The 75 Best Batman Moments
by DocLathropBrown

Batman is positively geriatric now. 75 years of busting heads and he shows no signs of slowing down. The record shows he took the blows, and in a life such lived, he did it has way. Here’s my pick for the 75 greatest moments the Caped Crusader has had up to this point, presented in no particular order. Up to the greatest moment, that is. Sources culled from television, film, video games and of course, the comics themselves.

Batman Pummels Riddler and his Gang Alone 

From: “Give ‘Em the Axe” (Batman TV Series, 1966)

            Robin is captured by the Riddler after he thought he’d killed both Caped Crusaders. Searching for a rare lost treasure in a museum store room (decorated with medieval torture devices), Batman arrives. Using his silhouette to frighten the Riddler and his gang, Batman then leaps into action alone while Robin is tied to the Rack. Unusual for a fight from the television series, the environment is heavily shadowed, and it’s one of Batman’s only solo fights in the show. Toward the end of the fight, the Riddler starts swinging a broadsword wildly at Batman, which our hero wrestles away from him with little trouble. Definitely a highlight from the show’s excellent first season.

Batman Details His Origin

From: “The Fear” (The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians, 1985)

            Although he’d been in media outside the comic books since 1943, Batman’s origin had never been revealed outside his home format. That changed due to writer Alan Burnett in the last season of “The Superfriends.” Set against the backdrop of the Scarecrow exploring Batman’s apparent fear of Crime Alley, Bruce decides to reveal why the place has an effect on him to Robin and Wonder Woman. Adam West voices Batman here, and in a nice treat, West gets to finally play the role straight. West gives a solid performance and infuses the storytelling with as much sincerity as he can. There are better depictions of the origin story—but for the novelty of West getting to wax serious, this telling makes the list.


A Reflection

From: “The Dark Knight Returns” (The Dark Knight #1, 1986)

            Defeating the wayward Harvey Dent, the aged Batman assumes that for his terrorist acts, Dent must have recreated his scars to be “Two-Face” once again, going back on his Wayne-funded plastic surgery. Sadly, Bruce realizes that Dent has done no such thing, and learns that Dent may not look it, but he’s every bit the monster his acts would betray. And in that fleeting moment, Batman has a scary thought: perhaps he’s not too far off from his former friend’s own madness.


Batman’s First Batarang Save

From: “Batman Versus the Vampire (Part II)” (Detective Comics #32, 1939)

            Trapped in a pit by the vampire called “The Monk,” Batman is surrounded by vicious wolves and only has enough gas pellets to knock them out until dawn. Desperate and running out of time, Batman attaches a rope to his ‘Baterang’ (as it was called in this, its debut story), using it to narrowly escape. The first of many, many times it will save his life.


Bruce Wayne Suits Up Again

From: “Disappearing Inque” (Batman Beyond, 1999)

            The new Batman, Terry McGinnis, has been captured by the shapeshifting assassin named Inque, so the original, a now mid-‘70s retired Bruce Wayne, must come rescue him. Bruce wields a hidden set of strength-enhancing armor under his clothes. With a great big swell of Shirley Walker’s theme from Batman: The Animated Series, Wayne leaps back into the role of Batman if only briefly. Enough time to help Terry get free to defeat Inque yet again.


Bruce Says Goodbye to Alfred

From: Batman & Robin, 1997

            Dying from an incurable disease, Alfred Pennyworth is bedridden. Unable to stay by his side due to his responsibilities as both Wayne and Batman, Bruce sits with Alfred a minute, sharing his regret at being unable to save him. At this rate, Alfred will most likely be dead by the time Bruce returns. Clooney and Gough bring genuine emotion to the scene, which ends with Bruce saying “I love you, old man.”


Batman Taunts The Joker

From: Batman: Mad Love, 1995

            Bruce Timm and Paul Dini’s origin story for Harley Quinn takes an even darker turn when The Joker berates and abuses Quinn for capturing Batman and putting him into a death trap, without Mr. J’s permission. Trying to escape, The Joker is tracked down by Batman, who berates him in return, just to get his goat. For a rare moment, Batman gets to be cruel back to his grinning foe.

Batman Flattens Two-Face’s Thugs

From: Batman Forever, 1995

            The best fight yet in a Batman film, Val Kilmer himself performs this tightly choreographed masterwork of action. Fighting multiple thugs at once and using gadgets to outwit or incapacitate his foes, this is the closest any Batman movie action has come to capturing the fighting style of the “Arkham” series video games.       


The Hugo Strange Teaser-Trailer

From: Batman: Arkham City, 2011

Not featured in the actual game, but instead a standalone teaser for the game itself, Batman’s oldest recurring arch-nemesis interrogates one of his armed guards about their fight to capture Batman, with disastrous results. Flashing back to the fight, Batman completely manhandles the soldiers, giving as well as he gets. Ending with Hugo monologing about knowing Bruce’s identity, the teaser set the bar high for Hugo Strange. Sadly the game failed to deliver on this teaser’s promise in regards to Strange himself.


Batman Interrogates Thug in the ‘Bat’s Cave’

From: “The Bat’s Cave” (Chapter II of Batman, 1943)

            This first screen appearance of Batman invented the Batcave, and immediately puts it to cinematic use as Batman and Robin grill a henchman about his boss’ activities. Lewis Wilson delivers decently as Batman, and although cheap, the moment captures a hint of the comics of the time, with its pulpy production values. It’s a fun thing to see, considering it’s a Batman film appearance from 71 years ago!


The Death of (Earth-Two) Batman

From: “Only Legends Live Forever! (Part II)” (Adventure Comics #462, 1979)

            “Earth-Two” is the designation for the universe of DC heroes that were being published during the 1940s. The post 1950s heroes were designated “Earth-One,” so this Batman is the same one who started in 1939. Growing older and marrying Catwoman, Bruce retired when she was killed in action. However, a mutated monster of a man comes out of nowhere threatening to destroy Gotham if Commissioner Wayne doesn’t surrender himself for murdering. Bruce instead gets back into costume one last time as the Batman. Confronting the man, Bruce goes out as he lived, heroically protecting the citizens of Gotham City.


“I’m the Worst Nightmare You’ve Ever Had”

From: “The Dark Knight Triumphant” (The Dark Knight #2, 1986)

            “…The kind that made you wake up screaming for your mother” is how the rest goes. Perhaps Batman’s greatest interrogation ever, the elder Batman drags a member of the Mutant gang up to the highest point in Gotham City, covering his eyes and revealing the thug’s predicament slowly. Without doubt, the Mutant told Batman whatever he wanted.


Who Made Who?

From: BATMAN, 1989

            In Tim Burton’s 1989 epic, a young Joker is the one who murdered Bruce Wayne’s parents as a child. When Batman realizes this, it’s on! Keaton delivers a performance dripping with satisfaction at having gotten his hands on the man who ruined his childhood. Batman proceeds to mop the floor with the Joker, who spits back at him: “You made me, remember?” Batman fires back with a point about how they’re even. Batman and the Joker are perfect flip sides in this universe.


The Explosive Gel Knockout

From: Batman: Arkham Asylum, 2009

            The Joker mutates himself into a deformed, powerful beast in order to trample Batman. Titan, the formula that does it, is made of an advanced strain of Venom, that which pumps Bane up. Refusing to yield to the frustrated Joker, Batman loads his fist up with a liquid C4 and belts the Clown Prince right in the kisser. The explosion knocks the villain on his ass and defeats him yet again.

Mastering the Wall-Jump

From: BATMAN: The Video Game (Nintendo Entertainment System, 1990)

            Although not sharing much in common with the Tim Burton film on which it’s based, the game is nonetheless excellent. A tight-controlling-yet-difficult game, players must master a special move called the “Wall Jump,” which allows Batman to rebound between walls and off of platforms, not unlike Ryu Hayabusa of Ninja Gaiden fame. Once players can pull it off, Batman’s an acrobatic machine that can’t be stopped, at least as long as they player is persistent.


“What About Escalation?”

From: Batman Begins, 2005

            Meeting with a newly-promoted Lt. James Gordon, Batnan notices the new spotlight for calling him by, and the two chat about what this all means for Gotham. Gordon worries about crime getting worse because of Batman’s theatricality, and sure-enough, Gordon turns over a special card, heralding the arrival of a new insanity. “I never said ‘thank you,’ Gordon says. Batman tells him he’ll never have to.


The Beating He Deserves

From: “Die Laughing” (Batman #496, 1993)

            In pursuit of the kidnapped Mayor Kroll, Batman chases The Joker and the Scarecrow (the two who did it) into an underwater road tunnel. Desperate to get away from the Bat, Scarecrow gasses Batman with his trademark fear toxin. But instead of making him afraid, all Batman sees is the murder of Jason Todd at the Joker’s hands (which was only a few years prior). Having never given the Joker his comeuppance for that event, Batman grabs the Harlequin of Hate in his fear-gassed haze and proceeds to give him what might be the worst beating the villain’s ever had. By the time he’s through, The Joker’s face is a mass of bloody flesh.


Batmobile to Batboat

From: Batman: The Movie, 1966

            Batman and Robin have deduced that the boat they were chasing earlier on the high seas (via the Batcopter, no less) was a mirage, and now they’ve got to go back out there and find out where it came from. They book it to the Batmobile, and then blast down to a secluded waterfront dock and depart in the Batboat, while the score by Nelson Riddle delivers a full-thrust adventure tune. High adventure on the high seas makes this sequence an exciting addition to Batman film canon.


Operating Table

From: “The Dark Knight Triumphant” (The Dark Knight #2, 1986)

            Defeated once in battle by the Mutant gang leader, Batman recovers and plans a counter-attack. He lures all of the gang’s members to a prime location and has them watch the rematch. Fighting smarter this time and not trying to match the brute’s savagery, Batman takes him apart, piece-by-piece. Finally ending with a devastating series of limb breaks while detailing that “it’s not a mudhole,” but instead an operating table. “And I’m the surgeon,” Batman grimly concludes.


The Interrogation Room

From: The Dark Knight, 2008

            District Attorney Harvey Dent has been kidnapped by The Joker. And he isn’t talking. When Commissioner Gordon leaves the cell and the lights go on, Batman is there, and after a brief dialogue, in which the Joker taunts and teases Batman about his own ethics and insanity, he reveals that Dent and Dent’s fiancée are kidnapped, and both rigged to die at the same time, with only time to save one. Batman starts to demolish the clown, but to no avail. The Joker’s too damn happy to yield to the pain. It’s all part of the plan.


Batman Shames Batman

From “A Better World (Part II)” (Justice League, 2003)

            An alternate universe sees the Justice League sanitize the world to their ends, eliminating strife but also free will. When the League from a universe without such acts collides with those Justice Lords, only Batman tangles with one of them: himself. The two battle with action and wits. “You grabbed power!” Batman shouts. “With that power,” the Justice Lord replies, “No 8 year old boy will ever lose his parents to some punk with a gun.” Batman yields. Later on, Batman turns to his overlord self and makes a point: “Mom and Dad. They’d be so proud of you.” With that, the Justice Lord Batman finally, for the first time in a long time, feels regret.


“We’re The Same.”

From: Batman Returns, 1992

            Out for revenge, Selina Kyle, in her other identity as Catwoman, bares down on the man who tried to kill her: millionaire Max Schrek. Batman intervenes, trying to curb Selina’s dark side by revealing his love. Trying to redeem himself in the process, Batman makes a sobering parallel. “We’re the same. Split, right down the center.” He removes his mask, a gesture of humility and vulnerability. Catwoman can’t let go of her dark side to easily, though. “I just couldn’t live with myself. So don’t pretend this is a happy ending!”

Tim Ends the Clown Prince

From: Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, 2000

            Captured, tortured and brainwashed for three weeks into being a “Joker Junior,” Tim Drake is being coerced into killing Batman by the Joker. “Go on! Do it!” The grinning gargoyle insists. Drake, still possessing a glimmer of sanity instead turns the gun onto the Joker and fires. The spear catches the clown in his chest, blasting him off his feet and onto his back. With his last breath, the monster insists “That’s not funny…” before keeling over. Tim, driven to tears, falls into a heap in Batgirl’s arms, laughing madly.



From: “Hi-Diddle-Riddle!” (Batman TV Series, 1966)

            Embodying the kind of intentionally goofy camp comedy the TV series was going for, the first episode sees Batman go into a club for information about the Riddler, but insists that he doesn’t “wish to attract attention.” His orange juice (the ‘Batman special’) drugged, Batman engages in his own dance with one of the Riddler’s hench girls, a moment later collapsing onto the floor when he realizes his drink has been “Doped!” One of the zaniest, but also most iconic Batman moments.


Whimpering, Begging, Crawling 

From: “Death Strikes at Midnight and Three!” (DC Special Series #15, 1978)

            A rare illustrated prose story sees a murdered prosecutor being avenged by the Dark Knight Detective. Batman races to save a blind witness to the doings of drug czar Milo Lewes. Lewes tries to murder the Bat and the witness, but to no avail. As the story ends and the drug kingpin is taking off in his private jet, he waxes poetically about his cunning, believing he has succeeded. The pilot’s announcement is actually from the Caped Crusader. In the end, Lewes is left face to face with the grim vigilante, too scared to be any longer arrogant.


Descent into Mystery

From: BATMAN, 1989

            Gotham City is in a panic. The Joker has poisoned several chemical types secretly and, when mixed, will kill the unsuspecting victims with a grin. But the Batman has cracked the Joker’s poison pattern, and he’s bringing Vicki Vale, the only journalist he can trust, to the Batcave to give her the information. Musically tense and visually breathtaking, this sequence delivers a moment that’s meant to be felt. Gothic, operatic, romantic and mysterious, the descent into mystery is easily one of the most iconic Batman moments.


Eradicating His One Rule

From: Batman: Crimson Mist, 1999

            The third in a trilogy of stories where Batman first fights and then becomes a vampire; the second story saw Bruce struggle against his newly darkened heart, only to give in to the bloodlust. In the third book, he is resurrected and no longer able to fight his nature, and yet, being Bruce Wayne, still struggles with his conscience, hating what he is though he’s unable to stop. Desperate to maintain some level of ethics, he spends his time protecting his city nonetheless, feeding on confirmed evildoers. Finally having had enough of the rogue’s gallery, he enters Arkham Asylum and systematically feeds on each villain, making sure to decapitate them afterward so they don’t return vampirically, like him.


 A Fight To The Death, Then?”

From: “Over the Edge” (The New Batman Adventures, 1998)

            During a battle with the Scarecrow, Batgirl dies. With her last breath, she reveals to her father, Commissioner Gordon, her identity. Having never known and now enraged, Gordon goes on a manhunt for Batman; deducing his true identity as Bruce Wayne, Gordon is relentless. Being forced out of office for his daughter’s vigilante activity, Jim decides to go all-out and releases Bane to trap the Bat. With nothing to live for and a heavy heart, Batman prepares to battle Bane to the death, and it surely is an epic confrontation.


Taking the Fight to Bane

From: “Better the Devil You Know” (Detective Comics #666, 1993)

            In a rare moment of cunning, Jean-Paul Valley (one-time assassin Azrael and then-Batman) releases Bane’s three closest men from jail with a vague note marked “B,” which they assume to be from Bane. Jean-Paul trails them back to Bane’s hideout, and the battle is joined. Bane is cocky and will not acknowledge the new Batman’s skills; but Jean-Paul can give as good as he gets. They begin to mince words: “I was born to this role,” Bane asserts, “Condemned before my first cries of life! The world is my prison. I will rule it or die.” Not to be outdone, Jean-Paul fires back: “Then that will be your sentence: Death.” It’s an intense fight, punctuated by the pressure on Valley, as the real Batman fell before the brute… can he possibly win the war for Gotham?


The Death of the Joker

From: “Hunt the Dark Knight” (The Dark Knight #3, 1986)

            “How many people have I killed,” The Batman thinks, “by letting you live?” It is this question that powers their final confrontation. Neither pulling any punches, Batman cripples the Joker while in the midst of deliberately trying to end him. The Joker gloats that they’ll kill him for it, and he decides to make it worse on the Masked Manhunter. With what’s left of his bodily control, the Joker shifts his neck, finishing the job and finishing his own life, with the new police commissioner hot behind, Batman bleeds out, with a murder finally pinned upon his chest.


Explosively Entertaining!

From: Batman Returns, 1992

            Batman thwarts a group of hoods from the Red Triangle Circus Gang. One of them carried a ticking bomb on his waist. Taking it out of their crazed hands, Batman carries it along until he comes to the circus gang’s strongman. “Go ahead and hit me.” The strongman commands. Batman does and it doesn’t faze the brute, in fact it makes him laugh. Batman looks down, the strongman’s gaze follows… and the bomb is on his waist! Batman gives a wicked smile and knocks him over into a nearby manhole. As The Batman walks away, the bomb goes off. A fitting end for his kind.


“You’re Not Batman!!”

From: Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, 2000

            Imbued with the knowledge of all of the Bat-family’s fighting styles, The Joker is mopping the floor with Terry McGinnis, the new Batman. Using his wits, Terry shuts out the lights and takes refuge in the darkness, deciding to mess with the Clown Prince’s head. “You make me want to laugh, but only because you’re kind of pathetic.” McGinnis laughs and the Joker goes into a rage. “I thought the Joker always wanted to make Batman laugh?” Terry asks. “You’re not Batman!!” the Joker screams, nailing him with explosives. In his last moment, the Joker strangles the teenage hero, only for McGinnis to take him out.


He Doesn’t Like Guns

From: “With Friends Like These…” (The Untold Legend of the Batman #2, 1980)

            In the 1970s and 1980s, Batman seemed a bit tightly-wound in his vengeful nature. And no moment shows that off like this beautiful Jim Aparo piece. Looking for information and denied, the Batman flies into a rage when a punk pulls a .44 on him… a rage that the punk won’t ever forget.


“Dear Penguin…”

From: Batman Returns, 1992

            Wanting symbolic vengeance, the Penguin has sent his gang to kidnap all first-born sons of Gotham, plotting to drown them in toxic waste; when hearing of it, the Batman naturally interjects. Celebrating this mad plot joyously, the Penguin is interrupted by the gang’s monkey, who brings a note. “Dear Penguin: the children regret they are unable to attend. –Batman.” The angry scream that follows is iconic.


Dynamic Duo Vs. The United Underworld

From: Batman: The Movie, 1966

            In the most high-scale and lavish fight the 1960s Batman crew ever created, there is mayhem on the high seas en masse. Clever staging and rousing music make this one of the more fun fights in a Batman film. Where else can you see Batman sword fight the Penguin with an umbrella?



From: “The Case of the Chemical Syndicate” (Detective Comics #27, 1939)

            A secret partnership to buy a chemical factory-gone sour was the Batman’s very first case, and one that ended as darkly as his black cloak. Before he was interested in enforcing the law, he enforced justice above all.


Batman Vs. Deathstroke

From: Batman: Arkham Origins, 2013

            One of the best boss fights in any Batman video game, the world’s deadliest assassin engages the Dark Knight in hopes of winning a 50 million dollar bounty that crime lord Black Mask has placed on the Bat’s head. Deathstroke constantly counters the player’s attacks, and Batman must counter back. Itchy trigger fingers and button-mashing will end the match—in Deathstroke’s favor. Players must be as patient as the Dark Knight himself to win the battle.



From: “The Dark Knight Returns” (The Dark Knight #1, 1986)

            Time is running out. Two-Face has planned something and Batman needs to know what. Pushing the limits of his ethics, Batman intimidates the hapless thug through a window, and when the punk complains about his civil rights, Batman reminds him just how far outside the law he operates. An iconic exchange, and one of the most badass Batman moments.


Vengeance and the Soul

From: Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, 1993

            Having just lost his love Andrea Beaumont to her own inner-demons, Batman laments his inability to save her. “I don’t think she wanted to be saved, sir” Alfred tells Bruce, “Vengeance blackens the soul.” Nobody, he notes, could have brought her back. Noticing a glint high in a Batcave wall, Bruce runs up to find Andrea’s locket, left for him. She has survived, but doesn’t want what Bruce can give her. A crushing cinematic moment.


Sympathy For a Snowman

From: “Heart of Ice” (Batman: The Animated Series, 1992)

            This episode won the show its first Emmy award. In a rare moment, Batman empathizes with his quarry. “I saw what happened to your wife,” Batman intones to the vengeful Victor Fries; “I’m sorry.” “I’m beyond emotions,” He replies, now Mr. Freeze. “They’ve been frozen dead in me.” Freeze wants to end the man who took his wife and his health, no matter the casualties. For a normal life, Freeze states, “Oh yes… I’d kill for that.” Though he must be stopped, Batman can’t help but feel for the man.


“He stole my balloons!”

From: BATMAN, 1989

            The Joker, like Lucifer himself, has lured the citizens of Gotham to a midnight parade with promises of riches. Once there, though, he unleashes his Smylex gas, enough gas to cover and kill half of Gotham City. The Batman arrives to save to too-trusting citizens with his custom jet, the Batwing. Demolishing the Joker’s plans by cutting and towing away the poison-filled balloons; the Joker finally has had enough of Batsy’s ‘wonderful toys.’ In frustration, the Clown Prince shoots his right hand man. A little murder soothes the soul.


Batman Fights the Children of the Night

From: The Batman Vs. Dracula, 2005

            Dracula has risen, this time in Gotham City. Slowly he has been overtaking the town, and when Batman finally deduces his hideout, he goes to battle with a cure in tow. When he arrives, he’s aghast at the army before him. Nobody said it would be easy… he goes to work, in one of the coolest and best animated fights Batman has yet been apart of.


Quite Revealing

From: “The Origin of Batman” (Batman #47, 1948)

            One of the most powerful twists ever in a Batman story, it’s surprising it emerged in the bland (for Batman) 1940s. Having finally identified the murderer of his parents (he always had a face, but no name) as Joe Chill, Batman campaigns to have him jailed for the murders, but he cannot prove Chill did it. Taking a major gamble, Batman outs himself as Wayne to Chill, who promptly freaks out; he can’t deny the deed now since the man hunting him is his witness. Running to his men for help, they angrily gun Chill down for having created the Batman. Justice is served.


Saving the Riddler Hostages

From: Batman: Arkham City, 2011

            One of the strongest parts of the game came from solving and finding the Riddler’s assorted clues, all in the pursuit of saving a kidnapped medical team. Nygma has placed the hostages in increasingly twisted and dangerous, labyrinthine death traps. To the Riddler’s frustration, players must best them all, and eventually take down the twisted puzzler himself.


Turning Down Redemption

From: BATMAN, 1989

            Vicki Vale has deduced the identity of the Batman, and joins with Alfred to try to get Bruce to stop his crusade before he gets himself killed. Why does he do it? “Because nobody else can,” Wayne assures Vale. In the end, Vale wants to know if Bruce will even try to have a relationship with her. “I’d like to,” he replies, shifting into business thoughts: “But he’s out there right now. And I’ve gotta go to work.” Wayne goes to transform again into the dread Batman, and by the film’s end, it’s clear that Vale is ready to move on because Bruce wasn’t.



From: Batman Forever, 1995

            Using his intellect, Edward Nygma devised a way to read men’s minds, which leads to his discovery of Bruce Wayne’s deepest secret. Invading Wayne Manor on Halloween night with Two-Face, the Riddler uses an arsenal of explosives to destroy the Batcave, Batmobile and Batsuits, leaving only Bruce Wayne left to finish off. Never before has a film Batman been so vulnerable.


The Lesser of Evils?

From: Batman: Crimson Mist, 1999

            The Batman fell into darkness. Tempted by the bloodlust, he sank his teeth into the Joker, finishing him off. Determined not to go any further, he instructs Commissioner Gordon and Alfred to stake him and end his potential evil. But when a new crime wave hits Gotham, something that cannot be stopped conventionally, Alfred revives Wayne as a last resort, but he’s now an insane monster. As much as it will be a struggle for Wayne to hold onto his humanity, it will be more of a struggle for Gotham to survive him.


Permissions Revoked

From: The Dark Knight Rises, 2012

            Spine restored and time running out, Batman returns to Gotham to confront Bane and end his plot to blow Gotham sky high. Having had enough of the mumbling warlord’s antics, Batman disables his breathing mask and sounds pounding on his foe. “Tell me where the trigger is,” Batman growls, echoing Bane’s earlier statement: “and then… you have my permission to die.”


A Desperate Plea

From: Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, 1993

            Torn between his obsessive compulsion to become the vigilante he vowed and his desire for a happy, normal life, Bruce Wayne comes to his parents’ graveside in an oppressive downpour. “I don’t want to let you down, honest…” He begs, “But it just doesn’t hurt so bad anymore. You can understand that, can’t you?” And yet, the tomb is silent. “I know I made a promise… but I didn’t see this coming. I didn’t count on being happy.” Andrea Beaumont, the symbol of his happiness is there, watching the sad display. “Maybe they sent me.” She says, embracing Wayne in her arms 


Scattering Like Roaches 

From: Batman Forever, 1995

            When wayward, vengeful Dick Grayson steals the Batmobile for a joyride, he gets a taste of heroism when he ventures into the wrong side of town. Saving a girl from being assaulted by a gang, the eventual-Robin soon finds himself overwhelmed by the hundred-strong urban army now baying for his blood. But in one moment, the gang members look up to see the somber black-clad figure of Batman. They scream and run from the gliding crusader. Grayson launches into an angry attack on Batman, saying if he’d revealed his identity at the circus, his family wouldn’t have died. “If Bruce Wayne could have given his life for your family, he would have.” Batman calmly intones, as Grayson begins to sob.


Narrow Escape

From: Batman Returns, 1992

            Framed for a murder he didn’t commit, Batman makes a break for it, only to find the Batmobile has been sabotaged by the Penguin and his goons. The car under the fiend’s control, Batman is taken on a wild ride through Gotham, worsening the Dark Knight’s reputation. Finally restoring control of the car, Batman heads for a narrow alleyway; his only chance at escape. Flicking switches desperately, the mechanism finally engages and the Batmobile transforms into the sleek Batmissile. A cool moment that shows Batman always has an ace up his sleeve.


Knightfall Approaching

From: “Strange Deadfellows” (Batman #495, 1993) 

            Already too ragged from the gauntlet unleashed by Bane so far, Batman is at a Wayne Foundation fundraiser when Poison Ivy attacks with her brainwashed army called the ‘Deadfellows.’ Stronger than normal men and Batman weaker than his normal self, Batman battles desperately against the group, eventually winning, but it’s a victory that moves him further toward his eventual fall. Brilliantly staged action from artist Jim Aparo and a story that humanizes Batman more than anything before makes this one of the standout action moments of Batman’s storied career.


St. Cloud: Gone With the Wind

From: “Sign of the Joker!” (Detective Comics #476, 1978)

            Silver St. Cloud was one of the Batman’s most notable loves, introduced in the Steve Engalhart run on ‘Tec affectionately called “The Definitive Batman.” Upon realizing the truth, that Bruce is the dread Batman by night, risking his existence for others, Silver breaks it off with Wayne right after a showdown with the Joker. The Batman is left silent and alone, like always.


First Predator Encounter

From: Batman: Arkham Asylum, 2009

            Arkham Asylum drips with atmosphere, more perhaps than its sequels. The Asylum’s eerie, maddening calm is offset by the tense encounters with armed thugs, thugs that will gun Batman down almost instantly if spotted. Players must use the darkness and the element of surprise to their advantage. Players must become the darkness to win. There’s not much else in the franchise that’s as fulfilling as taking out a gang of thugs unseen, just like the Masked Manhunter himself.



From: “Baby-Doll” (Batman: The Animated Series, 1992)

            A former child star with a rare disorder that prevents her from showing her age decides she wants to recapture her glory days by kidnapping her co-stars and forcing them back into their TV personas. Thwarted by the Dynamic Duo and on-the-run, Mary Dahl (Baby Doll) escapes into a funhouse at a nearby amusement park. She’s chased into a hall of mirrors and shocked by a mirror that seems to portray her as a normal looking adult. Frustrated at seeing what she can’t have, she shatters the mirrors, lost in her own rage and sadness. The Batman comforts her, understanding her pain. A human touch that many depictions of Batman fail to use.


Moved to Tears

From: “No Rest for the Wicked” (Detective Comics #663, 1993)

            After Batman rescues the Joker-kidnapped Mayor Kroll, despite the hero’s unbearable fatigue, Kroll cries out of admiration. As “Knightfall” showcases, Bruce Wayne doesn’t know what it means to surrender.


Reliving the Night

From: Batman: Arkham Asylum, 2009

            The second time Batman has fear-toxin induced hallucinations in this game, he’s forced to relive the night that ruined him. The hallway first appears eerily endless, and then it slowly transforms into Crime Alley. Bruce is turned back into a child, and remembers the jeers of the corrupt police department and how utterly alone he felt. One can’t help but be moved. 


Locking Away the Beast

From: “Ten Nights of the Beast (Part IV)” (Batman #420, 1988)

            Disgusted with the brutality and deadliness of assassin K.G. Beast, The Caped Crusader decides to wall him up alive, leaving him to die for his crimes. “Sometimes you have to ignore the rules.” He narrates. “I'm not in this business to protect the rules, I serve justice.”


The Birth of Batman

From: Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, 1993

            Haunting, operatic and even a tad depressing, this sequence sees Bruce reluctantly resume his planned destiny when Andrea Beaumont returns his engagement ring and disappears. To the swell of Shirley Walker’s remarkable score, Alfred is witness to the first fitting of the Batsuit, and even he is terrified at the visage: “My God…”


The Death of Alfred

From: Batman: Arkham Origins, 2013

            “I have left enough life in him for some final words… if you hurry.” Bane intones over the Batwing radio, knowing the Dark Knight’s identity. Frantic, Batman returns to the Batcave to find it in ruins, and Alfred dying under rubble on a small ledge below him. “Don’t add me to the weight you carry.” Alfred pleads before passing away. Ever the resourceful hero, though, Batman uses his electric gauntlets to resuscitate his friend. A powerful, unexpected moment from a dramatic video game. 


Alley Fight

From: BATMAN, 1989

            Rescuing Vicki Vale from the Joker’s goons, Batman takes the fight to a small back alley in Gotham, where he proceeds to take them out with extreme prejudice. One by one, the Batman mops the floor with the standard thugs, but suddenly, a new challenger appears, brandishing twin Katanas. Batman readies himself, and they go at it. Expertly blocking the swordsman’s attacks, Batman fires back with a devastating kick to the face, ending the threat—and battle—once and for all.


Never Say Die

From: “Broken Bat” (Batman #497, 1993) 

            Wayne has come home, feeling like he’s dead. He has been run so ragged that there is nothing left in him, only to find Bane—the mastermind behind Bruce’s recent torture—in his house. “I would kill to silence a grating voice. To put out the light in eyes that dared look at me,” Bane explains. Disgusted by the man’s unrepentant cruelty, Batman, figuring to die anyway, pulls his mask back on and leaps forward to defend his city “One more time.” Sadly, the battle does not go the Dark Knight’s way.


Bring Me to Life

From: Batman Returns, 1992.

            Perhaps the most iconic use of the Bat Signal. When madness engulfs Gotham Square downtown, Commissioner Gordon knows his men are outmatched. “What are you waiting for?” He bellows over the radio: “The signal!” Cut to Wayne Manor, and a somber figure sits alone in the study, brooding. A series of mirrors reflect the signal into Wayne’s study, and to the chilling sound of a harpsichord, audiences herald Batman’s return.


The Final Gauntlet

From: “No Rest for the Wicked” (Detective Comics #663, 1993)

            Directly after saving Mayor Kroll, Batman is jumped by Bane’s three henchmen: Bird, Trogg and Zombie. Already nearly dead, Batman steels himself for (what he thinks is) one last fight. When only Bird remains, Batman can resist his frustration no more, launching into a savage attack on the foe, beating him senseless. Only then does the Caped Crusader realize, however, that this was what Bane wanted all along.


Bruce Remembers

From: “The Forgotten” (Batman: The Animated Series, 1992)

            While investigating the disappeared homeless population in Gotham, Bruce is knocked out while undercover and ends up with amnesia, not remembering who he is. He is plagued by vague visions, but no clear answers. Forced into chain-gang slavery, Bruce ends up locked in a metal punishment box in the hot desert sun along with another inmate. In a sudden, desperate moment, the cries of his cellmate bring the memories back to Wayne… who resumes his attitude as Batman immediately.


Bringing the Joker Home/Opening Credits

From: Batman: Arkhan Asylum, 2009

            After an opening cutscene in which Batman drives the Clown Prince back to Arkham, players control Batman as they follow the procession of guards escorting the Joker back to his cell. The opening credits for the video game unfurl during the journey, all the while setting the mood and telling the opening stages of the story. An effective opening and a great mood-setter.


Did Robin Kill Tonight?

From: “The Diplomat’s Son” (Batman #424, 1988)

            When a drug trafficker with diplomatic immunity is caught by the Dynamic Duo in the midst of rape, Jason Todd makes it his personal vendetta to see that justice is done. When the scum coerces his victim into committing suicide, Robin makes a beeline for him. Batman arrives late, only to see that the perp has died from a fall, which prompts Batman to ask Todd if it was an accident. “I must have spooked him” Todd says, before swinging away. Readers have never learned the truth.


Batman to the Rescue

From: BATMAN, 1989 

            Trapped in the Flugelheim Museum by the Joker, Vicki Vale is truly desperate. The clown approaches her with an acid-squirting flower, meaning to disfigure her into ‘art.’ Just as the Joker surprises her with his true visage, the skylight overhead shatters, and Batman drops to the museum floor. Punctuated by Danny Elfman’s heroic theme, Batman scoops Vale up in his arms and escapes through the front doors of the museum on a zipline. “Where does he get those wonderful toys?” The Joker asks, flabbergasted. One of the best entrances in superhero cinema.


Batman Vs. Mr. Freeze 

From: Batman: Arkham City, 2011 

            An inventive boss fight, Batman is forced to engage Mr. Freeze when the fiend decides to attack him. Batman can’t face the foe head on, or he’ll be a Popsicle. Players must be quick witted and ever-evolving, as Freeze learns from his mistakes and adapts to Batman’s attacks; it’s a rollicking good time.


“You’d almost think he was the Batman.” 

From: “I am the Batman!” (Detective Comics #472, 1978)

            Hugo Strange has returned for the first time since 1940, and he wastes no time in capturing the Batman with his intellect. Learning Wayne’s identity, he impersonates Wayne to take over his company and fortune, while also selling the Masked Manhunter’s identity on the black market. Mayor Rupert Thorne, however, doesn’t want to pay for that secret. He has his goons try to beat the answer out of Hugo, but Hugo won’t budge, in the end realizing that he was wrong to exploit such a secret. “The Batman is too good for one such as you, Thorne. I will never betray…” and with that, Strange is dead, and Thorne can only marvel at the loyalty.


Claiming His Victory

From: “Who Rules the Night?” (Detective Comics #664, 1993)

            “I am Bane! This city is mine!” the opening splash page declares, as Bane stands high in Gotham’s version of Times Square, holding the broken Batman over his head. He throws the hero down to the street, as the citizens look on in horror. It’s a shocking, powerful scene, which only gripped the comic readers further back in 1993.


“I’m Batman.” 

From: BATMAN, 1989 

            The scene that introduced general audiences to a serious Batman for the first time; two thugs have just mugged a family and escape to a nearby rooftop to check out their score. The Dark Knight appears and doles out some justice. Taking out one by sending him through a door, the other tries to escape but it grabbed by Batman and hung over the building’s edge. “I’m not going to kill you. I want you to do me a favor,” the gravelly voice intones, “I want you to tell all your friends about me.” And with the simple, iconic statement of who he is afterward, a cinematic legacy was born.


Broken Bane 

From: “Dark Angel – Chapter II: The Descent” (Batman #500, 1993) 

            Decked-out in a new costume, Jean-Paul Valley is Batman, and Batman takes the war with Bane to its inevitable conclusion. Giving him the beating that Bruce Wayne might’ve, Paul resists the instinct to kill at the last moment, stating that Bane is broken and “Blackgate Prison can hold the pieces.” With that moment, Paul earned the right to the costume… at least for a time.


“He Gave Us a Signal!”

From: BATMAN, 1989

            “If the forces of evil should rise again to cast a shadow on the heart of the city,” Harvey Dent reads the note from their defender, “Call me.” Commissioner Gordon activates the Bat Signal for the astonished Gothamites. The camera pans up past the buildings to see Batman standing above the city, ready to defend it to the end. A perfect ending for any Batman film, let alone the first. 

And the all-time greatest Batman moment from the first 75 years…


Bruce Saves His Parents

From: “To Kill a Legend” (Detective Comics #500, 1981) 

            Taken to a parallel Earth by the Phantom Stranger, Batman is given the chance to save the Thomas and Martha Wayne of that universe. He may not be able to undo his own pain, but he can prevent the pain of another young Bruce. Trailing Joe Chill causes a shift, and the gangster who hired Chill in the first place (Lew Moxon) tries to commit the murder himself, but the Batman leaps into action. In one instant, Wayne gets what he’s always dreamed of: the rescue of his parents. It’s the ultimate Batman moment, because had someone been there to stop Chill, Batman would not have been born; Wayne would have been a normal man. As it would be the crowning moment in his own life, it must be his crowning moment for us as well.

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