Has Batman Become Too Dark?


  1. Heath,

    I had watched this video a long time ago but I've been reading many more recent Batman trades over the last month and figured I'd chime in after reading the "Black Mirror" on the weekend. First things first for me Tim Conroy will always be my Batman. I did watch both Keaton Batman movies when you could first rent them and '66 Batman was on tv but not at our house as we didn't get YTV. So the animated Batman series for me is "Batman". Anywho I don't think Batman is any darker now than he was 30+ years ago, I just find "Dark Batman" is the norm. It really hit home this weekend reading Black Mirror. I was three quarters of the way through the trade and loved it, but when I wanted to talk about it, the first person I saw was my oldest son who is 11 and I realized I couldn't it was too mature for him. Which got me to thinking when I was his age I was reading both Robin and Batman monthly, this was when Knightfall was the main storyline. I didn’t find either book at the time too mature for me (especially Robin) and it made me realize that modern Batman is no longer made for preteens, which bummed me out. When I was younger I knew of the Dark Knight returns, The Killing joke, Red Rain, and pretty much that Tales of the Dark Knight was for older readers. But Detective Comics and Batman, that was for me. Flash forward to 2011 and Black Mirror is in Detective and it’s the main storyline for about a year. Just thinking of recent trades I’ve read; Grant Morrison’s Batman and Robin, Court of Owls, they really have more of a mature tone than the 90s to even early 2003 Hush Batman. Don’t get me wrong I like the darker stories (well maybe not Morrison’ B&R) but if you’re trying to get into comics it’s like you have to wait until you’re a teenager to read them. I dunno maybe it’s just the “dad” lenses and Batman really isn’t much darker than before, but for me it just seems before you had Dark “mature” Batman and regular Batman, now it’s just Dark batman all around. Now granted the trades I read are from 7 years ago and maybe Batman “rebirth” is different. But for me I just wonder if comics can keep going with alienating younger readers from books. If you don’t start getting new readers you won’t have any reader base at all.


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