Note from Jonathan Lapper: I just wanted to say that I'm nervous about the idea of "guest" blogging with Nathaniel still here. It was easier when he was in Disney World and I felt he wasn't watching me. Now I feel he will judge my every word, slash and edit and rap my knuckles with a ruler any chance he gets. But enough of my massive insecurities, let's move on.
I have a question and I hope an answer: Why is Batman so popular? Seriously, there's about a million different comic book characters out there, many of whom enjoy popularity that is of the mass appeal sort (Spiderman, Superman, and Iron Man and the Hulk to a lesser degree) but Batman. Geez! They just keep reinventing him, bringing him back for more. And I think I know why. He's normal.
Okay, so he's not that normal. I mean, he dresses up in a bat suit almost every night (I only do it on weekends) but he wasn't bitten by a radioactive spider. He doesn't have the power to alter the course of a planet due to his astonishing strength (Superman). He doesn't turn into a big green behemoth (figure out that one on your own). He's just a guy in a suit. And unlike Iron Man, you can see him in the suit, see his eyes, see his mouth. He's human, not a CGI creation.
I haven't seen The Dark Knight yet (though I'm itching to) but I suspect a large part of its acceptance has to do with the fact that Batman somehow makes it easier for all of us to suspend our disbelief. When we watch him we're watching a crime movie, not a comic book movie and it appeals to a larger audience. Even his enemies are average joes who go psychotic due to one bad break or another. He doesn't fly or spin webs and stretch or burn or surf the universe. He puts on his uniform and goes out to make Gotham safe for everyone. If only every billionaire were that cool.