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Batman vs Superman...here we go again...
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 22, 2013 11:32 pm    Post subject: Batman vs Superman...here we go again... Reply with quote

Thanks to the announcement recently that Batman will appear in Man of Steel II there has been a major increase in the woefully idiotic debate about..Batman Vs Superman...ugh...

Most everyone knows my opinion on the subject but I'll try to clarify it one last time.

Batman cannot defeat Superman. That thing at the end of the last sentence is a period and it applies here with certainty.

I know that if I hit submit after typing this somebody will counter my statement with some kind of response that I will find vexing.

Every counter argument that I've ever heard about Batman defeating Superman starts off with the same word "IF".

That IF seems to be license to throw away all logic and reason however its used with unbridled enthusiasm.

"Batman can totally beat Superman if he got a piece of Kryptonite..."
"Batman is badass and will absolutely cream Superman if he got help from..."
"Batman is awesome and if he planned ahead 10 years in advance and came up with some really cool ideas he would totally whip Superman's ass!" (Which he did in some alternate reality comic published a while ago)
"Batman would be the underdog and we all root for underdogs so if Batman had all of our good vibes and well wishes he would slap Superman down so hard he'd be like all crushed and stuff!"
"Batman is the World's Greatest Detective and if he searched really hard he might find a way to give himself superpowers and then Superman better watch out!"
"If Batman pleaded with Superman to not turn him into a puddle and appealed to Superman's "I won't break your neck" philosophy...oh wait...never mind."

All things being equal Batman has nothing to fear from Superman and the reverse is quite logical as well so this Batman Vs Superman thing is a load of last night's half digested gas station burrito anyway.

Look I get why Batman fans want their favorite hero to be invincible but given the physics of the world established in the comics its just idiotic to keep having this discussion. I don't mean to be...well...mean about this but facts are facts.

The real Superman Batman fight wouldn't last long enough for the naked eye to detect given Superman's flash-like speed and there isn't anything particularly super about Batman aside from the fact that he's one tough customer and kicks the crap out of normal human being on a regular basis. That doesn't however mean much in this highly fictitious scenario that keeps spawning discussions over and over and over and over and...



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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I concur--any analysis of a battle between Batman and Superman typically relies on allowing Batman to plan the field of battle beforehand.

erm....ok. That is called "stacking the deck" but we'll run with it.

Telescopic and x-ray vision (which should technically be "penetration vision" but that makes people giggle so I always call it a specialized form of clairvoyance with the limitation "cannot see through lead") means that any pre-set Kryptonite would be spotted from a mile away. At that point, Superman would wisely not enter the pre-planned battlefield, instead opting to go fly out into space, grab a small asteroid, and then push in into Earth's gravity well and, well, you can tell what the end result of that would be. Presuming Batman survives the mass-driver attack, Superman flies in, grabs him, then flies him up into space. Even if he has some Kryptonite in his belt, he won't be conscious long enough to use it. At that point the fight is over.

"But Hashi--Batman could design a powered suit of armor that could let him physically match Superman!" Really? Then why doesn't he do so and use it all the time?! If this were an option for him then he would be stupid for not doing so and I thought he was supposed to be smart.

Do you want to know why Batman doesn't kill his villains? It isn't because he has taken a vow never to kill; rather, it is so that the comic book writers don't have to keep coming up with new villains all the time. Seriously, if I were a hero and I were going up against the Joker once he is defeated I would realize what a dangerous person he is and then I would either snap his neck or put a bullet in his head then cremate the remains--no more Joker. Karma be damned--he has a history of killing people so I would be doing the world a favor.

Batman is so easy to beat it is ridiculous. I take my small crew of men and we set up our criminal activity in a spot within view of a tall building. We have a victim tied to a chair with a bomb, a dead-man switch, and a gun to her head. As one guy is talking with Batman our sniper takes aim and *pow* one 50-caliber shot to the head. No more Batman. I didn't even need super powers to do it.

Anyway....fanboyz will be fanboyz and they will always defend Batman even in the face of logic. Just like Wolverine--another person so easy to beat it is ridiculous. How much does he weigh? Let's err on the side of caution and say 350 lbs, accounting for adamantium. Fine. One sufficiently-powerful telekinetic, one space suit, and he is history. Once lifted off the ground he has no leverage so his skeleton and claws instantly become useless. After that, lift him into orbit and push him towards the Sun. Once he enters the Sun's gravity well he will never return--his skeleton will remain on the solar surface until it goes nova.

I am smarter than most comic book writers, you see. More devious, too.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only way Batman could get close to taking out Supes is if he discarded all of his ethics and scruples. What does that turn him into? Lex Luthor. If Lex can't have pulled it off by now, then Bats isn't going to do it either. The only advantage Bats has over Lex is an element of surprise, and that should only work once.

One reason why I get Supes-fatigued so easily is the insufferable invulnerability to everything... except Kryptonite, and that has been old fr decades.

He is also vulnerable to bad writing, but that's a different story...

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's an angle you could take where Batman's willingness to use extreme measures could go up against Superman's morality and restraint, resulting in a Superman that holds back on actually hurting Batman (assuming Batman was not trying to kill Superman or doing anything actually evil).

If Man of Steel's Zod had not been so willing to kill innocents and forced Superman to kill him, they could have been stuck fighting each other to no purpose for decades, neither able to win because Superman would be unwilling to kill.

On the other hand Bruce Wayne is not Zod, and Superman has the ability to destroy and disable any technology Bruce might bring to bear, so it's hard to imagine such a stalemate being possible.

In The Dark Knight Returns Superman had just reconstituted his body after being caught in the explosion of a nuclear bomb, and Batman was able to face him in a small neighbourhood of Gotham pre-rigged with traps, wearing a power suit, and had help from a Kryptonite-tipped arrow fired by Green Arrow. I think it's a given that any film confrontation will take some inspiration from that one. It may be stacking the deck, but sometimes that's what a story needs to do.

(In Hush, Superman is controlled by Poison Ivy, and Batman can't beat him but uses the Kryptonite ring and some other tricks to bring him back to his senses.)

Still, I'm not sure I'm all that interested in seeing the two of them face off. Depends on how it's done, I guess.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent post Hashi...as usual.

I had a couple of Batman Vs Superman conversations since writing the original post and I'm still stunned at how Batman fans rally behind their hero to the point of being ridiculous. However I understand that all of this conjecture is in good fun and there's no reason to get too emotional about any of it its just that Batman fans are so earnest about the prospect of their guy beating down everyone else, including Batman's supposed friends.
Some of the wild scenarios I've heard are really quite elaborate and interesting to imagine and would probably make good cinema so I have to say this entire exercise has been pretty entertaining.

As far as Man of Steel 2 is concerned, especially if the film makers are trying to keep the film as grounded in reality as possible, I don't see the story featuring a Batman Superman conflict of any kind. I expect that Batman, being a very smart guy, would understand punching Superman would be like hitting an anvil with a cotton ball so he'd immediately proceed accordingly. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DukkhaWaynhim wrote:
One reason why I get Supes-fatigued so easily is the insufferable invulnerability to everything... except Kryptonite, and that has been old fr decades.


Precisely, which is why we have to correctly identify Superman's weaknesses/limitations and hand-pick the three people required to take him down. He cannot read minds, he cannot be in two places at the same time, he cannot hit what he cannot touch, he has the same vulnerability to psionics and magic that most other people have, and his nervous system runs on electric currents. Don't forget--he may be immune to terrestrial diseases but he won't be immune to Kryptonian ones.

For the first part we need either an electrokinetic or a psionicist; although I like electrokinesis I will opt for a psionicist because that gives us more options. The psionicist can either mentally stun Superman or, more insidiously, tell his brain to quit receiving input from his optic nerves--now he is blind. To be on the safe side, we would also turn off his auditory input--now he cannot hear, either. That alone renders most of his powers useless--he cannot direct his strength at things he cannot see or hear. I cannot think of any DC psis at the moment but I am certain they are out there.
Next we tap the Parasite. Don't attack him, just get in range and start sucking his power away. if this requires physical contact, then touch him long enough to steal some power then get out of the way. Wait a minute, then go back in and drain some more. At some point enough of his power should be sucked away that he becomes more vulnerable to physical harm. When that happens, use a syringe to inject a suspension of Kryptonite particles into his bloodstream.
Finally, Sinestro. He had access to the Guardian's archives at one time so he could have located Krypton's former location; his current ring might also be able to access that information. Go there and scour the remnants for evidence of any existing microbial or viral life and inject those into Superman.
Failing that, then get Black Adam. Not only is he just about Superman's equal but he has no qualms about killing.

Problem solved. There is only one comic book character whom I cannot devise a way to defeat--Dr. Manhattan. Even if you use emotional manipulation or lying to trick him somehow, he is already aware of future events and is only going through the motions of being tricked--he has no exploitable weaknesses.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sort of an innocent bystander in all this, in that I don't read comics. That also makes me uninformed, but I stick to the positive.

However, it's clear to me that the position behind aTOMiC's post is predicated on the fact that Batman vs. Superman must be a head-to-head martial-arts physical-type combat.

I don't think it's a position Batman would accept. It's not a position anyone would accept if they had to defeat someone like Superman. Why would anyone in their right minds limit themselves by battling Superman physically?

If Batman has any kind of talent -- and I am sure he does -- he'd want to bring that talent to bear on the contest, wouldn't he? This is, I think, what all the "IF" scenarios attempt to convey ... Batman trying to use his brain or his tenacity or his detective skills or his money or his something in order to make the contest NOT be solely physical.

So, in short, if your of a mind to limit Batman vs. Superman to a physical contest, it seems like a DUH. If your of a mind to not be so limited, then it's not such a DUH.

And, it's worth mentioning, DUH is boring. There's no entertainment value in watching the MoS smear the sidewalk with the DK. Heck, there's no entertainment value in watching the MoS smear anyone.

All Superman-based entertainment must include a risk that he could possibly might maybe lose. Else it's just a boring mental excercise, can he defeat Bozo #33 in 0.02 seconds, or -0.02 seconds?

So you gotta give people a break for thinking about how Batman might have a chance. Contrived? Yes. But what they are contriving is a way for it to be interesting.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wayfriend is right about Batman not taking on Supes physically. And Hashi is wrong to call it "stacking the deck." It's what Batman does. He once told the Question that physical fighting is about (iirc) 4% of his activities. (Q: "You and I have a LOT to talk about!" Bats: "I doubt it." heh) Batman is not only as perfect a physical specimen of humanity as anyone; one who has been trained by the best fighters in the world. He's also the world's greatest detective. He's the smartest man in the world. Not planning everything out as much as possible, and taking every advantage he can, would be idiotic. Comic books are a visual medium as much as they are about the stories. They aren't novels or short stories. So they will always be about POW and CRASH, and cool fights. And Bats can do that. But comics shouldn't ONLY be about those things. They should allow Batman to do what he does best: Think. Plan. Win.

All that being said, Superman would wipe the floor with Batman every time. No question. We've seen some good fights, where Batman does this and that to Superman. Bombs, acid, energies, even kryptonite. But then Superman says "ENOUGH!!", and bitch-slaps him. And that's how it would go every single time.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be a little more speculative on the possible storylines, I had guessed after watching Man of Steel that the sequel would involve Lexcorp (which exists in the movie, we see a prominently labelled truck) getting the cleanup job to fix Metropolis and Lex Luthor thereby getting hold of Kryptonian technology.

What if it was Waynecorp instead?
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fist and Faith wrote:
He's the smartest man in the world.


Untrue--Batman is not the smartest person in the world. He is, however, one of the most widely-skilled people in the world and thus most people who try to oppose him wind up underestimating him to their detriment. Even other superheroes sometimes find themselves wondering how Batman did something.

Now I am having a "duh" moment. Dr. Fate is the one who would be tapped to take out Superman--a simple dimensional portal would do the trick and wouldn't even require fighting or killing anyone.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Batman is the smartest person in the world. Or at least as smart as anyone. Never misses a clue, and guesses what the puzzle is long before having all the pieces. Incredible strategies, short and long term. Extraordinary inventions. If his memory isn't eidetic, it's darned amazing. He may not be the very top of the charts in every category of intelligence, but he's top in some, and very close in all.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't know this was a question.. because there is no doubt that batman is a better super hero.

first of all superman is basically invincible.. he is way overpowered and basically has no limitations...

Flying
super strength
heat vision
super speed
x-ray vision
invincibility
freeze breath (does he really need this?)

as a kid I never really liked superman because... well I guess he was just to super. It never mattered to me who would win in a fight between them.. the winner of that fight wouldn't be determined the better hero their sacrifices determine that. and superman being invincible doesn't have much to sacrifice other than a lame reporter. Theres not much to think about with superman.. I always remember feeling suspense because batman is mortal and has limitations.. with superman we all know it comes down to where the green rock is and who has it. Batman may not be the stronger of the two but he is no-doubt the better

plus the new batmans movies put the new superman one to shame.

just my opinions <3
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, that's my issue with Superman, he's invincible. I think that's also why he'll never have a popular movie franchise. Making him emo isn't really the right answer either.

Anyone see the Jack Reacher movie? He harkens back to an earlier Lone Ranger paradigm - the fantasy of someone who mysteriously shows up, solves your problem, and leaves. Reacher, in the movie, does everything flawlessly, and has no weaknesses. No one cares what he's thinking about, what his issues with being human are. There's no personal story arc whatsover. What's important about Reacher is his effect on others.

That's the right answer for Superman, I feel. That's what they made him invincible for. (The latin word for superhuman is the same as the word for divine. So: Homo Adamantis ex Machina.)

Which brings us back to Batman vs. Superman. If Superman is the Lone Ranger, who appears, rights wrongs, and leaves, then a Batman vs. Superman plot makes no sense. They only way it makes sense is to have Superman not be the Lone Ranger. So it falls apart by definition.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a natural conflict between the characters, it's just that Superman's powers make having them fight not quite work.

Superman is the incorruptible, the symbol of moral purity; Batman is the Dark Knight, willing to be a criminal in order to fight criminals. It's always natural that Superman would disapprove of Batman's methods, and probably oppose him until Batman somehow earned his trust.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I miss the pre-Crisis days when Batman and Superman were incredibly good friends, and worked together in World's Finest. There were some great stories there, showing how much they meant to each other, and how their powers/abilities complimented each other's.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hashi Lebwohl wrote:


Now I am having a "duh" moment. Dr. Fate is the one who would be tapped to take out Superman--a simple dimensional portal would do the trick and wouldn't even require fighting or killing anyone.[/color]


add magic users in general to the list then. Wotan, either of the Faust family. Abra Kadabra, Black Alice, fill in your own bad guy magic user.

how many teleporters are there in the DC Universe? Warp is the only one I can think of.

a someone mentioned Black Adam. he combines magic and top level strength, invulnerability, flight.

Composite Superman should have been able to beat Superman. combining the powers of many LSH members. I did a thread about it before.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Composite_Superman
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayfriend wrote:
Anyone see the Jack Reacher movie? He harkens back to an earlier Lone Ranger paradigm - the fantasy of someone who mysteriously shows up, solves your problem, and leaves.


Was that Tom Cruise? After Ghost Protocol but before Oblivion? I meant to see that one but missed it; I'll have to go get it from Movie Trading Company (one of my favorite stores).

I'm Murrin wrote:
Superman is the incorruptible, the symbol of moral purity; Batman is the Dark Knight, willing to be a criminal in order to fight criminals.


I am uncertain whether I like the idea of Superman being a moral paragon as much as i dislike the idea of Batman being "a necessary evil". I suppose it does work, though, since superheroes are our modern myths--the stories that define us as a culture.
I suppose, though, that I simply have a different idea about superheroes and their villains. If I suddenly gained superhuman abilities I wouldn't think of myself as human any more--my only identity would be my super identity. *shrug* Of course, in reality--*laugh* "reality" and "superheroes"--the emergence of super abilities would lead to the world being dominated by supers in less than 50 years.


sgt.null wrote:
add magic users in general to the list then. Wotan, either of the Faust family. Abra Kadabra, Black Alice, fill in your own bad guy magic user.

how many teleporters are there in the DC Universe? Warp is the only one I can think of.

a someone mentioned Black Adam. he combines magic and top level strength, invulnerability, flight.


I did--he is the perfect choice to oppose Superman. The only drawback to dealing with Black Adam, though, is that even if you make a deal with him he will break it if it serves his own ends and you can never fully trust him--he will always betray you at some point.

Teleportation is a rare power but one of my favorite ones--you cannot capture or detain a teleporter, as long as they are conscious. Exoteleports are even better--*bamf* the bad guy who used to be threatening to kill someone is now a couple of miles off the coast in the ocean. Let him swim back to shore, if he can. More cruelly, *bamf* a couple of miles straight up and let gravity take care of business. This is probably why writers don't like it--it can resolve conflict too easily with no *pow* *biff* or *sock*.
Telepathy is more common and it is only the failure of comic-book writers that telepaths aren't used more effectively. Want to kill Batman? *poof* One mental attack that puts his brain to sleep, then just walk up and slit his throat. Problem solved. If Superman is susceptible to sleep attacks then knock him out and have a field day until he awakens.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hashi wrote:

Teleportation is a rare power but one of my favorite ones--you cannot capture or detain a teleporter, as long as they are conscious. Exoteleports are even better--*bamf* the bad guy who used to be threatening to kill someone is now a couple of miles off the coast in the ocean. Let him swim back to shore, if he can. More cruelly, *bamf* a couple of miles straight up and let gravity take care of business. This is probably why writers don't like it--it can resolve conflict too easily with no *pow* *biff* or *sock*.

Dr. Doom once had Nightcrawler in a cell. No windows or anything. The point was that he had no idea where it was safe to teleport to. His solution was to teleport as far as he could, which was about two miles, straight up, and hope that put him somewhere in the sky. Which it did.

Jumper was a fun movie. But Nightcrawler tearing up the White House in the beginning of the second X-Men movie was about the most incredible thing I've ever seen.

Hashi wrote:

Telepathy is more common and it is only the failure of comic-book writers that telepaths aren't used more effectively. Want to kill Batman? *poof* One mental attack that puts his brain to sleep, then just walk up and slit his throat. Problem solved. If Superman is susceptible to sleep attacks then knock him out and have a field day until he awakens.
Straczynski did an absolutely amazing redo of the Squadron Supreme several years ago, called Supreme Power. Nighthawk (Batmam) defeats Hyperion (Superman) with some mechanical device that mentally convinced Hyperion that Nighthawk's punch could knock him down. Punch landed, Hyperion fell. Heh
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fist and Faith wrote:
Straczynski did an absolutely amazing redo of the Squadron Supreme several years ago, called Supreme Power.


Everything JMS writes is pure gold. Not only should be be given the screenwriter job for a Wonder Woman movie, but Justice League movie, as well. After that we need a director who can handle action but someone other than Mr. Snyder--his style is okay but we need a different feel. I would recommend Timur Bekmambetov.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Superman can simply kill Batman with a pinpoint use of heat vision. while standing in Chicago while Bats is in Gotham.
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