It’s no secret that Batman is a character with many issues to manage. Although he represents the maximum potential of human abilities without superpowers, the reality is that as a person he leaves a lot to be desired on many occasions and is certainly not the most stable in the world.
Bruce Wayne, Batman, is one of the most intelligent humans in the DC Universe. After his parents die, he travels the world for years to improve and enhance his physical and mental abilities. In addition, he has almost unlimited resources thanks to his technical and scientific knowledge, and his great fortune. All this means that he can measure up against superheroes and villains with powers like the Flash, Superman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman and more.
The most fearsome thing about Batman is not his weapons, his fighting abilities or his theatrics to instill fear, but his way of thinking. Bruce Wayne is a born strategist, capable of devising contingency plans decades in advance. Many of them never make it to practice… but others do. The fans know that if Batman goes down to the mud to fight it is because he has known for a long time that he has won, he is 7 steps ahead.
One of the best examples is found in the comic. Babel Tower by Mark Waid, Howard Porter and Steve Scott, where Batman’s plans nearly killed the ENTIRE Justice League. Here is a summary of what happens without making major spoilers of the story In case you want to read the comic.
Batman’s plans for the Justice League
In forming the Justice League, Batman studied all the candidates and he elaborated plans to eliminate each one of the members (allies)… in case one day one of them got too smart. Batman developed a personalized plan for each one with the thought of neutralizing him without actually killing him, fast and tremendously effective. In Babel Tower we can see a few, including Superman and Wonder Woman:
Detective Marciano he is covered in nanorobots that convert the outer layer of his skin to magnesium, causing him to burst into flames on exposure to air. He survives thanks to a special Aquaman suit.
Plastic Man it is frozen and smashed into pieces. Later it will be assembled by Flash.
Aquaman he is sprayed with a fear toxin from The Scarecrow that makes him hydrophobic or aquaphobic (fear of water). Arthur nearly died of dehydration. Martian Manhunter makes him hallucinate with a desert to calm him down and puts him in a water tank.
Green Lantern receives a bout of REM post-hypnotic suggestion while asleep. Roughly, he is rendered blind by the power of his own ring. Since the power of the Lanterns works through sight and imagination (and Kyle is also an artist), he is neutralized by the power of his mind and the ring, so to speak.
Wonder Woman it is neutralized by a nanorobot inserted through its ear in the form of a projectile. Using virtual reality technology, the robot makes Diana’s mind believe that she is in a very important and decisive battle against a rival that she cannot defeat. Her personality prevents him from giving up. The idea of her attack was to leave her like this until her heart failed. Plastic Man removes the device when she recovers from her attack.
Flash receives one of the cruelest punishments: a shot from a special projectile that lodges in his spine and adapts to the vibration of his molecules. Result? Poor Wally has epileptic seizures at the speed of light. In normal time, he spent 22 minutes… but his relative time made the experience seem like months.
Superman receives an incredibly high dose of Red Kyptonite, an artificial creation of Batman. It is Green Kyptonite exposed to high doses of radiation to neutralize and not kill. Effect? Superman’s skin becomes transparent and he receives an incredibly high dose of solar radiation and a sensory overload that causes him to feel such incredible pain that he is paralyzed.
Without going into spoilers, The Justice League receives a massive attack that affects all members at the same time … except Batman. When his companions are recovering, Bruce confesses that the attack has been carried out. using their plans… but it’s not your thing. A very interesting moral debate ensues and the League votes to kick Batman out. Once again, it becomes clear that Batman’s mind is a weapon of mass destruction. I recommend the comic!
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