There has been a lot of attention over the years about Batman’s actual date of birth. Normally, comic writers tend to stay clear of controversial plots like this, as it would be weird if an actual year is tagged to a certain character. Batman comics started circulating about 75 years ago, on March 30, 1939. So if Batman’s birthday were pegged to him, we wouldn’t be getting a Bruce Wayne as young as Robert Pattinson, would we?
The Caped Crusader’s 82nd anniversary would be holding this year to trace the first publication to 1939. But first off, let’s discuss Batman’s birthday ritual, as revealed to us by DC. I’m pretty sure that most people would rather know what he does on his birthday than knowing the actual date.
The Dark Knight’s Birthday Ritual
You might be familiar with Doug Mahnke and Peter J. Tomasi’s Detective Comics. In issue #999, Batman shows us his odd but not surprising manner he chooses to celebrate his birthday.
Almost everyone has his own preferred way of celebrating their birthday. It could be with friends, family, dinner with a spouse, cake, a birthday party, or a night out to see a movie. Some might prefer just to be left alone or to work through the day. It depends on the personality. But I assure you, none comes close to The Batman’s Birthday celebration.
So in the previous episode, #998, we see Batman encountering what appears to be his younger self in an ill-fitting Batsuit. In the next issue, #999, we found out that this ‘younger self’ was just a part of Batman’s simulation.
He called this simulation Project 2.1. Also, it’s been revealed that everything that happened since the arc, from Alfred being stabbed to Leslie Thompkins being killed was a simulation.
Why would he do something like this, though? Why did he have to go through such rigor and emotional trauma anyway?
“That’s the point of this every year, isn’t it?” the young batman asks present-day Batman. “Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Your gift to you… Happy Birthday, Bruce!”
To make things clearer, after Batman breaks off from the simulator, it was confirmed that everything that had happened was a result of the simulation program.
Damian and Alfred come in to help Bruce off the simulator when it was over. Damian remarked that his dad had a way of celebrating his birthday. He also could not help but ask his father why he had to go through this every year.
Bruce’s answer is characteristic response was, “Isn’t it obvious? …To kill me.”
“The testing apparatus itself has evolved over time,” he continues, “but yes, this is an annual… event I’ve kept to myself.”
Bruce then explained further that the reason he uses the simulator is to make sure that Batman keeps on evolving, never to be caught stagnated.
Well, this birthday tradition will definitely seem weird to a normal person. But, for an enigma like Batman, it is no surprise that his birthday celebration choice is pushing him to his absolute limits.
When is Batman’s Actual Birthday?
Here are a few speculations of the Dark Knight’s birthday date:
As said earlier, comic writers are careful of tagging a hero with a certain birthday. This is because there has to be some continuity. Except you want a modern-day, of 95 years of age, to be the local crime fighter.
Bruce Wayne was first born on April 7, in his early debuts back in the 1930s. Another column in “Detective Comics #494” stated that Batman’s birthday was now February 19.
We can call this day the true birth of Batman as it was on this particular day that Bruce Wayne lost his parents.
One thing that stayed constant through the different comic adaptations was that the date of his parents’ death. A clock stands as a secret entrance to the Batcave in some of the comic iterations and is set at 10:47 p.m. on June 26. This was to honor the precise moment Thomas and Martha Wayne died.
Throw your Bat-party in a sad, dark alley outside a movie theater for maximum impact! Give out clocks as favors! These are terrible party ideas!
October or November
In an episode of an animated series, Bruce Wayne mentioned that his birthday was in October. While Frank Miller, who was the writer of both “Batman: Year One” and “The Dark Knight Returns,” claims that his birthday was in November.
I guess this is one thing the Batman lovers would have a hard time agreeing on. This is not a question that the writers have given enough detail about. We may never reach a consensus. But that won’t be a big problem, would it?