Young Justice Court: Batman’s Code

by Stephen Doria
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(Please Note: The following article is an opinion piece from our writer Stephen Doria. While we fully support our writers views, it does not represent the views of everyone at the site)

So, with a lack of a Batman show currently airing, I am going to start talking about the latest/ newest episode of Young Justice.  This is a show that dare I say, boarders along the lines of the quality of TAS?  Even without Paul Dini, DC Animated has attempted to write some very intriguing and complex story lines in this show, and without a doubt they have also succeeded.

However, this first post is going to be more a feeler post if I may, than a true on review of the show itself.  I do not want to spend time playing catch up to tell you where we are, so to do it in a sentence:  Young superheros and their mentors are currently battling a Krolotean invasion orchestrated by a super secret evil empire.   If that makes you curious, then you can always watch the show.

The point that I want to make/ask tonight concerns the subtle breaking of Batman’s moral code.  I say subtle because it is never actually mentioned that Batman had broken it, but I would say when you run rampant on an alien planet badly enough to get on the space INTERPOL most wanted list, you probably killed something.

Now here is where things start to get tricky; since Batman probably did not actually kill a human, and since he was not in his proper state of mind when he did it, does it count?

I will be the controversial one here and say yes; yes, it does.  And now let me explain why: Batman does not believe in killing; he does not believe that the direct death of any human being in the world should be justified.  With that said, murdering any sentient life on any planet should really just be an extension of his moral code.  I mean if he can not kill the Joker, why would he be able to kill, let’s say a Green Lantern Guardian.  (Yes, I am aware of the difference on the evil scale, it is called a straw man fallacy that I am using to my advantage, thank you.)

Anyway… Now that it is established that killing an alien is in the same moral code as killing a human, by Batman’s own logic, when the proposed lives of the aliens he killed were terminated, then, Batman had broke that code.

To the second part of the argument, Batman was not in his own state of mind, I.e. he was under probably Vandal Savage’s control, or one of Savage’s minions control, should he, Batman, not only be held accountable for the actions, but also morally responsible for the actions?  Here is where the gray area comes in, I am again going to say yes.  It is because Batman has to be responsible for his own condition every second of the day, just as you and I are, for him to fall victim to said causes in the first place puts his actions at his own fault.

I know you are probably thinking: “well you cannot be aware of everything at every second, hindsight is 20/20.”  Here is my response, he is Batman!  Faulty premise, I know, until you take into account the mere fact that he is Batman, the worlds greatest detective, he should have a much greater spacial awareness than you or I.  We are talking about the man who is so paranoid he keeps Kr on him.  He allowed his guard to fall long enough to be subjected to a form of mind control, so he should still be responsible for what he did.

Now, I am not saying Batman should hang up the cape and cowl.  But, what I am saying is that the show really should not skip over this as it has done to this point.  Rather, it should take advantage of this and show its characters not only suffering the legal ramifications for their actions, but broaden it out and make them suffer those moral ramifications for their actions.  I think it is a great opportunity to make an already great show amazing as TAS.

P.s. I still kinda wished they would have Damian Wayne as the Robin used in Young Justice (if for nothing than the drama that could unfold), but I understand Tim Drake being the proper continuity.

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