Superman vs. Batman: Whose Side are You on?


It’s a question as old as comics. Batman or Superman? Not necessarily who would win in a fight (although that is a fun argument), but simply which character do you prefer, and why. I know that Batman usually wins that battle as well in the court of public opinion, and it really irks me. I am obviously, then, a Superman fan. I don’t buy into this idea that whichever one you choose tells a lot about your personality. I a firm believer that if you choose Batman over Superman you are buying into 1 of 2 major Batman myths. In other words, you just don’t know better. So, today, I am going to breakdown each of these myths, and hopefully convince you of what I have known for years, Superman is better. (Ok, I don’t really plan on convincing you, but it still makes for a fun post.)

Myth 1: I Identify More with Batman

I have heard people say this, and I laugh out loud each time. Inside, I cry a little. It makes me sad that so many people believe this. Let’s take a hard look at Batman. I want each of you to keep your hand raised until we get to something that is totally different from you.

Bruce Wayne was born on Earth. (unless my blog has much farther reach than I thought, everyone should still have their hand up.)

Bruce Wayne was born into the elite, super wealthy class. (I have probably lost the majority of you. If your hand is still up, please know that I am currently looking for sponsors for my site. You can contact me at [email protected])

Bruce Wayne’s parents were brutally murdered during a robbery (Although fairly common in comics, not as common in real life)

Bruce Wayne was raised by his strangely protective butler. (Do you even have a butler?)

Bruce Wayne used his limitless wealth to travel the world and learn every type of martial arts, as well as chemistry, biology, physics, and detective skills, turning himself into a one man war against crime. (If you are keeping you hand up to impress some girl, put it down, she doesn’t believe you either)

Bruce Wayne uses his limitless wealth to create the Batman persona, including the Batcave, Batsuit, Batmobile, Bat-computer, and any other Bat-accessory he might need. (There really should be no one left)

Batman goes out each night and miraculously survives endless encounters with criminals, ranging from strew-thugs to super villains. (Nope, hands down please)

And it goes on. Bruce Wayne continues to live the life of the super rich, doesn’t seem to age, comes back from the dead, etc. He’s not quite the average guy we all seem to identify with.

Now, take a look at Superman:

Kal-El was born on Krypton, and as the planet was blowing up, his father sent him hurtling to Earth in a small spaceship designed only for one baby. (I know, everyone’s hands went down. Please feel free to raise them again if anything else sounds familiar)

Kal-El was raised as Clark Kent by middle-class, blue-collar parents. (Some hands might be up)

Clark had to work in high school because if he wanted clothes or to go out on dates, he needed cash, which meant work. This of course was in addition to the chores he had to do around the house. (More hands up, others staying up- sounds pretty relatable)

Clark finds out he is different from everyone else. He is scared and feels like he doesn’t quite fit in. (Who didn’t feel this way at some point between the ages of 13-18, or beyond? Everyone’s hands should be up.)

Clark goes to a state university, studies Journalism and has to work his way through school. (Other than the journalism part, that was my college experience)

Clark gets a newspaper job, and moves to the big city and lives in a tiny, crummy apartment. (Sounds glamorous, right? It at least sounds real)

Because of the principle his parents taught him, Clark, as Superman uses his limitless power to help those who can’t help themselves and to become a beacon of hope. (We may not have limitless power, but how many of us strive to do what we can to help?)

Looking at the two examples, who is really more relatable to the average Joe? I submit that it’s Superman. Underneath the tights and the cape, he is just an average guy. Yes, he was born on another planet, but he grew up here, and his growing up was pretty similar to yours and mine. Way more than Batman’s. You have more in common, really, with Superman than you do Batman. The myth is based only on the first line I wrote for each of them: Batman was born here, Superman was born on a different planet.

Myth 2: Batman is Somehow More Realistic

This is really a 2 parter. Part 1: Because Batman has no powers, someone could become Batman, it could actually happen. In fact, given enough time, money, and resources, I could become Batman. Part 2: There is always a chance that Batman could end up losing because he has no powers, and goes up against people with super powers. Considering all of this, some might even question: is Batman strong enough to deal with the bad guys? Although his strength can surpass the limits of normal humans, there could always be the risk of an accident. Superman has too many powers, so he would never lose. Thus, somehow Batman is more realistic. Let’s take a look at each part of this myth separately.

Part 1: No one could ever become Batman. Going out every night and getting crap beat of you would be pretty taxing to your body. No one could take that kind of damage over a long period of time. Or, really, over short period of time. Of course, whoever tried could die the first night. Not even Chuck Norris could pull off a real Batman. Sorry Chuck.

Chuck norris wow

More importantly, YOU could never become Batman. The truth is, you don’t have the time, or money, or resources to become the caped crusader. No one really does. Think about the amount of time it would take to learn everything that Batman supposedly knows. Just to master all the martial arts skills alone would take most of your adult life. You would be like 70 by the time you mastered it all, or older. A really old dude is not going to make it long as a super hero. Then you would still have to learn all the science, like chemistry, biology, and physics. Not to mention studying and mastering your detective skills. Now, you’re probably like 100 years old, or dead of old age. That’s just the time aspect. Then there’s the money aspect. It would take billions to bankroll being Batman. That’s billions with a “b,” not millions. That is a lot of money. Then there’s the resources, like having a company that happens to have an R and D department that won’t ask too many questions when their best stuff goes missing. You just don’t have what it takes to be Batman. No one does. You have a better chance of finding out that you were really born on another planet and our yellow sun gives you super powers.

Part 2: Batman never loses. N-E-V-E-R. I mean, yes he dies once, but he got better. He cam back to life. He conquered death. I mean, Superman conquered death, but he’s Superman, with amazing powers, so it’s to be expected. Batman has no powers, but somehow he died, and then he wasn’t dead. The point is, he’s a fictional character, so super powers or no powers, Batman can do whatever the writers want him to do. And everybody wants to see him win, so he always wins. How is that more realistic than Superman? At least Superman is almost all-powerful, so his win streak makes sense. Of course Superman wins, he’s all-powerful. But Batman has just as impressive a streak, and we are ok with that, and somehow buy the myth that it is more realistic. Wrong! He is just as fictional as Superman, and frankly more unbelievable. Sorry, Bats, it’s not looking good.


The reality is this, whether you prefer Superman or Batman is really a matter of opinion. Most of you will respond by saying you like Batman because he’s cooler, has more of an edge. I can’t argue that. Superman has never been edgy. It’s not his style. That is a fine reason to prefer Batman, but don’t hide behind one of these myths. Batman is not more relatable or more realistic that Superman. They are both fictional characters and like most protagonists, we can see a little bit of ourselves in either one. Neither character is really based on anything remotely factual or everyday life, but isn’t that part of why we love them? It’s an escape from reality. I don’t want to read comics that are easily relatable to my everyday life. I get to live my everyday life enough, thank you. (Speaking of course about work and bills and things like that, and not of my family. I can’t get enough of them.) I doubt I convinced anyone to come over to Superman, but hopefully you’ll think twice before saying something like “I just identify more with Batman because he is just a regular guy in a costume.” It’s simply not true.

Jake Dietz
Jake Dietz is a humble bank employee by day, and super dad to 5 little monsters by night. He enjoys all things geeky. That's why he started this blog. He considers himself a member of many fandoms, and dreams of the day when all geeks, everywhere, can find a way to live together in harmony.
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About Jake Dietz

Jake Dietz is a humble bank employee by day, and super dad to 5 little monsters by night. He enjoys all things geeky. That's why he started this blog. He considers himself a member of many fandoms, and dreams of the day when all geeks, everywhere, can find a way to live together in harmony.