In spite of what it seems, Bruce Wayne isn’t dead in Gotham Knights.
The Batman: Arkham game series revolutionized comic book-inspired video games. The concept of an open-world video game with puzzles isn’t new; the difference was the kind of puzzles and how you attacked them. You had different ways to fight with all sorts of gadgets and the Riddler puzzles made you think harder than almost any other in gaming history.
It was like you were actually Batman – something people have wanted to do for years. Now, Gotham Knights will carry on that tradition. Except, in this game, you’ll be using Red Hood, Robin (Tim Drake), Nightwing, and Batgirl. In this spin-off game, these heroes are enlisted by Bruce Wayne via a video specifically sent to them under a major circumstance: His death.
We never thought we’d see the day that Batman was killed – especially not in a video game. He’s too important of a character. However, his last message was only to be sent in case of his death.
With the reports in the beginning of the Gotham Knights trailer that Wayne Manner was blown up and Bruce confirming all his equipment was destroyed, it looked like it was all true – Batman was dead.
Although, let’s be honest, do any of us actually believe that? This writer certainly doesn’t. Here are some reasons why Batman’s death could be false.
Reasons why Batman would fake his own death
Yes, faking his death isn’t something the comic book Batman would necessarily do, but this isn’t the Batman from the comic books. This is an alternate DC Comics Earth. His morals could be completely different from what we’re used to seeing. We don’t know everything that Batman has been through. However, there’s a fact Bruce told us in the video and it’s the death of Jim Gordon.
Commissioner Gordon may not have known Batman’s secret identity, but they were friends. They trusted each other. This trust enabled them to work together to keep Gotham as safe as possible. There’s no telling how Bruce took his death. In a previous article, this writer mentioned that it’s possible one of Batman’s villains may have killed him. It may be the reason the Gotham City Police Department (GCPD) stopped working with him or any of the Bat-Family members.
Having to fight Gotham’s worst on top of avoiding the cops may have destroyed his hope for a better Gotham. Batman is one of the most determined people in comic books but what is his breaking point? For all of his incredible feats and skill, he’s still only human. He may have realized that the only way to truly stop the villains in Gotham is to kill them = a line he won’t cross.
The Caped Crusader may have taken a look at Gotham City and had enough. He knew Gotham would be in good hands and decided to hang it up for good. Letting people know he quit wouldn’t sit right with him. Instead, he’d fake his death and start a new life.
Let’s not forget that Bruce isn’t getting any younger. Unlike Superman and Wonder Woman, Batman is mortal. He doesn’t have the advantage of aging slowly or healing fast. At some point his body is going to break down. Look at Marvel’s Daredevil. He almost gave up because his body wasn’t healing right due to years of abuse. Granted, getting hit by a truck didn’t help either, but Batman has certainly taken more abuse than Daredevil. Bruce may have come close to death or losing in a fight and simply had enough. We saw something similar happen in the first episode of Batman Beyond.
Dead and coming back
Let’s look at one more option. Bruce Wayne is actually dead. He sacrificed himself (which also seems unlikely) and the world has moved on. But that doesn’t mean he’ll stay dead. Heroes and villains come back from the dead all the time.
Bruce was once thought to be dead but actually stuck in the time-stream. In the Gotham Knights series, he may even be brought back by one of his greatest enemies. Ra’s Al Ghul could take Batman’s body and resurrect him using the Lazarus Pit. That’s not all, what if Batman comes back with no memory of who he was?
One thing the Batman: Arkham series loved doing was throwing twists in the game – especially in the final one. The identity of the Arkham Knight, the hallucination of Batman becoming the Joker, or the ending when Bruce unmasked to the world. And all that’s only in the final Batman: Arkham. There have been more moments like this throughout the series.
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Let’s take this one step further and go darker. What if Bruce Wayne was frightened of what he was becoming and ultimately decided to take himself out of the equation? There’s a scarier version of Batman in the comics and he’s called The Batman Who Laughs. He has all of Batman’s skill, intelligence, and physical prowess mixed with the remorselessness and savagery of the Joker. The apex predator, if you will.
Bruce would sacrifice himself if he knew that he was becoming a twisted version of himself. However, if this twisted persona took over, then he’d save himself before it’s too late. Waiting for the right moment to emerge as this new Dark Knight. Now that would be a twist no one would see coming.
Having Bruce become a potential villain – whether it be as The Batman Who Laughs, the leader of the League of Shadows or any kind of antagonist – would be a great way to officially pass the torch to the new team because it would give them a great obstacle to overcome.
Whatever happens, just remember; Batman isn’t gone for good.
What do you think? Is Batman really dead? Let us know in the comments below!