By Alan J. Porter
One of the main famous superheroes ever created, Batman has survived via campy television indicates and flicks, via actors akin to Adam West, Michael Keaton and Christian Bale. Batman Unauthorized: Vigilantes, Jokers, and Heroes in Gotham urban covers expansive territory starting from the foolish to the solemn. Why is the Joker so strong at pushing Batman’s buttons? What does Batman’s know-how say concerning the instances? Why are Batman’s villains crazier than usual? And why is Batman the fitting, iconic American hero?
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Extra resources for Batman Unauthorized: Vigilantes, Jokers, and Heroes in Gotham City (Smart Pop series)
I want you to remember . . my hand . . at your throat. . I want . . you to remember . . the one man who beat you . ” (195). And with that, he “died” with a heart-stopping concoction of his own making. 2 Thirdly, essential to the Batman character is a refusal to kill and an aversion to guns in particular. Not to pick on him excessively, but in the second Burton film, Batman Returns, Michael Keaton’s Batman sits inside the protection of his armored Batmobile and burns alive an unprotected man with a flame from his rocket engine, after the other ineffectually menaced him by breathing fire in a cheap circus stunt.
Then, at the culmination, he disguises himself as a cop and dresses a kidnapped cop up as the Joker. Accompanying Batman on a raid, he asks the Dark Knight if he shouldn’t just do the world a favor and pull the trigger, and for a moment, the Batman considers. Then Batman sees through the game. But at the story’s conclusion, the Joker remarks, “So I won that one. And sometimes at night, when the moon is high, and I know he’s out there, I feel a little better. The distance between us isn’t as great as it used to be” (290).
Miller is a big fan of pulp novels, and though the scope of the pulps is very different, he uses their overwrought sensibility: where a pulp novelist would have written “and the aircraft carrier was knocked over, the planes falling into the ocean like toys,” Miller draws them like little toy planes with barely any detail-they are just planeshaped gray things with little cockpit windows. The image is childish because it is the visual equivalent of a cheesy (but lovable) metaphor. Similarly, Lex Luthor is a monster, and so Miller draws him as a hulking ape, with huge square hands as big as his torso.