.
In fact, despite the constant to media conception of comic books, Batman I feel is one of comic doms, greatest encapsulations of the medium can showcase intelligent and adult themes that are worthy of discussion.
For one, one question that has always lingered with the character is whether or not Batman is innate, was it always in Bruce Wayne or did it take what the Joker classified in “The Killing Joke” as one bad day to unleash the persona. In addition, morally is Batman justified in what he does, not just from a legalistic point of view but also by letting the Joker live, is his rigidity dangerous, could it have saved lives etc?
These are just some of the questions and issues that only hint at the tip of the iceberg that is the Caped Crusader`s appeal. Whether you enjoy him because he is a cool visual, his gadgets or his attitude, I hope you have a good time in celebrating 75th years of his existence. And watch this space, as more articles relating to The Dark Knight will be here for you to read exclusively on TheBatmanUniverse.net.
Posted by Sartaj Singh