Off My Mind: What Happens if Batman Loses His Confidence?

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Posted by G-Man (36817 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman has always been known as one of the greatest superheroes around. This is a remarkable feat considering Batman doesn't have any superpowers. Besides training his body over the years since his parents' death in multiple fighting styles, Batman is known for more than just a fighter. Batman is the World's Greatest Detective. He is one of the greatest fighters and also has one of the greatest minds.

Batman is able to solve any problem. He can defeat any opponent due to the fact that he does have all the answers. He knows the strengths and weaknesses of both superheroes and supervillains. He has several villains that are of a more psychological threat and Batman has been able to defeat them time and time again.

Batman isn't overconfident but there's no way he doesn't know how skilled he is. That's how he is able to face off against super-powered villains without blinking his eyes. But what if Batman didn't have all the answers? What if he was in the middle of a big case and got things wrong?

== TEASER ==

For as great of a mind Batman has, you have to admit it's not necessarily the most stable one around. Batman is obsessed with fighting crime. He goes out in the night dressed as a giant bat. He doesn't have superpowers but sometimes relies on high tech gadgets. He employs children he feels are properly trained to fight along side him. But he is the best there is at what he does. He prides himself on being the best.

No one can always be right or always be able to solve the mystery. If a situation came up and Batman was unable to figure things out, it could have a big affect on him. Everything Batman does relies on his skills. If you take away his ability to solve the problem that comes up in any situation, Batman will be in a weakened state.

An example would be if all of a sudden Superman wasn't able to fly. Most of his fighting style revolves around flight. He zips around and can fly wherever he needs to go. He would still have his other abilities. We've seen him walk around in the recent Grounded storyline (and in television's SMALLVILLE) but losing that ability, or his super strength would take some getting used to. It could mean fatally losing a battle.

Batman isn't full of pride or one to gloat. He simply knows what he can do and does it to his full extent. He jumps into action without needing to think because he already has the answers to any scenario worked out. But has Batman taken into consideration a scenario where he is stumped?

We have seen Batman fail before. Death in the Family is one of the biggest downfalls for Batman. He was unable to prevent Jason Todd from running off in search of him mother. He was unaware until the last moment that it was a trap that would cause Jason's death. That had a big impact on him. Obviously there were things beyond his control. He couldn't keep Jason locked up or prevent him from running off. But if he had been a little quicker, things could have ended differently.

If anything, Batman is quick to adapt to any given situation. Even getting his back injured by Bane or getting killed by Darkseid couldn't put a stop to Batman. If Batman lost his confidence, he would have to compensate for it. It wouldn't be put an end to his career. Finding out that he was wrong would only make him work harder. Batman is one that would learn from his mistakes.

Batman has always been slightly arrogant when dealing with his fellow superheroes. He has every right to be since he's proven how skilled at everything he can be. The idea of Batman losing his confidence would be hard to grasp. We all know Batman is the ultimate hero. But seeing him mess up will be a reminder that he is indeed human. He's more human than most of his colleagues. Being over-confident is Batman's only real weakness. To make him an even better hero, he needs to face this flaw and overcome it. Once Batman realizes it's possible he might not have all the answers or that he could be wrong about something, he will become an even better hero.

#1 Posted by CanucksXVX (53 posts) - - Show Bio

how much better can he get? i think he already knows he doesnt have all the answers, it shows in alot of his stories but none the less, good article

#2 Posted by jubilee042 (1353 posts) - - Show Bio

if he did lose it the gotham would turn into underland

#3 Posted by Fantasgasmic (1071 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman can't lose his confidence. Superman is, at his core, about by a god's  overwhelming humanity. Batman is, at his core, about a man's overwhelming determination. That's why he's the World's Greatest Detective, why he can stand up to all the superpowered gods and aliens and metahumans and make them listen to him. I know tv shows aren't canon, but that's why each of these rings so true to the character. 
   
 
  

    
  
#4 Posted by soap on a rope (32 posts) - - Show Bio

hmm... 'what if a hero who relies on his instincts and wits lost his instincts and wits?' ...um, well, he'd be useless and probably wouldn't be a very good super hero any more.

#5 Posted by Eyz (3095 posts) - - Show Bio

I love that "HAS ANYONE SEEN THE JOKER??" panel XD
Love it so much!
It's EPIC! XD
 
Batman with self-confidence troubles? Count me out :/
His ability to plan for every contingency is part of the character!

#6 Posted by Or35ti (1101 posts) - - Show Bio

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. 
 
A moment that reminded me that Batman was still human happened in the pages of Infinite Crisis when Batman goes on the verge of a nervous breakdown right before Kal-L comes to visit him. What he does every day would put anyone through a lot of stress and I'm glad to know he's not some inexhaustible crime-fighting machine, and he feels that stress too.

#7 Posted by Enerjak (43 posts) - - Show Bio

I think that's part of his charm.  It's what makes the character so unique, the guy is a freaking master mind and when you're a human and a primary member of a team along side the Flash, Superman, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman, it goes a long way. 

#8 Posted by Ridge111 (28 posts) - - Show Bio

An even better question would be what would happen if Batman lost his conscience, his moral compass?
I'd really like to see that happen, just have Batman completely lose it and go insane...

#9 Posted by iLLituracy (13537 posts) - - Show Bio

Lose confidence? 
 
LOL. 
 
Please.

#10 Posted by Planewalker (326 posts) - - Show Bio

He'd be useless no longer to be able to function as Batman

#11 Posted by entropy_aegis (15456 posts) - - Show Bio

This was answered in Knightfall and No Mans Land.

#12 Posted by RainEffect (3240 posts) - - Show Bio

Bruce Wayne is the type of person who has no room for mistakes, so when one does occur, it hammers him immensely. He takes ridiculous precautions to ensure it doesn't happen again, and this is his most strengthening personality trait. Why else would he so fearlessly stand his ground against beings who far, far outmatch him in sheer power?

#13 Posted by FalcomAdol (116 posts) - - Show Bio

What if Tony only had to do off-your-mind columns about indy comics for an entire week?

#14 Posted by Top Flight Security (143 posts) - - Show Bio

Wasn't his overconfidence shown (or paranoia) in the OMAC story line? 

#15 Posted by MrGutts (242 posts) - - Show Bio

@FalcomAdol said:

What if Tony only had to do off-your-mind columns about indy comics for an entire week?

Or bring the videos back!

#16 Posted by TDK_1997 (14991 posts) - - Show Bio
@entropy_aegis said:
This was answered in Knightfall and No Mans Land.
#17 Posted by cocoy (2 posts) - - Show Bio

In 52, and in Batman RIP, it was already written in that Bats entered Thogal to take out fear and doubt in his mind.  Unless that isn't in scripture anymore with the new 52.  Even if it wasn't, because of who he is, Bats would find a similar path to banish fear and doubt in his mind? 

#18 Posted by GothamRed (2564 posts) - - Show Bio

What would happen if he lost his confidence, my guess is a lot of moping, which you know, makes for great stories, right?  Yeah, I'd rather not think to deeply on it

#19 Posted by FadeToBlackBolt (23334 posts) - - Show Bio
@entropy_aegis said:
This was answered in Knightfall and No Mans Land.
Still more topical than the Ms Marvel's pregnancy one.  
 
@iLLituracy said:
Lose confidence?  LOL.  Please.
Give Illy a medal. 
#20 Posted by kitsuneconundrum (208 posts) - - Show Bio

we all die, thats whats gonna happen!

#21 Posted by xkoenig (395 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, if you go back and read Knightfall from the 90s you will see he lost his confidence there and was outwitted by the bad guys to the point where Bane came and broke his back. How's that? You want him to do that again?

#22 Posted by G-Man (36817 posts) - - Show Bio

@FadeToBlackBolt said:

@entropy_aegis said:
This was answered in Knightfall and No Mans Land.
Still more topical than the Ms Marvel's pregnancy one.

@iLLituracy said:
Lose confidence? LOL. Please.
Give Illy a medal.

Have you guys listened to the Scotty Snyder podcast?

#23 Posted by FadeToBlackBolt (23334 posts) - - Show Bio
@G-Man: Nope, and please don't tell me that this is what might happen. I may cry. 
#24 Posted by TheGoldenOne (38849 posts) - - Show Bio
@iLLituracy said:
Lose confidence?  LOL.  Please.
This^
#25 Edited by TheGoddamBatman (56 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm surprised no one's mentioned "The Cult". Batman's mind and willpower gets completely destroyed by this crazy cult leader who brainwashes him into joining his cult and taking over Gotham. When Jason Todd helps Batman escape he's a total wreck and runs away from Gotham, leaving it in the hands of the cult. Eventually he gets his shit together and saves the day but the point is that he has lost his confidence before and when he did he couldn't function properly anymore.

#26 Posted by Pauldro (127 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman can't lose his confidence, there is too much on the line for him to start second guessing himself.  If he did lose confidence, then he wasted 8 years of his life learning different ways of crime fighting.  Bruce can't be like I'm not good as I think because then someone else dies.  That's why if he doesn't get to the bottom of someone's plans people will die.  There is a part in Batman 701 or 702, where Superman calls Batman up to Investigate the death of Orion.  Batman says oh those superhumans don't understand I am only human.  He can't give in.  He knew he was screwed when he faced Darkseid, so he at least maimed Darkseid. 

#27 Posted by FadeToBlackBolt (23334 posts) - - Show Bio
@TheGoddamBatman said:
I'm surprised no one's mentioned "The Cult". Batman's mind and willpower gets completely destroyed by this crazy cult leader who brainwashes him into joining his cult and taking over Gotham. When Jason Todd helps Batman escape he's a total wreck and runs away from Gotham, leaving it in the hands of the cult. Eventually he gets his shit together and saves the day but the point is that he has lost his confidence before and when he did he couldn't function properly anymore.
It's Jim Starlin. Jim Starlin stories don't count, because they're always terrible, and/or completely derivative. 
#28 Posted by G-Man (36817 posts) - - Show Bio

@FadeToBlackBolt: I think the new motto in the Bat-office should be "In Scott Snyder we trust." We have an in depth Batman interview with him coming up as well. Wait until you hear what he has planned. His Batman is the book I'm most excited for in the relaunch.

#29 Posted by FadeToBlackBolt (23334 posts) - - Show Bio
@G-Man: I've nothing against Snyder, I'm sure he's more than competent, but if his first Bat story is Bruce losing confidence, I may have to rage-self-mutilate. I'll still read it though. It's Bruce Wayne after all. 
#30 Posted by Migz13 (170 posts) - - Show Bio

I think it's kinda unlikely for The Dark Knight Detective to lose confidence completely. 
The guy is a ROCK, and he has back up plans for EVERYTHING!!

#31 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman losing his confidence is a sure sign that the end is near if he did.  He's just too important to take a fall when he is so needed by others.  For him to lose his confidence is a sure sign that evil not only is winning but has won already. Very much a Final Crisis kind of message...not that he had lost his confidence in that fight with Darkseid though.  Great stuff!

#32 Posted by Grimoire (546 posts) - - Show Bio

The way I see Batman is like he's the opposite side of the coin to Joker in terms of sanity like most but then I also see him as the opposite of Lex Luthor who is also a human but isn't spoiled, thinks he's above others, as well as being on the other end of human morality scale. Ultimate human determination suits Batman just fine.

#33 Posted by CATPANEXE (9368 posts) - - Show Bio

I took the physical breaking of Bruces back by Bane as a metaphorical version of his confidence being shattered as well, albeit temporary and the result the fallout from that.

#34 Posted by kfhrfdu_89_76k (3768 posts) - - Show Bio

That panel`s so funny. 
I mean, you`re eating a sandwhich, and thhen Batman shouts: "Has anyone seen the Joker?" 

#35 Posted by JonesDeini (3620 posts) - - Show Bio

Nope, but the writers sure as hell do...

#36 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29510 posts) - - Show Bio
@TDK_1997 said:
@entropy_aegis said:
This was answered in Knightfall and No Mans Land.
#37 Posted by Durakken (1593 posts) - - Show Bio

It's always amazingly stunning how ignorant people can be about a mind set that they once had and should still have if they've had a proper education but were indoctrinated out of. 
 
Batman is a skeptic. He doesn't believe anything that there isn't proof for and even when there is proof for it more proof would make him reassess his stances and change his position accordingly. He's not Arrogant. He knows what he knows and knows that even if what he knows is wrong then he will be all the better for learning that and taking that into his next action.  
 
Batman does 2 things. 1) Asks questions and takes into consideration what he knows and the answers that he is given. 2) Takes into consideration every possibility he can imagine even if it is in the realm of improbable. With those 2 things anyone could do what he does. 
 
The question "what does Batman do when he loses his confidence" is dumb because the only thing batman is confidence of is the scientific method which is hard to lose confidence in as it has yet to fail anyone.
 
The question "what does Batman do when he doesn't know the answers" is equally ridiculous as that is Batman's whole premise. What does a detective or scientist or skeptic do when confronted with any mystery? They ask questions and work with what they find out.

#38 Posted by DegradingCarnage001 (3 posts) - - Show Bio

Just imagine if he lost his confidence while driving the BatMobile.
#39 Posted by kaiserg (20 posts) - - Show Bio

Didn't this already happened to him? when he fought Bane and got his back broken? he lost confidence due to being exhausted and all, if ever this happens again then it may well result into his death? just a thought....

#40 Posted by xkoenig (395 posts) - - Show Bio
@kaiserg said:
Didn't this already happened to him? when he fought Bane and got his back broken? he lost confidence due to being exhausted and all, if ever this happens again then it may well result into his death? just a thought....
Is no-one able to read my post? I said the exact same thing.... lol :)
#41 Posted by satanmode (295 posts) - - Show Bio

a better question is What happens if he gets a pony for Christmas?

#42 Edited by kaiserg (20 posts) - - Show Bio
@xkoenig said:

@kaiserg said:

Didn't this already happened to him? when he fought Bane and got his back broken? he lost confidence due to being exhausted and all, if ever this happens again then it may well result into his death? just a thought....
Is no-one able to read my post? I said the exact same thing.... lol :)
Nope didn't had time to check all of the post. But it's good to know we had the same idea. Lolz!
 
And another thing didn't this also happened in Batman RIP story arc lost confidence he ended up brainwashed or something? really not sure anymore since i need to verify this with my collection.
#43 Posted by The Velvet Rabbit (262 posts) - - Show Bio
@Durakken said:
It's always amazingly stunning how ignorant people can be about a mind set that they once had and should still have if they've had a proper education but were indoctrinated out of.  Batman is a skeptic. He doesn't believe anything that there isn't proof for and even when there is proof for it more proof would make him reassess his stances and change his position accordingly. He's not Arrogant. He knows what he knows and knows that even if what he knows is wrong then he will be all the better for learning that and taking that into his next action.   Batman does 2 things. 1) Asks questions and takes into consideration what he knows and the answers that he is given. 2) Takes into consideration every possibility he can imagine even if it is in the realm of improbable. With those 2 things anyone could do what he does.  The question "what does Batman do when he loses his confidence" is dumb because the only thing batman is confidence of is the scientific method which is hard to lose confidence in as it has yet to fail anyone. The question "what does Batman do when he doesn't know the answers" is equally ridiculous as that is Batman's whole premise. What does a detective or scientist or skeptic do when confronted with any mystery? They ask questions and work with what they find out.
actually, this has been one thing I never liked about Batman - he always has the answers.   you can imagine the work he had to put in to actually get to those conclusions, but you rarely actually see any of the real process anymore.   then again, outside of the usual PIS, I'd wager there are quite a few detectives in the DCU who could actually run circles around Batman - I don't really think the term 'World's Greatest Detective' applies to him anymore, and probably hasn't for quite some time.   I guess it's sort of like how Reed Richards is with inventing, though - writers probably think the barebones dirty work would bore a lot of readers.   honestly, though, this is my problem with Batman as a Modern Age character - as far as DC goes, Batman is supposed to be the very definition of peak human.   as one man fighting a tireless war in a city that's basically New York without the charm, the unfortunate fact is that he's bound to lose from time-to-time, and it's only naturally that this would have an effect on his psyche in the long run.   when he fails, it could cost himself - or worse, somebody else - their lives.   look at the NML story arc (or Knightfall) - if everything went horribly wrong, and Batman just went back to the drawing board and everything just ended up being business as usual, it wouldn't be a very interesting read.   your idea that a character with infallible logic should be infallible is interesting, but flawed.   and as for the argument that Batman isn't arrogant, that depends on who's writing him - for somebody who's supposed to be one of the world's smartest men, his character usually ends up being woefully stubborn about matters.   that's why I like the Detective Comics-style Batman more than the JLA-style Batman - it allows to keep some of that intelligence of the character without him just being wrapped up in mythos and plot-induced stupidity (think less Bane, more Prometheus).
#44 Posted by MastaKilla (24 posts) - - Show Bio
@CanucksXVX: agreed.  batman has been in many situations where his planning wasn't enough or where his physical endurance was taxed to it's limits. it's the fact that batman knows both is strengths and weaknesses that make him such a formidable opponent.
#45 Posted by The Velvet Rabbit (262 posts) - - Show Bio
@satanmode said:
a better question is What happens if he gets a pony for Christmas?
it's always possible - heck, Batman could be a closet Brony    ;P
#46 Posted by MastaKilla (24 posts) - - Show Bio

I have to say, the article kind of insinuates that being wrong and losing confidence are one in the same. i don't think that is the case, particularly with batman. he has been wrong on many occasions yet it didn't undermine the confidence he has in his abilities. we have seen bruce have moments of introspection and self doubt yet, when he applies abit of ye' old critical thinking and logic, he is able to overcome. these aspects of the character are what make him stand out from the crowd and the fact that he knows his limitations  is actually a strength. many super powered heroes routinely bite off more than they can chew because of the sense of invincibility and infallibility that super powers instill within a given individual.
 
batman's meticulous planning, knowledge of what he can and cannot do and his years of intense training allow him to come out on top more than most.

#47 Posted by The Devil Tiger (1263 posts) - - Show Bio

If Batman lose his confidence, he will fake being absolutely confident, trap the bad guy, and regain it this way.
#48 Posted by Trodorne (2592 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman is a control freak, confidence has nothing to do with it. if he is in a team he needs to know everything so he can take control. Know the villains weakness so he can take control of the situation. Its harder for him to plan against magic or mental because its not a physical thing in which he is able to grasp fully.

#49 Posted by SpidermanWins (3982 posts) - - Show Bio

He'd fail alot...

#50 Posted by thephantomstranger (129 posts) - - Show Bio

Zur-En-Arr persona would take over and start effin people up...

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