There is no doubt that every movie lover out there is anxiously waiting the release of 2016's Batman V Superman, mostly because the movie headlines two of the most popular superheroes in comic book history. The trailers that the producers have released so far are just whetting our appetites for the film, and the idea that Batman will face off against Superman is just too attractive to miss.
These two superheroes have been in the public eye for over 75 years, meaning that if they were actual human beings they should each be close to a hundred years old by now. Whenever we are tempted to think that we know everything there is to know about our favorite superheroes, the producers come up with a new movie that blows us away.
Batman is extremely popular among all superhero lovers because unlike most other heroes, he is a human being with no superpowers, yet he is able to fight and bring down even the most powerful beings in the DC universe. Batman is a symbol of hope, he is a perfect example of an individual becoming the best that he or she can be and standing up for what is right, and he has embraced an extremely high level of discipline, a quality that makes him outstanding.
Below are a few facts about Batman that are not necessarily in the public domain, facts that will shed light on this character and make us love him, his movies, and is comic books even more. Which of the following are you familiar with and which of these are you reading for the first time?
20 Batman Was a Military Term
You will be surprised to know that the name Batman was used to refer to a particular type of soldier, particularly in the British and French military. You might be tempted to envision the batman in the military as the leader of the troops, the bravest of the brave, the most talented fighter of the pack, or even the man sent in when all other tactics have failed, but you would be so wrong in your thinking. A batman or batwoman, was in actual sense, a soldier assigned to an officer to be his or her servant. A batman's responsibility is the same as that of a butler; therefore, we can comfortably say that Alfred is the real batman in the Batman comics and movies.
19 Batman is an Actual Town in Turkey
Did you know there is an actual place called Batman? Yes, there is, and it is a very beautiful part of Turkey. The town of Batman is the capital of the Batman province, located towards the Southeastern Anatolia region of Turkey. Batman is a province famous for its proximity to Tigris River, the Abdullah Dervish monastery, and valuable archeological findings. Since all today's crime fighters do not know exactly where to find Batman, especially during the day, they should try looking at the map of Turkey and they could possibly plan to ambush him. One sad thing about Batman (the place) is that the mayor of the city threatened to sue Christopher Nolan and Warner Bros. for using the name Batman in the movie The Dark Knight without their approval.
18 Gotham is an Actual Place Found in Nottingham
The mention of Gotham takes our minds to the dark city where Batman fights crime. However, did you know that Gotham is an actual place in Nottinghamshire, England and is not just a fictional place in comics and movies, as you would expect? The name Gotham actually meant "goat home," but thanks to the Old English pronunciation, we have a place called Gotham. Gotham is a friendly village with approximately 1,600 homes, and there has never been the mention of the Joker, the Riddler, the Penguin or even Bane terrorizing people there. Actually, hundreds of years back, Gotham was famously considered a town full of mad people, with this reputation of madness making it the ideal name for the city where Batman would fight crime. Some writers over the years have referred to New York as Gotham, as a way of mocking New Yorkers, a nickname that has stuck in some circles even to this day.
17 A Version of The Beatles Exists in the Batman Universe
The best thing about comic books and fictional movies is that you can make your characters do anything you want or become anything you desire, and even bring in characters that are popular with the masses to boost your sales. DC noted that relating their comics with current events could work out for them, which is why they had a cover and a story featuring The Beatles. The above is the 222nd issue, and it depicted the band as having a dead member whose position has been replaced by a double or a doppelganger. Batman and Robin had the hard task of trying to find out which member was diseased and which three were fine.
16 Bruce Wayne is a Name Combining Two Important Historical Figures
Batman is a fictional character created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger, despite the fact that Kane receives most of the attention as the creator of this hero. The two did not face much difficulty coming up with the name Batman, but they had to put a lot of thought into his alter ego. Kane and Finger ended up combining the names of the patriot King Robert Bruce, the first of Scotland, whose efforts led to the independence of Scotland, and United States brigadier general Anthony Wayne who was a hero during the American Revolution. The historical figures have little to do with Bruce Wayne's character, except that Brigadier Anthony Wayne is considered Batman's blood-related ancestor.
15 Batman Married Catwoman and They Have a Daughter
Batman is a superhero with one of the greatest senses of self-control. He is wiser than almost anyone he has ever come across, and he can take down any villain he sets his mind on. However, Batman is not the model citizen we would want him to be when it comes to relationships, because he has been with over 20 women in various story lines. This goes to show that one of the very few weaknesses he has, if any, is a woman. However, of all the women Batman has been with, he has only gotten married to Catwoman, back in the 1950s. Furthermore, the two gave birth to a daughter named Helena Wayne, who goes by the alias Huntress.
14 Bruce Wayne's Mother Became the Joker
You must be confused at this point because we all know so well that Bruce Wayne's parents were killed in an alley by Joe Chills when Bruce was young, and there is no way his mother could be the Joker because the Joker is a man. That story is what happened in the real timeline, but the flashpoint alternate timeline is completely different. According to the flashpoint paradox, Bruce Wayne was the only one who was killed in the alley that night, his dad (Thomas Bruce) became a dark version of Batman, and his mom (Martha Wayne) became the Joker. Martha Wayne transformed into the Joker by cutting her cheeks to create a faux smile, because she was not able to cope with the loss of her son.
13 Bruce Wayne Became Batman at Age 25
The little history that most people know about Bruce Wayne is that his parents were killed when he was young. He went to study abroad, and then came back to face the injustices in Gotham city as Batman. There is so much detail that most people are not aware of, details such as his age when his parents were killed, how old he was when he became Batman, and how old he is today. Bruce's parents died when he was just nine years old. He started travelling the world learning all he could at age 14, and he almost joined the FBI at age 20 but later changed his mind because of its limitations. Bruce Wayne became the Batman at age 25 and is now roughly in his mid-thirties in most story lines.
12 The Designs for Batman’s Wings Were Based on Da Vinci’s Sketches
When Bob Kane and Bill Finger were coming up with the Batman and Bruce Wayne, they based much of what they came up with on several things that were happening around them. For example, the 1920 film The Mask of Zorro by Douglas Fairbanks inspired Kane and Finger to make Bruce Wayne the extremely wealthy person he is today. The Shadow, a 1930s pulp radio character inspired Batman's cloak, double identity and his character of being a crime-fighting vigilante. Finally, Da Vinci's sketches inspired what was to become Batman's wings. All these qualities in one man made it easy for readers to relate with Batman, which is also part of the reason why Batman was and still is so popular.
11 Batman’s Costume Wasn’t Always So Dark
Batman's costume is always a big deal, especially after the costume that George Clooney wore as Batman caused an outrage with the fans because it had nipples on it. Knowing what you know about Batman's image and costume, how would you feel if in his next movie he wore a bright red onesie, black underwear on top of his trousers, a simple mask just over the eyes, and wings looking exactly like a bat's wings? Can you imagine that the image in your head right now is exactly what Batman's original costume looked like before they started changing it to what it is now? Even in the recent past, the costumes he had were not as dark as the ones he wears these days. It seems that today the Batman is the Dark Knight in every aspect of the word.
10 Batman Used To Use Guns
Batman has principles that he abides by, principles that you would not expect a crime fighter who has both the criminals and the police after him to hold dear. One of the above principles is his decision to never use guns or kill people, primarily because his parents were killed using a gun and also because he believes in the justice system. However, Batman has gone against his principles several times in the past and used guns against his opponents. In recent times, Batman only uses his guns to blast through walls, to shoot at cars, or to make a path where there are obstacles blocking him, but he never uses them to kill people.
9 Were Batman and Robin Gay?
Batman's sexual orientation is something that has been of keen interest to his fans for a very long time, with experts claiming that the homosexuality debate must have begun in the mid-1950s. A psychiatrist by the name Fredric Wertham wrote a book called Seduction of the Innocent in 1954, wherein he claimed that the story of Batman had the ability to stimulate homosexual fantasies among its readers. However, over the years, the creators of the caped crusader have all stated clearly that Batman and Robin have never been gay, and to think otherwise is inconsistent with who their characters are. Furthermore, over the years we have seen both Batman and Robin getting into romantic relationships with women, even more reason to dismiss the above claims.
8 Batman Once Merged With Wolverine to Become the Dark Claw
Unless you are a comic fan, you have probably never heard of Dark Claw. Dark Claw is a crime fighting superhero in the Amalgam universe, a combination of Batman and Wolverine. Dark Claw wears a black and yellow costume, and has the combined powers and abilities of Batman and Wolverine. The alias of Dark Claw is a wealthy man named Logan Wayne, who as a young man witnessed his parents' murder and spent most of his childhood in Canada. Dark Claw is a 1990s character, who never really got as famous as either Batman or Wolverine. Jim Balent, Larry Hama, and Ray McCarthy created this fictional character, who not only brings the two heroes together, but brings together DC and Marvel as well.
7 Batman Single-Handedly Kicked Darkseid’s Ass
Batman is surely one of the most dangerous members of the Justice League, despite not having any superpowers like his counterparts. Most super villains tend to look down on him because he is just a human being, but that is usually the biggest mistake they can make. Darkseid can easily clinch the title of the most badass villain in the DC universe, being a god with powers that dwarf even those of Superman. However, after the entire Justice League was unable to take Darkseid down at one point, Batman gave him a thorough beating with the help of a special Batsuit that gave him enough power to level the playing field with Darkseid. Batman also killed Darkseid with a Radion bullet at Final Crisis (2008), when Darkseid was about to consume all reality.
6 Kiefer Sutherland Was Almost Robin
Think of a Batman movie where Robin's role would be played by Kiefer Sutherland. Wouldn’t that movie be totally awesome? Weirdly enough, before the making of the 1989 Batman movie, Sutherland was offered the role of Robin, a role that would have been perfect for the young Jack Bauer. However, Sutherland declined the offer, and the role did not even make it to the final script. Sutherland must have regretted turning down the role after discovering just how cool the movie turned out to be. Since we know just how tough Sutherland was, playing the role of Jack Bauer in 24, the bad guys would not have stood a chance of winning against a team made up of Batman and Bauer; they would be in custody within the first 24 hours of committing their crimes.
5 Charlie Sheen Was Considered For the Role of Batman
Whether Charlie Sheen turned down the opportunity to become Batman or whether he was just not chosen for the role, the fact that he was one of the celebrities considered to play that role is both amazing and very interesting. Can you imagine the Charlie Sheen we know today acting as Batman? There is no doubt his casting would attract record audiences because people would be curious to find out how he would pull off such a role. Other people considered for the role include Mel Gibson, Bill Murray, Harrison Ford, Pierce Brosnan and several others. The 1989 Batman movie starred Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne and Jack Nicholson as the Joker.
4 Luke Skywalker Played the Joker
When you hear the name "Luke Skywalker", what comes to mind? I bet you start thinking about Star Wars, don’t you? Luke Skywalker is the hero in Star Wars, and he is just as famous as most of the comic book superheroes we love reading about or watching on screen. Therefore, it is possible that every time you think of Luke Skywalker you think about one of the good guys. However, the Mark Hamill, the man who plays the role of Skywalker, has played the voice of the Joker in several animated films and video games. It is hard to imagine someone who has always been a good guy acting the part of a super villain, though the Joker is one villain that people seem to love, despite him being Batman's greatest rival. Therefore, the next time you see the animated Joker on screen, remember that the voice behind the character might be one of your favorite actors of all time.
3 Ben Affleck Has Been Batman and Superman
Batman and Superman are the two most popular DC superheroes, and their popularity is so high that they can easily make the top five lists of the most popular superheroes of all universes (DC, Marvel, or any other). You find that casting the roles of superheroes the likes of Batman and Superman tends to be quite a challenge, because the actors simply have to be the best. The above is why it is very interesting that Ben Affleck is both Batman and Superman; one role he has already played and another we have yet to see him play. Affleck wore the Superman costume when he was portraying George Reeves, an actor who played Superman on TV, and he will play Batman in the upcoming 2016 movie Batman V Superman.
2 Heath Ledger Wanted to be Batman
When you want to identify the best ever performance of the Joker in any of the Batman films, it is hard not to choose Heath Ledger's performance in The Dark Knight. Despite being the villain in the film, he won so many hearts with his performance, including numerous nominations and awards such as the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He also won the Best Actor International Award at Australian Film Institute Awards in 2008, and the Best Supporting Actor for the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, the Golden Globe Awards, and the BAFTA Awards. However, the interesting thing here is that the late Heath Ledger had met with Christopher Nolan earlier on with the potential of playing the role of Bruce Wayne. Can you even begin to imagine how much we would have missed out on his performance of the Joker if he had gotten the role of the Batman instead?
1 Batman Fans Killed Robin
Have you noticed that the last few Batman movies do not have Robin in them? Well, his missing in action for a while now is because Batman's fans killed him. It is odd to say that actual people to killed a comic book character, but that is exactly what happened in the case of Robin. DC comics gave its readers the opportunity to decide the fate of Robin, and 5,343 out of the slightly more than 10,000 people who cast their votes through calling the special hotline number provided, voted for Robin's death. A small margin separated those who wanted Robin to survive and those who wanted him to die, but a fateful end to his story won the day.