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In general

Bruce Wayne was born with a skin membrane similar to the sort a flying squirrel or other gliding mammal has
It was never removed with surgery. When his parents died, the combination of possessing it and seeing that bat come through the window inspired him to adopt his bat motif (because Flying-Squirrel-Man isn't as intimidating). If Bruce needed to escape very badly, while held hostage in a tall building, he could glide away out a window.

A meta example, Harley Quinn is a wish fulfillment/take that towards Joker fans
  • Albeit unintentionally. Allow me to explain: given the Joker's proclivity to screw with people, Harley was likely meant to be an example of how he treats others, regardless of how close they think they can be to him. The writers seem to be aware of this as demonstrated in the story through years of physical and psychological abuse, at the hands of the Joker, culminating in the eventual moving on phase (her working on her own, with Ivy, the occasional flirtations with Bats and later her being part of Suicide Squad), If anything, she and the Joker's entire relationship is a textbook example (if not the definitive example) of real-life abusive relationships. In short, this was probably the writers' way of trying to deride the idea of "Mista J" in a relationship. But damned if they didn't make one hell of a lovable character in Harleen......

Helena Kyle traveled through time after being separated from her mother, eventually become the Huntress.

Bruce Wayne murdered his parents for the inheritance money, and went insane with grief afterwards.
  • So... Batman is Tommy Elliot?

Robin doesn't exist.
The Flying Graysons either didn't have a son, or that son died too. When Bruce saw the dying Graysons at the circus, he flashed back to that painful memory of when his parents died. This led him to hallucinate a child who wanted revenge for his parents' murder, just like young Bruce. Basically, the Robin hallucination is what Wayne wishes he could have been when his parents died but couldn't due to lack of training and skills. That is "Robin" is a manifestation of a repressed element of his personality. The original Robin is Bruce's childhood happiness that was destroyed by the murder of his parents, as well as his belief that his parents could be quickly avenged. "Jason Todd" is a reflection of Bruce's early bratty personality and "Tim Drake" is a reflection of Bruce's innate intelligence. Together they paint a portrait of the Bruce Wayne who lost his parents all those years ago. He was a happy child, if occasionally moody/given to temper tantrums, and very bright. All of the other sidekicks are additionally either parts of Bruce's tortured personality or remnants of memories of his lost parents.
  • That would certainly explain why the Robins all look just like a young Bruce Wayne.
    • Or why Dick Grayson was allowed to go live with some random rich guy. Apparently, his family didn't have any friends in the circus.
    • Or why a character like Batman, who relies heavily on stealth, has a partner who wears bright red, yellow, and green? It doesn't matter, because no one else can see Robin.
      • Not so. The Joker can see Robin, as we find out in a one-shot issue where he's talking about Robin continuously coming back after he killed Jason. This could be a shared hallucination or two crazy people just playing off of each other's insanity since Joker actively kills a Robin at least once. So this leads to the implication that the Joker isn't just crazy enough to see the fourth wall and lean on it, but he's also crazy enough to see other crazy people's hallucinations.
      • Also, Ra's al Ghul brings Jason back to life. Wanting to have Bruce be the future head of the Demon would make him want Bruce to have a clear head, so playing off of his delusions would not be part of his agenda. Not to mention that many other people can see Robin and not just the Joker. This includes most characters in the series. Besides, who took over as Batman after the Final Crisis, and who founded the Teen Titans?

The Joker is so insane that he doesn't just see his own delusions, but the delusions of other mentally ill characters as well.

Batman created Bruce Wayne
All of Batman's back-story is just an illusion created by himself to try to gain trust, justification, and admiration from the public (comic book audience, aka YOU) and from supers, hence why they often seem distant to batman when not discussing things, etc. Batman only SEEMS to not be a super, for he is the ultimate human mentally and his real power lies in his ability to manipulate everything without anyone's knowledge.

The Joker is infused with the power of The First Evil.
After getting his ass kicked in The Buffyverse, he ran to the DCU and found himself a new insane, homicidal nutjob to give his power to.

The current Jason Todd isn't the real one
His body may be that of the original, but his spirit might not be the same. It's possible that it's a different soul who believes he's Jason.

That is the ability to see 1 second into the future. However, via his training and reflexes, he can exploit this to kick your ass. How? He sees you about to hit him a second early and therefore dodges right then, dodging your attack. He can only be caught off guard if you change a second before impact. Basically, he should be useless, but with training, he isn't.

Batman does not want to save Gotham. Gotham is a training ground for his arms sales/holding cell for his army of villains.
  • Wayne enterprises makes a lot of its money selling weaponry to top-secret organizations; weaponry that Batman has trained with and tested against some of the toughest villains ever. Alternatively, Batman is "training" his nemesis to be nearly unstoppable, except by him. That way he can release them whenever he wants and have a rampaging, chaotic army. This threat keeps the money pouring in for him.
    • The last thing he's in need of is more money.
      • Capital itself creates the need for accumulation. To hold such a big corporation together, you have to expand constantly.
  • He makes his villains stronger and stronger by sending them back to the hellhole that is Arkham. Every villain who has visited there has come back not rehabilitated, but even more dangerous than when they went in. Look at what happened with Destiny, Calendar man, and Dr. Crane, not to mention Harley Quinn. Arkham Asylum is not attempting any therapy on its patients; instead, they are a breeding ground for tougher and tougher villains. That's why Batman doesn't kill them, he needs them for testing and to hold as a threat against the world.
    • If he needed testing or a threat, he'd have more than enough of those things in the villains he fights on the Gotham streets or with the Justice League.

Batman will posses Joker and force him to help him come back to life
They will have to share bodies. Maybe there will be a Sitcom. And Batman/Harley Quinn will become canon via Batman tricking Harley while possessing the Joker.

All the Jokers are good friends
They have a pocket dimension where they have meetings.

Mark Hamill's Joker and Heath Ledger's Joker seem like they would get along.

This is how Joker knows Batman so well — he can talk about him with hundreds of himself.

Joker is Deadpool
He escaped the Marvel Universe to escape someone, got plastic surgery and the next day became Joker due to some kind of accident. He went nuts more nuts over this, and kept his lack of the Fourth Wall.

Joker is Batman, and a god, and has pocket dimension meetings, and is Deadpool
One day, Deadpool got godly powers. He created many dimensions based on his dreams and then went into one of them. He can hop around. In those dreams, he plays Bruce Wayne/Batman, the good part of his mind. He also, unknowingly, splits off his bad part, the Joker. Their fighting is part of his moral problems. The bad parts meet up to plot and talk.

Joker is the love child of Deadpool and Death
As above, except the godly powers come built in!
Joker secretly came to our universe and read the Joker Immunity page, somehow giving him immortality.
  • This redefines Mind Screw.
    • Thank You.
  • Well since Superboy Prime is supposedly from our universe it is possible.

Batman is a Furry.
Note how the Detective has many qualities that are ascribed to the Furry Fandom. For example:
  • He identifies himself closely with a particular animal.
  • He spends significant amounts of time in a costume resembling a humanoid version of said animal.
  • He no longer identifies himself with his original identity as Bruce Wayne, believing that he is more "himself" when in costume.
  • Of his adversaries, he is closest to Catwoman.
  • He is always more interested in her when she is in costume.
  • Of all his enemies, he is most likely to team up with Catwoman and The Penguin.
  • This theory is supported by Justice League Unlimited. When Batman is captured by Lex Luthor, he decides he needs to create dissent among the villains and gain allies. He ends up making out with Cheetah (an anthropomorphic feline) and striking a deal with Ultra-Humanite (an albino gorilla).
  • The one person who goes out of his way to make Batman miserable more often than anyone else is The Joker. And come on, let's face it, the Joker pretty much does everything he does just for shits and giggles. He's basically defined by his own sick brand of schadenfreude, deriving his pleasure from the misery of others. The Joker, in short, is a troll, and trolls often consider furries to be particularly favored targets.

Bruce Wayne has crippling Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, self-medicated by being a vigilante.
This is practically canon, unspoken if not outright stated in many, many incarnations of Batman.
  • Grant Morrison has said that the way he sees it, Batman would have gone insane if he hadn't dressed up like a bat and run off in a cape to fight crime, so it's probably something like that.

The Joker is Nyarlathotep's avatar.
Both seem to exist just to cause chaos for the sake of chaos, and both are good at manipulating people and have a talent for Gambit Roulette. Joker's makeup is like a mask, a reference to the thousand-masked god, perhaps?
  • He's more likely a worshiper than an avatar - one who has made a contract of immortality with him for as long as he keeps spreading chaos around him.
  • The Joker is Nyarlathotep? Congratulations: you have just come up with a better identity for him than any comic book writer yet has. Although a bit of backstory would be required explaining how this "mask's" powers became diminished. Does anyone care to take a shot?
    • Easy- Nyarlathotep-as-Joker doesn't have any overt powers because he doesn't want to use powers; Nyarlathotep uses the Joker the same way we use Grand Theft Auto to relax. There is no higher plot; Nyarlathotep just wants to kick back, relax, and cause some chaos and misery on a large scale. The only power he uses is immortality, which is why the Joker has his immunity.
      • Frankly, the Joker as a Humanoid Abomination explains quite a bit. His very blood is poisonous - a tiny bit once left Damian Wayne paralyzed. His ability to survive damage up to and including being shot in the head. His knack for hiding bombs absolutely anywhere, despite the difficulty blending in you'd expect with green hair and chalk-white skin. His inhumanly tall teeth. His strength, which exceeds what he should be capable of with his skinny frame. The inability of the world's greatest detective to find anything about his past. It would certainly explain what happened to Dr. Harleen Quinzel.
  • If he isn't an avatar or Nyarlathotep, then he's a friend. I say this because I can imagine the Joker being crazy and hilarious enough to be someone Nyarathotep would see as an equal, instead of a tool.
  • It's not clear whether Nyarlathotep could have children, but if so, the Joker could be offspring instead of an avatar.

Batman is Siddhartha.
After leading a sheltered life, Bruce Wayne came face to face with the harsh realities of the world all at once. Instead of seeing a sick old man, he saw his parents murdered, leading him to embrace violence as a means of escape rather than the life of an ascetic. He is currently partway down his road to enlightenment, at about the point when the original Buddha passed out in the stream. Soon, thanks to the grace of a woman (Leslie Thompkins?) who nurses him from near death, he will renounce his path of vengeance and go into isolation. He will emerge having discovered the Middle Way, as seen at the end of Kingdom Come. He eventually leads the other superheroes to Nirvana. This means he is also the Maitreya, the prophesied reincarnation of the Buddha.
  • He did study Buddhism during his years abroad, but he seems to have abandoned it.

As Superman is clearly a thinly-veiled Jesus, this would seem to answer the perpetual question of who would beat whom in a fistfight: Buddha just barely beats Jesus, with prep time.

  • Unless "Jesus" stops fucking around and lasers Buddha from orbit.
    • This is why Jesus is always losing: he's always trying to reason with people, while the other guy is mowing him down with a tank, shorting out the electrical grid to fry his brain with electricity, and shooting synthesized kryptonite arrowheads at him.
  • That's not clear at all. Superman has had many interpretations, Jesus is just the one that lazy grad students slap into their thesis because Jesus is conveniently symbolic and doesn't require much thought; Hero = Saves people = Jesus. You could just as easily say Batman is Jesus, he was even crucified once.
    • Clearly Jesus (on whom be peace) would win because Buddha was a pacifist. He wouldn't have fought back at all. It would be like matching someone against a guy who has voluntarily tied himself up for the fight.
      • One: both Jesus and the Buddha were huge pacifists; that was one of their core messages. Two: it is a little more well thought out than "Hero = Saves people = Jesus," it's more "Father sends his only son to Earth to save people, the son grows up with two completely ordinary hard-working people, the son becomes hero/savior when older." While I agree that is kinda stupid how often the two are compared to each other, it is understandable how they can be compared to each other.
      • It is, however, important to note that Jesus was cool with necessary violence, as evidenced by the tearing apart of the temple.
      • Jesus may have been a declared pacifist, but he obviously had a temper that would get the better of him on occasion.
      • Siddhartha was not a pacifist at the point in his arc that Batman is at, as he had not yet discovered enlightenment. He was just a grouchy rich guy sitting under a tree and refusing to eat.
    • It is definitely more than that, as noted above. Also, the respective temptations are similar (superhuman powers that could be turned to self-gain) as well as their response to those temptations (renewed commitment to self-sacrifice and an overdeveloped sense of responsibility).
    • Both Batman and Superman are maintained only partway along their respective myth arc: Batman is perpetually at the point just before Siddhartha's self-destructive tendencies nearly kill him, and Superman is perpetually just back from the desert after being tempted to turn his powers to self-gain. No matter what happens to these two characters they will always return to these points in their arcs. Any similarities between the heroes and their religious counterparts after these points are purely speculative.

Bruce was shot in that alley with his parents, and the entire DCU is his Dying Dream.
Just the fantasy of a boy who read a lot of sci-fi and fantasy as a kid. That's why it started simple and optimistic but keeps getting Darker and Edgier as his brain begins to lose function and his dreamworld falls apart...

Gotham isn't The DCU version of New York or Chicago. It's Innsmouth.
Either Innsmouth started out named Gotham in the DCU, or sometime around the mid-thirties when the city began to grow larger (enough to encompass Arkham and Dunwich as well), the new city was officially called Gotham and Innsmouth, Dunwich, Arkham, etc. became just boroughs. This explains the dark, twisted nature of the city, its architecture, people, and mad scientists... not to mention Arkham Asylum. Related theories:
  • In the DCU, Nyarlathotep is named "Parallax".
    • I, Electrical Lass, was going to say that Nyarlathotep is named "Joker" in the DCU, but the below WMG beat me to it
  • Martha Wayne is descended from the line of the Carters (such as John Carter of Mars, Randolph Carter, etc).
  • Killer Croc isn't mutated; he has a harsh version of the Innsmouth Look.
  • No, Gotham is Arkham, which later grew to encompass other smaller towns; the resulting city got named Gotham.
    • It probably started as Innsmouth, seeing how the heart of Gotham is near the ocean. It later spread out to near the inland Arkham, which is why Arkham Asylum is always depicted as being on the outskirts of Gotham, away from the sea.
  • Thomas Wayne got his MD at Miskatonic University.
  • So what state would that make Gotham in? Rhode Island?
    • Northeastern Massachusetts - Specifically Essex County.

The entire DCU is a delusion Bruce is having while locked up at an insane asylum for the rich.

... Think about it. All the villains are based on his fellow inmates (it explains their own issues). Superman is the kindly idealistic male nurse father figure, while Wonder Woman is the motherly psychiatrist. The Flash is the resident chemist, and Green Lanterns are the guards. It started so optimistically because he was sent there as a child, but he is getting older. The crisis was him hitting puberty...

  • Ironically, Ambush Bug is real.
    • Wasn't there a comic once that hinted at this?
      • Yes, the Legends of the Dark Knight story "Masks."
    • No less than three of his villains are psychiatrists (Scarecrow, Harley Quinn, and Hugo Strange). The tonal differences in different periods of Batman's history are due to different medication regimes.

Batman will change his name to Bee-Man.
He is obviously deeply traumatized by the Amazons' bee superweapon and will come to realize that the bees frighten people more than bats. He will change his name and thus become Bee-Man.

The Joker has No Fourth Wall.
He seems perfectly aware of his status as Batman's nemesis and, despite being roundly trounced, continues trying to kill him. He makes multiple asides and comments about the inconsistency of history (for example, he lampshades his own multiple backstories). His recklessness comes from being aware of his Joker Immunity, but he knows it'll wear out if he stops trying to kill Batman. Joker's occasional refusal to kill Batman, his preventing other villains from killing Batman, and his habit of putting Batman in a Death Trap are due to uncertainty over whether he'll disappear if the comic ends.
  • This is probably due to his insanity, although Arkham: A Serious House On Serious Earth has a psychologist speculating that Joker is super sane.
    • This may, thus, be the driving point behind many of his apparently senseless actions. His ability to change personalities allows him to "refresh" his character at will; his utter lack of empathy stems from the belief that his victims aren't "real" people anyway, and all of his lines about acting on a stage for a crowd become much more literal.
    • The Joker is super sane. Everything Superman does is super-whatever. Superman is sane. Therefore, he is super sane. Therefore, Superman is the Joker. He's ... bipolar?
      • One problem with that: Superman is optimistic. This invalidates the statement he's sane. So he can't be the Joker, as he is insane.
      • This theory makes the Injustice world very confusing... and metaphorical.
  • This one's been played with often in the comics. He has referenced a Spider-Man/Batman crossover that's out of continuity before, much to the puzzlement of the other characters. He once even addressed the artist of the story. He also displays a certain amount of Medium Awareness, handling his own word balloons or turning the page for the reader.
  • Maybe this is why the Joker doesn't want Batman dead. If he kills Batman, then the Joker and everyone else dies with him because there's no longer any reason for him to exist.
  • Joker knows he is a fictional work, which is why he does what he does. Think of how much fun it is in games like Grand Theft Auto to throw caution to the wind and let loose and cause chaos for chaos's sake. Joke's nature is his powers (Super-Sanity as mentioned above); he can get away with what he does because he knows no one is truly killed since they were never alive in the first place and are fictional characters that the audience hates. This is why he "fudged" the location of Rachel and Harvey in the movie: He knew that the fans felt that Rachel was The Scrappy and that they would much rather see Two-Face. Since this was a movie, she was in no real danger, just like his assistant for his magic trick. He would only seem dangerous to the "NPCs" of his universe - the police, Batman, Alfred, and Harvey Dent. But to him, he's aware he's Oscar gold. His superpower is to be the ultimate crowd-pleaser!
  • This brings up the question of what he'd do when faced with Deadpool or Animal Man.
  • Joker not only has no fourth wall but is also infused with godly powers. Oh, and I, err, he, goes on TV Tropes.
    • The Joker is unsure of whether or not he will disappear based on the fact that he's a batman villain so with batman dies then he has no nemesis but he is also aware of the dc universe's continuity and this is where it gets complicated he knows that if he kills batman he will continue to exist but he also knows that batman is a fan favorite and one of the dc universe's most beloved heroes, so with he kills him then the fans will despise him and want him dead so he may be killed "in-universe" but he isn't sure of that because the creators may want to use it to put the jokers evil and hatred level up to eleven and/or let make him Take a Level in Badass or maybe just to prove that heroes aren't always brought back, or to have a lesson in consequences, or infinite other possibility's this is what drove him mad

The Dark Knight Returns and Kingdom Come are in the same continuity.
Bruce Wayne's decision to retire from public (superheroic) life was just one step leading toward the events of Kingdom Come.
  • Sure, the Joker dies in both books, but he's faked his own death before.
  • Bruce wears the exoskeleton in KC because he was beaten up so badly by Superman in DKR.
  • That was also part of the reason Superman went into retirement, allowing the new, darker heroes to rise up.
    • Alternately, he had already retired. The "Superman" of Dark Knight is the Martian Manhunter, which would explain why he was hurt by a nuclear bomb (which we've seen the real Superman withstand before), why his appearance changed when the nuke hurt him, and why the Kingdom-era Manhunter is so shattered. The kryptonite arrow also contained an incendiary compound— that's Bats being prepared again.
      • Unfortunately, your theory has a flaw: The Martian Manhunter is weak to fire. If what you say is true, and that Superman was the Martian Manhunter, then he would have died in the explosion, as the heat would have been close enough.
  • When Alfred "destroys" Wayne Manor in DKR, all we see is the roof being blown off — the main building could have remained standing, intact enough to be vandalized later.

Whatever Happened's main text takes place first. It's reasonable to assume that if Lois lied about Superman dying, then she lied about the Gold Kryptonite. In exchange for giving him a new identity, the government requested a few odd jobs every now and then from Superman. Then, between Whatever Happened's main text and the frame story, the Dark Knight Returns. This requires that you disregard the Dark Knight Strikes Again, but would you miss it?

Helena Kyle's father will be retconned to be Bruce Wayne
Does this even need an explanation? Selina's her mom; and before the first Crisis, her dad was Bruce. Besides, her life was in danger just for being the daughter of Catwoman. If she was known as the daughter of Batman as well? Slam Bradley agreed to be the father to cover up Helena's true lineage for her own protection.
  • This is canon (again) in the short-lived Birds of Prey (2002) TV series. But somehow, this version of Helena shows her lineage with Catwoman by having cat powers.
    • Not that far-fetched since Wildcat's illegitimate son was found to be a werepanther.

Selina's daughter is Molly Hayes.
The baby's appearance (brownish hair and green eyes) is similar to Molly's. Heck, take a look for yourselves. She's even got a little hat on in that page. Bruce was to hide her away mysteriously, he might have somehow arranged for the child to be transported through space and time into the Marvel Universe. What's a better hiding place than a completely different universe? And it's possible Molly's powers are not of the Marvelverse mutant variety, but of the metahuman kind.

If you think about it, it makes sense. The Hayeses were having trouble conceiving and apparently couldn't due to their 'mutant powers'. It's possible they adopted or somehow came to possess her (i.e.: stealing her from the people Bruce had originally arranged to raise her), deciding to raise her and have her be spared by the Gibborim. They were even more shocked to find out she had powers of her own, which they might not have expected at all if she was not their biological child.

Billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne is the Batman!
Just think about it, fellow Gotham residents! Have you ever seen Batman and Bruce Wayne together in the same room? And yet all other high-ranking people in the community are either confirmed or rumored to have associated with The Bat, including Commissioner Gordon himself. The strange bruises and cuts we have seen on Mr. Wayne's face and hands sometimes. The evidence points to only one conclusion!
  • Dude, that's retarded. For one thing, Bruce Wayne's an idiot who's into extreme sports. Seriously, my sister, who works for the Gotham Globe, has a friend who dated him this one time and she described him as, and I quote: "Like Michelangelo's David - body chiseled perfection, head solid rock."
    • For the record, I've seen Batman and Bruce Wayne together. Are you going to tell me that was Superman in disguise? Bruce Wayne is clearly not Batman. Wayne, (While an idiot) is perfectly sane. And how would you describe the mental state of somebody who goes around as a flying rodent scaring people?
      • Batman is a ninja. Do you really think a scrawny billionaire like Bruce Wayne just climbed up a mountain and found the dojo of an ancient secret society of ninjas?
      • Batman a ninja? What kind of weaponized hallucinogenic flowers are you smoking?
  • Batman is a robot.
    • No human could do those sorts of things, and take and receive that level of punishment, Batman can't be human. Batman is a highly advanced experimental combat android able to withstand bullets, jump across buildings, and punch through walls.
    • Once again, the animated series apparently supports this.
  • Next, you'll be saying that Clark Kent is Superman! What audacity!
  • You must all be being deliberately stupid - HARVEY DENT ADMITTED HE WAS BATMAN! What more do you want?!
    • Harvey Dent is dead. Batman is not. Proof enough for me.
      • But have you actually seen the body?
      • There was supposedly a body, but it's impossible to tell if was him - half his face was burned off. Besides, I was at a party once where the Joker burst in and started threatening Dent's girlfriend, Rachel Dawes. Batman showed up and acted very concerned about her - because he's really Dent!
  • I heard they're doing some kind of biopic about Batman, and guess who's playing him? CHRISTIAN BALE! Isn't that, like, the perfect casting choice?
    • I read the cast listing, and he plays both Batman and Bruce Wayne. Maybe the producers know something we don't?
  • You people are completely on the wrong track. The question is have you ever seen Clark Kent and Batman together? Think about it.
    • I have. But Clark turned out to be JFK in disguise.
    • Hey! I haven't seen Clark Kent in the same room as Ambush Bug either...
      • Ambush Bug is Batman!
      • Ambush Bug is the Moon Princess!
    • Everyone, I have proof! So would Robin be his cousin Kara in a wig?
  • The Batmobile is a scrapped Wayne Enterprises military project: the Tumbler. The Tumbler was an experimental bridging vehicle abandoned by the military and only a handful of prototypes exist, and Batman somehow managed to get a hold of one. Chasing a tank down the freeway you would think the GPD would think to look through a few back issues of Jane's, given the current state of things Wayne is probably bribing the police.
    • WHAT!?! The Batmobile is a former Ford concept car called the Futura, from 1957. It was spotted at George Barris' shop in L.A. shortly before the Batmobile first appeared.
    • Which leads to a question: why is Bruce Wayne covering for Dent's extracurricular activities and giving him so much free crime-busting gear?
    • Oh, come on. How many people work for Wayne Enterprises? Okay, now how many of those hundreds (if not thousands) of people are not drunken idiots?
      • But how many of them have access to scraped military projects?
      • Lucius Fox is Batman! He could have worked for Ford when the Futura was designed, he can easily reroute the prototypes and materials from Wayne Enterprises, and it can't be Harvey Dent, because Batman's been around for half a century, and Dent can't be over 40. Unless Dent is Lucius' apprentice...
  • Don't be ridiculous. Bruce Wayne's not Batman - Bruce Wayne's gay. All those supermodels are just a long line of beards. But he seems to spend a lot of time with his dark-haired blue-eyed wards, not to mention Clark Kent, and he was even seen with Lex Luthor, and everybody knows the rumors about him.
    • And Batman isn't? Anyone going around dressing like that is a bit off. I don't want to kill you. What would I do without you? You Complete Me. Anyone who has the transcript of Batman's interrogation of the Joker is thinking Foe Romance Subtext of the whole Joker-Batman thing.
      • You're joking. Batman can't be gay, he's obviously some sort of ultra-right-wing lunatic! Why else would he go around beating criminals to a pulp?
    • Clark Kent isn't gay. He's married to Lois Lane. Not that she's faithful. Hey, who could blame a gal for fooling around with a super-powered muscle-bound man in tights when her husband is so mild-mannered? And the worst of it? She uses this to get all the scoop on Superman and beat out her honest husband for a by-line! The nerve of some people.
  • Are you kidding me? This was disproven by the animated series.
  • I can't BELIEVE you guys are going so far with this tourist trap thing. Helloooo? Batman's not real! Have you ever seen Batman? Hell no! All we have is the word of the news, the police, and the Council that there's ACTUALLY some kind of, I don't know, Uber-Hero running around, taking out the mafia with his amazing skills and stopping purse-snatchings on the subway, de-shitholing Gotham one alley at a time. Yeah, right! He's about as real as the Loch Ness Monster - do you think anybody would visit Lake Ness if there wasn't a "monster?" Batman has more to do with the fact that only 29% of Gotham college graduates go on to get jobs here than some super-resourceful, super-athletic guy wanting to clean up crime all of a sudden.
  • You're all wrong! Batman really is a girl! I mean, no self-respecting baddie would admit that he has been beaten by the girl, would he? So, this means that Bruce Wayne is not Batman, and neither is Clark Kent. Lois Lane, on the other hand...
    • Yeah! You're right! I saw her back in No Man's Land. Spraying bat tags and everything.
  • Batman is Peter Parker, who is Spider-Man, who is that dreamy Toby MacGuire. Unnaturally strong? Check. Can't fly? Also check. Doesn't Like Guns? Spot-on. If you cut him, does he bleed? Yep. Lastly, does he use grappling wire to get around the city? Totally, unquestionably the same guy.
    • If he uses grappling wire he must be the Amazing Spider-Man, unlike Toby who is a radioactive spider with Peter Parker DNA. A human with spider DNA doesn't create a web with his own body but a spider with human DNA would have no problem doing this.
  • I always thought Batman was L. The biggest detective in the world has many aliases and creepy looks... So, that would make Joker... Kira?
    • The Joker can't be Kira. That Japanese actress Misa something-or-other is Kira; the news even said so and the Joker is definitely not a Japanese actress.
      • What better disguise, then?
    • The biggest detective in the world is Giant Boy Detective.
  • I know who Batman really is. Has access to very expensive, custom-made equipment, so he's clearly got wealth. Needs some kind of support crew— but kept to a minimum, possibly even just one, to avoid endangering his Secret Identity. But that one would have to be very competent as well as fully dedicated— a Battle Butler, if you will. And Batman would certainly need a cover identity that could explain away any injuries or criminal entanglements— but he'd also need to be extremely well-trained and well-educated to do what Batman does, perhaps a great deal of travel or combat experience... Ah-HAH! It can only be one man! Batman is... Roger Smith!
    • Roger Smith?
    • We of the Union would like to add that Roger Smith is the Batman, and as such must be arrested and detained with extreme prejudice for daring to operate outside your... the law. We will hold his possessions until such time as he can retrieve them, particularly the giant mecha and the human-shaped robot girl he's keeping in his house. Our pinstripe-wearing, demonic-jester associate who is ''NOT'' the Joker will pick them up.
  • You're all morons! Harvey Bullock is Batman! Think about it: Bullock always says he hates Batman, he's much fatter than Batman, he sounds nothing like Batman, he has a reputation for taking bribes and being a crooked cop, and he uses guns. It's the perfect disguise! Who would suspect him?
    • No, Harvey Bullock is just one of Batman's disguises. The fatness is just padding, and the corruption is just a smokescreen so he can earn criminals' trust. Batman has to have an undercover identity in order to scope out criminals, and it's not like he can stick on a fake mustache and chew on a match. That would be the worst disguise ever!
  • Oh, come on everyone. It's obvious that Batman is Don Draper. Think about it: He's so mysterious, I don't think I've ever heard him talk about his past. Why does he disappear so often? He just leaves the office sometimes with no explanation. He disappeared for a whole two weeks just recently. And why does he live in a regular house? As head creative director, he should make more than that. I'll tell you why all those gadgets are expensive. Even Harry Crane, head of the Television Department, guessed this once.
  • Don't you mean Dan Dreiberg? Vigilantes got outlawed in one universe, so he just got Dr. M. to give him a lift to an alternate one where he could continue to fight crime. But Owlman was already a villain to the denizens of The DCU, so he needed a new theme to avoid confusion...
  • Oh, whatever. You're all sheeple. It's obvious Christian Bale is Batman - he's got the voice, he clearly knows his stuff and what better cover would there be for him than actually playing Batman in the movies? None. Exactly.
  • Okay, I've lost you all, here. I just want to say that it's obvious that Bruce Wayne's butler, Alfred - the one you occasionally see in pictures with Wayne - is totally Batman. I mean, you never see him, and you'd have to be a superhero to keep all of the Wayne mansion tidy! That logically means Bruce Wayne was the first Robin.
  • People, people, do the math! What do we know about Batman?
    • He's very, very rich—to get all those wonderful toys
    • He's very narcissistic—a man with unlimited resources and ability whose only hindrance is that he believes justice must be meted out by a man dressed as a bat
    • He's very sullen—all that black! Probably one of those emo teens when he was younger
    • He's very, veeeeeery ugly—hence the mask
    • And he can't get rid of a bomb! Look at the Adam West series; Batman is the only superhero who can go for nuns or school children and choose neither!
      • Put it together! Who is very very rich, who loves himself terribly, who is very mean and ugly, and who keeps sinking money into Miss USA despite it losing money every year? He is... DONALD TRUMP!
  • You're all wrong...Adam West is Batman! And Christian Bale is actually...the first Robin.
    • What are you talking about? Christian Bale couldn't be Robin (of which I suspect there have been at least two or three, possibly as many as five), he's Nightwing. Some paparazzo for the Gotham Hype Machine got pictures of him recently wearing a battle suit without a mask (sometime after the whole deal with the evac ferries, with all the political stuff that was going down), and it's way too functional to be Batman. Batman can't even turn his head in that cowl! He doesn't even have a bright yellow "Batman" logo on, and Nightwing's chevron is almost invisible in the dark. I could easily see TV's Adam West as Batman, though. Playing him on TV is the perfect cover, especially since he also plays Catman, and everyone knows Catman is as much of an urban legend as Spider-Man.
  • This troper thinks that you're all crazy! I'm Batman! * Is beaten up*
  • And Batman's not a robot... although he might be a small alien wearing an android body. Wait, this means... ... [pause for drama]... Batman is a Dalek!
  • My theory was always that Kermit the Frog was Batman, and that Bruce Wayne was Cthulhu.
  • Please. How can none of you see the signs? Bruce Wayne may have the money, but is too much of a drunken idiot to do anything like being a vigilante. The person who's actually Batman would need to be vastly intelligent to fill the role of the World's Greatest Detective, fabulously wealthy to put up with the cost of equipment, and really buff and muscular so he can fulfill the physical side of it, we know he has a good relationship with Superman, and I've heard rumors he's got no powers and is only a mortal. .... None of you guys get it? Batman is actually LEX LUTHOR!
  • You are all fools. Batman is obviously Tony Stark. Think about it:
    • He has access to lots of high-tech weapons and gadgets.
    • Have you ever seen both of them at the same time?
    • Who would suspect that batman is also Iron Man?
  • You're all barking up the wrong tree. Batman has all these super martial artist skills, is surrounded by hot-babes that have their own super martial arts skills, is a total Jerkass, keeps meeting up with super martial arts costumed foes with daft gimmicks, Batman is Ranma Saotome. The bat suit is obviously some sort of attempt to keep the water off, obviously, it doesn't work all the time because y'know, Bat-Girl.
  • You idiots. Batman is clearly Dom Cobb. How else can he pull off all those Batman Gambits if not for the fact that he can break into your head and steal and plant the ideas he wants?
    • I was under the impression that his friend Arthur was Batman. I mean, he's an anti-gravity ninja, dresses in suits, and is really, really stoic. Although I guess that could make Arthur Robin. And if that's the case, I don't EVEN wanna know about that Eames dude.
  • Come on. We all know Batman is REALLY Christopher Nolan. Wanna know why the gadgets in his Batman movies are so well-described? It's all really his stuff. Plus, dude's an expert in messing with people's heads without even NEEDING to break into them. He's got the skills.
  • You've all got it wrong. Batman is obviously a disguise for that Matches Malone crook. Think about it- every crime he's in on gets busted! Every single one!
  • Professor Hugo Strange is clearly Batman. Look at him! He has the physique, and the intellect, not to mention the fact that he's a criminal psychiatrist! Such a high-paying job no doubt allows him to finance his operations, and it explains Batman's detailed knowledge of the criminal mind!'
  • Four words people. Abed. Is. Batman. Now.
    • "There's a storm brewing on the horizon, but you and I will save the night. Chex Mix, pretzels, baby carrots: predictable but appetizing!"
  • Everyone knows that Batman is really David Xanatos. The man has enough bank to airlift a castle over the Atlantic because of some hocus pocus gargoyles; clearly, he has the money for it and how did he make that money? With his cunning and intelligence! He makes all the gadgets himself to keep others out of the loop and funds them with his criminal empire. He's not really fighting crime; he's picking off rivals!
  • Ladies and gentlemen, I am Alfred, Mr. Wayne's butler. It seems that you are suspecting Mr. Wayne's secret life, may I remind you that as a playboy, he often takes part in dangerous activities such as Polo and Snow skating. As his butler, I can ensure you that Mr. Wayne is no Batman, he is completely sane, in contrast to a Maniac who dressed up like a bat and assaulted Criminals. believe me, you have nothing to prove that there is any connection between Batman and Bruce Wayne. Oh my fucking bloody hell, little miss Helena, don't touch those suits, and young master Damian, stop littering your grandparents' rooms
  • I know who Batman really is! He's obviously... Man-Bat! Batman, Man-Bat. Batman, Man-Bat. Batman, Man-Bat. THEIR NAMES ARE SO SIMILAR!
  • I think Batman is Candle JaNo, but I wish I was him.
  • He's a chicken, I tell ya! A giant chicken!
  • I am Scarecrow. The master of fear. It is a true pleasure to tell you that I have confirmed this theory. The Bruce Wayne. Just as I thought it would be. This. Is Gotham's savior. Not a hero in the slightest. But a man. Just a man. Devoid of hope, betrayed by his friends, crippled by fear.

The Joker is Beetlejuice.
Specifically, Burton-movie-Joker. More specifically, he decides to become Betelgeuse once he meets the Celestial Bureaucracy after his hilarious cathedral-related demise. He used his new shapeshifting powers to make himself look just like Batman, just for kicks.
  • Definitely lines up with his Ambiguously Human status.
  • Or, Beetlejuice could possibly be what the Joker turns into upon death. He [Beetlejuice] was dead/a spirit/etc. after all.
    • No, the film White Noise is the prequel to Beetlejuice.
  • Nah, I've seen them together before.
  • Also, the Joker is Ryuk.
  • Mayuri Kurotsuchi is the Joker in the afterlife.

Batman is a Super-Soldier
There's some evidence that Batman is using requisitioned military equipment. But what if it wasn't requisitioned? What if it was issued to him by the Government? He's clearly an experimental weapon in the War on Terror, surgically or chemically enhanced to superhuman levels (hence the superhuman feats). Five years from now, assuming the experiment is successful, every city will have its own Bat.
  • Adding to this, the Robins (except Damien, his son) are all variations in the super soldier design (and therefore Bruce's brothers).

Batgirls are Super Spies
The above also explains the three bat girls. They are closer to spy models (even if they can fight they shouldn't unless they have to)
  • Barbara - information analyst, and dispatcher -long-range spy
  • Cassandra - Kinetic understanding, the on-the-ground personal spy.
  • Steph - Stealth. She's snuck up on Tim several times and nearly managed it on Batman once. Both times we knew Steph was Steph she was introduced as a midpoint spy, listening on a spy mike.
    • Perhaps this (and the above) theory could apply to Batwoman and Huntress as well.
    • ...Totally Spies!?

The Joker is not human.
The Joker is more than one person, both sequentially and simultaneously. The DC Universe is bordering on insane - normal people just can't cope with alien invasions, gods and demons, and superhuman battles on a daily basis - and it needs a safety valve. The Joker exists to bleed off insanity and is more of a psychic entity than anything else. Every time he "dies," a new manifestation emerges, either full-blown out of nowhere or, perhaps, possessing someone and transforming their body. This explains how he never stays dead for long and his wild variations of insanity stated origin, methodology, purpose, appearance, motivation, and attitude. This also explains how sometimes, very different versions of him can appear simultaneously in different storylines in a short period of time. Either that, or it's just Gotham City that's insane, and the Joker is how that manifests.

Riddler, The Question? The same person
Let's see:
  • Both redheads (in most continuities).
  • Both wear similar clothes, with bowler hats and domino masks instead of fedoras and synthetic skin. (Remember, the Question can change the color of his clothes.)
  • Both use question mark-based calling cards.
  • Both are obsessed with superiority, each one in a different way.

So, Edward Nigma, attempting to develop "the ultimate question/riddle", creates this other personality that's a superhero. He's so committed to the act that even his thoughts are always "in character." He probably has some devious plan; but what could it be?

  • Oh, and if those two characters have already met in person, one was a robot or something.
    • The Riddler was nearing sanity by the time Vic entered the scene. Hm...
  • The above criteria sound rather similar to Rorshach.
    • That can't be helped — the Question is similar to Rorschach...

  • Wait, isn't the Question dead now? But Edward is still alive, which means Rene is secretly the Riddler. Think about it, who would suspect the lesbian police officer of being the Riddler?

The Riddler and Rorschach are the same person
Same scheme as above, more messed-up result.

The Riddler is an alternate personality of Edward Nygma's.
Riddler commits the crimes; Nygma leaves the clues.

The Joker has a Healing Factor
This is the simplest explanation for why he can "take a licking and keep on ticking," even after what should have been Certain Death. It's not even Power Creep, Power Seep: in his first appearance, the powers that be realized that this character was too good to kill off and, at the last minute, they inserted a final panel where a doctor examining the fatally-stabbed Joker shouts, "This man is going to live!!"
  • So, he takes a licking and keeps on ticking? Does that make him the Energizer Bunny?
  • No, he's a Timex watch. (Chirping Crickets)I'm old.
Batman is Patrick Bateman.
Come on! Just drop the "E" and that's "Batman!" Could he make it any more obvious? Bateman's wealth would allow him to develop all kinds of devices. And why else would Bateman work out so much? Or wander the streets late at night? How else can we explain the mysterious bloodstains on his clothing and person, except that he is fighting criminals? The Batsuit is as exquisitely tailored as any of Bateman's Armani. And the Batmobile - sheer style. Bateman is regularly mistaken for other Wall Street men - useful if one has an identity to conceal.

Alfred has magic powers.
How else could a single senior citizen take care of an 80-room mansion?
  • Cleaning service. Bruce never notices the charges on the household account because Alfred's the guy who originally taught Bruce how to launder money.
  • He secretly calls in The Flash when Bats isn't looking.
  • Truth in Television: The butler in a large estate is the chief servant; his job is to ensure the rest of the household staff is doing their jobs. Alfred may be Bruce's personal valet, but with regard to the estate, he's got the personnel he needs to get the job done. They don't necessarily need to be there full-time or even have access to Wayne Manor beyond the rooms they're assigned to take care of, which allows Bruce's secret identity to remain intact. Alfred is in charge of hiring/firing them and no doubt does very thorough background checks on any new maids/cooks/etc.
    • Like Catwoman at the beginning of Dark Knight Rises.

Batman is a former supervillain in Purgatory
Because we need to have at least one Purgatory theory. And because he's that morally ambiguous.
  • Alternately, he was a former hero who either went Too Far and became a Knight Templar or who have up attempting to do good altogether, believing that if he gave up it wouldn't make a difference. Now he's in Purgatory, and whether or not he'll make it out depends on whether or not he can keep fighting despite Gotham City showing no real improvement despite his efforts.
  • If Bruce Wayne had not seen his parents shot, he would have grown up to be Lex Luthor.
    • And Superman would be dead.
    • Alternately, if Bruce Wayne's parents had avoided being shot altogether, he would have turned out like Tony Stark. The Superman/Batman reality-hopping arc demonstrated this: In the world where Thomas and Martha lived, Bruce is a party-all-night playboy who scores the hotties while lounging poolside with Tommy Elliot, his BFF.
      • Both of these are true. If Bruce Wayne's parents were not killed, he would have become a Stark-like genius playboy philanthropist billionaire, become best friends with Lex Luthor, destroyed a dangerously powerful alien before it could decide to turn against humanity, and teamed up with his best mate Lex Luthor in a pair of power-armored suits that let them wipe out crime in Gotham and lead Gotham and Metropolis to a Golden Age of peace and prosperity for all (but especially themselves). Of course, the two cities would also be rife with vice, but that's not a bad thing...
  • Expanding on the supervillain in purgatory idea - his nemesis was a superhero version of Commissioner Gordon - hence why he has to suffer and feel guilty every time "Gordon's family" suffers in Purgatory. His sidekicks are the images of heroes he fought against - again, that's why he has to go through a tremendous amount of guilt every time something happens to one of them. His Rogues Gallery in Purgatory is composed of twisted, psychotic versions of his victims in real life who are now punishing him - The Joker was the Plucky Comic Relief that came out on the wrong side of a Sadistic Choice inflicted by whatever Batman's supervillain persona was, Two-Face was the crusading district attorney that he drove insane, the villainesses are love interests of the hero he fought, Scarecrow and Riddler were nerds he tormented in high school ... you get the idea. That's why "Batman" is partially responsible for "creating" some of them.
  • Alfred is Gene Hunt. Who is also a time lord.

Batman's legendary preparedness is because he's aware of all his alternate incarnations.
In every universe, there is a Batman/Bruce Wayne. Because he's aware of all of his realities, he's able to adapt to any situation because chances are he's already experienced it (in another world) or he's gone through something that's close enough.

Since this includes the worlds where he's failed or become evil, his driving guilt - which has often been labeled as overblown, all things considered - extends to all of his lives, not just the one we're familiar with.

This could be conscious or subconscious, by the way; if it's subconscious, then that explains why he's always surprised to meet his alternate selves.

  • This is true, according to Whatever Happened to The Caped Crusader?? by Neil Gaiman. Every time Batman dies, he is reincarnated as Bruce Wayne to become Batman. The funeral stories were all stories of his past lives as he had lived them.
  • Alternately, his real power is to adjust all nonliving matter to another timeline that splits from his own at least several hours in the past. He can't bring back the dead because his power can't handle the more drastic changes of a death being undone or changing anyone's memories, and he only has the concentration to either land in a random timeline or find a timeline exactly like his except for the contents of his utility belt.
  • Part of his angst is almost certainly from seeing worlds where Batman is just a guy who put on a bat suit and proceeded to punch evil in the face. Deep down he wants to be that cheerful guy who's friends with the other superheroes instead of their silent partner, but he knows it wouldn't work in this universe, and that makes him sad.

Schrodinger's cat lives in Batman's tool belt and hands him stuff.
That's why he always has the right tool for the job, no matter how random. (And yes, this does mean that his tool belt is bigger on the inside. That also explains how he went back in time to meet Neils Bohr.)

The Joker has escaped.
One link above demonstrates that the Joker killed Heath Ledger. It doesn't mention that he did it on purpose, but he did. Why? He wanted to escape the fictional universe into the real world. He used Ledger's death as a springboard out. Where is he now? Secretly running Anonymous.
  • Wouldn't that mean that Batman's running the Church of Scientology?
  • The Joker got away? Was it because the Batmobile lost a wheel?
  • Does this mean 4chan is his personal army?
    • Ever notice that in the last few years, trolling has gone from pissing people off with large anuses and old men having sex to trying to kill people? Yeah, that's his doing.
  • Or he's trying to actually exist in our reality. He has No Fourth Wall and is trying to use his popularity to become more than just a character. Heath Ledger's dedication in portraying him was the Joker trying to become a Split Personality of the man-but it backfired and the stress killed him. It's only a matter of time before he brings himself and the rest of the Batman mythos to our world.And you thought fictional characters couldn't hurt you.

The Joker is black.
It's not like we know his backstory. Everything is speculation. Maybe it was going from black to albino that really drove him insane.
  • You mean that the Joker is Michael Jackson?
    "Why so serious, little boy? I'm gonna put a smile on your face!"
    • Michael Jokeson? And you thought the Joker was scary before!

If/when fan outrage about Bruce Wayne being dead occurs, he will be brought back...
...via a Black Lantern Ring. Because Grant Morrison and Geoff Johns influence each other, this could very well happen.
  • Jossed by Final Crisis #7.
    • If Black Lantern rings act by animating the body and not the soul, it could still work...
      • If so, then it's entirely possible that we could get Zombie Batman vs. Caveman Batman.
      • Jossed by Blackest Night #1: Black Hand only took his skull.
      • Also, and most definitively, Jossed in Blackest Night where Batman is just about the only supposedly dead hero not to be brought back as a Black Lantern with just something that looks like him being created by Nekron to induce an emotional response from the other heroes.

Simon Hurt was a reincarnated New God intentionally sent by Darkseid to break Batman.
The whole purpose of the Black Glove (or if you prefer, the Club of Villains) was to break Batman so that he could be taken in by Darkseid to become the new soldier template. Why was he chosen? Because of his actions when Supergirl was reintroduced in Superman/Batman: he may have frightened Darkseid with a threat. (Darkseid admitted that he believed that Batman could blow up Apokalips.) Impressed, Darkseid wanted Batman's qualities for his minions.
  • Confirmed in a way - he gained his immortality by absorbing... something... from the Apokoliptian Hyper-Adapter and acted as Darkseid's instrument of revenge.

Batman is a descendant of Sherlock Holmes.
Let's face it, it's just too improbable that the two greatest detectives of their own time who also happen to be highly badass aren't connected.
  • In Silver Age comics Canon, Holmes trained Batman. What, you think the original world's greatest detective couldn't find a way to extend his lifespan?
    • It's the bee juice.
    • Come to think of it, one of the Sherlock Holmes stories has Sherlock investigating a man who's dabbling in the quest for an elixir of perpetual youth. Holmes could indeed have found a way to extend his lifespan.
    • Which means Mr. Holmes probably met Ra's Al Ghul. Which explains the entirety of The Dark Knight Trilogy.
  • Assuming genius billionaires Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark are defending each other's cities to further throw off the scent, the fact that Batman's true identity (Tony Stark) looks so much like Sherlock Holmes in addition to so many similarities in their personal lives is further evidence.

Batman is a metahuman.
Undiscovered by all, including himself, Batman has luck powers that were activated by the stress of his parents' deaths. He gets hurt or traumatized, but only in ways that eventually make him stronger. The metagene is not discovered because doing so would shatter his self-image as a Badass Normal and make him a less effective fighter, resulting in his getting killed; thus, it always produces a false negative when tested.
  • It's possible the rogues have figured this out. It's why they don't just shoot him—they're aware that Batman is immune to more traditional methods, and are trying to exceed the limits of his abilities with death traps no human being could survive.

Dick Grayson will develop the Beyond Suit.
After taking up the mantle of Batman, Dick has been upset with how the suit hinders his fighting style and capabilities. While he wants to live up to the visage of Batman, he'll eventually come to realize he needs to be his own Batman, not a copy of Bruce. This will lead him to develop the Batsuit seen in Batman Beyond (which, at least in design and idea of being a "future" Batman, is canon in the DCU), or at least a recognizable prototype. When one takes a good look at the suit, it really does look like the Nightwing suit, but with slight changes to make it distinctively a Batsuit.
  • Also, the newest Batmobile is a FLYING Batmobile by default! I can hear the techno-metal now.
  • Also note, in the episode of Batman Beyond where Terry has to take down his suit when it gets possessed, it is in fact Nightwing's mask he takes to disguise himself.

Batman is deadly allergic to bees.
That's why he was so freaked out by the Amazon superweapon. One bee-sting swells him up like a pufferfish. It's not like there is anything that says otherwise. And every superhero needs a Kryptonite Factor.
  • "Suit! Get me an epi, stat! ....Suit? SUUUUIT!"
  • "Not the..." ah, never mind.

Poison Ivy has a thing for plant vore.
Aside from her frequently using giant man-eating plants of some sort, there's also a story where Poison Ivy happened to have been feeding a number of people to... well, a giant man-eating plant. When confronted about it by Batman, she even referred to it as a "guilty pleasure." So...

There are multiple Arkham Asylums around Gotham City.
Ignoring all of the Depending on the Artist designs there are, it seems that the Asylum doesn't have a set location. It might just be outside of the city or a relatively long drive. The Arkham Family actually bought a bunch of locations to be used for the insane, but due to the numerous jailbreaks that occur, at least one is open while the others are being fixed.

Batman is a member of the Wold Newton family.

Batman is a Time Lord.
Think about it. How else can he be so Crazy-Prepared? It's because he comes back from the future, knowing exactly what is going to happen and is able to determine exactly what he needs to counter it. The Batcave is his TARDIS, and Alfred and the Bat Family are his companions.

The Joker is 100% sane.
Think about it, no doctor has ever been able to diagnose his actual mental illness, and he seems to be almost as Crazy-Prepared as Batman himself. He's just pretending to be mentally insane to disguise his true nature and make himself harder to stop. Why is he doing this? Because it's fun!

Dr. Chase Meridian from Batman Forever is an Elseworld Harley Quinn
Let's see. A blond-haired romantically obsessive psychiatrist? Where have we seen that before? Dr. Chase Meridian is a Harley who never met the Joker and hence became obsessed with his nemesis. Remember, in that universe, the Joker died a long time ago. It's possible she changed her name from Harleen Quinzel ironically to avoid association with the late Mr. Napier.

Batman is a cat person.
Which is why Schrodinger's cat lives in his tool belt.

The Joker is a Time Lord.
  • Harley is his latest companion; his Regenerations explain his varying appearance and inconsistent personality traits.
  • There are at least two incidents that may have been regenerations. In his second-ever appearance, The Joker died by stabbing himself in the chest. Moments later it's declared he somehow survived, even after Batman himself, and everyone else involved had already declared him deceased. The only problem is, there really wasn't that much of a personality change between the First and second Joker, though the second Joker lacked some of the nigh-invincible quality of the original. In a later appearance, he gets himself executed, only to return campier and considerably less murderous.
    • There was no change in personality during that first appearance because there was no regeneration- one wasn't needed. The Joker only stabbed himself in one of his hearts, and Time Lords have two.
  • Grant Morrison's prose description of the Joker's personality reforming after his shooting, in Batman #663, was eerily reminiscent of the ways that various Doctor Who novelizations described regeneration.

Joker is a servant of Warhammer 40,000 god Tzeentch.
He practically spells it out in The Dark Knight.
Joker: I just do things. I just did what I do best. I took your little plan and I turned it on itself... Introduce a little anarchy. Upset the established order, then everything becomes... chaos.

Joker is in fact V
He's crazy. And he's an anarchist, as said above about his statement in The Dark Knight. The reason he lost is that he is fighting against the wrong government (democracy instead of dictatorship), allowing morality to take effect.
  • I can imagine his speech already.
Joker: Joker here! Allow me to take a jab at this jackpot of jerks without any jurisdiction, for the just deserts of justice always seem to jut out in the most juvenile ways! Not to jinx myself, but I must say, this Jurassic jury lacks any type of joy and forms a joke with fewer joints than a jigsaw puzzle! Don't think of jogging away, for any jenny ass who tries and skips my wonderfully jovial joyride through town will get a thousand jolts! Jim! Start the juicers, we've got some lives to jeopardize! Wahahahahahahaha!
  • He is not an anarchist, not even the Joker in TDK is an anarchist. His philosophy is closer to nihilism than anything else. V wasn't the Hollywood Variety of anarchist like the TDK Joker was.
  • Don't forget, the Joker didn't have a real name in The Dark Knight. One could even say that he was...Anonymous.

Joker is Alfred
Both are thin and fit. Both super-smart. Both know Batman to his very core.
  • Whatever Happened to The Caped Crusader? confirms this... happening to one version of Batman.
  • In the old Batman TV series, Alfred always seemed to know exactly the device Batman could use to save the day or himself when stuck in a situation with no obvious way out. The Joker has also admitted he doesn't really want to kill the bat as Batman completes him.

Batman did kill people at first.
From Batman Forever:
Bruce Wayne: Then it will happen this way: you make the kill, but your pain doesn't die with Harvey, it grows. So you run out into the night to find another face, and another, and another, until one terrible morning you wake up and realize that revenge has become your whole life. And you won't know why.
Dick Grayson: You can't understand. Your family wasn't killed by a maniac.
Bruce: Yes, they were. We're the same.
Is Bruce speaking from experience? (Though probably not starting with his parents' actual murderer, unless the 1989 film is discounted from canon or "I don't remember much that happened back then" is interpreted creatively. But this is WMG.

Batman's "Death" is a Stable Time Loop
The Omega sanction not only kills a person but forces him to live lives that are progressively worse. Since he was sent back in time, he will eventually reach a life in which his wealthy and loving parents were killed in front of him causing him to become the caped crusader for the first time.

If he ever gets brought back it'll create a time paradox-based Crisis Crossover.

Batman is really a bat.
When the bat during the famed "cowardly and superstitious lot" scene flew in the window, Bruce had a heart attack and died of fright. Guilt-stricken, the Bat hastily built a man suit and took the dead man's place. Not even Alfred knows although he has his suspicions about how that guano keeps getting into Bruce's bedroom...

Batman needs Robin, but not in the way we think
This isn't my WMG, it's the WMG of Brendan McGinley at Cracked, but I'm cut-pasting it here anyway, with acknowledgments, because it rather fits the page.

"Robin acts healthier than even the most unmolested teens. What gives? Something way weirder than a rentboy gig is going on here. Let's examine the facts:

  • Batman is forever marred by what happened to his parents
  • Robin fulfills some need of Batman's
  • There's no way Batman has time to be Bruce Wayne, fight crime as Batman, and violate an orphan
  • Batman is a master of disguise and misdirection
Don't you see? He deliberately misleads people to think he's molesting Robin, because it's so much easier to explain than his actual neuroses."
  • It took me a while to realize the neurosis to which you referred was the "dressing up as a bat-man and fighting criminals" and not some sort of Parental Absence issue.

In the Batman Forever movie, Bruce (and possibly Alfred) manipulated Dick to get him to become Robin
Bruce had witnessed the Graysons' deaths, noting the similarities to that of his own family. Even from that moment, he thought that this was a golden opportunity to get Dick's help in his crusade. At first, Dick wanted nothing to do with Bruce or Alfred until they both double-teamed him and managed to pretty much bribe him into staying (with promises of good food and a motorcycle). Alfred gives Dick a heartfelt speech about 'broken wings being able to mend' and promising that 'Robin will fly again', which probably got to him. They forbade him from entering a certain room that led into the Batcave, which knowing a stubborn guy like Dick would make him deadset on going in. Everything was carefully planned and executed by Batman, despite his claims of not wanting a partner.

Jonathan Crane's little sister is going to grow up to be just as insane as anyone in Arkham.
Sure, Scarecrow: Year One ends with that happy little domestic scene, but somewhere along the line, another writer will pick up on three things. 1. If her mother Karen's previous taste in men is any indication, it won't be long before she picks up another abusive white trash boyfriend who might, eventually, turn his abusive ways on his girlfriend's young daughter. 2. Karen kept in contact with the worthless piece of crap who knocked her up, but not her own son, which doesn't speak highly of her mothering skills. 3. The baby might have unconscious memories of her mother's white trash boyfriend (her dad?) getting killed with a ginormous knife (in the process of attacking her and her mother) and her own freakin' brother holding a gun on her until a guy in a bat costume swooped in to save the day. She looks like she's about eighteen months old when this happens. Plus, somewhere along the line she's gotta find out about her messed up family, right?
  • I support this. Insanity runs in that family.

My guess is that the baby's going to show up in Gotham in about eighteen years to mess with her half-brother's "research" either as a violent borderline psychotic anti-heroine or as a very nasty villainess. Either way, there will be borderline creepy Sibling Rivalry from Hell.

  • Alternatively, she might come to Gotham simply seeking revenge on her half-brother for almost killing her, and plan to give him A Taste Of His Own Medicine, via either a gun or his own fear toxin.

The Joker, Rorshach, Nite-Owl, The Riddler, Alfred, V, Tony Stark, Doc Samson, and Batman are all the same person.
And he's very, very busy.

Batman is Malkavian.
Despite looking relatively young, he's been around since the thirties and he is never seen during the day, so chances are good he is a vampire. Now the Malkavian part...
  • He has a well-documented series of obsessions bordering on outright mania.
  • He dresses in a silly outfit.
  • His personality changed radically over the years multiple times.
  • He's always prepared for everything. Most people just attribute it to his intelligence, but given his success rate, it seems to be far more likely that he is capable of outright precognition.
  • He can deliberately infect other people with his madness. He has chosen multiple people over the years to do this to, and thus created the Bat Family.
  • And for the most convincing argument: He dresses in a silly outfit.

Bruce Wayne Jr.'s mom is....
  • There was an Elseworld comic that showed a Batman/Captain America crossover set in WWII. In the epilogue, Captain America is thawed 20 years later by Dick Grayson (Who took up the Batman mantle when Bruce Wayne retired) and Bruce Wayne Jr., a Robin with red hair. Who's the mother? Well, earlier in the comic, Wayne is seen dancing and shopping with a pretty redhead. Maybe she was more than just a millionaire playboy's fling.
    • Also, they're in search of Joker Jr. when they find Captain America. Does Harley perhaps exist in this universe?

The events of 1989 Batman and most of the events seen in Batman Returns occur in the same year
The mayor seen in Batman 1989 was really in the midst of a reelection campaign. That's why he was so insistent on having the Anniversary Festival despite obvious problems, and why he has only now brought in someone like Dent to be the DA. But, possibly as a direct result of how the Mayor handled the Joker crisis, he loses to the Mayor seen in Batman Returns in November. Batman Returns mostly takes place in December of that year, but portions of it occur in January of the following year.

Batman actually has a wide variety of low-level superpowers.
  • Think of all the blatantly impossible stuff he does. The guy has to have at least Captain America-level body alteration, plus a handful of random things like "the ability to know where guns are."

The Joker has a daughter, who is Tsuruya from Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.
Same hair color. Chronic laugh. The mother could have been a vampire, which would explain Tsuruya's fang.

Mr. Rogers is Batman.
He has the training, after all.

Batman is an incarnation of the Eternal Champion and the Joker is an agent of Chaos
As per Michael Moorcock's multiverse. Law and Chaos are always in conflict, and the Eternal Champion is the one who brings balance to the conflict. Gotham was subjected to chaos-inducing insane criminals and freaks, and Batman is the Eternal Champion's incarnation who was sent to restore balance by strengthening Law. The Joker is probably the prime agent of Chaos in that universe.
  • Then Superman would be the primary agent of Order, right? Or would that be Dick Grayson?

Cassandra Cain is no longer in control of her body
Near the end of her Batgirl series, Cassandra ends up in a battle next to the Lazarus pit with her mother Shiva Wusa. She lost the fight but still crippled her mother. As an act of revenge, Shiva took her daughter's body using the powers of the pit. The next time she appears, Cassandra appears smarter and better educated. Her crappier fighting style is due to Shiva not being used to the smaller body. Eventually, Cassandra starts retaking control but merges partway with her mother's psyche, resulting in her altered state of mind.

In the Death of Batman Fan Film, the junkie is Jason Todd
Assuming this is an Alternate Universe where Bruce never met Jason and he never became Robin, he grew up in the slums as before, except he dedicated himself to becoming a better, well-educated person. Thus he got good grades and was on his way to college. Except Batman busted him for a crime he didn't commit, sending him to prison. In the end, he became everything he resented from his old life: a drug-addicted "criminal". Everything he did in the movie was his revenge for Batman essentially fucking up his life. Some of the methods he uses are also reminiscent of him as Red Hood...except for the taser to the crotch thing...

The Joker is the sanest person in the DC Universe.
Why else can he break the fourth wall? The Joker has a far greater awareness of the nature of his universe than anybody else, to the point he knows he's fictional. He knows people are writing him. His senseless mayhem is a commentary on the absurdity of the universe that most people are unaware of.

Dr. Crane is faking it.
I contend that the Scarecrow is not at all insane, just very evil. His knowledge of psychology allows him to put on a really good show for the state psychiatrists and private doctors who testify about his mental health and get him transferred to Arkham, but he is really stone-cold sane.

Obviously, for this to work, you have to disregard Jeph Loeb's characterization - Hush Scarecrow is obviously bat guano insane, what with the nursery rhyme quoting and then switching to normal speech when Batman rips his mask off heavily implying dissociative identity disorder, and of course the A God Am I thing in Knightfall too. But most characterizations really aren't all that crazy - very obsessive and sinister, but not really crazy. In the Diniverse, it's worth noting that the only time we see Crane in a completely off-the-rocker rant, he's in Arkham Asylum with tons of patients and at least one doctor as witnesses - and stops himself to acknowledge Harley. And in Scarecrow: Year One, when he is about to kill the guy who got him fired, the speech bubbles beg you to picture either a stone-cold killer or a Large Ham of Gary Oldman proportions - the fact the illustration shows him standing calmly suggests the former.

  • Why on earth would anyone want to go to Arkham instead of a regular prison?!
    • Because various curses and such make it easier for the inmates to make the staff insane rather than the other way 'round, meaning, apart from anything else, it's really easy to break out of.
      • Plus, even the scariest stuff they can write about Arkham (A Serious House On Serious Earth) can't quite compare to the Prison Rape scenes in Oz. Do we really think Blackgate is any better?

Forming a rock band would be the only way the Robins could cope with Batman's actual death
As portrayed here, Batman's sidekicks would need a big distraction to keep them from becoming traumatized over the death of their mentor. Rather than splitting up, which might push some of them (like Jason) over the edge, they would need to stay together. Doing something ludicrous like forming a band would be the way to go.

Batman is a robot!
  • Not the robot theory again...
    • Well, he could be.
      • then how do you explain Damian?

The Joker was brought back after death by the sentient fictional concept of a story's script for the purpose of balancing the DCU
After the Joker was originally killed in his second appearance, he wasn't consciously reintroduced by writers but forced back into the story by the story itself after it recognized him as Batman's ideal antithesis. Later writers thought this to be a Joker tradition and continued the trend.

The Joker is Heath Ledger in the afterlife
After Heath Ledger died he came to the DC Universe in a sort of Life On Mars turn of events than trying to perfect the role he had in The Dark Knight he became The Joker. This is why he has no problem killing people as he knows they're not real and how he can keep coming back to life as this is his afterlife it would also show how he seems to have no fourth wall as he knows this is all happening in a comic or other such medium.

Alfred is a child abuser.
As a former spy, Alfred left England disgusted by the permissive chaos of the '70s and, in a fit of pique, went into his father's business as an attache. He came to America and was hired by the Wayne family, two new parents with overly stressful jobs. Despite the master/servant relationship, Alfred and Thomas Wayne became friends.

When the Waynes were killed, Alfred's long-simmering resentment over being forced into early retirement and his perceived steady decline of law and order congealed into a plan for revenge. Instead of encouraging Bruce Wayne to engage in the process of healing, Alfred nurtured the boy's rage and fear. Immediately, he began teaching Bruce subterfuge, self-defense, thievery, and other spycraft. At this point, Alfred was still telling himself that what he was doing was in Bruce's best interest. Disagreements over this aspect of Bruce's education are the reason Leslie Thompkins's relationship with Alfred never flourished.

During Bruce's teen years, they began traveling the world, meeting up with Alfred's old spy contacts who each trained young Bruce in their areas of specialty. Even as he was honing Bruce's mental and physical skills, Alfred kept Bruce in a stunted emotional state. He kept the boy isolated and encouraged the eight-year-old's instinct for confronting complex problems: hit it until it goes away. He taught Bruce that the outside world is a chaotic, violent, and unpredictable place and that only Bruce could restore order and justice.

Once they returned to Gotham, Alfred took advantage of Bruce's childlike imagination and theatrical impulse, and thus they created Batman, a superhero of Bruce's own imagination with the power, bravery, and will to keep at bay the faceless, nameless shadows that killed his parents.

When Bruce took on young Dick Grayson, Alfred got an audience's view of the abuse he had put the young Bruce through and realized too late that he had started a pattern that would perpetuate itself until it imploded. He stepped back from his commitment to Bruce's training and found himself in the position of discouraging his former methods and attempting to steer Dick through a healthier path to adulthood. As Dick matured but Bruce remained the same, Dick began to see how childish Batman's game was and distanced himself from it. Bruce perceived this, naturally, as a lack of commitment on Dick's part and further proof that the world is unreliable and naturally corrupting.

Finally having seen the error of his ways, Alfred remains Bruce's attache out of a sense of self-imposed penance and responsibility for what he has wrought. He now spends his energy desperately trying to walk Bruce back from the very precipice Alfred placed him on in the first place, as well as hopefully defuse the very time bomb he created: a highly trained, highly intelligent, paranoid, top-secret vigilante with the emotional development, moral compass, and self-awareness of a pre-teen

Batman was Bruce Wayne all along!
Think about it, who else could afford the training and gadgets? We also know that he traveled the world much of his early adulthood in which he could have been training in esoteric martial arts and skills. His parents being killed in front of him would have given him the perfect motivation to become a crime fighter as well as causing him to constantly seek out new sidekicks to create a sense of family for himself. The millionaire playboy act is all an elaborate ruse worthy of the DCU's greatest detective himself!
  • And that means all his children, adopted or otherwise, are the Robins! His first adopted ward, Dick Grayson was obviously the first Robin, and when Dick grew up and moved out, that Robin just disappeared. And the hero Nightwing arrived in Bludhaven around the same time Grayson did! Later when Wayne adopted that street kid Jason Todd, a new Robin appeared. But notice that once Jason tragically died in a "freak accident," Robin was gone and Batman worked without one for quite some time. Later on, a new Robin showed up, but Bruce Wayne hadn't adopted any new kid. But later, he adopted Tim Drake, who was about the same age as the new Robin and whose father had been killed by a supervillain. There must be hundreds of children who are orphaned due to super-villainy, so why did Wayne choose Grayson? Because Grayson was already Robin, obviously! The fourth Robin, the female one, is a mystery, however... Recently, it seems that Bruce Wayne has found his biological son Damien Wayne, who seems very similar to the newest Robin running around.
  • But there is apparently a new Batman, as the original was said to have been killed by Darkseid, yet Bruce Wayne is confirmed still alive, but very busy in other parts of the world. Perhaps this is a coverup...
    • Bruce Wayne is Batman? Holy Secret Identities! And I never even saw that coming!

The Insider suit currently worn by Bruce Wayne in The Road Home miniseries is the basis for the Batman Beyond Batsuit.
The suit gives him an array of superpowers, including superstrength, and flight, and even has a cloaking device. It's far more advanced than any Batman costume created and even has a complete faceplate. When Bruce Wayne returns to his role as Batman he will put it away, but as his age catches up to him he will refit it with a bat motif and use it as his costume of choice again to take advantage of its enhanced abilities and power assist functions to compensate for his age.
  • This seems likely, especially since the Insider suit was introduced shortly after DC started publishing a Batman Beyond comic. It's even possible that he will keep using the enhanced suit (modified to fit the Bat motif) immediately after he takes back the mantle of Batman. Or that he will remain the Insider for some time to come, letting Dick Grayson spend more time as Batman.

Alfred is a Flash.
  • How else could he find the time to do everything from taking care of a 50-room mansion to running the high-tech Batcave without anyone's help?
    • Because he's the Goddamned Butler to the Goddamned Batman. That's how.
    • When no one was looking Alfred cleaned 50 rooms. That's as many as 5 tens. And that's awesome

All the Foe Romance Subtext / No Yay with the Joker is just a front ...
The Joker is actually a Shipper on Deck who wants Jim and Bats to get together. He knows he's a fictional character, right? So who says he doesn't manipulate the story in ways similar to real-life fanfiction writers? My guess is that all the torment the Joker has put Jim through over the years is one attempt at a Hurt/Comfort fic after the other, and killing Sarah Essen-Gordon was a Die for Our Ship.

In Batman Forever Riddler knew all along
Riddler already figured out Bruce was Batman when he first used the Box. Watch the movie considering this. Suddenly so many things in Riddler's scheme start to make so much more sense.

Bruce never returned at all. We've got some sort of clone or evil doppelganger in Bruce's place.
That's why Batman Inc was started.

Joker is in the closet.
Oh come on, it's plainly obvious. Not only is there a whole bunch of Foe Romance Subtext, but he hasn't shown any real attraction towards Harley Quinn. And this is Harley Quinn we're talking about. The only possible explanation is that he's gay. Whenever he kills or screws around with those close to him, it's because the Joker is either jealous or lashing out at the fact that Batman is straight. Why is he in the closet? While he's pretty evil, associating with the depraved homosexual trope is something even he's disgusted at. That, and he wants to retain his fangirls. A similar principle applies to why Poison Ivy is in the closet, even if it's painfully obvious she loves Harley.

In the 1989 movie, the Joker was not responsible for the deaths of Bruce Wayne's parents. Batman killed him because of a paranoid delusion.
The murderer of the Waynes remained at large throughout the Burton/Schumacher continuity, just as it has been in the comics themselves post-Year One (where Joe Chill did exist, but he was a heroin addict who was at home in bed on the night of the murder). Even on the eve of the 200th Anniversary Festival Parade, the Wayne case remained unsolved, as the file Bruce examines in the Batcave clearly indicates. Bruce merely tricked himself into thinking that Jack Napier was the killer, even imagining the Joker's words issuing from the mouth of the gunman.

Why did Bruce scapegoat the Joker? Because, according to the twisted logic by which his scarred mind operated, a man who looked like a clown had to have been responsible.

In the movie Bruce harbored a deep-seated prejudice against clowns and was not even consciously aware of it (or was, but was too ashamed to admit it). His parents died for literally no reason, and so Bruce recoiled from all suggestions of absurdity and chaos, however innocent-seeming. Attempting to make sense of a confounding and cruel world, Bruce became a strict Cartesian rationalist who did not accept (and in fact intensely hated) anything that could not be explained by any sort of rigorous philosophy. That is why he disguised himself as an animal - a creature governed by instinct and subject to natural law (and also why he was so drawn to Catwoman in the sequel) and why he relied so much on the scientific method when it came to crimefighting.

And so he couldn't stand the sight of the Joker. Clowns are inherently unreal: they are pure artifice, literally, paintings come to life. They have no place in the natural world; they have no right to exist. Bruce was filled with fear and loathing of all clown-like creatures long before the Joker appeared on the scene: note his reaction of what is arguably disgust when several men appear to him on the street disguised as mimes, and this before he knows they're working for the Joker or is even yet aware of the Joker's existence. Then, when he saw the Joker's permanent smile, he naturally connected it to the smile on the face of the mugger who shot his parents. Only a clown-like creature - a figure thoroughly illogical and nihilistic - could have caused such a senseless tragedy.

Batman remained in this psychotic state throughout the first two movies. He was not a hero at all, but a murderous paranoid - one step above a Serial Killer, really - who was prepared to unthinkingly slaughter anyone who was associated with clowns. (Note the Disproportionate Retribution he visits upon the members of Penguin's Red Triangle Circus Gang.) It took the Penguin's tragic demise for him to once again see the humanity in children's entertainers, and so in Batman Forever he can once again attend the circus - and take Dick Grayson in as his ward - without revulsion.

Killer Croc will get even worse.
Over the years, Killer Croc has gone from a Genius Bruiser with a legitimate skin condition, to The Brute with crocodilian fangs and a tail. The writers claim that Killer Croc suffers from an extreme form of atavism, which is causing him to devolve into a crocodile. Thus, it's not going to stop at him being a were-croc; one day, Killer Croc will simply be an ornery and particularly cunning crocodile living in Gotham's sewers. This is practically canon.

Adam West is not only Batman...
But every masked superhero ever. He has the power to clone himself much like Multiple Man and tends to send his clones out into the world in hopes that they'll gain superpowers. Some of them actually succeed at gaining powers; while others work as regular costumed vigilantes. Bruce Wayne actually died years ago and was replaced by one of West's clones that got cosmetic surgery and brainwashed himself into thinking he was Wayne. All the others have undergone similar brainwashing. Also, the main west, or "West Prime" is actually... Commissioner Gordon.

Tommy Elliot's next plastic surgery project will be to turn himself black.
Purely so that in this iteration he can get called "Nigga Hush".

Speaking of Hush...
Hush in the "hush returns" arc was not the real Hush but someone else, whose memories were altered with brain surgery by the real Hush to, what else, distract Batman while Hush was preparing his actual plans. Furthermore, the "Joker" was a similarly mind-altered impostor too, but because of an error in the brain surgery, this impostor had a sense of honor. Also, to my knowledge, this theory is already canon with Prometheus, except for the memory-alteration-by-hush-part.

The Joker has read the Necronomicon.
Even worse, he read it cover to cover. In this ancient eldritch tome, the man who would become the Joker discovered, to his horror, exactly how insignificant humans were in the grand scheme of things, and how thin a membrane of what we would consider reality lies between us and soul-rending terror. He realized then, with his first glimpse of the true nature of the universe, how hilariously stupid humanity's many endeavors are when set against the fathomless depths ruled by inhuman creatures that, if we are lucky, pay us no mind at all. This is why the Joker does what he does - he knows full well that nothing matters in the grand scheme of things because eventually they will be swept aside like so much dust in the incalculable eons.

In the 1989 movie, Jack Napier's partner was Joe Chill in the flashback.
Like in the original comics, he tried to steal Martha's pearls. This is a way of the movie being a bit more faithful to the original source material.

Carl Grissom ordered Jack to kill Thomas Wayne because they were both running for city council. Jack brought along Chill to make it look like a random mugging. But Chill was surprised that Jack also killed Martha, which wasn't part of the plan. Chill heard footsteps or police sirens, so he told Jack they should leave.

(This is inspired by an early script where it was Rubert Thorne who hired Chill to kill Bruce's parents.)

Insanity is genetic in the Keeny family.
Evidence? Let's see...
  • Pre-Granny: Someone killed themselves. I believe it was her mother and either her father or grandfather.
  • Great-Granny Keeny: Tortured and punished her great-grandson (more on him later) using chemically trained birds. She punished him for such things as reading Ulysses and being born.
  • Marion Keeny: Suggested that her grandson (haven't reached him yet) be buried alive upon his birth.
  • Karen Keeny: Seemed to have escaped insanity, but does have horrible taste in men and did abandon her son. Speaking of her son...
  • Jonathan "Scarecrow" Crane: Systematically killed off his family (one could argue they had it coming); killed the people who bullied him; fired a gun off in his class when he was a professor at Gotham U.; killed the people who fired him for this; created fear toxin and uses people as guinea pigs; admitted into Arkham regularly...I think you get the idea. Crane seemed to have been hit by the crazy stick particularly hard.
    • Now to find out how crazy is carried. Since most of the Keenys are female, crazy is either carried through mitochondrial DNA or the X-chromosome.
    • Lord help us if the above WMG for his half-sister turns out to be true...

Batman Deliberately Planned Wargames
He lost Tim Drake. Stephanie Brown volunteers. He trains Stephanie. There are now 2 trained Robins, however, only 1 is active. He could easily sacrifice Steph to get back Tim, all he needs are the right circumstances. He fires Steph, allows a girl who only wants approval alone in the Batcave, and waits for her to do her thing. If she doesn't start a terrible gang war, she will likely get herself killed or crippled vigilante-ing anyway, which would make Tim come back for revenge, and once back fighting crime, with such a terrible loss, would be unlikely to give up. If she does, he will come back when some other tragedy occurs for the benefit of Gotham, and knowing what happened through his enabling, would be unlikely to stop. If Steph or some other vigilante were to die, then the guilt from allowing such a thing to happen will make him a far more efficient and colder vigilante, worth more than his old self and Steph. Any which way, Gotham benefits.

Batman doesn't deny to Alfred that Steph is just being used to draw back Tim anyway, and he didn't change the Bat PC passwords at any point, giving this theory credence. More to the point, he came up with this, or just did an Indy Ploy, in about 2 seconds, after Steph demanded to become Robin.

Identity Crisis (2004) was simultaneous with War Games, so even should Steph not be fired or maimed, then eventually the person killing Super Hero dependents would likely get around to the Drakes, as apparently Robin who hadn't even told Superboy his identity yet to my knowledge had his real name and familial details known to every b-list JLer, and thus to the killer. The shock of losing his dad would, as usual, make Tim return to the fray to get revenge, and wouldn't give up.

And should somehow none of those work, the tedium of everyday life and the lure of his Teen Titan friends, not to mention rebellion against his father that comes in adolescence, would likely have him at least rejoin the Titans. Which would mean that Batman's Robin would have weekends free, and the TT Robin would be fresh from the school week, not being a Triple Shifter, as well as there being 2 well-trained Robins, increasing the overall amount of Robins for little cost.

To summate briefly, Batman is a friggin' genius.

  • Wonder Woman should come after him with an axe. If this theory is true, he used Steph. He was willing to sacrifice and manipulate her into starting a gang war, and then later he would be okay with people dying just to force Tim to come back. This WMG is saying that Batman was okay with a plan that included people's possible deaths just to get something that he wanted. Wonder Woman's the icon of feminism in the DCU.

The Joker is actually a virus that turns the skin of people white and degrades their mental state. Every time the Joker dies, he's replaced by another person that's contracted the virus. It's only passed via prolonged contact and doesn't affect women, so it usually passes to henchmen.
  • Perhaps, like Batman in "Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader", there will always be someone who becomes the Joker. Whenever reality is altered in a Retcon, someone else became the Joker. Whenever the Joker dies and is not ret-conned, the essence of the character is transferred to another. The Joker's Multiple-Choice Past comes from the same character retaining memories of all the people who have been the Joker. Even in a timeline where Bruce is dead, the Joker still existed, albeit with as Martha Wayne due to the timeline being screwed up.
  • Writer Steve Englehart (who did, among other things, the original "Laughing Fish" story) revealed on a podcast that he in fact subscribes to a more mundane version of this theory: the Joker dies every so often, and some henchman of his picks up the mantle.

Relatedly... the Joker actually died quite some time ago
The thing is, sooner or later the person who kills him snaps and adopts his persona. The franchise has gone through dozens of Jokers so far.

Scarecrow is a Nay-Theist
Having been raised by a zealot of a great-grandmother, Crane grew up to resent religion. But dear old Granny had ingrained religion too deeply into his psyche for him to not believe in God, so instead, he decided God was just as cruel as everyone else in his life. After all, what kind of God would allow a child to be locked in a church and torn apart by crows regularly?

Alfred is Destruction of the Endless
Destruction hasn't been around much for a while and yet, still in DCU, we have Batman and a somewhat enigmatic butler who has had spec ops-level training. Curious.

Batman is metaphysically both Cursed with Awesome and Blessed with Suck
How you may ask? the blessed side of things means that it makes it so hard for authors to convey batman's humanity if the Fan Dumb assumes that batman is in fact a Showy Invincible Hero instead of a Broken Ace. It also makes it hard for newer heroes to break out as the fans will just clamor for more Batman. The cursed with awesome side of things: Batman's supposedly cursed with a strong inability to feel genuine happiness, but the awesome part is that he does gain a great deal of affection for having his bat family to support him.

The Michael Keaton Batman is really Damien Wayne's grandson.
Think about it. Damien Named one of his kids Thomas Wayne in honor of his own grandfather, who gave his son the name Bruce in honor of one of the greatest heroes that ever lived. Both the real Bruce and Damien died at a time when Gotham was crime-free and when news that Batman died reached the criminals, it became a crime city again. This Thomas decided to be a doctor like his great grandfather rather than take up the Bat Mantle, so he could escape from that life. Joker quit after Batman died and became a two-bit thug who had a kid named Jack Napier. Who followed in his footsteps to become a criminal. He ends up killing Bruce Junior's parents and Bruce Junior decides to be Batman. Napier heard stories from his father about a giant bat terrorizing criminals but refused to believe them until he met Batman face to face. This along with being dropped into the chemicals made him Joker Junior.

The clues to this are as follows:

  • Gotham city while still a crime city, has cars reminiscent of the 1930s dominating the streets. Yet the music being listened to is either classical or 80s pop like Prince. This among the state-of-the-art gadgets and armor Batman uses would suggest a dystopian future.
  • This Batman is more than willing to kill criminals much like Damien started out before he became Robin.
  • Lastly since the Joker died permanently he wasn't the real Joker since Joker Immunity didn't apply to him.

The Joker is an elemental being, and Batman did create him.

More specifically, the Element of Chaos. When Batman took up his mantle as a symbol of Order and Justice in Gotham, the universe needed to balance him out. And so it was that The Joker sprung from the pits of Gotham fully formed and ready for destruction. And because he is not a true living being, he can't die.

Harley Quinn has a brother.
His name is Manny, and he's obsessed with puppets. Let the fanfics commence.

Hugo Strange isn't Eli Strange's biological father.
Dr. Strange is probably the rogue least likely to reproduce - just look at the fanbase's surprised reaction to him having a son. Even the DC wiki (admittedly fanmade) thinks it's more likely Dr. Strange took advantage of Eli, a troubled genius orphan, by pretending to be his father - and that kind of manipulation fits very well with Strange's character.

The Joker spends his free time on TV Tropes and is reading this.
He is very amused.

After getting his face cut off in New 52 continuity, Joker got a new face and has been impersonating Alfred for sometime now.
Because it'll be a nice twist.

Bruce Wayne is a patient of Arkham Asylum and hallucinating being Batman.
Due to his parents' death, he had a psychotic break and was confined to a mental institution. All of the rogues are other residents. Joker is the sociopath in the next room, taunting him constantly for his delusions, Selina Kyle and the various incarnations of Catwoman are patients with extreme cases of kleptomania, Harvey Dent is being treated for his severe bipolar disorder, the Riddler for his obsessive-compulsive disorder, Bane is a patient who attacked him, Doctor Strange is his psychologist and Jim Gordon is a kindly security guard. The various Robins are actually manifestations of Bruce Wayne's inner child and not real. Alfred is also the owner of Wayne Industries and comes to visit him regularly.

The entire The Dark Knight Trilogy was Ra's al Ghul's Magnificent Bastard attempt to redeem Gotham.
This is the hypothesis. Ras was never trying to destroy civilization. He was trying to rebuild it! Remember in the comics that Ras Al Ghul is really immortal.
  • Ras adopts young Bruce into the League of Shadows, gives him training, befriends him, and then seemingly betrays him; knowing this is going to cause the rather volatile proto-Batman to reject the League's mission. Violently. Then he fakes his death and comes back to do a kind of reverse Obi-Wan pep talk in the third film, knowing that THAT would give him a reason to get out of the Pit.
Cass and Steph are currently missing, because Barry Allen doesn't know who they are.
When Barry reset the universe, he had to create it from scratch, with details that are different because he didn't know every detail about his world. Cass and Steph, to my knowledge, never interacted with Barry, and aren't exactly so well known, so he didn't think to add them in. They'll come back when someone *cough*Tim*cough* works out Barry's part in the universe change and tries to get his ex and adopted sister back (More details to be added in the Flash WMG section).

Martha Wayne didn't actually die.
More than that, she actually hired someone (either Joe Chill or someone else) to kill Thomas and fake her death, but specifically not kill Bruce. She wasn't happy; she no longer liked city life and even though she loved Thomas and Bruce, she resented them and the way of life they were a major part of. But she couldn't ask Thomas to leave the city and give up everything his family had built, and he wouldn't grant her a divorce, so she didn't have many options. For a while, she was content splitting time between the city and a more agrarian environment she found to be more down-to-earth and fulfilling, but she didn't think that was fair to anybody, so when her paramour asked her to marry him, she had to resort to desperate measures. After her "death", she settled in with her husband full-time, and shortly after, they began to raise their adopted son, Clark.

The reason all of Gotham's buildings are in the neo-gothic style.
Wayne Enterprises will only fund buildings built in that style (or perhaps lobbied for a bill to make that the only acceptable style) because ledges and gargoyles are way easier to climb than glass and steel.

The Lazarus Pits exist because of the Life Entity.
Why are there pits that can restore life all over the Earth? Because the very incarnation of life slept within the Earth's core.

The Joker is the real hero of the DC Universe.
Hear me out.

The Joker has been hinted/outright stated to be able to see past the fourth wall. He is aware he is in a comic book. If he is aware of this, he might also know that the only reason his universe exists is that people are entertained by it. This realization drove him to desperate measures. He figured out that the only way to keep the universe going and not let The End of the World as We Know It happen is to keep the readers entertained.

He decided to do this by becoming the ultimate entertainer. He dresses like a clown, and in order to keep his entertainer image 24/7, he purposefully touches his face up with the stuff that transformed him in the first place whenever new skin or hair grows in in his natural coloring. At first, he started with simply killing and robbing, the kind of villain people typically read about when he was created. But as time went on, he has had to constantly change his persona to keep the readers invested. Over the years he has had to resort to more horrific and bloodthirsty tactics than ever before in order to save the ever more jaded readers' thirst for crazy and gore.

He continues to do these horrible things, not because he enjoys them, but because it's the only way to keep the readers coming and to keep the DC Universe from ending for good. He keeps his ever-present smile and humor because it's what the readers want, not because it's what he actually feels or thinks. But still, he goes on.

Because the people he kills will either be brought back to life anyway or were created just so that he could kill them for the readers' entertainment.

They are necessary sacrifices to keep the entire DC Universe and all of its characters from permanently coming to an end from lack of sales. And if he must become the villain to end all villains in the eyes of everyone else to do so, then so be it.

The Butler Did It!
Alfred Pennyworth, Batman's valet, is ex-S.I.S, a former professional actor, and was an employee of the British Royal Family before moving to the U.S. to work for the Waynes. Not long after he settled in at Wayne manor, young Bruce Wayne's parents were gunned down before his eyes just as they were leaving a Zorro movie together, leaving an intelligent, healthy, filthy-rich, and impressionable youngster on his own. Alfred immediately became Bruce's legal guardian. He then helped him to seek training to become a vigilante, mentored him in spycraft, and exerted an inordinate amount of influence on him his entire career. And it was all done so subtly that Bruce Wayne never once considers the possibility that his parents' death was set up, and the most likely culprit is the person that he trusts the most. And worst of all, if it is true, is that "The World's Greatest Detective" can't even see that he was the victim of the world's worst cliché.

The Perfect Robin Would Be...
... Billy Batson. Think about it, he's a young orphan but can turn himself into a figure who's as powerful as Superman. If he could just give him the reds & greens, evildoers wouldn't stand a chance in Gotham. Bane and Killer Crock would be on the floor crying and bleeding.

There will be a storyline in which a worldwide blackout occurs.
Similar to the premise presented in Revolution, but it would be handled differently. First, it would leave Bruce Wayne in a pickle, because most, if not all, of his toys, are electric, and they would be useless in the event of a worldwide blackout. Then Batman would have to bring order to Gotham City, in a manner comparable to The Dark Knight Returns. Also, he would have to discover the existence of electricity absorbing nanomachines. But once he does, he could discover ways to put it to good use...

The Joker is from Wonderland.
.The reason his past and identity are such a mystery is that he comes from a dimension where such things are fluid. In Wonderland, everyone has a multiple-choice past. Furthermore, his dress style, his (il)logic, and his sense of humor have a distinct Wonderland- aesthetic. His name is that of a playing card, indicating he comes from the deck of cards found in the novel. The Joker never is mentioned in either of Carroll's books, but that doesn't mean he isn't there. Perhaps the Queen of Hearts banished him to Gotham?

We're all mad here, Dear Alice...

The Joker's original self is considered a monster by The Joker
During "A Death in the Family", The Joker was terrified of Batman revealing his true name. This is not only because he did not want the "fun" to stop, but because hearing his original name again would bring out his original personality, and he does not want that man to come back. Not only is he not "fun" in the eyes of the Joker, but vicious, bloodthirsty, and most frightening...Sane. While the Joker would be only concerned with Batman, The Joker's other self would only be concerned with Bruce Wayne.
  • That would be Lampshade Hanging on his first appearance in 1940, where he was portrayed as a serious, psychopathic killer that wasn't funny. The Joker could've gone insane in order to escape from the utter monster he was originally, possibly as a way to justify his sick actions.

The Joker is a champion of Delirium.
Do I even need to explain why?

Bruce Wayne is the DC Universe's answer to Haruhi Suzumiya, and created the Batman mythos from his own psyche.
In truth, Bruce Wayne is not the embodiment of the Badass Normal trope, but rather a borderline-omnipotent Reality Warper. The meta-gene for reality alteration came out when his parents were killed. To this day, Bruce Wayne is completely unaware of his true powers, as he can only use them on a subconscious level. Thankfully his Reality Warper powers only manage to affect Gotham City. Gotham City is a Crapsack World because it's seen through a depressed Adult Child, and Arkham Asylum is Bedlam up to eleven because it embodies Bruce's insanity. And most of the characters embody a part of Bruce Wayne's psychology:
  • The first Robin, Dick Grayson, represents Bruce Wayne's childhood. His maturation into Nightwing is Batman deciding to visualize what he'd be like if he was a happy and well-adjusted visual-the reason why Dick's parents are DEEEAAAD is Batman in denial, and partly to play a part of the Freudian Trio (Tim Drake was the second attempt to bring back his childhood innocence, but since Bruce can't move on from movie night with mommy and daddy Tim's parents are DEEEADDD. Jason Todd was clearly thought up out of being angry at Dick/his childhood for moving on, and Damian Wayne is an outlet for his Psychopathic Manchild tendencies.
  • Batman's love interests are bad girls/enemies because Bruce's priorities with relationships are screwed up.
  • The reason why so many of Batman's villains are dark counterparts of themselves is that Bruce Wayne is trying to deal with his issues. Two-Face embodies his split personality disorder and feeling of victimization, Bane embodies his obsessive nature, the Scarecrow embodies his cruelty and Ra's al Ghul embodies his hero complex. The Penguin, ironically, is a manifestation of his sanity-the kind of individual Bruce strives to be, but makes a villain because he refuses to give up being Batman. The Joker Immunity is a result of Bruce remaining insane.
  • Darkseid thinks Earth is where he can find the Anti-Life Equation because of Batman. Batman's own misery and despair have caused the whole of Gotham to reflect that, which led to Darkseid deducing that if it wasn't the Anti-Life Equation at work, it was part of it. This may even be how Darkseid pulled off the Final Crisis. Ironically, Batman's major Moment of Awesome wasn't a result of his Reality Warper powers: Darkseid is far worse than Batgod and was canceling out Batman's powers-it was just Batman/Bruce Wayne by himself, with a Radion gun, who slew the God of Evil.
  • Batman, Nightwing, and the Joker serve as the Freudian Trio: Batman is the super-ego, serving as an ethical authority to the Robins that typically embody his ego. Nightwing is the balanced ego. The Joker is Batman's id incarnate, embodying his insanity and rash, twisted passions. Batman needs Nightwing to prevent himself from becoming too extreme, and the Joker to not be consumed by depression. The Ho Yay between the three is a result of desperately needing them and the same reason for selfcest.

Mr Freeze is sitting on his wife's cure
  • Freeze discovered a cure for his wife's condition years ago, but keeps here frozen and continues to go through the motions of "researching" it because he's secretly (and perhaps justifiably) terrified that she'd never love the man he's become in the years since the accident.

The Joker literally has the Mark of Cain on him; thus justifying Joker Immunity.
Where if anyone kills him; it's replaced seven-fold. (Seven-fold in Hebrew is symbolic, it doesn't mean "seven times" it means a LOT more.) Thus; when he's killed in continuities like Kingdom Come or Injustice: Gods Among Us; the world just goes down the toilet. (In Tim Burton's Batman, the curse resulted in the horrible sequels.)
  • Batman: Arkham City almost slowed it down with the Joker doing it to himself, but Arkham Knight has the curse coming back in spades. Tim killing the Joker in Batman Beyond resulting in the dystopia happening there.

Jack Nicholson's Joker was destined to father the Beast of Revelation.
When the Joker asks about dancing with the devil in the pale moonlight, that isn't just a catchphrase. Satan was at work behind the plot of the '89 film from the very beginning. He corrupted Lieutenant Eckhart Judas Iscariot-style (really, what need would that fat slob have had for all that extra money?), planted the seed of paranoia in Carl Grissom's mind, and disguised himself as Alicia in order to seduce Jack Napier to justify that paranoia. It was all in the service of setting up Napier's death in order to strike a deal with him in Hell (similar to Al Simmons's in '{{'Spawn}}'') to be allowed to return to Earth in exchange for helping the Prince of Darkness fulfill his master plan (with the "clown" disfigurement merely a bonus that wound up making the sacrilege a lot more fun). Vicki Vale was prophesied to be the mother of the Antichrist (note that her last name alludes to the "vale of tears" that the Virgin Mary is supplicated to rescue humanity from), and the Joker was to be the father. The helicopter at the end was to whisk them back to Axis Chemicals - satanic ground, for that is where Napier began the journey to the netherworld that granted him his powers - for the celebration of the Black Mass that would result in the conception of the Beast. (It wouldn't have worked in the cathedral for obvious reasons; that was merely where the Joker intended to romance Vicki in order to make her more compliant to the scheme.) Also, notice how the Joker miraculously escapes being shot and bombed at the parade; that wasn't just Joker Immunity, but black magic protecting him so that he would fulfill the prophecy. Bruce Wayne was earmarked by the forces of good to thwart this apocalypse because of his father's (converted) Catholic faith and his tremendous physical and spiritual willpower.

Two-Face's former fiance Marilyn Crane and her twin sister Madeline are Scarecrow's half-sisters by way of his father.

Because in Scarecrow's Year One comic his father Gerald Crane mentions having two children by another woman. Now Gerald does say both of his kids are nice even though Madeline's been noted to have sociopathic traits since childhood, but this could have been before Madeline was realized to be insane. Not to mention that it would explain why, even though insanity clearly runs in the Keeny family (given that Mary, Marion, and Karen all have the same last name despite being from different generations and illegitimacy being so stigmatized that it's a plot point, I'm guessing incest had something to do with it), Scarecrow managed to get an extra dose of crazy. It runs in BOTH sides of the family.

That and its comic books. If there's a slight chance that people are related, they WILL be related. It's not as prominent in DC as it is in Marvel, where almost the entire roster of heroes and villains are related in one way or another, but still.

This means that Two-Face and Scarecrow almost became related by marriage, adding even more crazy to the whole mix. Thanksgivings would have been aaaawkwaaaaaaard...

And before I forget, Marilyn was an expert in psycho-therapy and was good enough to (temporarily) cure Two-Face back into Harvey Dent. DO we know anyone else with the last name Crane who's good with other people's brains?

Batman is Lamont Cranston
So you're probably asking: How could he be a crime boss who died in Tibet in 1930?Simple: Cranston died shortly after his henchmen murdered a temple load of Buddhist monks, and the headmonk cursed him to never truly die until he'd stopped as many crimes as he'd caused.Since Cranston was a heroin dealer whose activities caused hundreds of thousands or even millions of crimes,from petty smuggling and theft to gruesome murders by and of junkies, his ghost is trapped, essentially forever.

Batman is actually a faulty robot from Superman's Fortress of Solitude
It does explain why Superman appreciates Batman and cares for him even though Batman can be so aloof: he's really Clark's property but his program is faulty and doesn't remember his master. So Supes just opts to let him be useful and do vigilante work instead of taking care of the fortress. This way also Batman can do the small fry (for Superman standards) in problematic Gotham City while Superman goes take care of real cosmic menaces. It's also the reason why Batman tends to be the strategist while the rest of the Justice League has more physical work to do: it's a relic from his days at the Fortress of Solitude. This is also why Batman figured Clark Kent & Superman are the same person: no detective work necessary, he already knew because he lived in Superman's intimate dwellings. It's also the reason why Superman never felt threatened by Batman knowing his real identity and why despite being so unlike each other, Batman feels compelled to work as part of Worlds Finest with his master, and Superman knows him too well since he built him.

It also explains how can a seemingly Badass Normal can become proficient at a dozen kinds of martial arts and learn a dozen languages and still have the time to be good at chemistry and math and escapism and extra stuff for which a non-superpowered human would need 100 years to sort of learn: it's in the programming Superman installed on him. It also explains that he also gets the time to pretend he's a playboy millionaire (which is a failed attempt at what he/it believes to be an actual human life) as well as his inability to be intimate and why we shouldn't worry that Bruce constantly adopting stray kids seems so pedo: it's just Superman's way to help and give a home to gifted children by proxy without going through all that family stuff with a workaholic jerkass like Lois Lane. Alfred and Bruce's social life are just programming in Bruce's head Philip K. Dick style

Also, it would nicely help explain how come someone can be so pathologically mistrustful and yet become pals with Superman: his programming inadvertently drives him to be nice to Supes, and the mistrust is just the guarding of the Fortress of Solitude part of the programming that went awry. It also explains why Superman never feels quite threatened by Batman: he can push a button somewhere in the Arctic and turn Bats off. Otherwise, Batman's natural ally ought to be Lex Luthor, not Superman as is the case. It also solves why Batman, the supposedly dark, badass, cool one of the two, chooses not to kill, following the program built in him by Superman.

Finally, it also justifies how Bruce Wayne and Clark Kent physically resemble each other with a square jaw and black hair and all that, what with Superman tending to build the Fortress' robots to resemble him.

  • "Not the robot theory again!"

Dolphins are extremely evil.
Batman used guns on them! Clearly, dolphins armed with plastic explosives are the ultimate evil of the DCU!

New 52 Batman occasionally gets caught in Groundhog Day-style timewarps
  • It would explain why he has at least 5 titles, along with a utility belt full of gadgets that are just right for the situation at hand.
  • This curse extended to his son Damian, who aged 10 years in the space of 5 but has over 20 years of experience in combat and other skills.

Because who else is it gonna be?
  • Resurrection Man?

Joker had a fear of clowns similar to Batman who had a fear of bats

Alfred is Bruce's real father
Martha had an affair with Alfred under Thomas' nose, and Bruce is really Alfred's kid. Alfred knows this. Eventually, some writer is going to make this canon, no matter how much it undercuts Batman's Death by Origin Story.

The basis of Whatever Happened to The Caped Crusader? apply to the Joker as well.
Just like Batman, the Joker's fate after death is to be reincarnated as himself, in a different universe. However, the difference between him and Batman? He remembers. After being doused in Ace Chemicals(the one thing that seems constant across all origins), the Joker remembered all his previous lives, though wasn't able to hold onto information as the Joker. His Multiple-Choice Past? He remembers the origin stories of each of the Jokers in the multiverse and is unable to determine (or just doesn't care) which is "his" past.

The new version of Cassandra Cain is Bruce's biological daughter
Since her old origin wouldn't work, in this she's Bruce's daughter with a new version of Cain, who has undergone a Race Lift and Gender Flip.

Arkham Asylum is inept on purpose.
With all the ineptness of the people there, you'd think that they'd hire better staff or better legal work. Hell, even Bruce would help improve. Rather than the insanity of the people there being that potent, the staff is incompetent on purpose. There's a conspiracy of the people in charge of the legal and prison system. Why? By making it easier for dangerous criminals to escape, the long arm of the law would be able to come in and save the day. Or get publicity from this, or in general make money from Batman's Rogues' Gallery and their antics. Somewhere in Gotham is a rich mogul/group of rich moguls who are making a quick buck off the revolving door prison system, using flawed or inept lawyers to get clearly legally sane people like the Joker in Arkham instead of getting the chair, and making sure the staff doesn't have the training to control them. And all the meanwhile Batman has no clue this is happening as he's busy with crime and hasn't figured someone might pull this stunt.

Giving Status Quo Is God, this Greater-Scope Villain will continue to get away with this shit until the end of DC Comics, or until some future story where Batman gets a clue.

All the graves in the graveyard say Wayne on them.
The reason the Wayne's grave keeps changing is that Bruce bought the entire graveyard and filled it with nothing but graves that say Wayne on them, and he's just visiting different graves whenever he goes.

There is a universe where the campy Batman becomes the dark and gritty Batman.
Instead of them being from different continuities, there is a universe where light-hearted Batman becomes stoic and dark. Before Jason Todd's death, Batman was a wisecracking guy who made puns and did the "Batusi" in clubs. He starts getting dark and serious after Jason's death. Criminals stop cracking jokes as well as time went on. Joker is no longer the wacky thieving prankster but is now a Charles Manson-type killer.

The Gotham super villains are all actors hired by Bruce Wayne.
Bruce Wayne is dying of an incurable disease. He only has a few years to live, so he decides to spend his final years living out his superhero fantasies. He hires actors to play the role of supervillains, mobsters, crooks, and police officers. All of his adventures are one big LARP (live-action role play), and only the citizens are not in on it. Gordon and Alfred are playing along because they care deeply about the sick billionaire.

Poison Ivy has a Madonna-Whore Complex.
But with men. Even ignoring her characterizations that outright embrace misandry, she associates much more easily with women, such as the Gotham City Sirens or the Birds of Prey (which include many of her enemies in her eco-terrorism schemes). The men she goes after are few, and they all fit an ideal, such as Batman, Nightwing, or Superman. They are the only people who can match up to her idealized view of a man, and all else are a threat to her and her plants.

The first 30 minutes of The Killing Joke animated movie didn't happen.
It was all a fantasy. Batman secretly lusts over Batgirl, but can never act on it since she is Jim's daughter and Dick's on-and-off girlfriend. Every now and then he will have soap opera-type fantasies about her. The infamous sex scene never happened.

Batman want his villains to remain insane.
Deep down, Batman doesn't want his foes to be normal. Without supervillains, he would go back to beating up thugs and muggers. He enjoys playing Riddler's puzzle traps and chasing an evil clown.

Joker actually does feel something akin to love for Harley, but he also hates her for it
Let's consider that "lousy comedian turns to crime to feed his pregnant wife, but she and the baby die, his 'associates' try to make him their scapegoat, falls in acid and turns mad" Joker origin is true. Now, let's consider what it could mean for him to be close to another woman; maybe there's a part of him that feels guilt for "cheating" on his wife, and maybe Harley's dream of a family feels like a punch in the gut for the family he almost had. So he abuses her, hurts her, and tries to keep her far away from the place his late wife had. But, if anything, he's a pragmatic man, and sees a valuable asset in Harley, and devotion that high is so hard to come by... So he has to keep her close enough, too. So he plays the Unholy Matrimony with her, time and time again, but then he realizes it's becoming less of a facade each time, so he beats her, throws her out the window, and keeps her at bay. But the times when they are intimate, she sees the good man underneath the psychopath, the man that can actually love her. He knows that, and he resents that she can provoke that in him, hates himself for letting her so close.That's why, in many depictions, he seems almost asexual; he knows it is his weak point and refuses to do it beyond the minimum necessary to keep her enthralled with him.

If Bruce hangs up the cape and cowl for good, Catwoman would lose interest in him.
Selina strikes me as a woman who likes dark mysterious men and thrills. If Bruce gives up being Batman, she would no longer be attracted to him. Imagine if a bad boy stops being a bad boy. That would be a major turn-off for the woman since she was attracted to his bad-boy persona. If Batman succeeds in cleaning up Gotham City and becomes a full-time Bruce Wayne, Selina would probably get bored of him and eventually dump him.

A common theory about Batman's identity in-universe is that there are multiple Batmen.
Batman's sometimes on good terms with the cops and sometimes he's not. Sometimes he's focused on the more down to Earth crime dramas and sometimes he's a member of the JLA facing god-like monstrosities. Without knowing who he is or being able to see past the fourth wall as the readers can, it wouldn't make much sense for your average citizen in the DC Universe to think there are multiple Batmen to explain his Depending on the Writer state. Bruce Wayne encourages this and other conspiracy theories since it makes it harder for them to learn he's actually Batman. Hell, they may even be kind of right since cloning, alternate universes, and impersonators Bruce hires are a thing, along with other characters having taken up the mantle on occasion.

Arkham Asylum is not a cardboard prison as you think
The villains bribe the Arkham staff to let them out of the asylum.

Joe Chill purposely created Batman
Joe is not really a mugger, just a guy who is concerned about Gotham. The REAL reason Joe Chill killed Thomas and Martha Wayne is so their kid can grow up to become a superhero. Joe realizes Gotham is a cesspool, so he decides to create a superhero for his city. It's not a coincidence he chose a rich family to gun down. He knows this new superhero will need money for gadgets, tech, vehicles, etc. The whole "give me your necklace, lady" thing was just an act he put on. He didn't want Bruce to know his true plan. He felt killing the boy's parents was a necessary evil to stop bigger evil.

Poison Ivy is an alternate personality of Barbara Gordon
Barbara is a plant-controlling metahuman with a split personality disorder. Whenever she gets mad, she turns into Poison Ivy. Sure you see them together in some stories, but there is an explanation for that. It's a clone created by her.

Joe Chill is Bruce's biological father
Joe is a rich man who had an affair with Martha Wayne. When Martha refused to leave Thomas, Joe disguised himself as a homeless man, followed them to an alley, and shot them both. Joe thought to himself "If I can't have her, then no one can!"

Batman's entire life is a fantasy dreamt up by a bored comic book fan
The real Bruce Wayne is a skinny, unattractive comic book fan whose parents are still alive. All of the characters in his fantasy are based on real people. Selina Kyle is an attractive coworker Bruce has a crush on, but is too afraid to approach. Joker is his verbally abusive boss Jack Napier. Harley Quinn is the boss's secretary/mistress. Harvey Dent is Bruce's jerk friend who is obsessed with his lucky coin. Jonathan Crane was a college professor who flunked him years ago.
  • Who might Alfred and Robin be?

Bruce Wayne got the adoptive parent version of buyer's remorse after taking in Jason.
Bruce became attached to Jason after he managed to make him laugh in Crime Alley on the anniversary of his parents' deaths. Like any newly adopted child at first Jason was walking on eggshells, therefore behaving in an orderly manner that appealed to Bruce's control freak tendencies. Then Jason became for certain of his place in the Wayne household and puberty and hormones did not do his temper any favors. Batman started to take issue with him using 'excessive force' on criminals. Ignoring that as a young boy that spent most of his life malnourished Jason was smaller and weaker than the grown criminals that he fought. Lacking Dick's ingrained acrobatic skills, Jason would have little choice but to put the criminals down hard and fast. Bruce behaved in a way that made Jason insecure ( constant criticism, accusing him of killing the rapist with diplomatic immunity with no solid proof) and fearful for his future. Which caused Jason to grasp at straws and try and find Sheila. Once Jason returns from the dead it is quite obvious that he has Lazarus pit madness and needs his family to help him. Bruce ignores that someone that was exposed to the Lazarus pits unwillingly can't morally or legally be held responsible for any misdeeds committed under the influence. Also, it is telling that Bruce reacts violently whenever Jason commits a crime and does not do so when the rest of his family does, like when Kate Kane murdered Clayface. The final proof would be the fact that Jason was not invited for the family portrait that Bruce had done with his 'sons', Dick, Tim, and Damian. Bruce only deigns to talk or interact with Jason whenever there is a crisis in Gotham and needs extra muscle, but has stopped caring for the boy if he ever truly did.

Black Mask is of Dutch or Lithuanian heritage
His last name (Sionis) doesn't appear to be a real name, but significantly resembles (at least in spelling) the Lithuanian name Šimonis and the Dutch name Simonis. It could be some kind of a derivation from either.

Victor Zsasz is of Hungarian heritage
"Zsasz" is also not a real name, but very strongly resembles the Hungarian surname Sas/Sass.

The Penguin has a redhead fetish.
Because most of his most prominent crushes often have red hair or have been characters associated with red hair at some point in their history. Sonia Star and Barbara Gordon from the Adam West show, Veronica Vreeland and Roxy Rocket in the DCAU, and Edward Nygma in Gotham, not to mention the countless nameless red-haired floozies that follow him in the comics.

Harley Quinn is under a curse
When she was a psychiatry student, she had a boyfriend that was madly in love with her. However, one day she told her she had gotten a job at Arkham and they couldn't spend so much time together so as to focus on her job, though they could still be lovers. Thinking she had abandoned him in favor of a bunch of horrid freaks, he was furious and told her if she loves these freaks so much, why doesn't she marry one?

As soon as that happened, one certain patient in Arkham started laughing like crazy, and when he was done, he spoke "Oh, that's hilarious! And it's just the start!"

Basically, Harley Quinn was cursed by her easily offended, possessive ex to fall in love with the worst man in Arkham as revenge for caring more about her job than her love life. Joker is fully aware of it.

If Batman was in the Marvel Universe, these are people who would most likely fall in love with him
He's had over 23 girlfriends over the years, if he was in the MU, he would get with one or two

Joker won't be mad, however. In fact, he'll find the irony of it absolutely hilarious and have a good laugh about it.

The Batman of Zur En Arrh will eventually evolve into All-Star Batman.
After the Silver Age comes the Dark Age. He's also the one who hates Rock and Roll.