How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

5 Reasons Batman Would Be a Better Dad than Superman

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Batman better dad than Superman wearing baby carrier

Alright, we’re encroaching on some touchy ground here. I know. Please don’t publicly hang me with USB cable, nerds. I mean you no harm.

As one of you, I am duty-bound to admit this is basically an open question that I am posing to myself and working through in a public space. So, put down the phasers and close your heat-vision eyelids, okay? I’m not going to dive into the canon of stories that have transpired. Instead, I want to wade in the theoretical futures of each character. There are too many alternate storylines to keep track of to be completely pious to every Superman and Batman narrative.

It might also be my stressful memories coming back to haunt me, compelling me to paint this picture as starkly as I’m about to depict it.

1. Batman Is Human

Being godlike has its drawbacks. Superman looks at the world through a different lens than we do. While Bruce Wayne is affluent and incredibly skilled, he knows he breathes air and fights the same limitations a child does. Superman is essentially an alien who was brought up as a human. One day, Clark realized that he had to wear the mantle of protecting our planet. His outsider vantage would make relating to a child’s needs really difficult and burping super dangerous.

2. Batman Works at Night

Batman, while he’s certainly dedicated, has more of a schedule than Superman, and though he may be fast and incredibly strong, Superman is called away often. He can hear the screams of the masses. He cannot simply shrug his duties to our world. Imagine you’re sitting with your son playing legos, and you hear someone being murdered. AWKWARD. Are you more of an a-hole if you speed away in your glorified underwear, or if you continued playing with your kid? That’s what I thought. Superman cannot divorce his work from his personal life. Kids would be another form of kryptonite.

3. Batman Is a Realist

Batman suffered though he was raised with means. He’s working on his demons, his painful past and knows about “teachable moments.” These traits can be very important in teaching a child that not everything in the store is for sale. Kevlar is softer than steel in this case. Also, what if Superman’s kids were human? No powers. Think about about all the unreal expectations that a normal kid would have from dad who could fly and warm up Top Ramen with his eyes? What kind of a letdown would that be? Dads have enough intense expectations without superpowers. Or worse yet, what if he had flying rugrats who eventually went to school. Now, you know why Krypton exploded.

4. Batman Is Approachable

Sure, Batman has some baggage, but I defy you to find a dad without. His experience would inform his parenting practices. He would know the loss of having an absent dad. He would cherish his time with his children. He would know the value of an engaged father and use every tool in his utility belt to provide a balanced life for them. Superman never met his parents and learned of them from crystals. Crystals. The guy basically learned about his parents from meth.

5. Superman Is a Douche

Cool toys with badass armor and an awesome “angry dad voice” or brightly-colored underwear with the world on his shoulders. Which dad would you rather bring on a class field trip? Can you imagine how good Batman would be with Legos? I rest my case.

Anyway, I know “Man of Steel” is about to premiere, and I swear I’m not hating on the dude. If anything, this new iteration should be closer to how the hero ought to be imagined: a real person in a real setting who wants to do right but struggles against the conflict between his ability to save those around him and his own self-preservation as a foreign body in the metaphorical immune system of Mankind. Whatever all that means.

Have at it. 

Which superhero would make a better dad?

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My Original Superman Post
Losing a part, I gained a whole.

73 Comments

73 Responses to “5 Reasons Batman Would Be a Better Dad than Superman”

  1. Wednesday says:

    I’m sorry, but there is no real argument here. Batman has been scientifically proven to have acute post-traumatic disorder ( http://ap.psychiatryonline.org/article.aspx?articleID=1209395&RelatedNewsArticles=true ). Child services would simply take the baby away.

    • Amanda says:

      I don’t think having PTSD is reason enough to take a child away from their parents, though some counseling is definitely in order.

      • Nate (A.K.A. Superdad) says:

        Yes, counselling would be in order, treating the PTSD, which the article Wednesday sites states that the manifestation of Batman stems from this PTSD, therefore with the proper therapy, Bruce Wayne would recover from his PTSD shedding the mantle of the Batman. Batman’s greatest nemesis is therapy… Hmmm, makes you wonder if that’s why so many doctors and therapists turn out to be villains in his story…

    • Rich says:

      Whoa, PTSD means child services takes away your kids? In what world does that happen?

    • Nicolas says:

      If child services took children away from all parents who have been traumatised by their own children (birth, sleepless nights, teething, accidents… TEENAGE YEARS!), we’d all be childless!

    • Keira says:

      Ah crap, DoCS are going to take my son…

  2. Kevin says:

    This was great! Thanks for the funny read!

  3. jetts31 says:

    I voted for Superman and to no surprise, geeked out extra hard for this comment. Here’s why:
    1. Who better to help a kid who feels like they don’t “fit in” or are different than a guy who has been fighting that feeling for the past 75 years?
    2. Superspeed. Who cares when or where he works, Superman will be back in a few seconds. Meanwhile, Batman works at night but him and the Batmobile are stuck in traffic and junior is going to be late getting to school.
    3. Superman is a working stiff. Guy is a journalist. What can they bring in a year? $50 g’s tops. Batman is mega rich, has no real world worries. He’s a 1%er. He probably has an Occupy movement outside of Wayne Manor. Superman knows what it is like to work for what he has.
    4. Batman is anything but approachable. Works at night (when no one else is around), only has one seat in the Batjet, dude pushes everyone away except for his octogenarian butler AND he can’t keep his wards alive for shit. Batman grew up, for the most part, without parents, traveling the world. He doesn’t know the first thing about being a dad. Clark had Pa Kent. Had a great example to learn from so when it came time for the crystals, he was like, “pfft, tell me somethin’ I don’t know already”
    5. You can have your toys and armor, I’ll be flying around the world fast enough to turn back time. And lego’s? Hey buddy, how would you like Dad to use the buildings in lower Manhattan as lego’s? You would like that right buddy? Of course he would. Game set Kryptonian match.

    • ^^ Yes to all of this.

      And fyi, Clarke did not learn parenting from meth. Jonathan and Martha Kent were good people. No, great people. And you damn well know it.

    • Rachelle says:

      Has everyone forgotten about super boy? He was always having some angst filled fit about how doesn’t belong , being the clone mixture of Lex Luthor and Superman. And Superman left him hanging almost every time, he had a chance to be a dad, and the dumped the kid on his parents. I am just sayin…

      • Nick says:

        Superboy wasn’t his son though. If he had a kid, you know he’d want to take full responsibility for it. Look at what he did when the idea of adopting Lor-Zod came up. Dude ripped apart a government convoy to keep him safe. Lor-Zod eventually became Nightwing thus bringing us full circle to Superman Dad > Batman Dad.

  4. AndyO says:

    Batman has commitment issues. Superman only loves one woman.

  5. Clearly, you hate Ron Mattocks and all that is good in the world (but not in that order).

  6. Seanathan says:

    I want that Baby Batman Bjorn

  7. Muskrat is right: you hate me don’t you? And we were roomies for goodness’ sake!

    You, of course, have my attention, and there’s so much I could say to counter this argument that it merits a full blog post in response. It’s on.

    (This will be fun)

  8. Dork Dad says:

    Damn you both for playing right into my wheelhouse. I’m teaming up with Ron and Clark Kent’s Lunchbox on this one. It will be my honor to be his sidekick.

    -Dork Dad

  9. Bwahahaha! No vote. No challenge accepted. Just… Bwahahaha!

  10. BubbaShelby says:

    Batman also has experience: in the comics, Batman is already a father, both natural and adoptive.

  11. Jeff Bogle says:

    The correct answer is Wonder Woman…because everyone knows dads aren’t be good parents. ;)

  12. Jeff Bogle says:

    I was stuck between ‘can’t be’ and ‘aren’t’ — naturally, I used a bit of both.

  13. James Wright says:

    Forgot the most obvious one. Batman already wears a tool belt and has tons of cool toys. I bet he’d have an awesome stroller / diaper bag / wipe dispensers / etc.

  14. Nate (A.K.A. Superdad) says:

    I have to disagree and I think jetts31 hits a lot of good points, and I’ll add mine.

    1) Yes, Batman is human, and Superman is an alien but Batman’s child would be human and Superman’s child would be at least half alien, so they both could relate to their children in that way. Superman would have the added bonus of knowing what it was to grow up with parents that both were different than he was. Batman’s parenting skills would be established mostly by a single english butler (Why didn’t Batman develop an English accent?).

    2) Yes Batman works at night, so he’s likely burning the candle at both ends and is poorly parenting, and poorly Batmanning (that’s a word now). Superman does not need sleep and therefore he can be available all the time. Superspeed basically makes him back before the kid knows he was gone (kind of like when my kid is looking out the window and I quick shove some food down my throat and return before he even realizes that daddy is starving).

    3) But the fact that Bruce Wayne has an exorbitant amount of money means the kid will be raised knowing all the things in the store ARE for sale. Superman has dealt with his own demons, parents also dead, his entire species dead, being raised by adopted parents who have no powers. He would definitely be able to relate to a child who was different than his parents.

    4) Batman would screw up his kid with all the secret identity stuff. Yes, Superman also has a secret identity, but his alter ego is a mild mannered reporter for a respected newspaper. Bruce Wayne is an egotistical narcissist womanizer. Bruce’s child would grow up being told, “think of others”, and then watch his dad on the news swimming in other people’s water fountains with models. Superman is an orphan who was raised by two loving people who didn’t have to tell him he wasn’t theirs until he was old enough to deal with it. Batman watched his parents get murdered and thought he was responsible.

    5) I love Batman, I really do, but to be fair Batman bought a bunch of high tech toys so he could be somewhat protected while fighting criminals even though he could have taken those billions of dollars to invest in social and police programs to curtail the criminals instead of kicking them in the face. Superman can see through walls, can shoot lasers from his eyes, can fly, can lift up just about anything. I’d say those things beat a gravelly voice and a few toys. Also I think being a parent having the ability to have superspeed, see through walls, fly from point to point at the blink of an eye, have super strength, would help me simply getting the kids dressed, making sure that they’re not hurting themselves when out of sight, make sure I’m not late to appointments, and fighting them during diaper changes. :-D

  15. Kate says:

    My husband has made this comment before, what would happen when Superman erm.. in the middle of making said baby, just releases and the force of his, erm, release, makes mummy go flying though the wall…?
    Can’t imagine Superman getting laid. Just sounds dangerous!

  16. Dork Dad says:

    Also worth noting:

    Very likely Jason Todd and Damian Wayne would have something very different to say about your conclusions.

  17. Jack says:

    Wolverine would be far more loving and reliable.

  18. Paige Green says:

    Why has no one else stated the obvious: Captain America is obviously the best “super” father (and husband for that matter).

  19. Dembai says:

    Let’s get this straight: ROBIN. ROBIN. ROBIN. ROBIN.

    He’s already taken care of four of them (and only one of them died!). He IS a dad already!

  20. aj says:

    Both would be horrible for all the previously commented reasons, but Batman has cooler toys and better work attire

  21. steph says:

    What kind of baby carrier is batman using in the photo? It looks like a bjorn, but the child looks ergonomically supported…I’m confused. Someone needs to teach him crotch dangling babies are bad.

    • Hoovereeno says:

      Batman is a man of many inventions. Obviously an ergonomically designed, yet sleek and showy baby carrier is one of them. Lucious Fox is clearly a fan of safe babywearing.

  22. Nicolas says:

    The only superhero would could be a good father is the one who gives up his superpowers for his children. I vote for Mister Incredible!

    • DanDann says:

      Technically, I see where you’re going with that, but

      1) He didnt exactly give them up for the kids, he gave them up for his own (and the rest of the family’s) basic survival

      2) He and his wife then spent years suppressing their children’s natural talents…

  23. Sanstrousers says:

    I’m venturing into territory I know nothing about here, but can Superman even have kids? Is there a lady Superman he can have babies with? Because I’m pretty sure Supersperm can not be handled by a regular human womb. Also, clearly Batman would be the better dad because, as you said, Superman is a douche.

  24. Jo says:

    HHhhmmm…this is all very confusing. I voted for Batman, but the comments are very compelling. Naw, screw it Batman wins…that’s all. ;)

  25. Mandey says:

    Yeah, definitely Batman. Also because he’s his real self all day. Superman is someone else during the day, can you imagine how pissed his half super kids would be when they found out their Dad was lying about who he was his whole life? Also, their powers would only be half of what their Dad has- talk about always living in your father’s shadow. How brutal!

    Also, Superman is a total d-bag. And the people of Metropolis are Grade A idiots. If you can successfully be a public figure and still maintain anonymity with simply a pair of glasses, the people you’re surrounded by are probably not the brightest.

  26. Scott says:

    I just want to know where I can get a baby carrier/batman costume.

  27. Kenny says:

    Neither. The correct answer is Aquaman. He’d teach his kid to swim & tell all the man-eating creatures that live in water to leave his kid alone. Plus, on the 70s “SuperFriends” morning cartoon show, he always rode along in Wonder Woman’s invisible jet. So, he’s used to letting a hot woman drive. Perfect daddy material, I’d say.

  28. Missy says:

    I would worry about Superman’s wife/baby’s momma. What would it be like receiving the seed of Superman? And then carrying his child? If the fetus kicked he could knock out a kidney or fracture her spine. I don’t think any human woman would be able to survive long enough to carry a Superfetus full term. So any kids he’d have would have to be adopted or created by some sort of test tube-ish fake womb apparatus. And that’s just freaky.

  29. Drew says:

    The way you get Batman to win is by framing it to him as a contest. Because Batman. Always. Wins.

    If you don’t frame it as a competition to him, then all you get are child Robins. We actually get to see Batman’s parenting all the time.

    Actually, now I just convinced myself that Superman might be better at this. Batman’s child bodycount is a bit high…

  30. kipakiwi says:

    Seriously – WHERE DID YOU GET THE BABY CARRIER?! MUST HAVE for my husband. Seriously. Really. NEED it! You had to get it or make it or SOMETHING for the photo.

  31. Drew says:

    Of course Batman would be a better father, hasn’t he proved that with all of his orphan sons he has adopted?

  32. Jeff says:

    Id rather have superman as a dad just think you would have powers and most importantly x-ray vision ;)

  33. Mary says:

    PTSD is not in itself a reason to take a child away. If you become violent or unstable, then yeah, I guess. But not every person suffering from PTSD is violent. C’mon.

    I agree with all this, though. Batman would make a rockin’ dad.

    But for the record, Kryptonians did not have powers on Krypton. Only under the yellow sun . . . :p

  34. Christine Taylor says:

    1. Now Pick A Better Mom :) Jean Gray Or Rouge? Wonder Woman Or Storm?
    2. PTSD is NOT a Reason To Remove A Child. PTSD does Not Equal Violent. But, Even If The Child Is Injured Because Of It Counseling Would Be Mandated. Mental Illness Does Not Equal Bad Parent. If Every PTSD Sufferer Lost Their Kids No War Vets Would Have Their Kids.
    3. I Always Imagined Superman’s O Sounding/Acting Like A Cannon Complete With BOOM And Reco
    4. Didn’t Superman Discover His Powers As Opposed To Always Having Them? If So, Wouldn’t It Stand To Reason That A Fetus Would Not Have The Super Powers, There Would Not Be A Crazy Super Toddler Terrorizing The World.

  35. Very impressive photoshop job.

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