I had a thought about Batman, or rather, a thought about Baterangs.
I don’t know when Batman began to toss about the Baterangs, but I’m more interested how the Dark Knight used and uses them now.
When I was a little little kid, and before I began to read comics, Batman existed in two locations: As a member of the Super Friends and The Batman live action TV series from the 60’s which I only saw in reruns.
Don’t recall if Batman ever used a Baterang in Super Friends, but I do remember the one used on the Batman series. Even as a kid it looked extremely heavy and couldn’t possibly be thrown properly, or how was it stored in his utility belt, but that wasn’t the point on that show, was it?
The use of Batarangs have changed over the years, from being used to knock a gun out of a bad guy’s hand they became Ninja throwing stars that actually imbed themselves in the bad guy’s hand.
Before someone writes in, yes I know that in the earliest Batman stories he did have a good. But that didn’t last long; the character has over the years become very opposed to using a gun. (No, let’s not talk about that gun he used in Final Crisis.)
But these little bats, made of metal, plastic, or fiberglass, (What do you think?) has changed in their use.
I suppose the change began with Frank Miller’s DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and YEAR ONE, and within the themes and mood of those books that the use of these as weapons is understandable.
But is that really how the batarang should be used on a regular basis.
While checking online to make certain I was spelling ‘batarang’ correction I came across this page on ComicBookresources.com written by Brian Cronin and provides an image of one of the very first uses of the Batarang to help him escape from a trap. It also answered my question from earlier; the Batarang first appears only months after Batman premiers.
The Batman movies have only added to this as “all those wonderful toys” became more like weapons. Even the Batmobile is a tank, which tears up the streets of Gotham.
Yes, I respect every writer and artist’s use of whatever bat-paraphernalia they need to tell the best story they can, but for me I’d prefer a Batarang that helps not hurts.
Going through several of my favorite Batman stories from when I was first reading them I discover that Batman didn’t even use the Batarang in many of them. In those stories he was more detective than action hero.
Duck! I'm about to throw my Batarang.
Kevin Paul Shaw Broden
Four Names of Professional Creativity.