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Heartwarming / Batman: The Dark Knight Returns

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  • After one mentally disturbed man shoots up a porn theater and another is shot dead in a Batman costume, a shopkeeper is shown inspired by the Batman to save a woman from a mugger. Bats can be a force for good, even when he's not present.
  • Right before the blackout and subsequent riot, a priest was being annoyed by the music of a teenager dressed similarly to the Mutants. The teenager later saves him, and stays to help the wounded until morning.
    • The majority of the citizens of Gotham seem to get a mass one of these, once charismatic leaders (such as Gordon near his home, and then Batman for the entire city) rally them to focus on the greater good - putting out the fire and helping the wounded.
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  • Superman's internal monologue, as he's just gotten pretty messed up due to a nuclear bomb, about how even though he's an alien, he considers Mother Earth his true home, culminating in the line "Your adopted son shall honor you."
  • After Superman and Batman fight, and Batman appears to have died due to a heart attack, Superman holds a broken and battered Bruce Wayne, remorseful for 'killing' his former friend, and snarls at the approaching soldiers "Don't you touch him." And then him winking at Carrie in the finale, clearly aware of Batman's secret yet letting it slide.
  • At the very end, where Bruce Wayne thinks to himself: "This is a good life. Good enough." If you've read the whole comic, you'll get it.
  • Throughout TDKR, Jim Gordon repeatedly muses about how he deals with the stress of living in Gotham. His secret? "I think of Sarah. The rest is easy."
    • Always, she'd need one more thing from the shop. Thank goodness. Sarah Essen is spared the destruction of her and Jim Gordon's apartment burning up because she went out to the store. This is after Jim is nearly driven to a Despair Event Horizon after seeing someone similar collapse in the flames.
  • After Batman saves her life Carrie is moping by her bedroom window. When she sees the Bat signal she's jumping for joy, buys a Robin costume, and trains up to be his sidekick where she will return the favor. He's so flattered that he tells her his real name and takes her under his wing.
    • Also one for the city, aside from the Straw Liberals Gotham finds hope in...well, the Dark Knight's return. Even The Mutants become the Sons of Batman to clean up the streets.
  • Batman rescuing the baby that the Mutants had kidnapped in the movie adaptation. The baby, who had been crying throughout the scene, quiets instantly when Batman tucks him into his chest.
  • After Carrie nearly falls to her death and is saved by Batman, he doesn't scold her but instead holds her close like, well, the kid she actually is.
    Batman: Good soldier.
  • Bruce helping Selina after Joker "visited" her. After all these years, after all the times they've both kissed and fought, after everything that's happened between them, Bruce still cares about her.
    • Despite the years having taken their toll on her physical beauty, Bruce still loves her. They even share a kiss before he runs off to confront the Joker.
  • When Ellen Yindel first shows up to replace Gordon, it's natural to assume that she'll be a Straw Character serving to further emphasize how much everything has gone to crap. Instead, the conversation between her and Gordon is full of mutual respect, with him noting that she's got an impressive record and her showing both that she's aware that she got the position solely because of her anti-Batman stance and that she's not at all happy with that fact.

Alternative Title(s): The Dark Knight Returns


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