How Batman beat Superman

By April 3, 2015Philosophy, Ramblings
Harley Quinn Holding a bat

Batman beat superman, and what it can mean for you

How Batman Beat Superman

When I think of Superman, I think of an ideal.

A delightfully American ideal.

One where an immigrant can come to our country, starting from the bottom as an outcast, a pariah, and basically foreign to our way of life and still rise so high to accomplish great things. In the case of Superman, he has saved the world, many times over.

I think of white collar criminals, like Lex Luthor.

When I think of Batman, I think of something wholly different.

I think of the blue collar criminals.

I think of seedy underworlds, and sociopaths beyond the pale of reason.

Archetypes, if you will, a culmination of the worst we can imagine.

A reflection that shows us that even the most abused person will sit there and take it, perhaps because leaving is so damn difficult.

Harley Quinn Holding a bat


What is the point?

If we believe Bill, then Clark Kent is a caricature of the human race as seen by an outsider. Something to be saved. Bumbling around, hanging out without really thinking.

Batman, however, is human. He isn’t even super human. Intelligence can be gained. Money can be gained (and in Bruce Wayne’s case, it gave him a clever ploy to lead a double life and cool gadgets to play with) and lost. So how exactly does Batman beat Superman?

Working Smart vs. Working Hard

Batman works smart. Superman has the luxury of working hard. Batman, being a mortal, does not.

Once again, we can go back to our superficial ideals. It is touted that we can accomplishing anything by working hard. We can become Superman through trying really hard.

But a closer look tells us just how fallacious this idea really is.

Step over to a local fast food restaurant. Many of the employees work hard. Many of them still get paid next to nothing.

Is this smart? No. Is it necessary? Maybe. Is it sustainable? I don’t think it is for very long.

This is not a value judgment against anyone. I want everyone I see to be doing what they believe to be the best thing is for themselves at that particular time.

But through the lessons of the Batman, we can learn how to beat Superman too.

When Batman beat Superman

My favorite instance occurred courtesy of one Frank Miller.

Here is how it went down, according to the wikipedia entry:

Superman tries to reason with Batman, but Batman uses his technological inventions and mastery of hand-to-hand combat to fight him. During the battle, Superman compromises Batman’s exoframe, while Queen shoots a kryptonite-tipped arrow to greatly weaken Superman. Batman suddenly has a heart attack, apparently dying. Alfred Pennyworth destroys the Batcave and Wayne Manor, dying of a stroke, exposing Batman as Bruce Wayne, whose fortune has disappeared. After Wayne’s funeral, it is revealed that his death was staged using his own chemical concoction that can suspend his vital life signs. Clark Kent attends the funeral and winks at Robin after hearing Wayne’s heartbeat resume. Sometime afterward, Bruce Wayne leads Robin, Queen, and the rest of his followers into the caverns beyond the Batcave and prepares to continue his war on crime. He plans to assemble an army to bring order back to the world.

Cool, yeah?

So what do we gain from this fight?

We know that if we put the two together on a flat area with no distractions, Superman would win. He IS the Man of Steel, after all. And Bats is just a man.

Yes, Batman had Kryptonite that he used to make an arrow for Queen to fire at Superman. Is this cheating?

No. It is using every advantage possible to achieve your outcome. And Batman’s outcome was for the good of everyone.


What can we learn from how Batman beat Superman? I think the take away is simple. Very rarely in life are opportunities given to us. Not to say that it NEVER happens, but we can’t rely on it. Given his intelligence and adaptability, Bruce would have likely been able to make the money to fund his crime somehow. He was that smart. And much like that, we have to create our own opportunities.

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About Peter Baker

In addition to being a fan of music and heavy metal, I am an avid player of table top RPGs, and I am a personal trainer in Tampa, FL as well as a graduate of the prestigious University of South Florida. Formerly, I was a prefect for House Slytherin.

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