What makes Batman an "Anti-Hero"?

#1 Posted by CF12793 (2993 posts) - - Show Bio

As far as anti-heroes go, I can understand why most people consider Wolverine, the Punisher and Deadpool at the top of their game. They've all had experiences in the past with killing and bloodshed, and have all done things they've regretted, and are even considered mostly dangerous and "bad" by people who work with them. But why is Batman considered an anti-hero? I mean, he's never killed, he does the right thing all the time, he has a great compassion for human life (even though he doesn't show it often.) Is it because he's so dark and unwilling to trust people? You could consider people like Tony Stark or Hank Pym "anti heroes" as they've done things in the past that doesn't exactly make them look too "heroic".

This isn't a thread started for debate reasons, just a curiosity. Thanks!

#2 Posted by Selinaky (677 posts) - - Show Bio

I didn't know he was an anti-hero?

#3 Posted by serpent222 (319 posts) - - Show Bio

Where are you getting that he's an anti-hero? I certainly wouldn't say he is. The only real anti-hero tendencies of his are being incredibly closed off and paranoid to the point of being suspicious and ready to throw down with other heroes. I guess maybe because he is fairly brutal too, even if he doesn't kill anyone.

#4 Posted by fodigg (6136 posts) - - Show Bio

There are different types of anti-heroes:

  • The Falstaff - a bumbling fool, but a heroic one
  • The non-heroic protagonist - by which I mean, not the reluctant hero or the bumbling hero or the dark hero, but a protagonist who frustrates and repulses you by their complete lack of 'protagonistness' (think Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury)
  • The morally unheroic protagonist - The typical definition, this would be those who want to achieve heroic goals but are morally flawed (note: this flaw doesn't necessarily have to be part of their methods, such as with Byronic heroes, but it often is with modern anti-heroes (e.g., Punisher's flaw is his brutal methods))
  • etc

The only consistent component of the anti-hero is that they must lack the traditional standards of a hero. They must be set apart from them somehow. Certain renditions of Batman--Batman as a scary vampire thing, Batman as Big Brother, Batman making Robin eat rats because he's crazy--fit this. Generally, however, he's morally considered traditionally heroic.

#5 Posted by FatihBATMAN (1389 posts) - - Show Bio

compare Superman to Batman... now theres a difference..

#6 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

What makes Batman an anti-hero?

Moronic chipmunks not using words properly...

#7 Posted by SmashBrawler (5978 posts) - - Show Bio

@FatihBATMAN said:

compare Superman to Batman... now theres a difference..

I don't get it. How does this make Batman an anti-hero?

#8 Posted by FatihBATMAN (1389 posts) - - Show Bio

batman = vigilante-hero, correct?

#9 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

@FatihBATMAN said:

batman = vigilante-hero, correct?

Yes and no. Under the strictest definition of the law he is a vigilante, but he doesn't do anything that a detective license wouldn't allow him to do. When people generally think of vigilante they mean more like Punisher where the person is not interested in collecting evidence or going through the legal system, but rather believes they are above the law.

#10 Posted by SmashBrawler (5978 posts) - - Show Bio

@FatihBATMAN said:

batman = vigilante-hero, correct?

If that's the case then all heroes are vigilantes, as I don't see any of them carrying a badge.

Plus, I don't consider Batman a vigilante in The New 52 considering what happened at the end of the first arc of Justice League.

#11 Posted by Avenging-X-Bolt (13626 posts) - - Show Bio

its wierd. ive heard people and media refer to Batman as an anti-hero in the past but could never nail down the reason as well. maybe it has to do with the Miller run.

#12 Posted by CF12793 (2993 posts) - - Show Bio

This sparked from a debate from a friend of mine and I. We were chatting about the best anti-heroes and he remarked how there wasn't anyone better then Batman. I asked him why Batman was an anti-hero, and he mentioned the whole "dark, brooding" thing, but didn't really have a reason other then that. I started researching comic book anti heroes, and atleast on mainstream websites, he's considered as one. Comic book fans generally don't consider him an anti-hero, which makes sense. I guess he's sort of the basis for a lot of the Anti-heroes/anti-heroic types that came after him, which makes him fall into the category of an anti-hero.

#13 Posted by Sovereign91001 (5005 posts) - - Show Bio

As far as I'm concerned Batman is not an anti-hero, end of story.

#14 Edited by Eternal19 (2076 posts) - - Show Bio

since when was batman an Anti-hero? I've never thought of him as an anti-hero. I think of ant-heroes as the ones that will kill there villians if they had a chance and dont adhere to the same "moral code" as most mainstream heroes like batman and superman. being dark and brooding doesnt make you an anti-hero .

#15 Posted by CrimsonCake (2682 posts) - - Show Bio

@Avenging-X-Bolt said:

its wierd. ive heard people and media refer to Batman as an anti-hero in the past but could never nail down the reason as well. maybe it has to do with the Miller run.

You mean All-star Batman? I can see why...

#16 Posted by tylertothemax (91 posts) - - Show Bio

@FatihBATMAN: There's a difference, but there's not a difference enough to consider Batman an antihero.

Compare Flash V Supes V Green Arrow

or Iron Man v Captain America

All are different/dynamic characters but it doesn't make one the antihero or the other any more of a hero.

#17 Posted by Eternal19 (2076 posts) - - Show Bio

the only time that i can think of where batman was portrayed as an anti-hero was in the dark knight returns and All-star Batman and Robin

#18 Posted by KnightRise (4762 posts) - - Show Bio

Nothing, because he's not...

#19 Posted by DarkKnight1939 (148 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman generally isn't an anti-hero, though he has killed in the past. He has a moral code which disallows him from killing, and tries to do the greater good.

#20 Posted by FatihBATMAN (1389 posts) - - Show Bio

what i mean in the difference is the posture, you know... hehe:)

#21 Posted by batshrine (1001 posts) - - Show Bio

I have rarely met nor read people that think Batman is an anti-hero. The characters in the Batman world that are usually associated with that are Catwoman, Jason Todd, and Azrael.

#22 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

An anti-hero has nothing to do with method by the way...

Anti-hero means that the person is doing something for motivations other than rescuing someone or being a hero and it just so happens that their actions line up with being a hero...

For example... Blade doesn't actually care about being a hero. He's a genocidal maniac at the core of his character however because the people he wants to eradicate are vampires and seen as evil his actions are seen as heroic and thus he is an Anti-hero.

Spider-man could be seen as an anti-hero to some degree because his motivation is not to be a hero, but rather to make his aunt/uncle proud and to live up to "great power/great responsibility" or the french term that means "The obligation of the nobility." Spider-man isn't doing what he is doing because it is good and he wants to do good.

On the other hand Batman and Superman, both do good because it is good.

The idea that Batman and any dark character is an anti-hero comes from symbolism and pop-culture being generally stupid... and possibly that Batman has a pathology of some sort where in he is being Batman not because it is good, but because he derives some sort of psychological thing from it. This is untrue though and mostly only the shallow nitwit writers who have no business writing in general tend to have this viewpoint.

#23 Posted by Stormbox (2001 posts) - - Show Bio

No batmans not an anti hero...

At all!

#24 Posted by soccersss (537 posts) - - Show Bio

I haven't heard many people refer to Batman as an anti-hero because he isn't.

#25 Posted by RedOwl_1 (1664 posts) - - Show Bio

He may be dark but that doesn't make him an antihero

#26 Posted by montydapunk.k (65 posts) - - Show Bio

No way that Batman is an antihero, maybe because he lives in a darker world that might give that impression. But then he does not do the two basic things that an antihero does:- kill people who get in their way and break rules.

#27 Posted by mrdecepticonleader (18715 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman is NOT an anti hero.

#28 Posted by htb106 (1641 posts) - - Show Bio

Umm... He's not.

#29 Posted by Eternal19 (2076 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken said:

An anti-hero has nothing to do with method by the way...

Anti-hero means that the person is doing something for motivations other than rescuing someone or being a hero and it just so happens that their actions line up with being a hero...

For example... Blade doesn't actually care about being a hero. He's a genocidal maniac at the core of his character however because the people he wants to eradicate are vampires and seen as evil his actions are seen as heroic and thus he is an Anti-hero.

Spider-man could be seen as an anti-hero to some degree because his motivation is not to be a hero, but rather to make his aunt/uncle proud and to live up to "great power/great responsibility" or the french term that means "The obligation of the nobility." Spider-man isn't doing what he is doing because it is good and he wants to do good.

On the other hand Batman and Superman, both do good because it is good.

The idea that Batman and any dark character is an anti-hero comes from symbolism and pop-culture being generally stupid... and possibly that Batman has a pathology of some sort where in he is being Batman not because it is good, but because he derives some sort of psychological thing from it. This is untrue though and mostly only the shallow nitwit writers who have no business writing in general tend to have this viewpoint.

Spiderman wants to help people thats why he is spiderman. Spidey is not an anti-hero in any way

#30 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

@Eternal19 said:

@Durakken said:

An anti-hero has nothing to do with method by the way...

Anti-hero means that the person is doing something for motivations other than rescuing someone or being a hero and it just so happens that their actions line up with being a hero...

For example... Blade doesn't actually care about being a hero. He's a genocidal maniac at the core of his character however because the people he wants to eradicate are vampires and seen as evil his actions are seen as heroic and thus he is an Anti-hero.

Spider-man could be seen as an anti-hero to some degree because his motivation is not to be a hero, but rather to make his aunt/uncle proud and to live up to "great power/great responsibility" or the french term that means "The obligation of the nobility." Spider-man isn't doing what he is doing because it is good and he wants to do good.

On the other hand Batman and Superman, both do good because it is good.

The idea that Batman and any dark character is an anti-hero comes from symbolism and pop-culture being generally stupid... and possibly that Batman has a pathology of some sort where in he is being Batman not because it is good, but because he derives some sort of psychological thing from it. This is untrue though and mostly only the shallow nitwit writers who have no business writing in general tend to have this viewpoint.

Spiderman wants to help people thats why he is spiderman. Spidey is not an anti-hero in any way

it depends on how extreme you want to be about it... he could be or could not be... though I tend to say he's not, but that's not to say I couldn't see him being considered one.

#31 Posted by Reignmaker (2235 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman isn't an anti-hero. There have been a few stories where he may qualify as such, but those have been the exception with his character not the rule.

#32 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (35001 posts) - - Show Bio

the anti-hero part comes from the everybody thinking he was a bad guy

#33 Edited by TwoGunGunnar (90 posts) - - Show Bio

He's not an antihero. Anyone who's tried to claim he is either doesn't know anything about Batman or thinks all it takes to be an antihero is brooding.

There's more to being an antihero than brooding.

Watch old Clint Eastwood westerns. In High Plains Drifter, Clint's character literally dragged an unwilling woman into a barn, threw her to the ground and had his way with her, and then shot a bunch of people to death. That's an antihero. Or read the original Conan stories. In one story, Conan was crucified. He was rescued from death by a desert nomad chief. Once he was healed, Conan ousted the chief, broke his arm and exiled him into the desert just because he could. That's an antihero.

Batman is not an antihero. At all.

#35 Posted by cuddles666 (310 posts) - - Show Bio

http://www.cracked.com/article_20111_the-6-most-brutal-murders-committed-by-batman.html

#36 Posted by Mediumguy (166 posts) - - Show Bio

Most heroes fight to defeat you, whilst Batman beats the shit out of you.

#37 Posted by Lvenger (21194 posts) - - Show Bio

Batman's definitely not an anti hero. A vigilante yes but an anti hero no. He actually cares about people and never kills, 2 qualities direly needed if one is to be an anti hero.

#38 Posted by FatihBATMAN (1389 posts) - - Show Bio

what defines, and what is a vigilante exactly?

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