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Can someone explain why i shouldnt want Batman to kill?

posted by VengefulKenny on - Viewed by 1.1K users

I have a hard time roleplaying this part of Batman's character, as some of the criminals that Batman fights will undoubtedly go on to hurt/kill even more innocent men, women, and children. I wouldnt have Batman go around killing everyone, but I wouldnt have any qualms killing a lunatic who would immediately get out of jail and start mass murdering again.

So why should i care about Batman's code if its inevitably going to get someone he loves killed, like in the other universes? I wonder if we will be able to shape Batman's stance/reason for not killing this season, or possibly have a difficult choice to kill someone later on?

29 Comments
  • One of batmans main character points is that he doesn't kill, even though thats pretty stupid because some of the stuff he does no doubt leaves people extremely injured or dead.

    Batman got stupid years ago I don't know why they just drop the no kill thing we're not falling for it, people die from being kicked of skyscrapers and stuff so stop lying to us. Now that I think about it the no kill thing is probably just to keep the age ratings lower.

    I haven't actually played telltales batman myself im just going off batman as a character.

    • In the first scene of the very first episode, the bad guys are talking about how Batman sent a bunch of their people to the hospital and the rest to the morgue. And then suddenly Batman never kills, its dumb and I feel like it really limits my interactions while playing as him.

      • Did Bats kill them or were they killed during the fighting? I mean, when we take down Falcone at the Skyline club, two mobsters are killed because Falcone was trying to shoot Bats and sprayed them with bullets. Totally not Bats' fault.

        Bat is not guilty of first, second, or third degree murders. It's possible that he is guilty of involuntary manslaughter if his devices cause a death he did not intend - similar to how these cops pursued a teenage graffiti artist (Florida, because Florida) and tazed him, which caused his death. Turns out the kid had a heart condition. The jury did not convict those officers of murder.

        There's another whole category of justifiable homicide; eg self-defense, or if you can prove that someone else is going to commit murder unless you stop them. So if the Bats had killed the Riddler, right before he slits that casino worker's throat, for example it would have been justifiable. We don't have that option, and even if he had, he wouldn't.

        In the first episode I wanted to not catch Selina, but the game doesn't give you that option. She's too integral to the game, and that goes against Bats' ethics.

        I think Bats gave a LOT of people concussions every time he got into a fight with thugs. Better that then actually kill them. Plus, ya know, they were trying to kill him or some other innocent person.

        Should Bats kill serial killers? I know I would, given the chance, but I actually respect Bats for not making that decision.

        My point is... it is never proven that Bats killed anyone despite whatever those CoA said or believed.

    • You're missing a lot if you haven't played this yet. Especially season 1.

      One of telltale's best work lately.

  • Batman's "no killing" rule wasn't a constant during all of the character's iterations. There were some versions that did kill (I mean, just at the beginning of one Tim Burton's Batman movies, he puts a bomb on some guy's crotch and pushes him in a hole, then the bomb explodes. Don't tell me that wasn't a kill). But it is something that has been enforced in modern iterations.

    Anyways, perhaps it is because I'm a lawyer in real life, but no one should be Judge, Jury and Executioner. It doesn't matter who the person is and what they did, everybody deserves their day in court. This is one of the pillars of our society, without which it wouldn't survive. You may think "yeah but what if they are really, REALLY bad?", but the thing is, when you start opening exceptions, crossing certain limits, it is a matter of time until you go too far. Bruce decided long ago that there are some limits he isn't willing to cross, and not killing is one of these.

    “Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster... for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you.” - Nietzsche

    • Batman's "no killing" rule wasn't a constant during all of the character's iterations. There were some versions that did kill (I mean, just at the beginning of one Tim Burton's Batman movies, he puts a bomb on some guy's crotch and pushes him in a hole, then the bomb explodes. Don't tell me that wasn't a kill). But it is something that has been enforced in modern iterations.

      Didn't he also cause Joker to fall in the original movie? Bat is the one who attached his leg to the statue of the bell tower.

      • Yeah he did. That one is a classic! Batman even says he is going to kill the Joker before the brawl. That one is Tim Burton's too. Tim Burton's Batman killed quite a few people.

    • Im not very knowledgable on the different Batman iterations so i didnt realize there were versions where he does kill. That gives me hope that i can shape the Telltale Batman to be more brutal and unforgiving than its forcing me to be.

      I understand how killing and taking the violent route can be a serious detriment to the very society those actions would be trying to protect. I've seen firsthand how horrifying mob justice can be, and a state obsessed with anger and violence is not one I want to live in. But surely there is a definitive line that can be crossed where imprisonment isn't enough of a punishment/preventative measure.

      Since you're a lawyer, have you ever represented someone that you knew had no remorse and would commit the crime again in a heartbeat? What if they would 100% come try to kill you or your family the second they were released? What if they simply don't care how much time they get in prison, and what if they simply become better criminals while they're there? At what point is the law and the pillars of society simply being taken as a joke?

      Anyways I would at least enjoy the opportunity to try this method and experience the ramifications, because for me the no killing rule feels some mischaracterized for how I want to play Batman. I mean hasn't Bruce ever wondered if his parents would be alive if Joe Chill had been killed instead of spit in and out of prison? Its a difficult dilemma that i hope to explore later in the series, thanks for the discussion mate.

      • Since you're a lawyer, have you ever represented someone that you knew had no remorse and would commit the crime again in a heartbeat? What if they would 100% come try to kill you or your family the second they were released? What if they simply don't care how much time they get in prison, and what if they simply become better criminals while they're there? At what point is the law and the pillars of society simply being taken as a joke?

        Kinda. I assisted my teacher, who is the equivalent to a public defender in the USA, in a case like that while I was still in college. The defendant was a serial killer without a pattern: Whenever he got the impulse to kill, he just killed with whatever he could find, whoever he could find, for a total of 12 confirmed victims. His youngest victim was a teenage boy. And in my country there is no death penalty or life in prison: The max someone can stay in prison is for 30 years, no matter the conviction, even if they get like 400 years they will get out in 30. And I'm 100% sure he doesn't care, he is a psychopath after all.

        But despite all of that, he is a person (as per legal definition of person, as much as I want to call him a monster). He got his day in court (several days, actually) and got convicted for all 12 murders. My teacher tried to claim insanity so he would be sent to a mental institution instead (not that it would help, since these are as bad as prisons here, sometimes worse. "Arkham" is a thing in third world countries, absolutely), but the jury didn't care much. But the point is, it was a completely legal process, where several people were involved, and as much as knowing he will get out in 30 years leaves a bad taste in my mouth, I would feel much worse if I had to see a bunch of vigilantes being put in jail for mob justice instead.

        But it is a difficult dilemma. I actually had to be convinced this is the right thing after getting in law school. Drawing a line between justice and vengeance is really, really hard, and I would love to see Batman struggling with this. Especially since my Alfred is vengeful right now.

  • What annoys me the most is that Batman keeps sparing the Joker despite all the terrible things he has made like:

    • Getting Barbara Gordon paralyzed.
    • Manipulating and torturing Harley Quinn.
    • Getting Rachel Dawes killed.
    • Killing Jason Todd (Robin).

    Seriously, there is no point keeping him alive because he will always cause trouble, Joker is not human anymore.

  • He has a personal honor code against killing, simply put. Batman became Batman because he witnessed the murder of his parents. As cheesy as it may sound, he probably feels killing would make him just as bad as the guys he goes after.

    EDIT: Also, he believes deeply in the concept of Justice, as in everyone should be tried in a court of law.

  • Batman has evolved since his inception. In the 1939-40's, Batman frequently killed people. ( Comics ) He punched someone into a vat of acid, and called it a fitting end for his kind. He shoots up a truck with his plane. He does mention that he doesn't like to take a human life in that panel, but also mentions ' this time it's necessary '. He's also hung someone til death from the batplane.

    It's not until Detective Comics #33 that Bruce Wayne has a backstory, and a rule against killing with weapons appears in Batman #4 as a reminder to Robin. More recently as mentioned, Tim Burton's Batman killed.

    The no-killing rule is extremely frustrating, just as 'justice' itself is extremely frustrating. The revolving door of violence our society has created is like a living parody, and those who commit non-violent crimes or even some minor drug related crimes that only hurt themselves sometimes get put away for longer than those that have made the innocent suffer. There are people who have received longer sentences for possession of marajuana than rape.

    It's really little wonder how many people often think if Batman would just kill one person , how many hundreds would that have saved considering the body count of villain after villain. How many children wouldn't have to also be an orphan ( and one that didn't have a butler that would raise them as their own in a mansion ).

  • The rule is far from perfect, but it makes him a much more interesting character, imo.

    Some iterations have tied it to him not liking guns. This makes sense as it ties back to his origin, when Joe Chill killed his parents with a gun etc. Batman V Superman touched on this, though that film is deeply flawed and didn't get the moment right, the DCAU however (Batman: TAS, Batman Beyond) got it spot on. The pilot episode of Batman Beyond shows an old Bruce Wayne give up the mantle because he resorted to almost using a gun to defend himself.

    That said, I'm not strictly against him killing. I just tend to think of the main version of the character to have the rule, since you have alternate versions like Flashpoint, and you need that contrast to distinguish the two. Batman V Superman didn't give this enough focus, though the Dark Knight under its realism made it clear that there are consequences for people dying, even indirectly because of Batman existing. It also touches on him being aware that he simply does not and should not have the authority to do that, I mean, he's already a vigilante.

    It's a very stubborn thing to do, just to keep his own conscience clean, but for him to be able to do what he does efficiently, the line has to be drawn so that he doesn't become the very thing he chose to stand up against.

  • Batman's reasons are to keep him from becoming a monster. There have been times where he's expressed that he wants to kill but he holds himself back. A perfect example of this is in the Under the Red Hood animated film. Minor spoilers incoming! Jason Todd is furious and just can't understand why Batman hasn't killed the Joker for what he's done. And Batman explains that he's always wanted to kill him but if he went down that path he'd never come back. So as I understand it Batman believes that the second he'd cross that line he would never come cross back. If he'd kill Joker he'd kill everyone who got in his way.

    EDIT: So why should you care? I don't know if I can tell you that. Maybe if you care about Batman as a character you should care about his beliefs. I don't know.

  • You can want to kill whomever you want in the Bats world, doesn't mean that the writers are going to allow that as an option.

    I mean, he would have tried to save LA even though she knew his identity. The building collapsing on her is the only reason I can think of that he didn't.

  • Well it was due mainly to the US Government getting on the case of horror Comics and pushing a ratings system that made Comics more kid friendly....Tales From the Crypt and others wee pretty gruesome...it was not until the growth of the popular Mangas coming to the US and Independent Comic books in the late 80s through the 90s that Killing the bad guys became more popular...This actually did sorta help Batman as the 70s went into darker psychological stories that seem to creep up in newer issues every so often.

    As a side note...in the 70s things were so gritty that Cat Woman was a drugged up whore and actually died. But of course reboots happen and the only thing we have left of that is Frank Miller's Year 1.

  • I will say that the entire no-killing rule set does help to preserve some of the greatest villains in the comic verse whereas most comic books only have a handful of decent ones. It also prevents messy stories that involve some mysterious resurrection or a very clear death has a very horribly shady 'didn't really die' storyline. Quite a few authors have written themselves into corners by killing villains that were very popular with the fans only to have to cheaply concoct a method they could've survived the event for a future story.

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