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Characters / DCAU: Batman

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Batman I (Bruce Wayne)
"I chose this life. I used the night, I became the night."
Click here to see him as Bruce Wayne 
Click here to see his first Batsuit 
Click here to see his TNBA Batsuit 
Click here to see his Bruce Wayne redesign 
Click here to see his Justice League Batsuit 
Click here to see his final Batsuit 
Click here to see middle-aged Bruce Wayne 
Click here to see him in Batman Beyond 
Click her to see him in "Epilogue" 

Real name: Bruce Wayne

Species: Human

Abilities: Genius-level intelligence, master detective, peak human physical condition, master martial artist, multilingualism

Weapons: Various gadgets, High-Tech Batsuit, Utility belt


Voiced in English by: Kevin Conroy

Voiced in Latin American Spanish by: Framk Maneiro (regular voice), Jesús Lista (early episodes of Batman: The Animated Series), Enrique Mederos (present, Static Shock), Sebastián Llapur (future, Static Shock), Héctor Indriago (Batman and Harley Quinn and Justice League vs. the Fatal Five)

Voiced in French by: Richard Darbois (Batman: The Animated Series, Mask of the Phantasm, SubZero, Superman: The Animated Series, and The New Batman Adventures), Patrick Messe (Batman Beyond and Return of the Joker), Bruno Carna (Justice League, Static Shock, and Mystery of the Batwoman), Stefan Godin (Justice League Unlimited), Michel Barbey (Older Bruce in "Epilogue"), Emmanuel Jacomy (Batman and Harley Quinn and Justice League vs. the Fatal Five)

Voiced in Japanese by: Tessho Genda


Appearances: Batman: The Animated Series | Batman: Mask of the Phantasm| Batman & Mr. Freeze: Sub-Zero | Superman: The Animated Series | The New Batman Adventures | Batman Beyond | Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker | Static Shock | The Zeta Project | Justice League | Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman | Justice League Unlimited | Batman and Harley Quinn | Justice League vs. The Fatal Five

"I am vengeance! I am the night! I am BATMAN!"

Batman, otherwise known as Bruce Wayne, is a Gotham City vigilante who rose up to fight gangsters, insane criminals, and eventually even alternate universe despots, metahuman threats, and intergalactic tyrants in the DCAU.

Batman is the least changed character in the DCAU from his comic book counterpart; He generally has the same origin via the fact that his parents were shot dead after the three of them went to see a movie and he decides to avenge them by becoming the vigilante Batman, complete with a Batmobile and a handy utility belt. He is also notable for being an amalgam of the Golden Age, Silver Age, and Bronze Age versions of the character. He's dark and brooding, but also an excellent Parental Substitute and even gets a few witty one-liners (as well as being caught in the occasional Death Trap).

As a member of the Justice League, he preferred to work alone and from the shadows. Nonetheless, he has a vested interest in the group's activities (as it is Bruce Wayne's finances that paid for their Watchtower headquarters and Javelin ship) in addition to still being capable of fighting against villains.

Sometime in the future, Bruce's declining health would eventually force his retirement from the mantle of Batman. Twenty years after his retirement, he would eventually pass down the mantle to Terry McGinnis, working with him as his mentor to protect the future Gotham as Bruce once did.

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    Tropes from the classic era 
  • 10-Minute Retirement:
    • In "I Am the Night", Batman messes up a stakeout and Commissioner Gordon is shot as a result. In the wake of this, he goes into a deep, irrational depression and nearly gives up the cape and cowl, even when he hears that the gangster has broken out of jail and plans to finish the job. It is only when Robin tries to save Gordon on his own does he finally snap out of it.
    • In "Chemistry", he decides to give up being Batman when he finally found the love of his life, preferring to settle down and marry (though Nightwing believed he would be back in the suit in a month). However, it is later discovered that she (along with everyone else's partner on said ship) is a plant person created by Ivy to inherit all their fortunes once they're dead. Bruce returns back to being Batman in order to foil her plot.
  • Ace Pilot: He is a very skilled pilot and has a seemingly endless supply of Batwings. He does occasionally get shot down by other pilots, but that's typically because he's outnumbered more than anything else.
  • Action Hero: As always, Batman is involved in plenty of action. He is a top martial artist who is trained and able to take on numerous people at a time.
  • Aborted Arc: In "The Doomsday Sanction", Batman is left injured and distrustful of the Justice League and the future actions it might take. Bruce Timm stated that this episode was a turning point for Batman, and he was originally going to split off from the League and join Cadmus. Since there was no way to do this without making Batman look like the bad guy, the idea was scrapped. Timm stated that if the plan came to fruition, Batman would have created a superhero team of non-superpowered heroes, such as Huntress and Wildcat.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: In the comics, Bruce Wayne is usually depicted with blue eyes. In Batman TAS, he has black colored eyes. However, they were mostly changed back to blue in TNBA and onwards (although they had the occasional tendency of zigzagging between blue and black in Justice League).
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: In Justice League (Unlimited), he's shown to be far more loyal and supportive towards the Justice League than his comic book counterpart was at the time. Notably, he refuses to completely forgive Hawkgirl for creating files for the team's weaknesses and betraying them, which was something his comic book counterpart has agreed upon and done before. Also, despite having some doubts about the League's N.G.O. Superpower status, he more or less does see Cadmus as a bigger threat to the world than the League is (which is true).
  • All-Encompassing Mantle: Just like in the comics, he usually has his cape fully cloaking his body, looking really creepy when he pops out of the shadows in his own way. The artists even had pencil drawings to specifically show how the cape should look and how Batman should move like this.
  • All-Loving Hero: This incarnation of him, as opposed to his usual persona. In addition to his Thou Shalt Not Kill rule, he almost always tries to Save the Villain, and shows compassion towards the more sympathetic criminals (such as trying to catch Harley Quinn without hurting her in "Harley's Holiday" when he realizes she's just scared and confused, as well as offering to pay for Harvey Dent's plastic surgery (as Bruce).
  • Aloof Ally: He's considered a part time member of the Justice League.
  • Alternate Self: He has a couple of alternate counterparts.
    • In "The Savage Time", Vandal Savage created an alternate timeline by interfering with the events of World War II. In this alternate timeline, Bruce Wayne's parents were killed for speaking out against Savage's brutal regime. Thus, Bruce became Batman, the leader of the resistance movement against the regime.
    • The Justice Lord Batman in "A Better World". In a parallel universe, Lex Luthor killed the Flash and, as a result, is murdered by Superman. This ultimately leads to the remaining six members of the Justice League rebranding themselves as the Justice Lords, who turn the planet into a police state with themselves in control and drop their generalized rules of Thou Shalt Not Kill—yes, even Batman. Batman and his Justice Lord counterpart end up having a dispute over their morals.
  • Amazon Chaser: He seemed to enjoy watching Wonder Woman kick ass in "Maid of Honor".
  • Amnesiac Liar: "The Forgotten", which is one of the early and unusual episodes, featured this happen to him while he was disguised as a homeless guy. He gets kidnapped by a greasy, overfed slavedriver who runs a mining operation while Alfred is trying to find him. This is a very poignant episode, as Bruce gradually uncovers his memories and retakes his levels in badass.
  • Amnesia Danger: In "The Forgotten", Bruce forgets that he's Batman and he is held at a slave camp.
  • Animorphism: In "Dead Reckoning", he is transformed into an ape by Grodd's Evil Plan, but Superman manages to destroy the generator, turning everyone back into humans.
  • Anti-Hero: As always, Batman is more of a Knight in Sour Armor.
    • In a subversion of his role in the comics and most adaptations, Batman is probably the least anti-heroic member of the Justice League aside from the Flash. The Justice Lord Batman was the only member of the the parallel League to see how corrupt his world had become and normal Batman called Superman out on his ethically questionable handling of Doomsday.
      • The thing that Batman realizes that the rest of the League doesn't is that they need to have a squeaky-clean public image, or the world's going to come down on them.
    • Batman can also lean towards a Pragmatic Hero on occasion, such as when he interrogated a thug in front of his wife and young son. The tendencies for Batman to become Good Is Not Nice, including the interrogation incident previously mentioned, are at least partially what made Dick Grayson give up being Robin and become Nightwing, as detailed in "Old Wounds".
  • Arch-Enemy: He has several enemies, but The Joker stands out among all of them.
    Terry McGinnis: It's funny. I know about all your other major enemies, but you never mention him. He was the biggest, wasn't he?
    Bruce: It wasn't a popularity contest. He was a psychopath. A monster.
  • Art Evolution: Batman was redesigned when Batman: TAS was revamped into The New Batman Adventures (which also caused his costume to undergo a number of changes throughout the remainder of the DCAU):
    • He was given a sleeker, brawnier appearance with an overall darker costume that had all of the colors replaced by blacks and grays. The Bat symbol was changed to a black Bat without the golden ellipse surrounding it. The highlights of his cape, cowl, gloves, briefs and boots were removed, save for a few highlights on his shoulders that were now gray instead of blue, and the cape now covers his shoulders at all times. His gadgets and vehicles were given a sleeker, redesigned look with a black color scheme. His utility belt was also altered, with the belt color changing from yellow to tan and the hard capsules were changed to cloth pouches.
      • His appearance as Bruce Wayne was also redesigned from how he looked back in Batman: TAS; his hair was brushed back to highlight his face, with blue eyes instead of black, and his regular business suit was changed from brown (or occasionally blue) to black.
      • In Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman, grey highlights were added to the revamped costume and the belt was re-designed to have black spaces between the pouches, implying that the belt is now built in to the suit, like the utility belt on the Batman Beyond suit.
    • He received another redesign in Justice League, where he was slimmed down from his previous chronological DCAU appearances and given a new costume that was an amalgam of his BTAS and TNBA costumes. It retained the simplicity of his TNBA costume, but brought back the blue highlights from his BTAS costume (though they took on more of a blueish-purple color in Justice League, as opposed to the electric blue of TAS). In addition, the belt pouches appear to be made of a more rigid material, the "ears" on the cowl were lengthened, and heels were added on the boots (the latter two are aspects that would later be included into his Batman Beyond suit).
  • Ascended Fanboy: He is revealed to be one of the Grey Ghost in "Beware The Grey Ghost". He even keeps Grey Ghost merchandise in the Batcave and explains that he actually based its design on the Grey Ghost's lair.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: He was in this with Lex Luthor when they were forced in an Enemy Mine situation against Darkseid in "Destroyer".
    Lex Luthor: Problem?
    Batman: I'm out.
    Lex Luthor: [offering Batman a gun] Take my extra.
    Batman: Not my style.
    Lex Luthor: Suit yourself. I'm planning to live through this.
  • Backported Development: Justice League vs. The Fatal Five features Batman using his cape itself as a glider instead of using a separate glider, a parachute, or depending on someone who can fly to catch him (as seen in "Dark Heart" and could very well have been the in-universe reason Bruce switched to a glider cape), similar to his The Dark Knight Trilogy and Batman: Arkham Series counterparts (Granted, Batman Begins, the first installment of the former, was released while the Cadmus arc in Unlimited was airing). This is also a Call-Forward to the glider wings that would appear on his Batman Beyond suit.
  • Badass Back: Just try to sneak attack him from behind.
  • Badass Baritone: As voiced by Kevin Conroy. Considered by many to be the voice of Batman and Conroy has provided the iconic sound in other DC works as a result, most notably the Batman: Arkham Series.
  • Badass Boast: "I am vengeance... I am the night... I! AM! BATMAN!"
  • Badass Cape: Despite getting a few Cape Snags, his cape always comes back.
  • Badass in Distress: In "Injustice For All", Batman gets captured by the Injustice Gang. The trope is subverted, Batman ends up freeing himself from the restraints, which he could actually have done any time, and while being held captive he pitted the Injustice Gang against itself and foiled their plans himself with the Justice League coming in to assist rather than save him.
  • Badass Normal: Well, yeah, it's Batman we're talking about. He beats criminals as an everyday schedule, fights against super-powered menaces like a clay-powered shapeshifter and An Ice Person who freezes people up with ease, and he doesn't even need super powers himself to do so. In fact, all he needs is his gadgets, intelligence, and Determination. He even once tried to sacrifice himself to save earth in a ship of extreme hot tempatures that nearly killed him. Even his Arch-Nemesis admits he's this.
    Lex Luthor: What makes you think you can kill Superman when you can't even handle a mere mortal in a Halloween costume?
    The Joker: There's nothing mere about that mortal.
  • Batman Gambit:
    • In "Almost Got 'Im", he disguises himself as Killer Croc during a poker game with The Joker, Poison Ivy, Penguin, and Two-Face. He brings up the subject of whose come closest to killing him as he knew that Joker would talk about their last encounter and reveal what he did with Catwoman, who had saved him.
    • In "Mad Love", Batman tells The Joker that Harley actually came very close to killing him—much closer than the Joker ever has, in fact—and that his only way out was to trick her into calling him, knowing Joker's ego would get in the way of Harley's objective.
    • In "Injustice For All", Batman outwits the Injustice Gang and gets them to undermine their own plans and betray one another... all while immobilized in a full-body restraint system in the basement. He proceeds to tell The Joker that he could've escaped at any point he wanted, but only stayed around to keep an eye on him.
    • In "Wild Cards", he convinces Harley Quinn that the Joker's likely more interested in the girl he's standing next to on TV while he sends Harley out to do the grunt work. She refuses to turn on the Joker and seemingly knocks out Batman before returing back to the Joker to talk things out. Joker promptly slaps her aside, quickly realizing that it was all Batman's plan to get her to return to base and lead him to his headquarters, which is just what happened.
    • In "Kids' Stuff", as Mordred holds the Kid Hero Justice League helpless, Batman taunts him via saying that for all his power he is still just a boy with no idea of an adult's responsibilities and that he's afraid to grow up. Furious, Mordred uses his remaining power to transform himself into a grown-up man, subjecting himself to his own spell and sending him into the other dimension.
  • Being Personal Isn't Professional: He is this with the Justice League in the beginning. On occasions, Batman's distance from his teammates is emphasized.
    • In "Fury", Hawkgirl remarks that it is hard to imagine what being orphaned at such a young age can do to a child. An obvious opening for Batman to comment on the loss of his parents, but he doesn't take it.
    • In "A Knight of Shadows", J'onn confides to Batman that he would give almost anything to see his dead family again, then adds that Batman couldn't possibly understand how that feels, Batman remains silent.
  • Berserk Button: The Joker is finally able to press it in the flashback sequence featured in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker.
  • Betrayal Insurance: In "Tabula Rasa", the android A.M.A.Z.O. manages to copy Superman's powers, after which Batman pulls out a piece of kryptonite and manages to subdue A.M.A.Z.O., at least temporarily.
    Hawkgirl: Do you always carry Kryptonite around with you?
    Batman: Call it insurance. [grapples away]
    Hawkgirl: And they say I'm scary.
    • Later on in JLU:
      Batman: What would stop you from doing what the Lord Superman did?
      Superman: There's always that kryptonite you carry around.
  • Beyond the Impossible: In Justice League Unlimited's "Destroyer", he was able to escape from Darkseid's Omega Beam with his agility and careful timing by having a parademon take the hit. Darkseid even commented that no one had ever been able to avoid his Omega Beam before.
  • Big Damn Heroes: He tends to save the day in a big, awesome manner. For example, he managed to save Mayor Hill in the nick of time in "The Clock King".
  • Big "OMG!": When he discovers Freeze's motives. The production team is still shocked that they got away with it.
  • Broken Ace: In "Kids’ Stuff":
    Wonder Woman: Circumstances aside, it was kind of... enjoyable to be a kid again.
    Batman: I haven't been a kid since I was eight years old.
  • Building Swing: This is a frequent method of entry when he's not using Stealth Hi/Bye.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Unlike most versions (who are mostly portrayed as laid-back playboys living off their trust fund), the DCAU Bruce/Batman takes a more active role in the day to day operation of Wayne Enterprises (until he loses the company in a hostile takeover). He still likes to cultivate an image as a slightly dimwitted millionaire though.
  • Byronic Hero: He is motivated by the death of his parents. He is extremely passionate fighting against the injustice of Gotham city. He places his identity as Batman above all else; his own happiness, his friends and love life. As a result, he has been described as self-centered by Dick Grayson (aka Robin I/Nightwing), Barbara Gordon (aka Batgirl), and Terry McGinnis (aka Batman II).
  • Cape Snag: A version of his detachable clasp is shown in "The Last Laugh" when his cape becomes trapped in the grip of a robot Joker henchman. Batman quickly detaches his cape and spends the rest of the episode capeless.
    • In "World's Finest", however, he was not wearing a detachable cape, so when it gets snagged here, he's forced to discard the cowl and mask along with the cape, enabling Lois Lane to learn his secret identity.
  • Celibate Hero: Well, not really, but it always works out that way in the end. It doesn't help that his Love Interests were composed of villains, eco-terrorists, villains' daughters, a super-powered female ally, and his partner/apprentice (who was also the daughter of his one ally in the police).
    • By the time of Batman Beyond, he has become a lonely old man who is left with nothing but a lot of old photographs and regrets.
      Bruce: When I was younger, women used to throw themselves at my feet all the time.
      Terry: What'd you do?
      Bruce: I stepped over them.
      Terry: Smooth.
      Bruce: I thought so.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Batman was usually more than a match for any foe he encountered, human or otherwise. For instance, when Batman first met Superman in "World's Finest", the vigilante suddenly threw the powerful alien across a room to Superman's complete astonishment at the attack's sheer audacity. In "Hereafter", he managed to toss Kalibak several meters away and claimed he was trying to stall him, but Superman thinks he could have taken him.
  • Character Development:
    • Batman starts out as being anti-heroic yet optimistic and friendly towards his allies, but he grows more cold, pragmatic, and cynical throughout the entire DC Animated Universe. His increasingly standoffish personality and his relentless dedication to fighting crime at the cost of his own happiness alienates many of his friends and love interests, until he's a bitter, old recluse by the time of Batman Beyond.
    • In Justice League (Unlimited), probably due to the influence of his more idealistic teammates, he eventually turns around and makes a real effort to keep the League true to its values and learn how to work with a team.
  • Chick Magnet: The amount of girls who show interest in him is astoundingly higher than any other DCAU character to list. Batman has managed to attract the romantic affections of Diana, Barbara, Zatanna, Selina, Talia, Kathy Duquesne and even Lois Lane and Harley Quinn!
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: As always, Batman is always willing to help people. This was even used for laughs in "Appointment in Crime Alley". The Dark Knight is burning rubber to make it across town to stop a mobster from demolishing a historical landmark of Gotham City when he sees a trolley shoot past him, completely out of control. Batman can't leave them to die, but he reacts the same way most people would if they had just hit a red light.
    Batman: Perfect. Just perfect. [alters direction to save them]
  • Clear My Name: In "Feat of Clay", Matt Hagen (prior to becoming Clayface) impersonates Bruce Wayne and gets him framed for the attempted murder of Lucius Fox before the man was saved by Batman. Since his only alibi is being Batman, he's faced with having to clear his name some other way. In "On Leather Wings" and Mask of the Phantasm, the police assume Batman has gone rogue after vaguely bat-like figures are seen leaving the scene of violent crimes.
  • Clint Squint: He's extremely stoic and hard to surprise. When in costume, his most common reaction is narrowing his eyes.
  • Collector of the Strange: Through his years of crime-fighting, he has amounted quite a large stash of villain weaponry and gadgets that he keeps on display in his Batcave. The strangest thing would be a giant penny that Two-Face attempted to squash him with.
  • Combat Pragmatist: He's not above beating you with a chair.
    • He'll also happily steal weapons from enemy combatants as long as they aren't guns and offer them to Superman.
  • Confirmed Bachelor: He poses as The Casanova in his Bruce Wayne persona. Privately, his reasons are closer to a combination of Married to the Job and It's Not You, It's My Enemies, at least since his youthful relationship with and aborted proposal to Andrea Beaumont. He did have some kind of relationship later with Lois Lane, Talia al Ghul, and even Barbara Gordon at varying levels of seriousness, as well as history with Zatanna and Ship Tease with Wonder Woman. In the end, however, he's left with nothing but a lot of old photographs and regrets.
  • Cool Car: He has the Batmobile, as always.
  • Cool Garage: The Batcave.
  • Cool Plane: The Batwing.
  • Costume Evolution: Flashbacks in Batman: TAS showed Bruce in the Batman: Year One costume while the events of the Batman: TAS era sees him in the yellow oval costume. Subsequent designs that don't see him in the Beyond suit went back to the Year One design.
  • The Cowl: He's the Trope Codifier.
  • The Comically Serious: He has his moments.
  • Crazy-Prepared: It's Batman. This is practically his superpower.
  • Creepy Good: His first encounter with Superman in "World's Finest" solidifies his status as this.
  • Crimefighting with Cash: Although, he is obviously backed up with years of study abroad in all manners of self-defense, forensics, and manhunting. Deconstructed in Batman Beyond. Despite very much being a philanthophist and humanitarian back in TAS its shown that as time went on Bruce put increasingly much focus on fighting as a vigilante instead of directly tackling Gotham's issues as a businessman. As a result, other businesses have long surpassed Bruce's ability to protect the city and Bruce's social life is virtually nonexistent. His ability to protect Gotham from more financial dangers, or even enjoy the company of his fellow superheroes, has completely vanished because of his own hyperfocus on costumed crimefighting.
  • Cultured Badass: He occasionally quotes Shakespeare, Blake's The Tyger, and repeatedly quotes The Odyssey in Justice League. The Fridge Brilliance kicks in when you realize that Odysseus was a Badass Normal in an age of demigods like Achilles, paralleling his own status as a Badass Normal in the Justice League.
  • Cunning Linguist: The languages apart from English that he is able to speak include Japanese (as the two Kyodai Ken episodes reveal), the fictitious Kaznian (which he speaks in "Maid of Honor"), and Spanish (which he speaks in "The Secret Society" to a doctor). "If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Rich?" has him solving a multilingual puzzle by translating Arabic. So yes, Batman has a ear for languages.
  • The Cynic: As always, Batman has the tendency of being cynical about certain things.
    Batman: You know, I've never seen [It's a Wonderful Life]. I could never get past the title.
  • Dating Catwoman: He has this type of relationship with Catwoman, as always. After their first encounter in the DCAU (which was featured in "The Cat and The Claw"), they both expressed strong feelings for each other (in Bruce's case, out of costume as well), but Selina Kyle wasn't interested in Bruce Wayne. They were never able to start a true relationship due to being on opposite sides of the law. Later on, they were more scornful of each other as they knew a relationship wasn't possible due to a lack of trust, and only dealt with each other when crime was involved.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He has his moments throughout the DCAU and they include him being snarky in the most deadly situations.
    • In "World's Finest".
      Superman: Thank you. I couldn't have saved Lois without your help.
      Batman: I'm aware of that.
    • Also this gem from the same episode after Joker's plane goes up in smoke with him seemingly caught in the explosion
      Harley: Puddin'!
      Batman: At this point, he probably is.
    • In "The Once and Future Thing Part Two: Time, Warped":
      John: The Green Lanterns have a legend—no one can see the beginning of time. It's a universal law!
      Batman: Write them a ticket.
    • In "Shadow of the Hawk":
      Shayera/Hawkgirl: How stupid do you think I am?
      Batman: Scale of 1 to 10?
    • In "Dark Heart":
      Batman: I could use some air support. Since I can't fly. At all. ... Now would be good.
    • In "Destroyer":
      Batman: Don't you have a tall building to go leap?
  • Deal with the Devil: "This Little Piggy" features him dealing with the villain Circe when he realizes fighting her won't save Wonder Woman (who'd been turned into a pig) in time. She forces him to sing "Am I Blue?" to save Diana.
  • Death Seeker: On the commentary for "Starcrossed", Bruce Timm jokes that Batman seems to have a death wish performing a Heroic Sacrifice in the episode.
  • Decomposite Character: His role from the comics of betraying the Justice League's trust (via gaining their weaknesses) and deciding to leave them after a debate that the League had regarding whether he should remain on the team or not was given to Hawkgirl.
  • Determinator: It is Batman after all. He never quits. Ever.
    • In "Only A Dream":
      Dr. Destiny: You don't have any special powers!
      Batman: Oh, I have one, Johnny. I never give up.
    • In "Wild Cards", during a long desperate struggle against Ace's mind-control and the Joker, Batman plucks the mind-control headband that Ace's government handlers used to pacify her. Seeing it, Ace turns on the Joker.
    • In "Destroyer", Batman repeatedly interrupts Darkseid's attempts to kill Superman. Darkseid is astonished that a mere mortal would dare to strike him-and even more so when Batman actually evades his deadly Omega Beams.
      Darkseid: You (Batman) still try to fight. Can't you see that it's hopeless?
      [Superman pins him to the wall]
      Superman: That man won't quit as long as he can still draw breath. None of my teammates will!
  • Does Not Know How to Say "Thanks": This is something that he never quite picked out as he admits to Superman, Zatanna, and others. He finally does manage to nearly spit it out to Terry in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker:
    Bruce Wayne: Terry, I've been thinking about something you once told me, and you were wrong. It's not Batman that makes you worthwhile, it's the other way around. Never tell yourself anything different.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Of course, his hatred of guns stems from the infamous night when a gun-wielding thug killed his parents.
    • Subverted in "The Savage Time" (which featured an altered timeline), a resistance fighter Batman grabs a gun and points it at the League, thoroughly convincing them that something has changed the timeline.
    • In "The Once and Future Thing Part One: Weird Western Tales", he's offered a revolver in order to keep up appearances in the old western setting. Despite the fact that Bruce wouldn't have needed to use the gun, he still refused to even carry it.
    • In "Dead Reckoning", Deadman possesses Batman and kills Devil Ray with a gun (in a split second reaction to save Wonder Woman's life). Batman is visibly disgusted afterwards at having any part in killing someone with a gun, even to save a friend.
    • In "Destroyer", Luthor offers Batman his spare pistol when he runs out of batarangs. Batman declines, saying "Not my style."
    • This eventually prompts him to retire for good by the time of Batman Beyond (when he is an older man) after a situation where he is forced to use a gun to defend himself due to a bout of heart trouble while trying to rescue a hostage.
  • Doomed by Canon: His love life is this. It's canon that he ends up alone in Batman Beyond, which means that any romantic relationships he has in Batman: The Animated Series, The New Batman Adventures, and Justice League will ultimately not work out.
  • The Dreaded: He is this to the superpowered crooks in Justice League that have a fear of him. Even those who don't fear Superman are terrified of Batman.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: This is how his sidekicks remember him. It is best encapsulated in a Gilligan Cut after Tim Drake signs on to become Robin.
    Bruce Wayne: If you're going to work with me, Tim, you have to follow the rules. Rule Number One: first, You give me everything you've got. Rule number two: Then you give me more. And rule number three: I make the rules.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Despite his Tragic Hero circumstances (see below), it's revealed in "Epilogue" that Terry McGinnis (who is the successful successor of Batman) is also his son and that they've looked after each other all this time. Bruce might even hold on just long enough to see his grandkids, as Terry is set on getting married to his Love Interest and not repeating Bruce's mistakes.
  • Enhanced Interrogation Techniques: In "Feat of Clay", he used a minion's phobia about germs to extract information by threatening to drop a jar containing a liquid culture of a disease on the minion's head. It was a bluff since the jar merely contained a sample of completely ordinary seawater, but the fear it caused was as real as if the jar actually had contained deadly germs.
  • Escape Artist: He is always prepared with the right tools and skills, from lockpicks to acid to liquid nitrogen. He learned from the master himself, John Zatara.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Virtually every conversation he has with Alfred while pondering the crime du jour leads to a Eureka Moment (along with an "Alfred! You're a genius!" declaration and a bemused "Of course, sir" response).
  • Evil Laugh: His laugh in "Mad Love" is so terrifying that even Harley, who is used to Mistah J's worst, is creeped out.
  • Exactly What I Aimed At: Averted the "missed me" dialog. The Mad Hatter had trapped Batman under a playing-card wall and was about to axe off Batman's head. Batman throws a batarang directly at Hatter, to which Hatter easily dodges. Rather than sneer, Hatter resumes his attack only to discover Batman's toy severs a line suspending a huge gargoyle statue. Paralyzed with horror (Oh, Crap!), Hatter is pinned beneath the statue's claw with Batman escaping in the nick of time. Yeah, just as he planned it.
  • Faking the Dead: He fakes his death in "The Man Who Killed Batman".
  • Fearless Fool: In "Never Fear", the Scarecrow creates a toxin that removes Batman's fears and inhibitions, making him much more reckless than usual and it doesn't stop there. The writers are savvy enough to even make him more heartless as he doesn't fear what his own reaction will be if, say, Robin gets killed or if he breaks his one rule and kills a criminal. Scarecrow is making a point that fear is necessary, not just useful, and then in his usual mad fashion extends that to mean that he is necessary to have around.
  • Fiction 500: Wayne Enterprise is so productive that he's able to pay for financing his own vigilante activities and eventually the Justice League, but he did it so stealthily that nobody knows it.
  • The Final Temptation: "Perchance to Dream" featured Batman getting caught in a virtual dream world by the Mad Hatter (who fortunately could not observe the dream itself) where he lived a life as playboy billionaire Bruce Wayne with his parents alive and well (and thus he had never become Batman). In the dream, he was engaged to Selina Kyle (who was not Catwoman) and the mysterious Batman was someone ELSE who just showed up in Gotham. His friends and family in the dream almost had him completely convinced he had created his real life as a delusion to escape his feelings of not having accomplished anything on his own, but the illusion fell apart when he discovered he couldn't read anything because reading requires parts of the brain not used in dreams. Suffice to say, he did NOT appreciate the Mind Screw when he woke himself up.
    • Trying to read something in a dream is a trick used by lucid dreamers to detect whether they are dreaming. Unless you have a photographic memory, your brain will have some trouble trying to remember or imagine a page full of text.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Although he started out distant, he became True Companions with the Justice League founding members, even on a First-Name Basis with each other despite some of them having secret identities.
  • Fountain of Youth: In "Kids’ Stuff", Batman alongside Superman, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern are transformed into eight-year-olds in a desperate attempt to save the world from the magic of Mordred. Batman's personality is the least changed of all of them, although he does come off a bit bratty and without as much patience for the others. However, at the end of the episode, Batman points out the Fridge Brilliance behind it.
    Wonder Woman: Circumstances aside, it was kind of... enjoyable to be a kid again.
    Batman: I haven't been a kid since I was eight years old.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: As always, Batman is very melancholic.
  • Friendly Enemy: He arguably has this pretty much his entire Rogues Gallery. He doesn't want to kill them or even see them locked up. He just wants them to get better. Some examples include:
    • When it seemed as though Poison Ivy had stopped her criminal career, he mentioned that he genuinely wanted to believe that she was finally cleaning up her act (unfortunately, she wasn't).
    • Similarly, when Harley Quinn passed a competency hearing and was legally released from Arkham, he offered her a congratulatory handshake and did his best to help her stay out of trouble. When she ended up back in the asylum (largely through a series of misunderstandings, and with the hope that she'd recover in time), Harley thanked Batman with a quick smooch... and liked it so much that she planted a much bigger kiss on him immediately after.
    • Batman helped the Ventriloquist break his reliance on Scarface and even helped Arnold Wesker (the Ventriloquist's real name) reenter society by giving him a job at Wayne Enterprises.
    • The always true exception of course being the Joker. Batman shows nothing but pure disdain for the Clown Prince of Crime, and his brand of psychopathy. Disdain that only worsens over the years until during their final battle he's flat out on the verge of murdering him.
  • Friend to All Children: This is part of his Jerk with a Heart of Gold personality, which is best demonstrated in "Injustice For All" when he gently coaxes a little girl to go with him out of a burning building along with "Epilogue", when he stays with a dying Ace at her request.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: As always, his greatest ability is his intelligence and possesses one of the sharpest analytical minds of all time in addition to the fact that he is highly skilled in multiple fields of science, which also allows for him to be a scientist that is skilled at inventing technology. He actually built the Watchtower by the time of Justice League along with the Javelin. While he does not have a 12th level intellect like Brainiac and Luthor, his main skill as a scientist is his peerless engineering, all his products are functional, competent and made to last.
    • Even his final Batsuit, which has been sitting in storage for around 20 years by the time of Beyond, is cutting-edge when Terry steals it. It's possible Bruce upgrades it after lending it out to Terry, but right out of mothballs it's still more than enough to practically drive itself.
    • This is taken Up to Eleven in "Hereafter" where Superman is teleported to a post-apocalyptic Earth where Vandal Savage is the only survivor. Superman finds the Watchtower crashed to the earth, only to be told by Vandal Savage that it only fell out of orbit recently, which implies a span of several thousand years after the end of life on earth. Savage gives the understatement when he remarks that it's a great feat of engineering.
  • Genius Bruiser: It took him most of his childhood and the early part of his adulthood to get there, but he's equally capable with physical and mental tasks. He's capable of handling whole gangs of armed thugs with his bare hands, concocting brilliant plans on the fly, utilizing advanced scientific equipment, performing intricate detective work.
  • Good Is Not Nice: He is unquestionably dedicated to doing good, but he's well aware that this doesn't mean he has to be nice. His specialty is intimidating and interrogating, and his whole costumed persona is based on being able to scare his opponents. However, as Bruce Wayne, he's a Nice Guy.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: He does this more times than you'd expect.
    • In Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, when he agrees to meet Andrea's father.
      Bruce: What the heck am I doing, Alfred?
    • In "World's Finest", when he sees a blimp with a message from the Joker.
      Bruce: What the devil is he up to now?
  • Grappling-Hook Gun: This is one of the gadgets that he frequently uses throughout the DCAU.
  • Grave-Marking Scene: He visits the place where his parents were killed once a year on the anniversary of their death, even as a very old man by the time of Batman Beyond.
  • Great Detective: He is one of the foremost detectives on Earth and possesses one of the sharpest analytical minds of all time. Even in-universe, he has followers on the internet that acknowledge him as the "World's Greatest Detective". Ra's Al Ghul's nickname for him was "detective".
  • Grudging "Thank You": In "Night of the Ninja", Batman feared that the titular Ninja could actually defeat him in combat (though he wouldn't admit it). When the final showdown occurs, he's in Bruce Wayne disguise and can't fight up to his full potential... until Robin comes along and "removes" the sole witness. In the denouement a day later, Batman thanks Robin for his assistance and admits that defeating the Ninja might have been highly difficult if not "maybe impossible".
  • Guile Hero: Batman is a master of intimidation and psychological manipulation, specifically with the criminally minded. In "Injustice For All", with a few choice words, Batman manipulated the nearly mindless Solomon Grundy into fighting his then-teammate, the super-genius Ultra-Humanite, tricked Cheetah into taking sympathy with him, and later swayed the Ultra-Humanite to his side by offering to sponsor an opera performance program which the Humanite cherished.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: This is discussed in Batman: Mask of the Phantasm.
    Alfred: Vengeance blackens the soul, Bruce. I've always feared that you would become that which you fought against. You walk the edge of that abyss every night, but you haven't fallen in, and I thank heaven for that.
  • Heartbroken Badass: Bruce's first true love is often viewed as Andrea Beaumont, who Bruce apparently loved so much that he was willing to give up his promise of avenging his parents and marry her. This was changed when Andrea broke off their engagement and left for Europe due to her father owing money to the mob. Years later, she reappeared in Gotham as The Phantasm and killed off the mob bosses who murdered her father. After an intense battle with The Joker, Andrea disappeared and left a locket with a picture of her and Bruce in the Batcave, leaving him heartbroken once again.
  • The Hero: Almost as much as Superman, but he puts a cynical twist on doing the right thing.
  • Heroic BSoD: He gets a brief one in "I Am the Night" after he blames himself for Commissioner Gordon getting shot.
  • Heroic Build: As with most versions, Batman is tall and muscular (almost to the extent of Superman). It shows when he's punching crooks across the room with ease.
  • Heroic Fatigue: He suffers an emotional breakdown like this in "I Am the Night".
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: He falls into this in "I Am the Night" when Commissioner Gordon is wounded during a police bust. Batman bitterly reproaches himself for his failure, thinking he does more to help merchandise salesmen than the people who really need it. This trope is Lampshaded by Robin, who points out that Gordon is fully aware of the dangers of his job, and tries to remind Batman that Gotham would probably have fallen apart without him. Eventually, it's subverted when a disgusted Robin gives up trying to cheer up Batman and goes to the hospital to protect Gordon since Jazzman, the mobster they busted, has escaped from prison and is probably going to pay the Commissioner a "visit". Subverted again when Batman snaps himself out of his depression and goes to the hospital himself. Jazzman tries to whack Gordon and runs into Batman.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In "Starcrossed", he tries to manually pilot the Watchtower into the Thanagarian's hyperspace-bypass weapon. Fortunately, Superman saves him in the nick of time.
  • Heroic Vow: This is deconstructed in the flashback sequence featured in Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. Bruce has realized that he must choose between Andrea or his vow to fight crime. During a rainstorm, he goes to his parents' grave and begs to be released from his vow:
    Bruce: It doesn't mean I don't care anymore. I don't want to let you down, honest, but... but it just doesn't hurt so bad anymore. You can understand that, can't you? Look, I can give money to the city they can hire more cops. Let someone else take the risk, but it's different now. Please... I need it to be different now. I know I made a promise, but I didn't see this coming. I didn't count on being happy. Please... tell me that it's okay.
  • Heroic Willpower: Batman's mental discipline and determination are as equally strong a weapon as his physical prowess. In "Perchance To Dream", he overcame the temptation to abandon the real world and live in a fantasy world with his "ideal" life in order to foil the Mad Hatter’s plan.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: He had this type of relationship with Superman as time went on. At first, they didn't trust each other, but after a few team ups and by Justice League, they're very much this.
  • Hidden Depths: In "This Little Piggy", he's revealed to be a talented singer when he performs "Am I Blue?" to Circe, her men, and Zatanna in order to undo a spell on Wonder Woman.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Only a few chosen people, like Amanda Waller (in "Epilogue"), have ever seen Bruce's compassionate, human side under his callous attitude.
  • Hypocrite:
    • In Justice League. When Superman initially refuses to help Darkseid fight against Brainiac from destroying Apokolips due to his previous experiences with the overlord, Batman tells him to "get over it" when recounting his trauma. Batman, as anyone who knows him would be able to tell, is far from someone who has gotten over his trauma especially considering he has had much more time to do so. To top it off? Superman was right.
    • In Batman and Harley Quinn, Batman is less than thrilled when he sees that Nightwing had hooked up with Harley Quinn. This is despite the fact that Batman has had romantic flings with villainesses before, and was even kissed by Harley in "Harley's Holiday" (Sure, she was the one who initiated, but he didn't try to resist and was smiling afterwards.)
      Nightwing: Like you never made out with a supervillain.
  • Honest Corporate Executive: Invoked in "World's Finest", where Lex Luthor tries to persuade Bruce Wayne to allow him use the robots they were developing together for military purposes. Bruce tells him "I don't like guns".
  • Hope Bringer: As always, Batman serves the role as this for the decent citizens of Gotham City and its Police Department (well, the non-corrupt parts).
  • Horrifying Hero: Batman strikes so much terror into evil that he's often seen as a monster outright rather than man, as shown for example in "The Forgotten".
    Poor Random Mook: [running into boss's office, terrified out of his wits] A Bat!! A GIANT BAT!! HORRIBLE!!
  • Iconic Attribute Adoption Moment: In Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, flashbacks show Bruce starting as a vigilante but not having become Batman yet. He's able to foil a heist but notes that his methods are still missing something and ponders over how to make his crimefighting more effective. During this time he meets and falls in love with Andrea Beaumont, whose presence in his life leads him to consider giving up on his vigilante aspirations. When she leaves Gotham and ends things with him he fully commits to his crusade against crime. In the newly created Batcave Bruce dons his cowl for the first time and Alfred's shocked response makes it clear that Batman has risen.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: He has icy blue eyes during The New Batman/Superman Adventures era and Batman Beyond as well. Justice League is a slightly inconsistent about this since the series sometimes presents him with the black eyes he had back in Batman: TAS instead.
  • Impersonation Gambit: He does this few times, such as in "The Cape and Cowl Conspiracy" or "Almost Got 'Im".
  • Implacable Man: In "The Underdwellers". First, one of the sewer kids tries to elude Batman through the tunnel system he knows like the back of his hand, only to find to his shock that Batman is waiting for him. The Sewer King gets his own surprise in a quiet moment when he thinks that he has eluded Batman and locked the door behind him, only to suddenly have it blown open seconds later as he realizes that the Dark Knight is after him and will not stop.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: Batman is shown to have a very sharp aim, such as when Batman stops "the Jazzman" from killing Gordon by flinging a batarang right into the muzzle of his gun in slow motion.
  • Invincible Hero: This is lampshaded after Batman returns from yet another seeming demise and the Joker shouts "Why won't he stay dead?"
  • I Regret Nothing: He contemplated his eventual demise in "I Am The Night".
    Batman: It might be the Joker, or Two-Face, or just some punk who gets lucky. My decision. No regrets.
    • Ironically enough, this doesn't happen and he lives into at least his 90s. This is lampshaded when Batman meets his future self in JLU and is surprised he lived that long.
  • It Has Been an Honor: In "Starcrossed", Batman helps place the Thanagarians into escape pods and sneaks out to launch the pod with Flash and J'onn still inside, sparing them from his kamikaze mission. Batman explains that he has to guide the Tower in manually in case it burns on re-entry, even if it means sacrificing himself. He bids his comrades farewell.
    Batman: Gentlemen, it's been an honor.
  • It's Not You, It's My Enemies: It's subtly invoked as one of the reasons why he avoids serious relationships. He actually says this in "This Little Piggy" to try and dissuade a female partner who is interested and started flirting with him. Considering the fact that said partner is Wonder Woman, who has near Superman-level Super Strength and durability, it just looks pathetic, and she treats it as such. In fact, it would have made more sense for him to point out that her enemies make it unsafe for him, since she regularly fights mythological monsters, evil gods and similar cosmic-tier nasties.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Downplayed Trope. Not most of the time, but he makes use of this fairly regularly to get what he wants. He's so good at it that even as an old man, he's capable of terrorizing regular punks into telling him everything he wants to know.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Batman can be a pretty callous at times, even to his own friends. But you cannot deny his dedication to helping people all the same. In "This Little Piggy", Wonder Woman has been turned into a pig. He is clearly worried about her, yet he remains (or... tries to be) his cool, collected self.
  • Kind Restraints: This happens to him twice, both as a result of the Scarecrow's toxins. The first time Bruce inhales a fear-inducing hallucinogen and is confined in Arkham Asylum while suffering various paranoid delusions and being unable to convince his caretakers that the Scarecrow's plan is actually real. The second time features a fear-eliminating toxin turning him into a psychopath and Robin ties him up against his will to protect his enemies.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: He is this in TNBA and Batman Beyond more than he was back in Batman: TAS (although it comes up, particularly in the episode “I Am The Knight”).
  • The Knights Who Say "Squee!": "Beware the Gray Ghost" had him showing as much squee as he can upon meeting the actor of a childhood TV hero, the "Gray Ghost", who seems to have inspired some of the Batman persona. The Gray Ghost is played by Adam West as a Shout-Out to earlier incarnations of Batman.
  • Knuckle Cracking: In "Robin's Reckoning", there's a crook who is loudly declaring "I'm no squealer" that Batman needs to get information out of. Batman just cracks his knuckles and narrows his eyes threateningly. The guy talks.
  • The Lancer: He serves the role as this when he becomes a part of the Justice League.
  • Lantern Jaw of Justice: His mask does a good job at showing off his chin.
  • "Leave Your Quest" Test: "Perchance To Dream" features the Mad Hatter try to keep Batman out of the way by putting him in a Lotus-Eater Machine where his parents never died and someone else is Batman, only for Batman to know his perfect life is an illusion because he discovers that he can't read any of the books in the dream. In the flashback sequence featured in Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, Bruce must choose between marrying Andrea or his vow to fight crime. During a rainstorm, he goes to his parents' grave, and begs to be released from his vow. His decision is made once Andrea leaves and breaks off their engagement.
  • Love Interests: He has had a lot of romantic relationships with women over the course of the DCAU: Andrea Beaumont, Zatanna, Selina Kyle/Catwoman, Talia Al Ghul, Lois Lane, Kathy Duquesne, Barbara Gordon, and Wonder Woman.
  • Master of Disguise: He would occasionally disguise himself for undercover work in the criminal underworld or to infiltrate sites and retrieve information.
  • McNinja: He has the tools, the clothes, the attitude, the moves, even the backstory of training in Japan for it.
  • Metaphorically True: In "Night of the Ninja", Bruce explains to fellow prisoner Summer that they escaped because Batman arrived and took down the bad guy. Hey, his voice changed so it was mostly true...
  • Mighty Whitey: Bruce Wayne is considered by his martial arts master, Yoru, to be his best student. This creates the friction between Wayne and Kyodai Ken who constantly refers to Wayne as "Rich Man's Son".
  • Mission Control: It allows him to stay out of the spotlight in Justice League.
  • Movie Superheroes Wear Black: During The New Batman Adventures, he had the blue highlights replaced with dark grey ones, lost the yellow oval, and wore a beige utility belt. While the oval would stay gone, the blue highlights and yellow coloring for the belt return in Justice League.
  • My Future Self and Me: In "The Once and Future Thing Part Two: Time, Warped", he meets his older self of the Batman Beyond era.
    Old Bruce: Surprised to see me?
    Batman: A little. I'm more surprised that I lived so long.
    Batman II: Batman, Bruce Wayne. Bruce Wayne, Batman. Or have you met?
    Batman and Old Bruce: [in unison] Not now!
    Batman II: Great. What did they used to call it? Stereo?
    • They even end up playing Good Cop/Bad Cop on Ghoul.
      Batman: [dangles Ghoul over the side of the building by his ankle] Where's Chronos? My arm's getting tired.
      Old Bruce: I can't believe I was ever that green. [grabs Ghoul and throws him back on the rooftop before advancing on him slowly] THIS is how you interrogate someone!
      • Of course, Ghoul spills everything and even how often he wet his bed.
  • My Greatest Failure: Both Dick and Tim. Dick because Bruce allowed their relationship to fall apart and Tim because of what the Joker did to him.
  • Nice Guy: He's this when he's just Bruce Wayne. However, he has to cover that when fighting crime as Batman.
  • Ninja Log:
    • A panther lunges at Batman and it somehow gets tangled in an empty cape.
    • In Mask of the Phantasm, the police open fire on Batman, only it's just his cape draped over a road barricade.
  • Noodle Incident: In "Dark Heart", he flies in his Batwing and dumps an ice-bomb on to the alien structure in order to freeze it. He comments that he's had to use an ice-bomb to freeze Gotham's river before, which was never featured in an episode before. In "Dead Reckoning", Deadman says that Batman previously helped him solve his own murder despite the fact that this episode was Deadman's only appearance in the DCAU.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: His Thou Shalt Not Kill attitude had its heavy price in the flashback sequence featured in Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, where the Joker tortures Robin until the boy shoots the Joker in the chest.
  • No Sense of Humor: He is thought by many to have no sense of humor, but it's there, albeit it's just really dark. Indeed, he becomes The Comically Serious in Justice League and serves as a reliable straight man to The Flash and, disturbingly, The Joker. Terry claims that this is why the latter was so obsessed with him.
  • Non-Powered Costumed Hero:
  • "Not So Different" Remark: He has this moment with Ace in "Epilogue" as she reminisces about the experiments performed on her:
    Ace: They got their weapon; I got cheated out of my childhood.
    Batman: I know what that's like.
    Ace: You do, don't you?
  • Not So Stoic: Anyone who gets to know him very well will attest to this. Amanda Waller's flashback in "Epilogue" provides quite possibly the ultimate example of this.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: As Bruce Wayne, particularly whenever he encounters his enemies out of costume.
  • Offhand Backhand: This is one of his trademark moves (and provides the page image for the Trope) to the point that a mook's chances of hitting Batman actually decrease if he attacks from behind.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: He has a tendency to suddenly disappear, only to inexplicably reappear elsewhere as one of his tactics in fighting criminals and taking them by surprise.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Batman usually follows his Thou Shalt Not Kill rule to the letter, but he immediately threw a knife at The Joker's head upon seeing what he had done to Tim Drake. Joker managed to dodge it, but imagine if he didn't.
  • Older Than They Look: Bruce was born in the early sixties (as he was eight when his parents were killed at the end of said decade) and thus by Justice League and Unlimited, he is in his early-to-mid forties. Nonetheless he looks like a man in his prime and has the physical abilities to back it up. Justified because his entire lifestyle is dedicated to keeping himself in top shape. That being said his age, both in terms of appearance and physical ability, caught up to him by the time he decided to retire.
  • Origins Episode: The flashback sequence in Batman: Mask of the Phantasm features Bruce's first night out as a vigilante, the inspiration for his costume, the discovery of the Batcave, and the first time he put on the mask.
  • Orphan's Ordeal: "I haven't been a kid since I was eight years old."
  • Papa Wolf: You should never, ever, harm his loved ones and a single innocent-child in front of him.
  • Parental Abandonment: As always, HIS PARENTS ARE DEEAAAAAAAD!!!!
  • The Patient Has Left the Building: Despite the fact that he was injured one time, he considered his Batman duties important enough to defy his doctor's orders to stay in bed and recover.
  • Pet the Dog: During TNBA, he became considerably colder to his allies and increasingly less likely to pull his punches against his villains in fights. But even with all that, he did have a few moments that showed he still wanted to help redeem people like in the old B:TAS days. The first was during "Double Talk" where he still went out of his way to try to help Arnold Wesker. Another instance was in "Old Wounds" where Dick recalled being really upset with how Batman shook down a small time criminal right in front of his family. Later on, Dick found out that Bruce Wayne helped that same man find a new job and turn his life around, after which Dick acknowledged that Bruce was still a decent man deep down.
  • Pragmatic Hero: He'll get the information that he needs to stop the bad guys even if he has to intimidate them or threaten to seriously harm them.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang: He uses any of the batarangs he throws.
  • Properly Paranoid: In "Only A Dream":
    Green Lantern: Look, whatever he is, he's sure not in the same league as Grundy and the others. He's a nobody.
    Green Lantern: Point taken.
  • The Protagonist: For the entire DCAU, even if his role in Justice League is closer to Supporting Protagonist. He's the first superhero introduced, he has most of the sequel shows and all the made for home video movies, and is the only character in the DCAU to have a complete arc from childhood to old age in addition to making an appearance in every installment of the franchise. The final scene of "Destroyer" (which is the end of the DCAU as a whole) is a close up of him, Superman, and Diana rushing into the camera with Batman's bat-logo closing in at the last frame, forming a book-end for the entire continuity.
  • The Proud Elite: Bruce Wayne is wealthy and has a troubled past, but he does care for others deep down.
  • Psychic Static: He provides the page quote for this trope. In "Only A Dream", Batman tracks Doctor Destiny down at a warehouse. Doctor Destiny is close enough that he can enter Batman's mind even though he's awake, but Batman keeps him out by humming "Frère Jacques" over and over again, and is able to beat him hand to hand.
    Dr. Destiny: What's that stupid song going through your mind?!
    Batman: It's what's keeping you out, Johnny.
  • Reading Lips: He does this in Mask of the Phantasm and "Shadow of the Bat".
  • Reckless Pacifist: Even if he doesn't kill his enemies, he often does destructive actions that could endanger his enemies without any concern.
  • Rich Idiot With No Day Job: Deliberately averted, per Word of God. Batman as Bruce Wayne is an Honest Corporate Executive who takes an active role in Wayne Enterprises' daily operations in contrast to his other versions (who play him up as someone deliberately acting like a foolish billionaire so as not to draw attention to the fact he's really a genius vigilante by night). Because of this, he actually manages to accomplish the same endgame as his more buffoonish versions (as, rather than seeming too incompetent to be Batman, he is too responsible as anyone who would take such a hands-on approach with his company's work would never find time to run around at night pretending to be a crime fighting bat).
  • Roof Hopping: This is his main mode of travel.
  • Samaritan Syndrome: "I Am the Night" featured him making his annual visit to the site of his parents' murder, which makes him late for a sting operation that he helped set up. He arrives in time to help subdue the crooks, but finds that Jim Gordon has been severely wounded. Batman's guilt (which is not helped at all by Detective Harvey Bullock) over not being there in time to save Jim sends him into a Heroic BSoD. He is saved from a Heroic BSoD because he stops another attempt on Jim Gordon when he wakes up and finds out Jim has the same doubts.
    • In other episodes, he's refused to let minor inconveniences like a cold and, oh, blindness stop him from bringing down the bad guy because he knows what kind of mayhem is being unleashed while he sits it out.
  • Samurai Shinobi: "Night of the Ninja" and "Day of the Samurai" spotlight the line that Batman walks between following in the footsteps of his samurai master, Yoru, and his fellow pupil Kyodai Ken, who embraces the path of ninjutsu. At one point, Kyodai attempts to persuade Batman to embrace the same path, as the Caped Crusader's methods are very ninja-like, only for Batman to reject it and identify himself as a samurai. When Kyodai is defeated and seemingly dies, Bruce Wayne and Yoru further discuss the differences.
  • Science Hero: Batman's greatest ability is his intelligence. He is highly skilled in multiple fields of science. As a member of the Justice League, he contributed much of the technology that kept it going, including the Watchtower and Javelins. In addition to his fighting abilities, his contributions to the team as a scientist have proved invaluable time and again.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: While he's already rich, he refuses to accept bribes.
  • Secret Identity: With very few exceptions, no-one is aware of the fact that Batman and Bruce Wayne are one and the same.
  • Secret Identity Identity: As demonstrated in Batman Beyond, he realizes that the voice in his head is not his own because it calls him "Bruce".
  • Shirtless Captives: In "The Demon's Quest, Part 2", he is stripped of his shirt by Ra's al-Ghul's henchmen and put in chains in the dungeons after his capture attempting to sneak into the Lazarus Pit compound.
  • Shoot the Dog: Subverted and Defied in "Epilogue". Ace began causing havoc when her powers developed beyond causing hallucinations to being able to alter the fabric of reality itself. Cadmus had retrieved a special weapon to kill her and prevent the disaster, which Batman volunteered to use. However, when he reached her, Ace revealed that he never intended to use the weapon having read his mind. Instead, he asked Ace to reverse the changes she had made, as he related with her over her lost childhood. Ace was aware that she would die and asked Batman to stay with her, as he did just that holding the crying girl's hand. With him by her side, she died peacefully. A defining moment in what makes Batman who he is in the eyes of Amanda Waller.
  • Shrouded in Myth: This is demonstrated in "P.O.V." and "Legends of the Dark Knight". Very few people get a good enough look at him to get an accurate impression.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Ra's al-Ghul explains his wonderful plan to save the world by wiping out most of humanity. Batman responds with a note of wonder in his voice. "Yes... I can see it all clearly now for the first time. You are completely out of your mind."
  • Single-Episode Handicap: In "Blind as a Bat", he becomes blind.
  • The Smart Guy: Along with J'onn in the Justice League.
  • Stealth Expert: Batman was a master of stealth and infiltration (all the more remarkable given that he stands 6'2" and weighs 210 lbs) and often revealed himself to his enemies when they least suspected him to.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: He is the master of it. He could disappear from allies in mid-sentence, which is a habit that frequently annoyed the likes of Commissioner Gordon ("One of these days I'm gonna nail his feet to the ground") and Harvey Bullock ("I wonder how Gordon puts up with this").
  • The Stoic: It's part of his portfolio, after all.
  • The Strategist: He primarily took this function with the Justice League.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Batman is usually one with a harsh demeanor, but he proves to have a soft side on more than one occasion.
  • Super Window Jump: He does this regularly.
  • The Swarm: In "Starcrossed", Batman uses a set of sonic batarangs to sic a swarm of bats onto the Thanagarians during a fight in the Batcave. On the commentary, Dwayne McDuffie admits that he "happily stole" this trick from the comic book story Batman: Year One.
  • Take a Third Option: Harley Quinn captures Catwoman and ties her to a conveyor belt heading for a massive meat grinder. Batman arrives and catches Harley, who then taunts that he can either bring her in or save Catwoman, but not both. Batman then... nonchalantly reaches over to the circuit breaker and shuts off the power to the grinder, to which Harley responds, "Good call. Help!"
  • Taking the Bullet: This is deconstructed. He saves Superman, who he loses trust in at the end of "The Doomsday Sanction". To elaborate, he uses the Javelin to redirect a kryptonite nuclear missile from destroying Superman and an island. Injured after his crash, he expresses disgust at Superman's decision to banish Doomsday, and questions him over the Justice League's direction becoming like the Justice Lords.
    Batman: You don't get to joke! Not today. I just took a bullet for you.
  • Talking Your Way Out
    • He used this when Harley Quinn singlehandedly captured him and put him in a Death Trap that he couldn't escape from. He played off her infatuation with the Joker and convinced her to call him so that he could "witness" his death, knowing that his ego wouldn't allow anyone else to off the Batman.
    • When he was caught and held defenseless by Scarface's gang, Batman convinces Scarface that the one who sold them out was Arnold Wesker, aka The Ventriloquist. Scarface angrily orders his men to kill Wesker, and when they hesitate he thinks they are traitors as well. Batman escapes in the chaos and bring the gangsters down. The twist? Scarface is Arnold Whesker - he is just a ventriloquist's doll that Wesker uses to manifest his psychotic Split Personality.
  • Taught by Experience: The flashback sequence in Mask of the Phantasm had Bruce perform his first night as a vigilante in black clothes and a ski mask, yelling out police commands. He had all the training and gadgetry, but didn't really understand Batman's foundation of fear and intimidation. This is what leads him to being the poster child of Crazy-Prepared. This aspect of the movie was a homage to Batman: Year One, which used essentially the same thing.
  • The Team Normal: The only member of the League who doesn't have any form of super-powers, natural or bestowed.
  • Technological Pacifist: "Blind as a Bat" marked Bruce Wayne's only time developing anything for the military. After the troubles that stemmed from that, Bruce declared that Wayne Corp would never develop weapons again. It briefly does develop weapons under Powers' helm in Batman Beyond, but the no-weapons policy comes back in full force when Bruce regains control of the company.
  • Teleportation Sickness: In "The Call", Bruce explains his dislike for boom tubes which he reveals to his successor. Serving as a Call-Forward, Batman travels through a Boom tube for the first time chronologically in "Twilight".
    Batman: Ugh... that was fun.
  • Temporary Blindness: He has this in "Blind As A Bat".
  • Terror Hero: In Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, as Bruce dons the mask of Batman for the first time, Alfred serves as the only witness to this transformation and remarks in both terror and astonishment, "My God!". Thus, Batman's war on crime began.
  • Thememobile: Batman had used several vehicles in the course of his crime-fighting career, including: the Batmobile, the Batboat, the Batcycle, the Bat-glider, the Batwing, and the Jet-wing
  • There Are No Coincidences: In "Starcrossed", Batman is suspicious of the Thanagarian's sudden circumstances and examines the remains of a dead Gordanian. He discovered that the corpse has been long dead before the Thanagarians "rescue".
  • There Was a Door: He most often enters buildings by crashing through windows.
  • Trophy Room: He has a large one in the Batcave.
    Poison Ivy: So Harv, whatever happened to the giant penny?
    Two-Face: They actually let him keep it.
  • Troubled, but Cute:
    Diana: No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.
    • He also gets positively cute as a kid version of himself in "Kids' Stuff". Diana (who also has been de-aged into a girl, and still keeping her crush on him) must have seen him downright adorable and gets all clingy onto him... while he still grumpily brushes her off.
  • Took a Level in Badass: While he was already incredibly badass back in Batman: TAS, Batman levels up as his career progresses and by the time of the Justice League since he takes on the likes of Vandal Savage, Brainiac, and finally goes toe to toe with Darkseid himself (earning Villain Respect from the most powerful being in the universe). This is for a Badass Normal with no powers who took small crimes as seriously as major supervillains in a Wretched Hive like Gotham.
    • This becomes a plot point where an early issue raised doubts about Batman's ability to keep up with the rest of the Justice League, after he easily gets taken out in a group fight against Luthor's Injustice Gang with Superman asking him to stay back while he investigates. Batman instead displays how his skills as a detective and master tactician and psychologist completely damages the opponents by triggering their Chronic Backstabbing Disorder. He progressively raises his game to hyper-competent levels. In a later episode, he's able to judo throw Kalibak, an alien Superman-level thug from Apokolips who Superman says he could have easily beaten.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: This is deliberately invoked. In the The New Batman Adventures and onwards, he's growing grimmer and colder.
  • Tragic Hero: While his dedication to helping others is admirable, Bruce failed to keep close the people who loved him the most (and whom he loved, despite his gruff demeanor) and by the time of Batman Beyond, he paid for it dearly ending up with no connection to many of his former friends, most of his company being taken over, retired from Batman, and living alone. It's telling that by the time of the JLU episode, "Epilogue" (which is the Distant Finale for the entire DCAU), the only other person Bruce has any form of contact with is Terry. See Earn Your Happy Ending above.
  • Tragic Dream: Since the murder of his parents when he was only eight years old, Bruce made a vow to devote the rest of his life to ridding crime in all Gotham so that no one would go through what he did and so that Batman would no longer be needed. What he didn't realize was that his dream, while noble was not realistic, his relentless, driven but standoffish personality alienated his loved ones and by the time of Batman Beyond, it's painfully obviously that he paid a heavy price for his unattainable dream.
  • Übermensch: As far as he's concerned, the only immoral thing there is when it comes to crimefighting is killing the enemy.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Lex Luthor at the beginning sees Batman as just a nuisance who is of no concern to him compared to Superman. This is until Batman breaks into his penthouse in the middle of the night, knocks out Mercy with an Offhand Backhand, and absolutely scares the crap out of Luthor, which is something Superman had NEVER been able to do. From that point, Luthor gives Batman the same level of priority as Superman.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: He has this relationship with Wonder Woman; the "unresolved" part is a source of great frustration for her. Considering the events of ''Batman Beyond'', they were never going to end up together.
  • Utility Belt: Batman's Utility Belt had compartments to hold several items, the contents of which change according to his needs, and often include items such as Batarangs, Grappling-Hook Pistol, and grenades, the remote control for access to the Watchtower in Justice League, flashlights, laser cutters, underwater rebreathers, binoculars, a fingerprinting kit, remote controls for his vehicles, and more. It also involved some fairly sophisticated security measures as well, when Batman was taken captive by the Injustice Gang, Lex Luthor spent a great deal of time and effort to open the belt.
  • Vigilante Man: Batman is obviously seen as such in the eyes of many like Detective Harvey Bullock, who is a top investigator for the Gotham Police Department.
  • Villain Respect: He receives this from Ra's Al Ghul, Darkseid, and Amanda Waller. Alhough the level of villainy varies from extreme to mild.
    • In "Hereafter", Vandal Savage praises the Watchtower, which has lasted for several thousand years despite all that's happened, only falling out of orbit shortly before Superman's arrival in the future. Savage is unaware that Batman was responsible, but does comment that it's a remarkable feat of engineering.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Superman, J'onn, Green Lantern and Flash.
  • Vocal Evolution: His Batman voice originally sounded very gravelly and his Bruce Wayne voice was higher pitched and more cheerful. From the TNBA era onwards, his Batman voice was no longer gravelly and there was no difference between his Bruce voice and his Batman voice.
  • Weapon Stomp: He has done this at least once.
  • We Used to Be Friends:
    • Harvey Dent was both one of Batman's biggest allies within the Gotham City government and one of Bruce's closest friends. Once he became Two-Face, he became Batman's enemy though the Caped Crusader was a bit lighter in his dealings with him and Bruce tried to help cure him multiple times. Additionally, Two-Face still held a soft spot for Bruce as he was furious when Hugo Strange claimed that Bruce was Batman and dismissed it as absurd.
    • With Dick Grayson post - BTAS; unlike the comics, the two never fully reconcile after Dick quits as Robin and only grudgingly work together as Batman and Nightwing. By the time of Batman Beyond, the implication is that they haven't spoken in decades and unlike Barbara and Tim, Dick never appears in Beyond despite still being alive at the time of the show's setting.
  • When He Smiles: Horrifying appearance notwithstanding, the rare smile that he shares with children is so warm-and-kind it can melt glaciers.
    • In JLU after the last villain of the Cadmus arc, Luthor/Brainiac, has been defeated, Superman feels the League has let the world down and publicly announces the League's disbandment. When everyone starts thinking it's the end for the League, Green Arrow gives him a Rousing Speech on how the League has once again saved the world, and how the superhero association will carry on, even without its founding members if necessary, but ends up opening a door for Superman and the other founders to continue. As everyone else applauds, Superman is moved by his speech, but looks upon the others for everyone's approval. At that point, it's Batman's smile what finally reassures him and convinces him that the League must go on.
  • Where Does He Get All Those Wonderful Toys?: In "Secret Origins", Superman asks Batman if his stockholders know about the newly-commissioned Watchtower, which Batman handwaves with "hidden as a line item in the Space R&D budget." Sure, that hides the funding, but says nothing about assembly either pre-launch or in orbit. Although with Superman available, Batman at least wouldn't need a launch vehicle — or if Clark had a spare weekend, a construction crew.
  • With My Hands Tied: He is forced to beat up two burly orderlies while in a straitjacket and held for treatment in Arkham.
  • Working Through the Cold: He does this in "Heart of Ice".
  • Would Hit a Girl: Batman is smart enough to recognize genders in a fight. This is especially true if his identity is at stake. In "Almost Got 'Im" during Poison Ivy's tale, Batman punches Ivy off when she tried to take his mask off. There's also this exchange from "Harley and Ivy":
    Batman: Man or woman, a sick mind is capable of anything.
    Poison Ivy: A very enlightened statement, Batman. We'll carve it on your headstone.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: As with his comic book counterpart, he absolutely hates it when others hurt children or puts them at risk.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Bane makes his presence in Gotham known by smashing the Batmobile with his bare hands. Another villain, Lockup, puts a boot (wheel clamp) on it.
    Batman: He trashed my car, Alfred. Between a couple of guys, that's real personal.
  • Wrestler of Beasts: In the episode "Never Fear", Batman infiltrates a seminar run by the Scarecrow which teaches attendees not to fear anything. When Batman, still undercover, gets captured, he's kept at bay with some crocodiles in a moat. Scarecrow hits him with a dose of his new gas, which does the opposite of his fear toxin and makes the afflicted lose fear of anything. Batman climbs into the moat and gets attacked by the crocodiles. After Scarecrow walks away, Batman climbs out of the moat, soaked but unharmed, while the crocodiles are floating belly up.
  • Your Heart's Desire: In "For the Man Who Has Everything", Batman is subdued by a telepathic plant from a distant galaxy that renders its victims helpless and delusional in a dream world created from their heart's desires. Batman's fantasy is Thomas Wayne retaliating and overpowering the gunman that killed him and his wife. However, like Superman's dream, it turns sour when the gunman regains himself and shoots Thomas in front of him and his mother.

    Tropes from the Batman Beyond era 
  • Achilles in His Tent: The ease with which he was able to stop Powers's development plan, and the speed with which he was able to retake his company after the Powers family was removed from the equation, implies that he could have taken control of his company back at any time. The only reason he didn't was because he just stopped caring.
  • Adult Fear: The reality of his advancing age. It's clear he's much weaker and slower than he was in his heyday, which preys on him constantly. Several times in the show his biggest mortal threat is his own heart condition.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Subverted. Terry thinks Bruce is being unnecessarily close-minded because he does not believe the rumors of a ghost haunting Terry's high school. It turns out that Bruce has seen similar paranormal activity, but the reports sound too amateurish and "high-school" to fit into that paradigm. In the end, it turns out to be something completely different.
  • Back in the Saddle: He's long-since retired from being Batman due to old age and a crippling heart condition. He now mentors and acts as the Voice with an Internet Connection to the new Batman. However, on two occasions, he's taken up the fight again. On the first, he did it with the aid of Powered Armor. On the second, he was returned to a younger age through the use of a Lazarus Pit. Both times, the heroic theme he had back in Batman: The Animated Series plays for him.
  • Badass Normal: He fought everything from gods, demons, and spellcasters with only the Batsuit, his wits, and skills.
  • Bash Brothers: He fights alongside Terry in "Out of the Past" thanks to a Lazarus Pit rejuvenating him.
  • Batman Grabs a Gun:
    • It took this happening while a goon was beating him with a crowbar while Bruce was having a heart attack to make Bruce stop being Batman, proving (to Bruce) that he couldn't continue crime-fighting if he had to stoop to their level.
    • In the flashback in Return of the Joker, it was implied Bruce was ready to kill the Joker during their final battle at Arkham, from tossing the knife he'd used to cut himself free at the Joker's face to the fact he grabs the Joker by the neck and threatened to "break [him] in two."
  • Break Out the Museum Piece: In "Black Out", Bruce took Mr. Freeze's freeze gun out of his little crime museum to stop Inque and wore the old Gray Ghost hat and mask to keep his identity hidden. In Inque's second appearance, Terry tried the same, but she broke it. Later, Bruce took a huge Powered Armor suit out of retirement to go hand-to-hand with her.
  • Career-Ending Injury: His heart condition, which prompts the incident above.
  • Cane Fu: It's unclear as to whether Bruce really needs the cane (since he was injured in his final fight with the Joker), or if he's just pretending to be more handicapped than he is for the sake of having a weapon.
  • Conspicuous Trenchcoat: He uses this to hide his BatMech while rescuing Terry from Inque.
  • Cool Old Guy: Beyond the crankiness from getting old, he is a wise and supportive mentor.
  • Cornered Rattlesnake: In “Rebirth”, Bruce's Batman is too old to fight against the goons. One of them is about to beat Batman with a pipe, forcing Batman to use a gun to win. Batman, who hates guns, decides he needs to retire in his old age so he wouldn't be in this situation again.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Naturally.
    Terry: She's heading for the stairs!
    (Bruce presses button, metal door seals shut, preventing Inque from heading into the mansion.)
    Inque: Someone's got a secret. (tries to sliver in through the cracks in the metal door)
    Terry: She's getting through!
    (Bruce presses another button which electrocutes Inque from the door)
    Terry: Wow, you really are prepared.
    (Inque slivers up to the ceiling and starts to burrow herself up in the rocks)
    Bruce: She won't get through that way either, there's several feet of solid steel.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He's a precision snarker to Terry's chatty snarker.
  • Dented Iron: His deteriorating general health, compounded with all the injuries he'd sustained over the years, is what ultimately forces him into his Moment of Weakness at the very start of the show.
  • Determinator: Will a heart attack stop him from saving someone? Nope. But the moral crisis suffered after being forced to pick up a gun will.
    Superman: You'll outlive us all, Bruce. You're too stubborn to die.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Throughout the DC Animated Universe, Bruce had many love interests, from Selina to Talia to Diana, but he doesn't end up with any of them and, as Epilogue shows, he remained a bachelor until the end of his life. Although it's hinted in the comics that if Wonder Woman hadn't chosen to stay with Justice Lord Batman, she would've stayed with him.
    Bruce: When I was young, women used to throw themselves at my feet all the time.
    Terry: What did you do?
    Bruce: Step over them.
    Terry: Smooth.
    Bruce: I thought so.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: The series begins with a heart attack forcing him to scare a criminal off with one, horrifying him into retirement.
  • Do Not Call Me "Paul": Played With when he started Hearing Voices as a result of Shriek. He later tells Terry that the reason he knew he wasn't going crazy was because the voice kept called him "Bruce," which is not what he calls himself in his head.
  • Double Consciousness: He states that, inside his head, he doesn't call himself "Bruce" anymore.
  • Due to the Dead: It's revealed in "Ace in the Hole" that he still makes yearly pilgrimages to Crime Alley, where his parents were gunned down, and leaves a bouquet of flowers on the spot where they died.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: He starts out the series living alone with his dog after all his friends have either died or cut ties with him, retired from being Batman and living on what he has left of his conquered company. However, he trains a successor to keep protecting Gotham, reconciles with the Bat Family and as in Return of the Joker, has fully reclaimed his company back and plans to do good with it, especially after the corruption done by Powers (both of them; in fact, the comics reveal just how Bruce got his company back) And if "Epilogue" is anything to go by, he might just live long enough to see his grandkids.
  • Everyone Has Standards: After finding out that Ra's hijacked Talia's body and essentially killed her, he prevented Terry from trying to save him, technically breaking his ironclad Thou Shalt Not Kill rule. According to him, it was because whatever was there had died a long time ago.
  • Feeling Their Age: The ultimate reason Bruce retired as Batman. His last battle against generic thugs almost cost him his life after suffering a heart attack mid-way, forcing him to pull a gun on his attacker. His frustrations over his age form the primary dramatic thrust in "Out of the Past" when offered age reversal from Talia using the Lazarus pits. This makes for a memorable action scene that puts Bruce in proper fighting condition alongside Terry against a group of enemies.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: His heart condition forced him to retire as Batman.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: In "The Once and Future Thing, Part 2", when Old Bruce takes over questioning Ghoul from his younger self, he plays the bad cop so effectively that everyone is unnerved when the younger Batman steps in to play good cop.
    Old Bruce: I can't believe I was ever that green... This is how you interrogate someone...
    (A short Fade to Black later and Ghoul is ready to spill the beans)
    Batman: I can't control my friend here much longer. You better give us something we can use.
    Static: Wow. Batman playing good cop.
    Green Lantern: Everything's relative.
  • Good Is Not Nice: He can be a tough old bastard via giving Terry the hard facts and truth.
  • Grumpy Old Man: You know how young man Bruce can be hard to deal with? Add a couple of decades of isolation and you get crotchety old man Bruce. Somehow, Conroy and the writers managed to make the elder Bruce scarier than his younger self.
  • Handicapped Badass: While he's still a good fighter despite his age, due to his heart condition, he lacks the stamina to fight for very long.
  • Heroes Love Dogs: Understandable, since Ace is his only companion at Wayne Manor other than Terry.
  • Hollywood Heart Attack: He suffered one of these during his final fight as Batman, which forced him to use a gun to force the last crook to back off.
  • I Regret Nothing: In "Sneak Peek", when faced with the possibility of his identity being outed, Bruce is pretty subdued about it, confessing to Terry that he suspected that sooner or later, his identity would be exposed. His only real complaint is that it's at the hands of a sleazy tabloid reporter like Ian Peek.
    Bruce: I always assumed I'd be found out sooner or later. It's just galling that a piece of garbage like Peek had to be the one.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: It definitely adds a fair bit of character to Old Man Bruce. Also, a subtle hint that Terry is his biological son since he inherited the eyes.
  • Impoverished Patrician: It was never explored in the show, but DVD commentaries and behind-the-scene features reveal that Bruce has lost almost all of the vast Wayne Fortune in the intervening years between the present and the future eras of the DCAU. He survives on the returns from his stock holdings in Wayne-Powers, which he could sell for a massive profit, but he would never do so because he would lose any last remaining influence over the company.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He can be rather grumpy and curmudgeon-y at times, but end of the day, it's clear he cares for Terry. Case in point: in "Babel", Shriek threatens to escalate his attacks on Gotham City unless Batman surrenders to him. Some of the citizens (including people Batman had saved earlier) say he should give in to the demand, much to Bruce's disgust:
    Bruce: This kid has done a lot for this city. It's about time this city did something for him!
  • Lonely at the Top: The rare heroic example of this trope at the beginning of the show. He is one of the richest men in the world and it is due to his crusade as the Dark Knight that Gotham is still standing. However, he has also completely alienated everyone around him and is utterly alone. And once he got older, his failing body conditions prevented him from further activities as Batman, which has made him bitter (not to mention his company was gradually being taken over). Bruce sometimes thinks about what could have been, though training Terry does improve the situation and set up the events that have him subverting this.
    Terry: Why do you hate him so much?
    Barbara: No, I don't hate him. I hate what he's become. Such a great alone.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: It's revealed in the "Epilogue" that he's Terry's biological father due to Amanda Waller's Project Batman Beyond. Waller believed that the world would always need a Batman and knew that Bruce wouldn't be around forever. Collecting genetic samples that Bruce Wayne left around the city due to the various scrapes and bumps he takes in his line of work, Amanda picked out a target couple to inject these samples into, Warren and Mary McGinnis, overwriting Warren's reproductive DNA with Bruce Wayne's. Word of God is that Bruce, the world's greatest detective, deduced his relation to Terry and Waller's intervention on his own sometime after Terry assumed the Batman mantle, but kept it to himself, partly out of respect for Warren McGinnis, and partly because he wanted Terry to find his own way in life and become his own man.
  • The Mentor: He helps Terry by teaching him how to be Batman.
  • Mentor in Sour Armor: Already a Knight in Sour Armor, between what happened to the Batfamily, his heart attack, being forced to use a gun to defend himself, losing his company to Powers, he became even more of a hardass in his old age. Then again, he does loosen up a little over time.
  • Mission Control: He stays in the Batcave and mans the Batcomputer while Terry does all the physical stuff.
  • Moment of Weakness:
    • He is hit one in the prologue featured in "Rebirth". If he had to use guns on common crooks, then he couldn't be Batman anymore.
    • In "Out of the Past," Talia offers Bruce an opportunity to restore his youth using the Lazarus Pit. He resists the temptation, but changes his mind after he and an innocent bystander are nearly killed in a mugging he once could have handled easily. As it turns out, it was a setup designed to trigger just that reaction.
  • Movie Superheroes Wear Black: His final Batsuit was a mostly black number with grey compartments for the belt and a red bat-symbol.
  • Never-Forgotten Skill: Bruce has retired from being Batman and has spent years being a bitter old recluse. However, he has proven to be quite proficient with his cane, not just for attacking, but for casually blocking thrown knives with it. Then, there's "Out of the Past" where he goes into a Lazarus Pit and being made younger causes him to fight with all the skills of his younger self unforgotten. Occasionally, we see him throw a Batarang with all his old pinpoint accuracy. As revealed in Return of the Joker, he still remembers how to make the antidote to Joker venom.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: His act is even more effective now that old age leads people to assume that he might be a bit senile.
  • Offhand Backhand: Back-cane, rather than backhand, but he's old.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: In "Sneak Peek", Terry does an extended chase scene following Ian Peek down floor after blockaded floor as fast as he can. The instant he falls through the final floor (right after Terry arrived), an elderly Bruce appears... although he was left hundreds if not thousands of feet away in no rush to chase after them. He probably just used the elevator.
  • Older and Wiser: Batman plus decades more of experience. It makes him way, way scarier than before. As in, Justice League Unlimited features him unsettling his younger self and a 50-year-old Static. Bruce may an old man now, but he still knows how to handle villains.
  • Old Master: He regularly chides Terry for not listening to him, often when Terry falls into the same sorts of traps as he did in his early cape-wearing days.
  • Old Superhero: Deconstructed. Bruce has continued being Batman well into his elderly years, but no matter how skilled he is, he cannot escape his age. When he gets into a fight with some goons, he suffers a heart-attack before he can defeat the last goon, who easily takes advantage of it to begin hitting him into a corner. When it looks like he may die, Bruce desperately grabs the only thing nearby to help; a gun. This scares the goon into running, but makes Bruce react with disgust at himself for having to do something he morally is against, and when he returns to the Bat-cave, he gives up being Batman, realizing he no longer has the same health he used to. Later on, when he finds Terry being harassed by criminals, he steps in and easily defeats several of them, but the stress of it is enough to cause him heart pain, and its clear if Terry had not joined in to help him, he would have died.
  • Other Me Annoys Me: In "Out of the Past", Terry takes Bruce to see Batman: The Musical for his birthday. Bruce considers it an insult to his legacy and everything he stood for.
    Bruce: You hate me, don't you?
  • Parental Substitute: He functions as this to Terry in the sense of a mentor, and also the fact that his real father is dead. This lasts until the reveal that he is Terry's real father because of a crazy governmental genetics program.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: In "Sneak Peek," upon discovering that Ian Peek stole the Intangibility belt he used to get dirt on people in Gotham from Dr. Taka, one of Bruce's associates at Wayne-Powers, and burned down his lab to cover his tracks, Bruce is so disgusted that he refuses to help Peek find a cure for his Power Incontinence and is fully prepared to leave him to his fate; while Peek gets no sympathy from the audience, it's still a far cry from the man who took Thou Shalt Not Kill so seriously that he would Save the Villain whenever possible.
  • Playing Gertrude: Kevin Conroy voices Bruce in both Batman: TAS (along with the other DCAU shows and tie-in feature films) and Batman Beyond, and manages to make the aging between both series very believable. For reference, Bruce is in his 80s during the series proper. Conroy only just turned 50 during the Unlimited seasons of Justice League.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: In “Rebirth, Part 1”, he helps Terry fight off the Jokerz... but then needs help getting back to Wayne Manor for his medicine and falls asleep in his chair right after taking it.
  • Pretender Diss: When faced with the Jokerz in the first episode, he taunts them over how they simply don't measure up to the original Joker.
    J-Man: Who do you think you're talking to, old man? We're the Jokerz!
    Bruce: [smirks] Sure you are.
  • Properly Paranoid: His intuition is powered by decades of investigation and weirdness. It irks Terry that his hunches are always correct, like the time he left town and told Terry to do extra patrols because he was sure something bad would happen as soon as he left. Cue explosion.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: He gives a good one to Ra's Al Ghul in "Out of the Past":
    Bruce: Sure, Ra's, why not? Anything to hold off The Grim Reaper another few seconds. I take it back. You don't cheat death; you whimper in fear of it!
    Ra's: Silence! (slaps Bruce)
    Bruce: And you hit like a girl.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the Blue to Terry's Red because of his stoic nature.
  • Retired Badass: In the few times he goes back to action, he shows that he still has the skill to bring down villains. He just lacks the stamina.
  • Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: After hanging up the cowl, Bruce publicly acts much more like Batman (aloof and somewhat cold) instead of the playboy façade he used in his prime. If nothing else, the man has a serious case of schadenfreude.
  • Secret Identity Identity: It's shown at the end of season one's "Shriek" that he has it all figured out.
    Bruce: The voice kept calling me "Bruce." In my mind, that's not what I call myself.
  • Secret Secret-Keeper: Per Word of God, Bruce discovered he was Terry's biological father long before Terry himself realized the truth note , but he kept quiet about it out of respect for Warren McGinnis and because he wanted Terry to be his own man.
  • Seen It All: He has faced demons, wizards, gods, Darkseid, The Joker, and ghosts. However, he has doubts about a ghost haunting a girl's locker room as it seems just too juvenile.
  • Technological Pacifist: In “Rebirth, Part 1”, he's disgusted to find out that Derek Powers has been using his company's resources to develop weapons, both conventional and biological. Taking back control of the company is a minor plot threat in the series.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: He took one between Justice League and Batman Beyond, becoming even more cynical and anti-social. He's gotten even worse in the comic continuation of the series, having treated Terry, Dick, and Barbara as pawns.
    • Possibly due to disillusionment on realizing how ineffective it is towards society after many years, his moral code also seems to have weakened somewhat by this time. In the past, he would Save the Villain whenever possible, even Ax-Crazy psychopaths like the Joker. In "Sneak Peek," Ian Peek, having lost control of the intangibility belt which he used to get dirt on Gotham's celebrities (one such secret being Batman's Secret Identity, which he planned to reveal to the public on his TV show), calls him in for medical help in exchange for the only unedited video recording exposing Bruce and Terry's secret; after discovering that Peek stole the belt from Dr. Taka, one of Bruce's associates at Wayne-Powers, and set the fire that killed him, Bruce blatantly refused to help him, choosing to leave Peek to his fate (not that there was anything he could have done, but he didn't even try). Not to mention in the show's two-part opening episode "Rebirth," he was about to leave Terry for dead at the hands of Powers' security guards after activating the kill-switch for stealing the Batsuit if not for Ace's presence and what's left of his Thou Shalt Not Kill rule roaming around in his conscience to deactivate the kill-switch.
    • Similarly, when Paxton Powers is being ransomed, Bruce utterly refuses to care (unless, as usual, he was ten steps ahead of everyone and figured out what Paxton would do next to save himself).
  • Used to Be More Social: The only friends of Bruce's who he hasn't alienated are dead.
  • Weak, but Skilled: While older and more physically frail, Bruce still has decades of crime fighting experience under his belt and is still a decent fighter despite his age. Best shown in "Rebirth", where he tag-teams a group of Jokerz alongside Terry and pulls off his signature Offhand Backhand with his cane.
  • We Used to Be Friends: When the series begins, he's no longer on speaking terms with any of his old partners or teammates in the Justice League.
  • Welcome to My World: Invokes the trope after hiring Terry to be his assistant. Terry's mother thinks it's welcoming Terry to the world of big business and all that Bruce Wayne represents. Terry and Bruce (and the viewer) both know it holds more meaning than that.
  • When Elders Attack: He fits this trope occasionally. Given that this is Batman as a senior citizen, he's much more effective than average. He's still able to take out multiple young opponents at once with nothing but his cane.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are!: During Return of the Joker, Terry insists to Bruce that being Batman is important to him because it helps him make up for his past and makes him feel like a worthwhile person. At the end of the film, Bruce tells Terry that being Batman doesn't make Terry worthwhile - it's the other way around.
    Bruce: Never tell yourself anything different.

Video Example(s):


A Better World

"If you want people to respect the big laws, you have to enforce the small ones."

How well does it match the trope?

5 (15 votes)

Example of:

Main / PoliceState

Media sources:

Main / PoliceState