It’s not guilt or revenge or whatever else creators like to impose on Bruce. He needed something that night that didn’t exist, so he became that thing. A superhero. He wrapped himself in the darkness he feared, and set out to wage war on all those who would threaten the innocent. It’s religious for me. Bill Finger’s Batman origin story is seriously the best story I’ve ever heard.
I love his friends and family, I love how his rogues reflect broken mirrors back at him, showing him the easier paths his trauma could’ve taken him down. But lately I’ve been thinking about why it was Batman over other heroes, and there’s a new thing I realized about him. Batman’s a character who could appear in a story and save a kid from being abused in any form. It’s hard to tell that story with Superman or Spider-Man. You could do it, but it’s almost like the crime in my own secret origin is too dark for them. I know those guys are big enough heroes to save us, and keep saving others, but Batman, being grounded in more of a real-world criminal setting—as much as I love seeing him in space or time traveling—Batman was born of a horrible crime, and fights crime in a city riddled with dark crimes. Those crime scenes can’t tarnish his boots the way they would Superman’s.
He knows how broken things are. He’s not hopeless, he’s making a difference, he’s saving the world on a regular basis, but he’s capable of true empathy with every victim, and even though he feels all the pain, he never, ever stops.
Batman is something else, man. He’s not an anti-hero. He’s an eight-year-old’s idea of what the world needed. And it really, really did."