First lets take a look at how each character differs. Yes this may seem a little redundant, but it’s to help keep the focus as we move on. Batman is not so much a hero, but a vigilante who punishes those who need to be punished. Batman is not afraid to get on their level never crossing the kill line though. That is the one barrier that he leaves to separate himself from the villain scum. Batman has also spent years training and honing his body and mind to as near perfection as he can get it. Of course he also tends to boarder on madness from time to time. Although, he does seem to have a plan for everything.
Superman on the other hand isn’t even human. He crashed on our planet and was raised by simple farmers. Superman is considered the ultimate boy scout which can be either a praise or an insult depending the context. Superman hates violence and will find another way if he can to resolve conflict and crime. He truly believes in rehabilitation and that everyone possesses the capacity for good if given a chance. While Superman has the powers of a God he tries to fit in amongst regular people as best as he can. He believes that with strength and will that good will triumph over evil.
What Batman and Superman do have in common is what it is they want to achieve. Both want to rid the world of evil to make it a safe place for average citizens. Both want to defend and preserve free will. Each of them, Batman and Superman, want to give everyone the chance to flourish without the threat of crime or harm. The overall goal is the protection of the planet and its people.
We have two very different characters, but their goals and ideals are the same. The truly interesting part is how each one goes about accomplishing those goals. One dwells in light while the other dwells in darkness. Their mentality and plan of action are completely different. Overall though, who defends what they believe in the best?
Batman is prepared. He has done the research, he knows his enemy, he knows who/what is involved, and he knows the consequences if he doesn’t succeed. In the process Batman doesn’t care whose toes he steps on as long as the mission is accomplished. Batman is also not above breaking a few bones here and there since his enemies are more than willing to do that to innocent people. Some people refer to Batman as paranoid because of all of the plans and back up plans that he has. Not to mention that he has a plan to take out each and every member of the Justice League should any of them become a threat. Granted that may sound a bit paranoid, but look at it this way; wouldn’t you want someone who can take down Martian Manhunter if he suddenly flips his lid? That just shows preparedness. The most important aspect of Batman is that he will not back down.
Superman on the other hand tries to reason with his enemies. He tends to charge in with the best intentions, but doesn’t see far enough down the road to know if there’s more at stake or not. If it’s an enemy that he has a long history with, like Lex Luthor, he understands their motives and in that case he’s very effective in defeating them. You have to admire his compassion in that he tries to resolve conflict before it becomes a full out fight. Superman will also put himself in harm’s way to save innocent people. Superman tries to idealize the human spirit as much as he can. He is always seeking a compromise, but will fight if that is required to save the planet he has adopted and now calls home. Superman also works with the American Government to help resolve issues on a national scale. He considers himself a champion of the people.
Now let’s look at the downsides to Batman and Superman’s approaches. After all for every pro there is a con and vice versa. Granted that no method is going to work perfectly, but let’s see what it is that’s holding each of these characters back.
While Batman does have a plan for everything to the average person he looks reckless and destructive. There are times when his methods are downright insane. Not to mention that he comes across more as a villain than a hero. The police are after him, the media fries him on a regular basis, and he seems overall downright scary.
Superman is on the opposite end of that scale. He is so willing to do for people and the Government that he’s more a pushover than anything. He still hasn’t figured out that you can’t slap villains on the wrist and say, “That’s not nice. Please don’t do that anymore,” It is because of this willingness, nay obsession, to play by the rules that makes Superman an errand boy more than a hero. He is so afraid to even tread on the line that separates him from the villains that he comes across as a wuss. He has all of that power, but he’s so afraid to use it.
So dear readers which do you deem is better? To get the job done by any means necessary and not worry about how you come off or be so concerned with playing by the rules and being good that you become more of a political puppet?
Overall who do you think has achieved their goal better? Superman with his practically limitless power or Batman with his seemingly limitless resources?