This the ultimate question of every Batman fanboy, can someone with enough money and access to technology also become a Batman? As we all know these two things aren’t the only attributes needed to turn into the Bat! Batman is a master of martial arts, an accomplished forensic and detective, science and chemistry expert, superhuman gymnast, adept at the geography of the area and knows the ins and outs of organized crime, criminal psychology, and physiology. And finally, he also has a killer bulletproof suit that can also resist electrocution that somehow, also allows him to move as fast as an Olympian runner and be as flexible as an acrobat.
No wonder it’s fiction! But the beauty of Batman is that unlike other superheroes, it gives a feeling of being somewhat plausible, and at a diluted level, he is just a really strong and agile fighter with loads of cash.
So let’s assume you have decided to embark on the journey towards vigilantism. You joined the military and became a Delta Force commando of the highest quality, while also got a double-major in criminal justice and psychology and a minor in chemistry to cover the educational bases. You’ll also need to take courses on detective work while maintaining an extraordinary level of physical fitness. Quitting the army and joining the police would be the next logical step to learn real life crime solving and detective work at crime scenes. So that’s at least 20 years of work right there to merely match the most basic aspects of Batman.
Now to start vigilantism, you’ll need to quit the force and be as discrete about this so not attract suspicion and expose your identity. After making sure no one has a clue about your true intentions, you’ll need to learn your way around rooftops and fire escapes and practice working in the shadows while not being seen.
Not to forget the millions of dollars you’ll need to spend on the Batman suit, so better start saving up for it! Here’s an infographic showing the “cost of a being Batman”.
You’ll also need a base of operations, so finding an old cave or missile silo will also be a hassle before you can turn it into a secret headquarters for your computers and monitoring equipment along with the high tech car and bike, etc.
Here’s another infographic on the additional cost of the gizmos,
So now you are ready to go out for your first night as Batman. , on Quora, who is a self-professed expert on Batman and an admin of the longest-running Batman website puts up a scenario:
“You should probably be about 32 at this point. And you are only about to go out on your first night as Batman. Okay, it’s taken longer than expected and been pretty hard, and honestly you are not quite as much a master of all fields as Batman, but at least you got the basics and are pretty well trained and smart and equipped. So off you go, looking to stop crime…
…and you’re looking. And looking. Oh, wait, you hear police sirens or you get a transmission from picking up the police radio calls, there’s a domestic disturbance in progress… well, that’s not really what Batman does, so you let that one go to the cops. Then you get another call about a robbery, ah ha! Finally Batman is going into action! You run across those rooftops, swing across to another roof — whoa crap, that was a lot more dangerous than it looks in the comics! But you’re booking it, running flat out and probably hitting, what, a good 10 miles per hour? Maybe less actually because of having to dodge things and stop at the edge of the roof to swing down again.
Anyway, there you are, rooftop to rooftop, and it occurs to you that the cop cars are so far gone now that you barely hear the sirens. So you think “Hmm, no wonder the real Batman has a car, this rooftop thing looks cool but I’ll never make it in time to stop a crime that isn’t happening within a block or two.”
And you don’t — make it in time, that is. The first few nights, you keep showing up and the robberies or shootings or whatever are already over, and you realize that this makes sense because most reports about crimes are only after it happens, not while it’s taking place. And you also remember that as a cop, you almost never just walked up or drove up accidentally right where a crime happened to taking place. In fact, you were just one of several thousand cops in your city, and most of you never just stumbled right across a significant crime in progress.
By your second week, you are getting unhappy that 90% of the crimes you’ve even seen up-close are just pathetic junkies buying crack from another pathetic junkie selling drugs to support his/her own habit. And nothing makes you feel LESS like Batman than scaring sad homeless crackheads. You tried to chase down a kid who you saw punch a lady and take her purse, but you can’t really pursue that kind of thing by running on rooftops, you gotta do it the hard way by chasing him on foot down the sidewalk… in your full Batman costume, where everybody can see you. People are taking photos on cell-phones, and yep there’s a cop car at the intersection and he saw you, and now he has his lights on and it’s YOU he’s after. Great, you have to let the kid go so you can run down an alley and climb up a fire escape to the roof to get away.
At last, week three, you get lucky — an armed robbery, right there across the street! You leap down onto the hood of their car, cape over the windshield just like in The Dark Knight Returns. And a teenage kid in the passenger seat fires a shotgun though the windshield in panic, blasting your torso.
You are wearing armor, though, haha! So it merely shreds your costume and knocks you off the car onto the street, but man that hurts! And it takes your breath away just long enough for the car to speed off. You get up, angry and just in time to see everyone taking your photo again and staring at your shredded outfit. Then the police come around the corner, and you run off again but this time you are injured because although the armor stopped the slug it still bruised you and broke a rib. You are fast, but not fast enough this time. The police draw their guns and order you to stop. You turn and grab for the smoke pellet on your belt to help hide your getaway, but unfortunately for you the cops see you reaching for something and open fire… and you suit’s armor is already a mess from the shotgun blast earlier. Uh oh.
When you wake up in the ICU, your mask and costume are gone, you’re in a lot of pain, but the doctors successfully removed the bullets and re-inflated your lung. The downside is the set of handcuffs trapping you in the bed. As a master detective, you can of course easily pick the lock on the cuffs to escape, but on the other hand the staph infection you caught after surgery is pretty bad and you feel like s**t. So you wait until night to sneak out — except you fall asleep on your pain meds, and wake up the next morning to the police coming to pick you up and take you to the infirmary at the state prison. Where you will spend a month recuperating until they can transfer you to the county jail for your first court appearance. During which your only comment to the judge is, “I guess it’s not really possible to become Batman.”
Sorry to burst your bubble. But if all this hasn’t got you down, here’s a video on what people you can go to train yourself and turn into a real life Batman!
On the other hand, folks at Scientific American do think that a Dark Knight era Batman could exist! WHAT!!!