In the many hours I’ve spent scavenging the internet, it has come to my attention that there are so many stories about Batman. While being a detective story, a lot of questions are answered. Some, however, are not. Some fans would find this enticing. Others, it sends their minds racing. I’m one of the latter. Constantly wondering about the mysteries running deep within Gotham’s veins. Thankfully, I am not the only one. With social media running wild on the web. There’s no shortage of outlandish ideas. Most are good for a chuckle or the occasional “Come on now. That’s just ridiculous,” but sometimes you find one that makes you think. I scoured lists, videos, and forums to find the top 5 Batman fan theories.
Before I start, there are a few points I’d like to make.
A lot of theories are very similar, some are nearly identical. I will be making mention of a couple, but for the sake of a top 5, that means only 5. Also, a fair amount rests in the same respective universe. For instance, the Joker and Bane in The Dark Knight Trilogy, while others differ, like the Joker in Suicide Squad. So for time-saving purposes, I’ll be focusing on the more popular ideas. In other words, “How many times did I see that one?”
My 2 main points for making decisions on this list are popularity (how often I came across a theory), and plausibility (how believable the idea is). While doing research, a number of thoughts came up more than once. So frequency became a pretty obvious factor. In addition, some were so outlandish they could never be canon. That’s where believability came in. If it simply sounds too ridiculous, or it has been denied officially (by a writer, artist, or director), it was no longer considered a reasonable candidate. That being said, I hope you enjoy DKN’s Top 5 Fan Theories.
#5: I QUIT!!!
At the end of The Dark Knight Rises we witness Batman flying a bomb away from Gotham, sacrificing himself for the good of the city. After killing two people (Talia, and some random mook), Bruce decides to end it all… Or did he? A lot of differing opinions surround this theory. I haven’t found any definite statements saying if he really died, therefore we have no conclusive answer. However, one popular opinion suggests that it was all a hoax. Bruce Wayne killed the idea of Batman, knowing he could no longer be viewed by his beloved home, as a hero.
Granted, this leaves some unanswered questions. Like “Is Bruce still alive? If so, did he remain in Gotham, or fake his own death as well?” It leads me to believe there was going to be another movie, but it never got off the ground. Without Nolan at the helm, we may never find out. I picked this as #5 because it’s too open-ended. A fantastic thought though it may be, there’s no verification. All we know for sure is the Bat (The Dark Knight Rises version of the Batwing) is blown up, and Batman is gone. Still a very popular opinion, but not as much as the next.
#4: Bruce is Batty
There’s a number of lists giving this concept a little more traction. Currently, there are two of noticeable mention, one from the Animated Series suggesting Bruce never fully coped with the loss of his parents, and his enemies are representations of his own personality disorders. The presumption indicates that Mr. Freeze is Bruce’s emotional distance, leaving him cold to anyone that tries to get close to him. Two-Face is the inability to separate fact from fiction (Batman and Bruce Wayne), and the Joker is the unfiltered madness from senseless acts of violence (like the murder of his parents). As for Crazy Quilt and Condiment King? Maybe GCPD gave him an ugly blanket and bought him a hotdog?
The other encompasses all of The Batman saga, suggesting the whole thing is but the feverish delusions of a madman who lost his parents as a child, and now walks the halls of his asylum all night, accusing the staff of misdeeds. Both suggest it’s all in Bruce’s head, though it’s the latter that seemed to have more imagination, and arose far more often in various searches.
I chose the 2nd specifically due to imagination. Whoever came to this conclusion covered a vast amount of the story. I strongly recommend looking into it if you aren’t familiar. Poison Ivy is the groundskeeper. Clayface takes shape as the entire janitorial staff. The Joker is a doctor that uses his chipper attitude and bad jokes to help patients relax, and Harley is his assistant. While Two-Face is also a doctor, although he is incredibly kind when visitors are around. He is actually quite cruel to all his cases. With a great writer and proper artist, this would certainly make its way into my own collection. Preferably hardcover.
#3: The Hero They Needed
I found so many Joker theories that I could make a Top 5 Joker Theories, now let’s just see if I get the approval. So I’m going to squash this one really quickly: The “Jason Todd is The Joker in Suicide Squad.” I love this idea, but director Scott Snyder has already snubbed it. So it’s scrapped.
Another is so bad, it’s impressive. Jared Leto’s character in Fight Club is the Joker. Fight Club has a sequel. It’s a comic called Fight Club 2. *Spoilers* It’s amazing, and Angel Face is in it.
Carrying on! The one we’re focusing on is the one where Joker is the hero in The Dark Knight. This one got deep, but simply put, The Joker stopped everything when Batman left. He just quit crime. Also while he was still active, he singlehandedly brought all the gangs (I emphasize ALL of the gangs) down, and nearly rid Gotham P.D. of crooked cops. This was after parts of the city had been closed off due to the chaos. He managed to step in and put an end to all of it. Then for 8 years, crime was practically non-existent. This was all for the sake of proving that Gotham doesn’t need a hero and that if Batman stepped in, it will be the city’s demise.
The Dark Knight theory was chosen because still makes sense. He stepped in both for the challenge and to prove a point. You’re not really a hero if things only get worse. When Batman added his take on justice, the criminals became overly violent to compensate, making Gotham far more dangerous than it was before Bruce created his alter-ego.
#2: The Butler Did It!
I have considered this on my off time more than I’d care to admit. In this scenario, Alfred hired a gunman to kill the Waynes. Apparently, Al was getting some sugar from Martha on the side, who later gave birth to a son in secret. When she refused to divorce Thomas, in a jealous rage, Alfred decided that if he couldn’t have her, no one could. To his surprise, the hitman known as Joe Chill missed a target, and Pennyworth was left to raise Bruce all alone. You may be wondering what happened to Alfred and Martha’s lovechild? He jumped around foster homes, hiding his longing for a family behind a sick sense of humor. You see where this is going right? Joker. He became the Joker.
This is my #2 due to #1 showing up more. That’s it. It may not be quite as believable (as you may soon come to agree), but when you put the pieces together, it does add up. Why else would Pennyworth let Bruce go out night after night, boxing Gotham’s cruelest to a standstill? Alfred knows that sooner or later, he isn’t coming back. Until then, enjoy the countless meals Bruce never has time for.
#1: Code Red
Easily the most prominent of the list. Robin is a failsafe set in place in the event that if Batman ever fully loses touch with reality, he must be stopped. Now for clarification, this is Dick Grayson I am talking about. We all know Damian would be more than willing, but capable? Maybe in 10 years. Ideally, this will never be necessary, but when has a Wayne ever been unprepared? Except for that one time. The Dark Knight is ready for anything. He has plans in case his plans fall through. Training Robin to surpass himself is like car insurance. You pray you’ll never need it, but you’ll be grateful if you ever do.
The whole point is that Dick is and has always been Batman’s family. When Bruce realized he may not always be in control, he came up with a contingency plan. If the lines between Batman and Bruce Wayne ever blur, and he begins to slip into dementia, then for the good of the city, Dick is to take down the Dark Knight permanently.
It all makes so much sense, I’d almost petition a request of the epilogue that would be The Last Dark Knight. Literal chills right now. Not to mention, Dick is the perfect candidate to take up the mantle. After all the reading, I still get excited when I talk about this. It simply had to be #1. With nearly all the forums and lists making mention of it. It is hands down, the most popular Batman fan theory.
So that’s it, but I am but a man. If you’ve read, or conspired any bat-theories, let us know. I actually love reading them, so I literally will. As always Like and Share! Help us grow!