Bats in His Belfry?


This isn’t going to be a full post, but I just have to vent something I realized this week. Batman is really stupid in the newest issue of Forever Evil (#6). The Syndicate has Nightwing strapped into an explosive device that was designed to hold Doomsday — also known as the giant rock guy that killed Superman. Batman and his unlikely allies, like Lex Luthor, are locked in the room with Nightwing. The bomb is connected to his heart rate; if Nightwing dies, the bomb deactivates. The system is designed so that there’s no other way around it. Either Nightwing dies or everyone dies.

Batman is, of course, stubborn as ever, and is desperately looking for a way out of it. Luthor comes up with it first. Now, I know Luthor is a genius, but Batman is supposed to be the greatest detective in the world. Just a few pages earlier he revealed that he’d planted all sorts of backdoors in the security systems of the Watchtower when he installed them, because he’s the goddamn Batman and that’s what he does (also because he’s paranoid as all hell and has plans to take down everyone of the Justice League if they go rogue — this was a plot point back in issue #1 or #2, I believe). But now he’s gone stupid. He — and I reiterate this, THE GODDAMN BATMAN — let emotion cloud his judgement, the kind of thing he always berates his compatriots for.

And it’s not until the last panel that he comes to his senses.

See, Luthor figured it out, and it wasn’t really too difficult to follow his logic, even though his plan wasn’t explained at all. Luthor kills Nightwing, shutting off the bomb. Batman goes into a frenzy and tries to kill Luthor — again, Batman, who has a strict no-kill policy and is a master of self-control — and it’s not until Luthor manages to get a few words out that he understands. And then the issue ends, of course, because the heroes can’t win until the last issue of the series, dropping next month (unless I’m behind, in which case it’s this month. But I don’t think so).

Still lost? Here’s the thing: though the vast majority of medical content in TV shows and movies isn’t totally accurate, there is often the common thread of reviving people from death, if measures are taken quickly enough. There is actually a time limit after which it’s impossible to revive a person, due to oxygen loss in the brain causing severe, irreversible damage. If you’re dealing with a straight-up stopped heart — no major blood loss or severe physical trauma, no hypothermia, no metabolism-slowing drugs or other life-support — there’s roughly 4-5 minutes before cells begin to die, and after roughly 10 minutes they’re effectively dead. So basically, there’s a time frame of about ten minutes before irreversible brain damage starts to set in and resuscitation becomes less probable. So Luthor kills Nightwing by suffocating him, which won’t cause any (more) damage to his body. The bomb shuts down, saving everyone in the room. It’s not made clear, but I assume that he’s released from the device as well — he wouldn’t be any good to it anyway, with a stopped heart.

What Batman misses is that once Nightwing is free and the bomb is neutralized, they can bring him back. Batman’s no stranger to CPR, and he’s certainly no stranger to dying or almost dying — he digs his way out of his grave in R.I.P., and is apparently killed by Darkseid in Final Crisis, after which he is shown to be thrown back in time, whereupon he fights his way through all of history to return to life. He submits himself to all sorts of tortures such as intentionally putting himself into a near-death state, undergoing severe, complete isolation and sensory deprivation. He creates a hidden back-up persona to survive crushing psychological attacks. This is not a man who should just completely forget about the fact that Nightwing should be pretty damn easy to bring back, at least since in this case the people in charge of it are himself and Lex Luthor. It ain’t rocket science, it’s med school 101. Bruce is the son of a doctor and a master of pretty much everything ever.

So that’s that, my rant against Batman’s strange, uncharacteristic stupidity. I’m just not sure why it was important to have him suddenly seem to forget everything he’s ever known. Also, even if CPR wouldn’t work, he’s fought Ra’s al Ghul, called the Immortal, and he’s seen Jason Todd come back from the dead (again, aside from his own personal experiences). He’s trying to find a way to bring his son back to life, I believe (I’m not closely following current Bat-comics). So, really? He’s going to go ballistic over Nightwing’s death, which will probably not even do much to him except maybe give him a headache or something (which he won’t notice anyway seeing how brutalized he’s been since the series started)? Come on, DC, you’re better than that.


Huh, guess it was a full post. Whatever, no biggie. Like us on Facebook for updates in your newsfeed, and feel free to leave comments both here and there! We read them all, I swear!


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