As one of the few superheroes without powers, Batman has been making people feel like anyone can be a hero for over eight decades straight. Gotham’s dark and gritty landscape has churned out plenty of villains that have kept us on the edge of our seats wondering what they’ll do next.
Batman has spawned countless TV shows, comics, and movies telling and telling stories of his adventures. With the many takes, there have been different visions of what the hero should wear (and drive). From tight spandex to armored plates that can withstand the gods, Batman has donned many hoods over the years.
The Batman (1943)
The Batman was the very first screen appearance of The Dark Knight, originally released as a fifteen-chapter theatrical series. Total run time was 260 minutes, or 4 hours and 30 minutes. This movie was about a Japanese terrorist group, led by Dr. Daka, wreaking havoc in Gotham.
This version of Batman was dressed in a cloth suit that had very little protection. With no Batmobile, few gimmicks, and nothing but fabric, this take definitely needed some upgrading.
batman and robin (1949)
batman and robin is the direct sequel to The Batman (1943). By changing actors Lewis Wilson for Robert Bassey, this film was also released as a fifteen-chapter theatrical series. Fans see Batman return, this time with his trusty sidekick Robin, to take on The Wizard.
Much like his costume in the previous series, Batman sports an all-cloth costume with no armor. While his gadgets have multiplied, his costume is still lacking in the protection department.
Batman ’66 was both a TV show and a movie starring Adam West like batman and Neighborhood Burt like Robin. The film was released between the first and second season. In the movie, Batman’s Most Notable Villains Join Forces in order to defeat The Caped Crusader.
This Batman follows his predecessors with the cloth costume. The main differences are the classic blue and gray costume of that era with the yellow symbol in the center.
This marked a turning point for Batman. Fans have gone from low-tech gadgets and cloth outfits to updated Batmobiles and armored suits. This film featured Michael Keaton as Batman confronts by Jack Nicholson Joker. In the film, fans see the rise of the Clown Prince of Crime as he takes over Gotham.
Batman ’89 is the first Batman film to show a more realistic costume. Keaton’s Batman pops an all-black spandex suit that appears to have armor plates in parts of the suit. This gave Batman a mobility advantage as well as much-needed protection.
batman and robin (1997)
batman and robin is the fourth and final film in WB’s premier Batman series. Here, fans see yet another cast change for the title character, this time played by George Clooney. Clooney’s Batman takes on Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, and Bane with a little help from his friends Robin and Batgirl.
This new and improved costume has more armor and is equipped with even more gadgets in its belt.
batman forever (1995)
batman forever is the third installment in WB’s premier Batman series. Bringing the series’ first cast change, Val-Kilmer takes on the mantle of Batman. Kilmer’s Batman confronts the Riddler and Two-Face. The duo teamed up to terrorize Gotham City. However, they are not the only new duo. In this film, Batman recruits a new partner, by Chris O’Donnell Robin.
Kilmer’s costume is a perfect mix between Keaton’s spandex and Clooney’s armor. This mix gives Batman the perfect amount of movement ability and protection against his enemies.
Justice League (2017)
Justice League is DC’s first live-action movie to bring together many of the company’s most iconic heroes, including Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash. They form a team to help save the world from Darkseid’s minions.
Ben Affleck reprises his role as Batman, after appearing as a Caped Crusader in Batman versus Superman. Affleck’s Batman wears a suit filled with padding and Kevlar, and sometimes additional armor, which helps him fight Gotham’s criminals.
The Dark Knight Trilogy (2005)
by Christophe Nolan Dark Knight Trilogy was a 3-film epic following the beginning and end of Batman. Christian Bale takes on the mantle of Batman as we see him take on Ra’s Al Ghul, Scarecrow, Joker, Two-Face, and Bane. Fans have been following Bale’s journey since he started training in batman begins until Batman’s death in Batman: The Dark Knight Rises.
In this series, fans see Bale’s Batman create his costume and make many modifications until it is perfect for his needs. He uses different armors and materials to keep the suit flexible and lightweight while still being able to take an incredible amount of damage, making it one of the best suits fans have seen on screen.
batman versus superman (2016)
batman versus superman was Batman’s first entry into the DCEU, as well as the first time Ben Affleck portrayed the role. As the title suggests, in this film, viewers see DC’s two most iconic characters go head-to-head. Batman thinks Superman is a threat to the world, while Superman is coerced by Lex Luthor into trying to kill Batman.
Batman, being only human, didn’t stand a chance against the divine Kyrptonian in his normal costume. With help from Alfred Pennyworth, Affleck’s Batman designs a suit that can stand up to Superman. This new costume was covered in armor and gadgets designed to take out The Man of Steel.
The Batman (2022)
The Batman is the new version of the beloved character. interpreted by Robert Pattinsonfans will see their hero take on the Riddler in this reboot of the franchise.
Pattinson’s costume seems to be bringing fans back to the armored and spandex look. Although covered in armor plates, this version has strategic breaks between the plates to help with its flexibility and mobility. This combination seems to be the perfect balance between protection and friendliness.
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