Batman v Superman: Resolved
009 - It is impossible to address the fundamental question with direct comparison. It is only through a slightly circuitous route where I find clarity.
I digress from the normal subject matter for of this weblog for two reasons. First, and foremost, this topic of discussion has recently come up over lunch with some colleagues. Second, after missing a post last week, I feel a little obligated to add one more this week.
So it’s Superman, right? I mean … he is super. Batman is just a smart, rich dude with an incredible amount of resources at his disposal. There is no independent flight, no super strength, heat-ray vision, or super breath. Batman is … human. Unfortunately, trying to tally up pros and cons of these two icons is a fool’s errand. I find it similar to trying to figure out if Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, or LeBron James is the best basketball player in history. Yes, they played the same sport, but in totally different conditions. There were different rules, different levels of competition, different styles of play, different equipment, different understandings of training and nutrition, different recovery strategies. The list goes on. (Besides, we all know that Bill Russell was the best ever.) A similar situation arises with Batman and Superman. These two superheroes had to act and react to different standards, different realities, different laws of physics.
So let us abandon the original line of inquiry and follow a new path. Let us compare two figures that are more alike than different. Consider two mentally unstable, billionaire inventors. Consider Bruce Wayne and Lex Luthor. Here you find two humans of similar abilities and equally ludicrous assets. I put to you this question. Of the two, who is more competent? Who takes all that has been given to him and channels it most effectively? I feel an argument could be made on either side, but result after result makes me feel that Bruce Wayne is simply better at getting the job done.
If you have come with me this far, it is just a short jump to get back and answer the original question. Lex Luthor has come incredibly close to defeating Superman, on multiple occasions. Lex Luthor is the 1990s Buffalo Bills of comic book combatants. If you can acquiesce that Bruce Wayne and the resources held within Wayne Enterprises can outdo Lex Luthor and the mighty LexCorp, then Batman would be able to overcome Lex Luthor in a conflict. The transitive property of superhero/supervillain clashes has me going against my first instinct and my better judgement. I am convinced, however, that Bruce Wayne is clearly greater than Lex Luthor. Lex Luthor is only slightly less than Superman. So in this fantasy matchup of superheroes, we should all pick Batman over Superman.
By the way, Gene Hackman was the best Lex Luthor of all time.
Kneel before Zod!