Holy Bat-trimony: The Dark Knight and Marriage

Will the Dark Knight ever take a wife ? While some of his contemporaries like Superman and the Flash have enjoyed long and healthy marriages, Batman has always struggled when it comes to holy bat-trimony. As we prepare for DC FanDome and observe Batman Day, let ’ s explore Bruce Wayne ’ south retentive and complicated history with marriage and see if it gives us any insight on why he can ’ t seem to close the cope .

Curious About the Cat

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During his early Golden Age stories, Batman was engaged to a woman named Julie Madison. Julie predated Robin, Alfred, Joker, Catwoman and many of Gotham ’ s most iconic characters. She first gear appeared in 1939 ’ s Detective Comics # 31 where she was kidnapped by the Mad Monk. Bruce and Julie ’ south relationship wasn ’ t explored a lot, with Julie largely serving as a damsel-in-distress. In 1941 ’ s Detective Comics # 49, Julie last grew tired of Bruce ’ s miss of ambition and gave him an ultimatum—do something with your life or the marriage ’ s off .
At the time, Wayne Enterprises was not depart of the condition quo and Bruce privately mused that Julie would sing a different tune if she knew he was Batman. Reading the scene, it ’ s clear he ’ sulfur treating it as a individual joke. Julie ends their engagement, but it ’ south hard to see this consequence as anything early than Bruce passive aggressively driving her to do it. Why not tell her he was Batman ? After all, you were planning on marrying her. Whatever the case, something was holding Bruce rear.

Bruce ’ s adjacent date occurred in 1943 ’ second Batman # 15. Batman learned that Catwoman, who was disguised as a socialite named Elva Barr, had fallen for Bruce Wayne. This caused him to launch one of the strangest plans he ’ south ever concocted. Thinking that his affections could cause Catwoman to retire from crime, Bruce Wayne romanced Elva and cursorily proposed to her. According to Bruce, the design was to end their engagement once Catwoman had given up crime for good .
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There are many obvious problems with this plan. First, Bruce didn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate permit Dick in on it, causing the Boy Wonder to become dismay when he read about the employment in the newspaper. When Dick pressed Bruce for answers, the Dark Knight smugly brushed him off. Bruce besides didn ’ t give his real number girlfriend, Linda Page, a heads up. ( Far excessively many of Bruce ‘s friends and sleep together ones had to find out about this in the paper. ) Of course, the biggest trouble is besides the most obvious one : there is no way this ends good. Calling off the engagement has the danger of breaking Catwoman ’ sulfur heart and driving her back to crime. precisely how far were you planning on taking this Bruce ?
ultimately Catwoman learns the truth and returns to crime, but you have to question Batman ’ s motivations here. Because Bruce didn ’ t tell Dick his plan, it ’ sulfur fair to conclude that he was ashamed of the whole thing. Batman wanted to be with Catwoman, but their roles as hero and criminal prevented any relationship. The engagement deception allowed Bruce to taste the forbidden fruit, even if he had to lie to himself and pretend it was for a noble function. It ’ s possible Batman wasn ’ metric ton mindful of how far he was bequeath to go .

Do You Take These Women…

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The Caped Crusader ’ s adjacent brush with marriage occurred in 1953 ’ s Batman # 79. A foreign diplomat had fallen for reporter Vicki Vale, and in order to prevent an international incident, she pretended she was already spoken for. Vicki identified Batman as her betroth, and the Caped Crusader begrudgingly went along with the parody. Throughout the fib, Batman and Robin give a negative see on marriage and there are lots of ( now identical dated ) henpecked conserve jokes. Like most situation comedy charades, the lie spirals out of control until a real marry is planned, but Batman ’ s flying think allows him to remain a bachelor .
This attitude towards marriage continued with the insertion of Batwoman. Throughout the early Silver Age, the estimate of Bruce Wayne marrying Kathy Kane was explored, but lone in dreams and fanfiction that Alfred wrote ( yes, that was a very thing ). Some of the scenarios had Dick Grayson anxiously wondering if marriage would mean the end of the Dynamic Duo partnership, playing into the mentality of “ weddings mean the end of masculine exploits. ” At the goal of 1959 ’ second Batman # 122, Bruce Wayne ponders, “ I-marry Kathy ? I expect some day I will marry ! Kathy, eh ? Well, she ’ s a dainty girl ! Who knows. ” Despite this brooding, Batman powerfully rejected Batwoman ’ second affections during their adventures together .
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The idea that marriage was a joke continued with Batman ’ s future battle in Superman ’ s Girlfriend Lois Lane # 59. Bruce learns that Lois thinks he ’ mho Superman, so he and the Man of Steel decide to play a questionable prank on her. Bruce Wayne proposes to Lois and she accepts, believing herself engaged to Superman. During the wedding ceremony, Bruce Wayne shocks his bridget by having Superman stand beside him as best homo. Lois leaves Bruce at the altar and Batman shares a private joke with Superman after the guests leave. ( Let ’ s be real, none of them behaved their best here, but they ’ ve all saved the universe multiple times then I feel we can cut them a little mire. Plus, it was the Silver Age ! ) It ’ south interesting that out of all of Batman ’ sulfur engagements, this was the first gear one to culminate in an actual wedding ceremony, even though it was never completed .

Love Among the Lazarus Pits

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Years belated, Batman met Talia alabama Ghul, daughter of the criminal Ra ’ s alabama Ghul. Like Catwoman, there was a clear attraction, but Bruce and Talia ’ s moral differences prevented Batman from acting on his desires. Nevertheless, Ra ’ mho made his intentions clear—he wanted Batman as his son-in-law. He saw the Dark Knight as a desirable teammate for his daughter and heir to his empire. Talia had no objections to her forefather ’ randomness matchmaking, but the Dark Knight was tolerant. This caused Ra ’ second to take matters into his own hands, resulting in one of the most bizarre shotgun weddings ever seen in a comedian .
In DC Special Series # 15, Ra ’ s sends his men to drug Batman and when the Dark Knight awakes, he finds himself standing at the altar as Ra ’ s is finishing up a marriage ceremony between him and Talia. “ I now pronounce you Batman and wife, ” Ra ’ s al Ghul says to a puzzled Caped Crusader. Ra ’ south explains to Batman that in his nation the bride ’ mho father is the alone person needed to consent to a wedding. Talia is overjoyed, but Batman tells her he refuses to consider the marriage real .
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Years late, in the graphic novel Batman : son of the Demon, Bruce ultimately accepts Ra ’ s put up to join his empire and exist as Talia ’ sulfur husband. As Talia prepares to consummate their marriage, Batman asks about the ceremony and Talia reminds him that the marry he slept through in DC Special Series # 15 is silent binding. While Batman has his reservations, he embraces marry life, and spends many glad weeks at Talia ’ south side. “ I ’ ve never been happy at all. I like it, ” Batman tells his bride .
Before hanker, Talia tells Batman that she ’ mho fraught and the Dark Knight couldn ’ triiodothyronine be more thrilled. however, Talia notices that he ’ s losing his border. Batman ’ randomness started taking less risks, saying that his wife and unborn child are the only things that matter. amazingly, it ’ randomness Talia who chooses to end the marriage, faking a miscarriage and telling Batman to leave their glad life. Of course, Batman fans and comedian readers now know this child as Damian Wayne, the current Robin, but it would take Batman years to learn that his son had survived .

Getting Serious

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While Batman ’ s early brushes with marriage were played as complications and comedies, his time with Talia started a swerve where it turned markedly toward tragedy. Comics were maturing as a medium, which meant that Batman ’ sulfur attitude towards marriage was a well. The storyline “ Batman : year Two ” finds Bruce proposing to a woman named Rachel Caspian. Wayne envisions a liveliness where he could settle down with Rachel, rid of his responsibilities as Batman. This began a reoccurring root that a happily wedded Bruce Wayne couldn ’ t co-exist with his alter ego Batman .
After learning that her father was the criminal know as the Reaper, Rachel ended her date with Bruce and became a nun. If you ’ ve never read the comedian, but find this report familiar, it ’ sulfur because a similar narrative played out in the classic enliven movie Batman : mask of the Phantasm. In the movie, we learn that curtly before Bruce began his career as Batman, he considered abandoning his vigilante plans when he fell in love with a woman named Andrea Beaumont. Bruce proposed marriage, deciding that he had a casual for happiness after all, but Andrea cryptically left the state the future day. Heartbroken, Bruce dove headfirst into launching his career as Batman, deciding there was no board for love in his life .
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Bruce Wayne ’ s animated counterpart found love again in The New Batman Adventures episode “ Chemistry, ” quickly marrying a charwoman named Susan Maguire. once again, Bruce arrives at the ending that Batman can ’ metric ton exist if he ’ south married, and he tells his sidekicks that he ’ second stepping down indeed he could spend more clock time with Susan. sadly, at the end of the sequence, it ’ south revealed that Susan was a plant construct created by Poison Ivy, leaving Batman brokenhearted .
marriage leading to tragedy was immediately a given, and the root played out again in Batman : The Widening Gyre # 6. During this express series, Batman proposes to his girlfriend Silver St. Cloud, but his happiness doesn ’ triiodothyronine last retentive. He cursorily accuses his fiancée of being an malefic automaton and wonders if he has what it takes to be glad. sadly, he ’ s not given the find, as Silver is murdered by one of his enemies at the conclusion of the issue. Next, Grant Morrison rewrote history in 2011 ’ s Batman Incorporated # 4, revealing Batman and Batwoman were briefly engaged, much to Robin ’ s horror. When Kathy ’ s spy superiors ordered her to reveal Batman ’ mho identity, she decided to end the betrothal without telling Bruce the very reasons .

Wedding Day Blues

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Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo ’ s Batman run played with the theme that Bruce can merely seek out marriage when Batman isn ’ metric ton in the picture. After a confrontation with the Joker gives Bruce amnesia, Jim Gordon temporarily takes over as Batman, while Wayne lives a quietly animation working with underprivileged children alongside Julie Madison. Bruce and Julie become engaged in 2015 ’ second Batman # 46, but their happiness is cut short when Bruce is called into action as Batman again. Julie helps Bruce regain his memories, even though she knows it will transform him and end their betrothal. By this point, its clean that Bruce can either be Batman or happily married, not both .
This idea was explored by writer Tom King when he took over the Batman title in 2016. Under King ’ south pen, Bruce Wayne questioned if he had the mighty to be happy. Musing on the theme for some fourth dimension, proposes to Catwoman ( this meter sincerely ) in 2017 ’ randomness Batman # 24, and Selina accepts in Batman # 32. In the weeks leading up to their marriage, everyone from the Joker to Holly Robinson ask Selina to consider if Bruce could still be effective as Batman if he ’ s a marital serviceman. The wonder weighs on her, causing her to worry about Gotham ’ s future without its Dark Knight. ultimately, Catwoman concludes that Batman needs dark to thrive, so she leaves Bruce at the altar in 2018 ’ s Batman # 50 .
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Batman and Catwoman reunited months later, but as of this writing they ’ ve tabled their wedding. But all of this begs a wonder. marry heroes like Superman, Flash and Aquaman are still effective crimefighters, so what makes Batman different ? Is it because the early death of his parents left him without a cocksure exemplar of a healthy marriage growing up ? Does he use darkness as a crutch ? Throughout Batman ’ s career, he ’ second treated marriage as a joke ( Lois Lane ), a means to an end ( Elva Barr ), and a trap to escape from ( Vicki Vale ). Can Batman last confront his demons and take the walk down the aisle, or is he doomed to remain a bat-chelor ? only meter will tell.

DC FanDome returns on October 16, 2021 ! For more articles like this one, and to stay improving to date on all the latest news program, visit dcfandome.com .
Joshua Lapin-Bertone writes about television receiver, movies and comics for DCComics.com, is a regular contributor to the Couch Club and writes our monthly Batman column, “ Gotham Gazette. ” Follow him on chitter at @ TBUJosh .

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