Truth be told, I was in grade school when one day I just decided that Batman was my favorite super hero. At the time, I didn't think much of anything of it. I was just a kid. I might as well have been stating that my favorite color was blue (it isn't) or that my favorite shoes were flip-flops. It was just a mere statement, a declaration. The question came to me one day "Who is your favorite super hero?" And I thought, well, I should pick one. I loved all super heroes and I never really thought about WHY Batman was my favorite. I just decided that he was. I don't know if I claimed him as my favorite first, or if he became my favorite because of that declaration, but to this day Batman is my absolute favorite super hero. And as I think on it, here is why:
Character Development: Batman has a beautiful character ARC. As a child he sees the murder of his parents which in return sets in motion this need to seek justice and vengeance for the terrible criminals that wrong others. He is dark, mysterious, but above all just a guy trying to do good in the world. He has a hero complex. And at the end of it all he can't bring himself to kill someone because of his good nature.
Comic Book Feel: I love comic books. But what I really love about this particular comic book hero is how dark it is. I mean, it has Arkham Asylum for the criminally insane. I feel like this is such a clever and key ingredient into the world of Batman. It explores an area that other comic books simply do not. And it adds that darker element to it.
Side Characters: I personally feel like Batman has the most memorable side characters. Love Alfred. Love Vicki Vale. Love Commissioner Gordon. Heck, I even love Dick Grayson if he's not Chris O'Donnell. (No offense to Batman Forever because I really DO like that movie, just not a fan of Robin). But each character adds something to the story. And I will be honest with you, not ALL side characters in stories do. But each main side character in Batman is very distinct and brings something to the overall story.
Villains: Batman has the best villains ever, in my opinion. They are crazy and wild and different. Unlike other comic book villains.
Batman Music: From ALL of the movies, I LOVE the soundtracks. I could listen to Kiss From A Rose On the Grave by Seal over and over again. In fact ages ago, when that movie came out, that was my favorite song. It could be the worse of the Batman movies and I still love the music. Danny Elfman and Hans Zimmer, of course, being my favorite composers. All of it is good. I'm a huge music lover and I love how dark Batman music can be, especially in The Dark Knight.
So, the point of this post isn't just to tell you about Batman and to let you know that he's my favorite. Even though he IS my favorite and I'd be happy to talk about him all day. The point is we find inspiration in so many different places of life and for different purposes. Batman inspires me for my writing. I want to write complex characters like Batman. Some stories I want the same dark feel that Batman has. I want to create those side characters that make the story have depth and meaning. I want to make villains that are memorable. I want to explore topics that perhaps others haven't before. I want to hear music that makes the story leap off the page.
But Batman doesn't just inspire my writing. As silly as it sounds, he's a good guy to look up to. I mean, What Would Batman Do?