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Drawing Crazy Patterns – Knowing Batman’s Identity Can Be Lethal!

by  in Comic News Comment
Drawing Crazy Patterns – Knowing Batman’s Identity Can Be Lethal!

In this feature, I spotlight five scenes/moments from within comic book stories that fit under a specific theme (basically, stuff that happens frequently in comics).

Today I’m featuring people who have discovered that Bruce Wayne is really Batman…only to die soon afterwards.


The king of this plot is Joe Chill, in the utter classic Batman yarn, “The Origin of the Batman,” from Batman #47.

Batman confronts the man who killed his parents…

I still can’t get over how awesome that story is.

Anyhow, amusingly enough, the VERY NEXT ISSUE of Batman, #48, has a story about a crook who escapes from prison and goes on the lam – conveniently in Wayne Manor. He accidentally discovers the entrance to the Batcave and Batman and Robin try to trap him within the cave…

A number of issues earlier, a member of a gang of hoods Joker was a part of figured out Batman was Bruce Wayne after dancing with Bruce. She saved his life, only to be killed in return…

Go to the next page for the next group of examples!

In Batman #83, Batman crashes the bat-plane and is trapped in the mountains outside of Gotham City. A bunch of crooks are the only people who receive his transmission for help. Now knowing Batman to be out of commission, they decide to hire an ex-con to dress up as Batman while the real one is indisposed. However, the ex-con, conks his head and Robin comes by to bring him back to Wayne Manor, where he is convinced that he IS Bruce Wayne. The ex-con (named Harry) then fights the crooks AS Batman! Eventually, the REAL Batman returns and is captured. Harry, though, looks enough like Bruce Wayne that when Batman is unmasked, they still think he is Harry. They decide to kill him in retaliation for double-crossing them. Harry has something to say about that…

In Detective Comics #70, a fake mind-reader, Carlo the Amazing, actually gains the power to read minds. He figures out Batman is Bruce Wayne.

Carlo goes on to use his new powers to find out where an old miser has hidden his treasure. Batman and Robin track Carlo to the miser’s home only for Carlo to trap them (as his telepathy means that he knows all the secret trap doors and defenses that the miser has devised for his home to keep people from stealing his treasure). Carlo then throws Robin into a bathysphere) with the oxygen turned off so he’ll suffocate to death) and sets out to find where the miser put his treasure…

If you have a suggestion for a future Drawing Crazy Patterns installment, e-mail me at

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