To be edited.
Steve Mini. Toronto.
I once joked that Batman fits into every alignment in the Dungeons and Dragons system. He can be considered everything from Lawful Evil to Chaotic Good. He’s all 9 different alignments. But how can this be?
When you think of Batman you think of a good guy beating up bad characters. He’s got to be good, right? But often his alignment is more than that. Does he frequently break the law? Everything from speeding down a stretch in the Batmobile to assault with a weapon. Even murder sometimes. He lets people die by falling off a building. He thinks justice is punishing criminals for their moral transgressions. Nobody is safe from Batman if they’ve committed a crime. Is he a lawful character, on a quest for justice, coaborating with the authorities? Or is he a chaotic vigilante, often excessively violent and out of control, on a self-serving mission to rid the world of criminals? Is he Lawful Good, like Adam West’s iteration? Or is he Chaotic Good, like some of his other stories? He’s got to be Good, right? Maybe not, though …
I argue that, philosophically, Batman should stray a little more towards being neutral. He should serve his own self-interest at times. I wish he would side with a villian to tackle an objective. Falling in love with an “evil” character was a master-stroke and some of the highlights of his pathetically good career. He should break the law at whim. Be excessively violent at times and a little out of control. Dark and gritty. Show his soul’s soft underbelly. Not just his knight-in-shining-armor attitude.
The problem is, unless we stretch our imagination or are “rules lawyers”, he doesn’t really ever break with the law, or his own personal moral compass.
There have been transgressions. But at the end of the day, Batman is just a good guy.
Other than beating up obviously evil dudes, is he in any way selfish? Could he steal intelligence and win a war? Probably not. He wouldn’t. (Unless he obviously has somewhere. I’m not sure). Anyway it doesn’t make sense for Batman to do so. It breaks with his character. That’s what sucks about Batman. He’s too two-dimensional. Too good.
You see batman can’t be a criminal. He’s just a good person at heart. That’s where I come in. I want Batman to be evil for a while, then stray towards neutral after that.
I would have wanted him in the neutral alignment category somehow. Lawful neutral would be interesting. or Chaotic Neutral. So that he could side with evil characters and good characters, say, for example, to promote freedom.
Maybe I’m just talking about a whole nother character entirely, one based off of the old-school “true neut” druid of now-defunct Advanced Dungeons And Dragons, who would readily side with your enemy to protect nature, then help you get home safely by killing all the other monsters on the way.
Maybe I’m onto something. Yes to Neutral characters. Yes to Batman being Evil for a month.
Your g-d of neutrality,