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  1. #1
    Saoirse Ronan The Accuser CaptainMar-Vell92 of the Kree's Avatar
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    Default I think Superman is more ''relatable'' than Batman

    Before you call me a fanboy just hear me out. I hear a lot of people say that Superman is unrelatable, and a lot of people also say that Batman is way more relatable. I am here to say that that is one of the most stupid thing I've ever heard, I will start my case with Superman.

    Clark Kent grew up on a farm in West Kansas in a small town called "Smallville". He was raised as a normal american kid in a normal school with other kids like him. When he turns 18 he moves to a big city where he gets a job as a reporter at the Daily Planet and falls in love with Lois Lane who doesn't necessarily love him back at first. He becomes a Superhero named Superman, faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, yada yada, and yet even while being able to do all these things he's still just a guy trying to make a living and figure stuff out. He doesn't do that because he has any ulterior motives, he just does it because he can, because he has the ability to.

    Now, Batman. Bruce Wayne grew up as the son of the richest family in Gotham, he went to a private school. Most of his friends were rich, he was enjoying his life until a grim night as a boy when his parents were gunned down in an alley when they were making their way home from a movie. After that he had a goal, he studied every book he could, he learned everything he could, going to every one of the best schools he could for only a few weeks until he knew everything he needed to. When he was 18 he went on a journey around the world to learn every single martial art he could, studying with people and groups that even he thought were only legend. He learned techniques to lower his body heat by meditation and go into a manual coma by will alone. He returns to Gotham city to become the very personification of vengeance, he becomes the reason why some criminals decide not to commit a crime, he becomes the Batman. He's the world's greatest detective, he canonically speaks 23 languages, he knows 127 martial arts, his IQ is 192, he can battle over one hundred men at once and come out alive. He is a one man army that can't be stopped by anything but a teambuster villain. He's defeated the whole Justice League before, he has a second plan for every second plan's second plan. His love interest is a cat burglar who he can never marry, and he has 3 adopted sons and one biological son who have all been by his side in fighting crime as "Robin".

    Look at both of those, read them carefully and think about them intensely. Now tell me Batman is more relatable than Superman. You probably won't, your parents weren't gunned down in an alley, you don't know 23 languages or 127 martial arts or have 192 IQ. You're not "The World's Best Detective", you're probably nothing close. We're all just trying to figure it out where as Batman knows what he wants to do and he does it no matter the cost. Now I'll leave this with one last thing. Haters gonna hate.
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  2. #2
    Extraordinary Member j9ac9k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainMar-Vell92 of the Kree View Post
    Before you call me a fanboy just hear me out. I hear a lot of people say that Superman is unrelatable, and a lot of people also say that Batman is way more relatable. I am here to say that that is one of the most stupid thing I've ever heard, I will start my case with Superman.
    I stopped reading right there. If you want people to "hear you out" best not to start by saying other people's opinions are "the most stupid thing I've ever heard." Just saying...

  3. #3
    Incredible Member Hol's Avatar
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    lol this is funny.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainMar-Vell92 of the Kree View Post
    Before you call me a fanboy just hear me out. I hear a lot of people say that Superman is unrelatable, and a lot of people also say that Batman is way more relatable. I am here to say that that is one of the most stupid thing I've ever heard, I will start my case with Superman.

    Clark Kent grew up on a farm in West Kansas in a small town called "Smallville". He was raised as a normal american kid in a normal school with other kids like him. When he turns 18 he moves to a big city where he gets a job as a reporter at the Daily Planet and falls in love with Lois Lane who doesn't necessarily love him back at first. He becomes a Superhero named Superman, faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, yada yada, and yet even while being able to do all these things he's still just a guy trying to make a living and figure stuff out. He doesn't do that because he has any ulterior motives, he just does it because he can, because he has the ability to.

    Now, Batman. Bruce Wayne grew up as the son of the richest family in Gotham, he went to a private school. Most of his friends were rich, he was enjoying his life until a grim night as a boy when his parents were gunned down in an alley when they were making their way home from a movie. After that he had a goal, he studied every book he could, he learned everything he could, going to every one of the best schools he could for only a few weeks until he knew everything he needed to. When he was 18 he went on a journey around the world to learn every single martial art he could, studying with people and groups that even he thought were only legend. He learned techniques to lower his body heat by meditation and go into a manual coma by will alone. He returns to Gotham city to become the very personification of vengeance, he becomes the reason why some criminals decide not to commit a crime, he becomes the Batman. He's the world's greatest detective, he canonically speaks 23 languages, he knows 127 martial arts, his IQ is 192, he can battle over one hundred men at once and come out alive. He is a one man army that can't be stopped by anything but a teambuster villain. He's defeated the whole Justice League before, he has a second plan for every second plan's second plan. His love interest is a cat burglar who he can never marry, and he has 3 adopted sons and one biological son who have all been by his side in fighting crime as "Robin".

    Look at both of those, read them carefully and think about them intensely. Now tell me Batman is more relatable than Superman. You probably won't, your parents weren't gunned down in an alley, you don't know 23 languages or 127 martial arts or have 192 IQ. You're not "The World's Best Detective", you're probably nothing close. We're all just trying to figure it out where as Batman knows what he wants to do and he does it no matter the cost. Now I'll leave this with one last thing. Haters gonna hate.
    If your argument is purely a socio-economic one, then sure, the life of Clark Kent is more 'relatable' than that of Bruce Wayne's.

    That apart, the rest of your arguments don't really hold water as much. Bruce's skills for instance. Yeah, the specific skills he's spent years mastering may be a bit outlandish, but the idea of spending years working on your body and/or mind to train yourself to become an expert in a field is one which is pretty relatable. More so than growing up discovering you're an alien with powers that virtually make you a God. Knowing a bunch of languages and martial arts is in no way 'less relatable' than being able to shoot laser beams from your eyes.

    Having a bunch of kids, real or adopted, who follow you into the family business, or some kind of dangerous profession, isn't really that unrelatable, even if the specific business when it comes to Batman and the Robins is a bit outlandish.

    Ultimately, to me its Batman's motivations that make him the most relatable. Yes, wanting to do the right thing even if you have no real personal reason to isn't 'unrelatable' per se. But being in a situation where you once felt helpless, and wanting to be empowered to turn such situations to your advantage the next time - for yourself or for others - is something I can relate to more.

    Both characters are wish-fulfilment at the end of the day and have their fantastic elements. But the wish-fulfilment inherent with Batman is far more relatable IMO. Wanting to be rich and powerful enough to do whatever you want and protect yourself and others from something you once suffered is more relatable than being a God-like alien who wants to selflessly help humanity while spending half your life pretending to be an ordinary human (one who's sometimes depicted as a bit of a weakling).

  5. #5
    Leftbrownie Alpha's Avatar
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    I don't think most people actually care about a character being relatable. They care about a character being compelling. A lot of people can relate to a movie about a janitor with back issues, but that doesn't mean that they would be moved by a story about him.

    That said, I personally find a book like Superman Secret Identity to be one of the most intimately rewarding stories I'vd experienced in comic books. I have yet to experience a lot of what he experiences in those stories, but they reflect my desires in a normal world.

  6. #6
    Fantastic Member ducklord's Avatar
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    post deleted on account of mushy thoughts

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by j9ac9k View Post
    I stopped reading right there. If you want people to "hear you out" best not to start by saying other people's opinions are "the most stupid thing I've ever heard." Just saying...
    I don't think saying an idea is stupid is a faux pas. On these boards, if you say a poster is stupid or you quote their post and say that's stupid--that is against the spirit of these boards. But to say a notion that many hold is stupid--I think that's fair play. If I say I think being against vaccines is stupid, I believe I have every right to say that. Others may not respect that opinion, but it's my opinion and I'm allowed to voice that.

    And I was taught in English composition that it can be inferred the essay is in your opinion--so you don't have to underline that point. This is what the poster thinks and they're allowed to say what they think. Just as you're allowed to disagree with them after a fair hearing.

    Maybe your quarrel is with the poster's way with words. But I try to cut posters some slack and not correct them all the time. Not every post can be written in perfect English, with the best vocabulary, in correct syntax, without spelling or grammar errors. I'm sure a lot of posts are being composed on phones.
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  8. #8

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    Relatable is subjective.

    Yes, Superman is more relatable if you grew up in rural America to loving parents, and had a relative stable upbringing. Otherwise, for many that is something that is hard to relate to.

    Yes, Batman is a millionaire but he's also experienced significant trauma in his life that people can relate to. People can relate to his pain & unhappiness. He is also a fairly logical scientific thinker that many relate to as well.

    A lot of DC's heroes are perfect for those who've had well paved suburban life, which is a good thing, but most people have had some struggle which is why Marvel characters like Wolverine, Daredevil ect remain popular.

  9. #9
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    I'd say this is something I see a lot more in comparing the Marvelous Corporation to their Distinguished Competitor. The argument runs that there's something about the iconic status of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and their ilk that obviates their relatability contrasted to the more down to Earth Peter Parker, Tony Stark, Natasha Romanoff. I think that's a load of malarkey.

    It doesn't make much sense to compare how much they have suffered in their lives. If we have to have suffered in our own lives to relate to the suffering of fictional characters--does this mean some of us don't count, because we've suffered less? Like how much does a reader have to have suffered to have a say on the topic?

    I think of relatability in less tragic terms. Clark Kent wears glasses, he's shy around women, he likes to write, he has a best friend named Jimmy, he has a snow fort in Canada. Bruce Wayne has a cool car, he has a cave under his house (I always wanted to have a cave under my house), he likes to wear dark clothes, he's inquisitive.
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  10. #10
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    Batman was more relatable than Superman, up until somewhere in the 1990s, when Bats went from someone a common thug could level with a blackjack, to someone that levels and entire team of White Martians who have already neutralized the rest of the JL. For the last 30 years, I'd say it's been a wash.

    Clark Kent, on the other hand, has always been more relatable than Bruce Wayne.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    It doesn't make much sense to compare how much they have suffered in their lives. If we have to have suffered in our own lives to relate to the suffering of fictional characters--does this mean some of us don't count, because we've suffered less? Like how much does a reader have to have suffered to have a say on the topic?
    It doesn't mean you don't count, in fact as I previously stated it's probably a good thing if one hasn't suffered.

    All it means is that you may be drawn to different characters. If you've had a good smooth life, you may be able to relate to Superman more. I like Superman but I can't relate to him, I relate to someone more like Wolverine, that being said, I'd prefer to relate more to the former.

  12. #12
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainMar-Vell92 of the Kree View Post
    Haters gonna hate.
    Speaking of that, I'm curious as to why there is a spike in anti-Batman posts lately.

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  13. #13
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    I'd say this is something I see a lot more in comparing the Marvelous Corporation to their Distinguished Competitor. The argument runs that there's something about the iconic status of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and their ilk that obviates their relatability contrasted to the more down to Earth Peter Parker, Tony Stark, Natasha Romanoff. I think that's a load of malarkey.

    It doesn't make much sense to compare how much they have suffered in their lives. If we have to have suffered in our own lives to relate to the suffering of fictional characters--does this mean some of us don't count, because we've suffered less? Like how much does a reader have to have suffered to have a say on the topic?

    I think of relatability in less tragic terms. Clark Kent wears glasses, he's shy around women, he likes to write, he has a best friend named Jimmy, he has a snow fort in Canada. Bruce Wayne has a cool car, he has a cave under his house (I always wanted to have a cave under my house), he likes to wear dark clothes, he's inquisitive.
    Honestly, I see this as the most unrelatable thing about Superman for me - I'm from the south, the cold sucks, choosing to have your kickass mancave somewhere cold is crazy!
    But then Canada has a population so clearly some people can relate to that.

    Fuck snow though.

  14. #14
    Extraordinary Member Lightning Rider's Avatar
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    I can see plausible arguments either way. Batman does lots of things that we could see ourselves feasibly doing if pushed to, whereas Superman as Clark lives a life closer to what most of us experience.

    It would be interesting to see a personality test that shows which personal experiences correlate most/least to which character preference.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrNewGod View Post
    Clark Kent, on the other hand, has always been more relatable than Bruce Wayne.
    Yeah. Plus, skipping the whole 'actual alien with superpowers' thing, lots of us grow up feeling like an outsider who doesn't belong, with a sense of alienation from the people around us, perhaps even from our own families.

    I definitely relate more with the farmboy thing, since I also grew up on a farm, and not a mansion. As did Clark. As did James Kirk. As did Luke Skywalker.

    Farmboys represent!

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