This article is about the superhero. For other uses, see Batman (disambiguation).
"Bruce Wayne" redirects here. For other uses, see Bruce Wayne (disambiguation).
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Detective Comics #27
(cover date May 1939 /
release date March 30, 1939)
Alter ego Bruce Wayne
Place of origin Gotham City
Batmen of All Nations
World's Greatest Detective
Skilled martial artist and hand-to-hand combatant
Master tactician, strategist, and field commander
Utilizing high-tech equipment
Batman is a superhero who appears in American comic books published by DC Comics. Batman was created by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, and debuted in the 27th issue of the comic book Detective Comics on March 30, 1939. In the DC Universe continuity, Batman is the alias of Bruce Wayne, a wealthy American playboy, philanthropist, and owner of Wayne Enterprises based in Gotham City. Kane, Finger, and future DC writers accompanied Batman with supporting characters, including his sidekick Robin, allies Alfred Pennyworth and James Gordon, and foes such as Catwoman, the Scarecrow, the Penguin, and his archenemy, the Joker. Batman's origin story features him swearing vengeance against criminals after witnessing the murder of his parents Thomas and Martha; he trains himself physically and intellectually, crafts a bat-inspired persona, and monitors the Gotham streets at night.
Kane conceived Batman in early 1939 to capitalize on the popularity of DC's Superman; although Kane frequently claimed sole creation credit, Finger substantially developed the concept from a generic superhero into something more bat-like. The character received his own spin-off publication, Batman, in 1940. Batman was originally introduced as a ruthless vigilante who frequently killed or maimed criminals, but evolved into a character with a stringent moral code and strong sense of justice. Unlike most superheroes, Batman does not possess any superpowers, instead relying on his intellect, fighting skills, and wealth. The 1960s Batman television series used a camp aesthetic, which continued to be associated with the character for years after the show ended. Various creators worked to return the character to his darker roots in the 1970s and 1980s, culminating with the 1986 miniseries The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller.
DC has featured Batman in many comic books, including comics published under its imprints such as Vertigo and Black Label. The longest-running Batman comic, Detective Comics, is the longest-running comic book in the United States. Batman is frequently depicted alongside other DC superheroes, such as Superman and Wonder Woman, as a member of organizations such as the Justice League and the Outsiders. In addition to Bruce Wayne, other characters have taken on the Batman persona on different occasions, such as Jean-Paul Valley / Azrael in the 1993–1994 "Knightfall" story arc and Dick Grayson, the first Robin, for a three-year period from 2009 to 2011. DC has also published comics featuring alternate versions of Batman, including the incarnation seen in The Dark Knight Returns and its successors, the incarnation from the Flashpoint (2011) event, and numerous interpretations from Elseworlds stories.
One of the most iconic characters in popular culture, Batman has been listed among the greatest comic book superheroes and fictional characters ever created. He is one of the most commercially successful superheroes, and his likeness has been licensed and featured in various media and merchandise sold around the world; this includes toy lines such as Lego Batman and video games like the Batman: Arkham series. Batman has been adapted in live-action and animated incarnations, including the 1960s Batman television series played by Adam West and in films by Michael Keaton in Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992), Christian Bale in The Dark Knight Trilogy (2005–2012), and Ben Affleck in the DC Extended Universe (2016–present). Kevin Conroy, Jason O'Mara, and Will Arnett, among others, have provided the character's voice.
In early 1939, the success of Superman in Action Comics prompted editors at National Comics Publications (the future DC Comics) to request more superheroes for its titles. In response, Bob Kane created "the Bat-Man". Collaborator Bill Finger recalled that "Kane had an idea for a character called 'Batman,' and he'd like me to see the drawings. I went over to Kane's, and he had drawn a character who looked very much like Superman with kind of ... reddish tights, I believe, with boots ... no gloves, no gauntlets ... with a small domino mask, swinging on a rope. He had two stiff wings that were sticking out, looking like bat wings. And under it was a big sign ... BATMAN". The bat-wing-like cape was suggested by Bob Kane, inspired as a child by Leonardo Da Vinci's sketch of an ornithopter flying device.
Finger suggested giving the character a cowl instead of a simple domino mask, a cape instead of wings, and gloves; he also recommended removing the red sections from the original costume. Finger said he devised the name Bruce Wayne for the character's secret identity: "Bruce Wayne's first name came from Robert Bruce, the Scottish patriot. Wayne, being a playboy, was a man of gentry. I searched for a name that would suggest colonialism. I tried Adams, Hancock ... then I thought of Mad Anthony Wayne." He later said his suggestions were influenced by Lee Falk's popular The Phantom, a syndicated newspaper comic-strip character with which Kane was also familiar.
Kane and Finger drew upon contemporary 1930s popular culture for inspiration regarding much of the Bat-Man's look, personality, methods, and weaponry. Details find predecessors in pulp fiction, comic strips, newspaper headlines, and autobiographical details referring to Kane himself. As an aristocratic hero with a double identity, Batman had predecessors in the Scarlet Pimpernel (created by Baroness Emmuska Orczy, 1903) and Zorro (created by Johnston McCulley, 1919). Like them, Batman performed his heroic deeds in secret, averted suspicion by playing aloof in public, and marked his work with a signature symbol. Kane noted the influence of the films The Mark of Zorro (1920) and The Bat Whispers (1930) in the creation of the character's iconography. Finger, drawing inspiration from pulp heroes like Doc Savage, The Shadow, Dick Tracy, and Sherlock Holmes, made the character a master sleuth.
In his 1989 autobiography, Kane detailed Finger's contributions to Batman's creation:
One day I called Bill and said, 'I have a new character called the Bat-Man and I've made some crude, elementary sketches I'd like you to look at.' He came over and I showed him the drawings. At the time, I only had a small domino mask, like the one Robin later wore, on Batman's face. Bill said, 'Why not make him look more like a bat and put a hood on him, and take the eyeballs out and just put slits for eyes to make him look more mysterious?' At this point, the Bat-Man wore a red union suit; the wings, trunks, and mask were black. I thought that red and black would be a good combination. Bill said that the costume was too bright: 'Color it dark grey to make it look more ominous.' The cape looked like two stiff bat wings attached to his arms. As Bill and I talked, we realized that these wings would get cumbersome when Bat-Man was in action and changed them into a cape, scalloped to look like bat wings when he was fighting or swinging down on a rope. Also, he didn't have any gloves on, and we added them so that he wouldn't leave fingerprints
Subsequent creation credit
Kane signed away ownership in the character in exchange for, among other compensation, a mandatory byline on all Batman comics. This byline did not originally say "Batman created by Bob Kane"; his name was simply written on the title page of each story. The name disappeared from the comic book in the mid-1960s, replaced by credits for each story's actual writer and artists. In the late 1970s, when Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster began receiving a "created by" credit on the Superman titles, along with William Moulton Marston being given the byline for creating Wonder Woman, Batman stories began saying "Created by Bob Kane" in addition to the other credits.
Finger did not receive the same recognition. While he had received credit for other DC work since the 1940s, he began, in the 1960s, to receive limited acknowledgment for his Batman writing; in the letters page of Batman #169 (February 1965) for example, editor Julius Schwartz names him as the creator of the Riddler, one of Batman's recurring villains. However, Finger's contract left him only with his writing page rate and no byline. Kane wrote, "Bill was disheartened by the lack of major accomplishments in his career. He felt that he had not used his creative potential to its fullest and that success had passed him by." At the time of Finger's death in 1974, DC had not officially credited Finger as Batman co-creator.
Jerry Robinson, who also worked with Finger and Kane on the strip at this time, has criticized Kane for failing to share the credit. He recalled Finger resenting his position, stating in a 2005 interview with The Comics Journal:
Bob made him more insecure, because while he slaved working on Batman, he wasn't sharing in any of the glory or the money that Bob began to make, which is why ... [he was] going to leave [Kane's employ]. ... [Kane] should have credited Bill as co-creator, because I know; I was there. ... That was one thing I would never forgive Bob for, was not to take care of Bill or recognize his vital role in the creation of Batman. As with Siegel and Shuster, it should have been the same, the same co-creator credit in the strip, writer, and artist.
Although Kane initially rebutted Finger's claims at having created the character, writing in a 1965 open letter to fans that "it seemed to me that Bill Finger has given out the impression that he and not myself created the ''Batman, t' [sic] as well as Robin and all the other leading villains and characters. This statement is fraudulent and entirely untrue." Kane himself also commented on Finger's lack of credit. "The trouble with being a 'ghost' writer or artist is that you must remain rather anonymously without 'credit'. However, if one wants the 'credit', then one has to cease being a 'ghost' or follower and become a leader or innovator."
In 1989, Kane revisited Finger's situation, recalling in an interview:
In those days it was like, one artist and he had his name over it [the comic strip] — the policy of DC in the comic books was, if you can't write it, obtain other writers, but their names would never appear on the comic book in the finished version. So Bill never asked me for it [the byline] and I never volunteered — I guess my ego at that time. And I felt badly, really,
- Братья Темплтон выросли и отдалились друг от друга. Но все меняется с появлением нового босса-молокососа с суперсовременным подходом, который воссоединяет семью и вдохновляет героев на новые бизнес-свершения.
- Джим был лучшим профессиональным снайпером, но теперь он оставил войны позади и ведет уединенную мирную жизнь. Покою приходит конец, когда он решает вступиться за беззащитного мальчика, случайно ставшего свидетелем преступлений могущественного наркокартеля. С этого момента Джиму предстоит в одиночку противостоять киллерам, используя все свои боевые навыки.