Saturday, February 9, 2008

On Batman (and then some other things)

I need to get my hands on JLA: Divided We Fall. I've seen scans of it, and read fic of it (Jen-in-Japan). I know I'll enjoy it.

But I need to get my hands on it and own it for the simple reason that I think it likely canonizes My Batman.

Separated (due to shenanigans from 6th dimensional aliens) it's Bruce who has all the rage and passion, frustration, fear and more and it's Batman who is an empty shell.

I've role-played Batman in RPG's and I've ended up defending my choice to make Batman the outfit that hides the identity within Bruce himself. I've defended my decision to make Bruce the Playboy the mask, but only because underneath it was Bruce the Champion of Justice and Batman was merely a costume, a way of protecting his identity.

I don't know where it came from, this concept of Batman, cloak and ears and skills being the true persona, the real thing. - that Batman overwhelmed Bruce himself. Maybe it was Dark Knight with its comparisons to Harvey Dent.

But I always thought that it was Bruce's pain and Bruce's loss , therefore Bruce was the one with the passion and that his true self had been born the night his parents died; with the decision that this was unjust, unfair and unneeded and he would find a way to make sure no other child ever felt the loss and despair he was feeling.

Maybe that's why it's always been easy for me to see Bruce in AU's, as a government agent or in some RPG's where he was a Presidential candidate. All that changes for me, when it comes to Bruce in these alternate universes, are his tools and his teachers.

Perhaps that's also why I could so readily call Terry McGinnis Batman and not feel like I was cheering on a replacement; because to me, Terry was seeded with the same loss, the same crack across the face from and about bullies, and might equals right and horrendous loss and he used Batman to try to balance the scales. More-over he used Batman as a way to make-up for the little losses and little pains he'd caused others in his mindless trip down 'the wrong path'.

Maybe Amanda Waller had it right, Batman is formed by pain but more- over he's formed by the decision to protect rather than avenge. And so the minute Terry made that turn over, he stopped being a wanna-be-Jason in a possible future.

And I think that's why I also cherish good Batman - Jim Gordon interaction. Because between the two of them, there's a whole hefty weight of 'To Protect & Serve'.


Batman, Wolverine, Smax - To Protect & Serve.

Oh yes, Wolverine's a savage, ravage son of a b*tch etc - secret agent blah blah blah. But even look at the movies, when did Hugh Jackson become the Wolverine for you? For me it was the moment he let Rogue into the cab.

Why do I like him in the comics? When do I like him in the comics? When he protects, when he continually faces the choice to destroy and avenge or to protect and serve and he chooses to protect.

Yes, I need to own JLA: Divided We Fall and I probably need to give the new Wolverine animated series a chance too.

1 comment:

  1. I would just like to say how much I love your character analyses' (analysis'? putting an apostrophe on the end makes everything better)

    One of the intriguing things about the upcoming X-Force series is that Wolverine joins, not because of the reasons given by Cyclops, but to moderate the self-destructive actions of the other characters. He knows how easy it is for self-identity to get lost in that kind of lifestyle, and he doesn't want to see it happen to anybody else.