For decades, one question above all others has echoed through the comic-book stores and teenage bedrooms of this world: Who would win in a fight between Batman and Superman? That deep philosophical query is addressed in spectacular (or perhaps just spectacularly dull) fashion in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. In anticipation of it, we asked celebrities, comics creators, and geeky critics to make their pick.
That’s a really tough one because Superman, he’s a god. I feel like Superman would probably win. Without the kryptonite, he’s kind of invincible. Thank god that they watched the Marvel movies to learn about the Iron Man suit so they could upgrade Batman’s suit.
I’m so utterly unconcerned with the outcome of that fight. So profoundly, utterly unconcerned. I can’t even come up with a fake answer. I guess I have to root for Superman because he killed me, so I would hope that he would continue his killing spree and become like a serial killer Superman. That’s a new take on Superman. We’d all be in a heap of trouble if Superman was a serial killer. He could just wipe us all out. But then he’d be lonely.
Isn’t he already lonely?
Well, we’re all lonely.
I suppose theoretically Superman’s got the edge because he’s not from this planet. Batman’s just really stacked, you know what I mean? But listen, that’s a fight I’m willing to watch. That’s a proper odd boxing match. We’ll see, I guess, this weekend. But everyone should go and see I Saw the Light instead.
You know, I don’t really care. I wish they’d both injure themselves and shut up. Because this whole Batman vs. Superman thing, I just don’t get it. I think it’s weird to have superheroes fighting because aren’t they all supposed to be for the common good? It seems to be counterintuitive.
I hope Batman does, because otherwise I’d be out of a job. I think Batman, because he has the intellect, he has the brains. I think he always figures a way out. What I find intriguing about this movie, I've heard from the Batman role, is this I think is the first time they meet. They're two very destructive people. So I think it would be a battle of minds, as much as anything else — not just brawn.
Oh, Superman. The very fact that they even did this in the comics — I understand why they did it, and I understand why they’re making a movie — but I have a hard time believing that anybody could beat Superman. When they created Superman, they made him unbeatable, so even if Batman is in a special suit with special things, I mean, Superman is faster than a speeding bullet; I mean, he shoots lasers from his eyes. I don’t know how Batman would even have a chance.
Superman, ’cause I’ve always had a crush on him. How do I think he would win? Just smoldering good looks.
Batman, obviously. I support Batman. He’s my guy. He would win because he’s more badass than Superman. He’d beat him up. He’s just better. He would just out cool him. Superman would just be shamed into flying away.
I think it's a matter of how much preparation time Batman would have. Like, if he knew it was coming, I think he'd get ’em, because I think he's industrious enough to figure it out. If they just met in the street, there are just some obvious advantages Superman has. Flying helps. Being impervious to violence helps.
Robin Lord Taylor
I can say who’s side I’m on, and it’s Batman, but only because I love the idea of a mortal beating someone who’s essentially immortal. I think that’s like something that all of us could aspire to. [He’d use] kryptonite, I guess. In one of those batwings or something. I’m sure Zack Snyder has something more exciting when the movie comes out.
Greg Pak (comics writer, Batman/Superman)
It depends on what the best story’s gonna be, in the moment. If there’s a great story to be told where Batman wins, and if there’s a great story to be told where Superman wins, that’s it. Any character in comics can beat any other character in comics under the right circumstances.
Scott Snyder (comics writer of Batman and Superman Unchained)
I would say neither one would win if they fought. But, of course, Batman wins. I always say, "If the Hulk and Spider-Man fight, who wins? Batman wins." Batman always wins.
Mark Waid (comics writer of Superman: Birthright)
Superman. There's no question that Superman would win. Superman has heat vision. Heat vision trumps everything. If you can stand in low-Earth orbit and stare at someone and turn them into a skeleton, Superman wins.
Glen Weldon (author, Superman: The Unauthorized Biography and The Caped Crusade: Batman and the Rise of Nerd Culture)
Batman's power is that he never loses. Batman wins, hands down, always. That's the one thing he does. Superman never gives up, but that's different than always wins. Batman is the tactician. He makes plans within plans. He will win. That's canon. You can't escape.
Ardo Omer (comics critic)
Scott Snyder wrote a great answer to that question. Batman says, “Who wins in a fight? The answer is always the same. Neither of us.” You have these two great heroes, but a fight like that has them both losing in some way. But I won’t cop out of giving you a definitive answer, so I’ll say Batman, because he’s the Batman and shouldn’t have a reason beyond that.
Meg Downey (comics critic)
Probably Bruce because Clark would get tired of holding a grudge faster and just let him, to be honest. Clark isn't great at holding onto anger, especially when it's directed at people he cares for. Bruce can hold a mean grudge but would eventually have to hear the voice of reason from someone. Neither of them ever would kill the other, so it's really just a matter of who's willing to swallow their pride long enough to stay down, and Clark's a far more humble guy than Bruce.
Emma Houxbouis (comics critic)
There's all kinds of trinkets that can level the playing field physically, and when that happens Batman prevails. When it comes down to it, Clark will always put what he perceives to be the greater good ahead of his personal interests. If you put Superman and Batman into the pivotal scene of The Wrath of Khan, it would be Clark rushing into the reactor and Bruce screaming on the other side of the glass every time.
J.A. Micheline (comics critic)
Batman means a lot to me and I'd love to write him one day. That being said, Superman would own Batman's entire life in a fight. Sorry, B.