Top 10 Times Batman Got Superpowers

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Top 10 Times Batman Got Superpowers

VOICE OVER: Callum Janes WRITTEN BY: David Foster
You might be surprised, but Batman has gained superpowers on many occasions. For this list, we'll be looking at stories where the notoriously non-powered member of the Justice League found himself with extraordinary abilities. We won't be counting any times that armors or exosuits gave him extra talents this time around. Our countdown includes when he was granted the powers of a Genie, when he became a Green Lantern, when he gained Vampire powers, and more!
Transcript
Script written by David Foster

You might be surprised, but Batman has gained superpowers on many occasions. For this list, we’ll be looking at stories where the notoriously non-powered member of the Justice League found himself with extraordinary abilities. We won’t be counting any times that armors or exosuits gave him extra talents this time around. Our countdown includes when he was granted the powers of a Genie, when he became a Green Lantern, when he gained Vampire powers, and more! Do you prefer your Batman with or without superpowers? Sound off in the comments.

#10: Vampire Powers

"Batman and Dracula: Red Rain" (1992)

It’s not hard to see how The Batman was influenced by the works of Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” But comic book writer Doug Moench took the connection further by having The Dark Knight meet the vampire in one story. During the narrative, Batman receives Vampiric powers such as enhanced strength and flight after being bitten. But doesn’t have time to enjoy his abilities. Batman immediately had to turn his new powers against dangerous vampires that threatened Gotham. By the end of the story, he gives up on being Bruce Wayne. But he’s still determined to go on as a much more literal Batman.

#9: Echolocation & Sonic Abilities

"Justice League Vol. 2 Issue 38” (2015)

In one comic storyline, Lex Luthor develops a synthetic plague known as the Amazo virus. When it accidentally gets out, most of the superpowered Justice League is rendered helpless and bedridden. Things turn out a little different from Batman when is exposed to the Amazo virus. Within a short time, he loses his eyesight. However, he gains new echolocation abilities that allow him to hit enemies with soundwaves and perceive the world around him. Although it definitely made Bruce feel like more of a bat, this power set felt a little familiar. We think we know a superhero lawyer who can’t see and relies on sound that might sue Batman for copying him.

#8: Flight, Strength & Increased Durability

"Superman/Batman #32'" (2007)

Like Venom of marvel fame, DC’s Blackrock is an alien symbiote that can grant powers to ordinary people while having serious side effects on the host’s mental state. But when Superman and other heroes are overwhelmed by a negative influence, Batman relies on the alien. The black stone gives the dark knight enough power to fight the big blue boy scout. Additionally, Bruce can take a lot more punishment. The trade off here is that Batman isn’t exactly in full control of who he punches. Luckily, a couple of hard hits from Superman and an emotional conversation got Bruce back on track. Imagine the chaos Batman could’ve caused if he had the power of a symbiote that makes Venom look downright friendly.

#7: The Powers of a Genie

"Detective Comics #322" (1963)

Yep, you heard right. Batman–the Dark Knight, Caped Crusader and scourge of Gotham’s criminals–was once a genie. After being hit with magic dust, The Batman must grant the wishes of crooks holding his lamp. He also gains a variety of superpowers like powerful breath, enhanced strength and the ability to alter his size. Batman even tears the roof of a place at one point! Robin gets his partner back by just making a third wish that frees the dark knight from the lamp. Although we praise the boy wonder’s quick thinking, he might’ve missed a big opportunity. We wish Robin could’ve found a way for Batman to keep his genie powers just long enough to clean up Gotham’s crime in a snap.

#6: An Evil Bat-Manhattan

"Dark Nights: Metal" (2020-21)

In the classic “Watchmen” graphic novel, an accident with an intrinsic field generator transformed scientist Jon Osterman into a blue being known as “Doctor Manhattan.” We’d see Bruce have a similar scientific mishap in the “Dark Knights: Metal series. When he tried to investigate Dr. Manhattan’s energy, the sinister Batman who laughs interfered. As a result, The machine imbued the dark knight with all of Dr. Manhattan’s powers. The Batman who laughs found a way to get his brain inside the superpowered Bruce Wayne’s body. This led to a powerful being with Dr. Manhattan’s powers, Batman’s fighting skills and Joker’s insanity. Anyone scared of the blue man in “Watchmen” should know they could’ve dealt with someone much worse.

#5: Man-Bat Batman


“Batman Incorporated” #10 (2013)

Since 1970, Dr. Kirk Langstrom’s Man-Bat has been both Batman’s ally and enemy. While the scientist's motivations vary depending on the story, he typically tries to help people with an affliction before accidentally creating a serum that mutates him into a Man-Bat. A desperate Bruce decided to give the serum a try himself in 2013. It was horrifying and a little cool to see the original Batman become more animalistic and sprout wings. This dark knight seemed to have all of Man-Bat’s enhanced senses, sonar and the ability to lead bats. If you want to see another version of this cool hybrid, “Justice League: Gods and Monsters” has you covered. The movie just skips a step and has Kirk Langstrom become a Man-Bat Batman.

#4: Immortality

“Superman & Batman: Generations” (1999)

Although he’s been around since 1939, Batman ages like everyone else. But his classic League of Shadows enemy, Ra’s al-Ghul, doesn’t have to worry about that drawback. The villain has access to a rejuvenative substance which keeps him from aging. However, in “Superman & Batman: Generations, Ra's al-Ghul asks an older Bruce to follow him into the Lazarus Pit. When the dark knight emerges, he’s back in his prime and ready to fight crime. He keeps using his access to his Lazarus Pit powers to deal out justice for much longer than he naturally could have. Normally, an older Bruce would just accept that he’s aged and fight crime anyway. It’s hard to tell whether that’s more impressive than a practically immortal Batman.

#3: Green Lantern

“Batman: In Darkest Knight” (1994)

One Elseworlds tale chose to dramatically change Bruce Wayne’s origin story at a crucial point. Right before a bat can fly in and inspire his heroic identity, he’s offered the chance to become a Green Lantern. Bruce immediately uses the ring’s ability to create virtually anything its wielder can think of to stop a robbery. He even manages to stop the accident that would’ve created the Joker! However, after Bruce fights the alien Sinestro, the extraterrestrial becomes a pseudo version of the clown that must be stopped. Surprisingly, this isn’t the only time Batman became a Lantern. We’ve even seen him wear a yellow ring! Every time he gets his hands on Lantern powers, Batman stuns us with his imagination.

#2: The Red Death

"Dark Nights: Metal - Batman: The Red Death #1" (2017)

There’s a world where a Batman snapped after losing multiple allies during his crusade. This unhinged dark knight only sees one way to move forward: he must stop the Flash and steal the speedster’s powers. After a tense battle, Bruce ends up tying the fast hero to the front of a modified Batmobile and drives into the speed force. This harrowing trip ends up giving the unhinged Bruce the powers of the Flash and the Scarlet Speedster’s consciousness. The new being becomes a vigilante known as Red Death who brutally eliminates criminals. On top of that, he can spawn bats that can wreak havoc on people’s bodies. Thankfully, this powerful Batman is stopped before his terrifying powers could destroy untold amounts of lives.

#1: Greatly Enhanced Strength & Durability

“Injustice: Gods Among Us” (2013)

When the DC themed “Injustice: Gods Among Us” fighting game was announced, fans wondered how someone like Batman could fight powerhouses like Superman. The writers thought of a brilliant solution and introduced a pill made of Kryptonian Nanotech. Known as Five-U-93-R, this small item can vastly increase a person’s endurance and strength. Although it was originally developed by an evil Superman, Batman and his allies grab some to resist the evil regime. It was great to see a pill that gave the dark knight enough power to smack Superman around was so well integrated into the story. Although Batman has a mechanical suit that allows him to fight Kal-el, this small workaround was a great change of pace.
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