It has been 77 years since the world was first introduced to The Batman. Known as the World's Greatest Detective, the character continues to stand the test of time, and grow in popularity with each passing year.
The staying power of the character is further proven by the fact that today marks the third annual Batman Day - celebrating all things Caped Crusader. In celebration of the occasion, we've compiled a list of 25 facts about the iconic DC Comics character we're sure fans will enjoy!
And so, in the immortal words of The Joker: "And, Here...We...Go..."
1. Batman debuted in the pages of Detective Comics #27, released in May 1939.
2. The character was created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger.
3. Originally, Batman was a gun-toting vigilante who would often shoot and kill his adversaries.
4. Bruce Wayne's name is derived from two real life heroes - Robert the Bruce of Scotland and Mad Anthony Wayne, a hero of the American Revolution.
5. Inspiration for The Batman came from the likes of Zorro, The Shadow and even Dracula.
6. There is an alternate reality in which Bruce was killed instead of his parents. His father Thomas would become The Batman while his mother, driven mad over the murder of her son, became The Joker.
7. Robin was only supposed to appear once, but when his debut issue sold more than twice the number of past installments, the character became a permanent fixture in DC Comics lore.
8. The Batcave first debuted in a 1943 television serial entitled The Batman, which starred Lewis Wilson as Batman and Douglas Croft as Robin.
9. Famed crooner Frank Sinatra had hoped to play The Joker in the 1966 Batman TV show before Caesar Romero was cast in the role.
10. The Batmobile for the 1966 Batman TV show was created using a Lincoln Futura concept car, which customizer George Burris purchased from Ford for $1.
11. While it is considered a classic today, critics initially hated Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, dismissing it as a dark, convoluted tale that was far too difficult to follow and crammed with too much text.
12. Batman was selected to join the ranks of the Sinestro Corps due to his ability to instill such great fear into his adversaries.
13. Andy Warhol directed the first Batman movie in 1964. However, as it was made without the consent of DC Comics, the movie never saw release and all copies of the film are lost.
14. Gotham City receieved its name after co-creator Bill Finger opened a phone book and randomly put his finger on the number for Gotham Jewelers.
15. Voice actor Kevin Conroy has played Batman longer than anyone else. Beginning with Batman: The Animated Series in 1992, Conroy has voiced The Caped Crusader in 8 animated TV shows, 14 animated movies and 10 video games.
16. While The Joker may have been responsible for beating Jason Todd to death, it was the fans who voted for the second Robin to die. A call-in pole raked in 5,343 votes in favor of the character being killed off by The Clown Prince Of Crime.
17. Batman has defeated DC Comics villain Darkseid on two separate occasions. The first time, Bats shot Darkseid with a god - killing gun during the events of Final Crisis. The second time, with the aid of the Hellbat armor designed by the Justice League, Batman bested Darkseid once again and successfully rescued his son Damian in the process.
18. Tim Burton's Batman, which grossed $411-Million worldwide in 1989, is credited with becoming the first modern era comic book blockbuster.
19. Bob Kane was supposed to have a cameo appearance in Tim Burton's Batman, but was too ill to do so. Kane would also serve as a consultant on the film.
20. On an alternate earth, Batman and Catwoman marry and their daughter, Helena Wayne, takes up the mantle of The Huntress.
21. Both Darren Aronofsky and Wolfgang Petersen were slated to direct Batman movies before Christopher Nolan was brought on to helm Batman Begins in 2005.
22. In 1996, a comic book crossover was published that combined Batman and Wolverine into a brand new hero named Dark Claw - whose alter ego is Logan Wayne.
23. According to Forbes, Bruce Wayne is worth an esifimated $7-Billion.
24. A number of different characters have taken up the mantle of Batman over the years including Bruce Wayne, Jean Paul Valley and Dick Grayson.
25. Despite being just a man, Batman has bested Superman in combat on numerous occasions, employing everything from Kryptonite gauntlets to power armor in order to do so.
Happy Batman Day, Infinite Earths fans!!
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