If we've learned anything from comic books and their adaptations, it's that superheroes seldom choose their own aliases. More often than not, they're dreaming up by enterprising reporters or gruff, cigar-chomping editors. Such is the case with South London's new masked crimefighter, dubbed the "Bromley Batman" last week by a local newspaper.
It's "God awful," he told the Evening Standard, which gave him the name in the first place. Conceding he'd never thought about adopting an alias, he said, "As a young boy I always enjoyed The Shadow, so if any name then that one kind of makes some sense."
The anonymous guardian, who described himself as "younger than 50 and older than 25," drew attention last week after he appeared in suburban Bromley to rescue a man from a gang of knife-wielding thugs. That initial report led two other people to come forward to say they too had been saved by the vigilante, as far back as four months ago.
the Bromley Batman The Shadow told the newspaper he's been patrolling the streets for three years, but had managed to remain undetected until now. Apparently the "power to cloud men's minds" doesn't always work so well. While that may not be quite up to snuff, The Shadow certainly has his creed polished.
"I am doing this for future generations to feel safer," he told the newspaper in an email. "I have seen the world get increasingly dangerous and unstable. We all need to stand up and be counted, not stand by when people need us. Let us please try to leave a better world for our children and learn from our previous mistakes instead of making the same ones over and over again.
"I'm glad the people I have helped are OK, but there isn't any thanks needed. Just raise a glass or something and then forget about it and get on with your lives -- I wish you all well."
It's not quite "Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of men," but it'll do.