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While browsing the other day I came across someone who has a rather interesting theory. I don’t recall this person being credited in the version I came across but the site I found it on was one of those ‘viral image’ sites. This theory was pertaining to Batman, the origins of The Joker and the generalized canon considered fact for the night Bruce Wayne’s parents were gunned down. They were shot, true enough…but who shot them?
Was it Joe Chill…or was Joe Chill just some insane homeless mugger not knowing what he was admitting to? Was the killer in fact Jack Napier who later became The Joker? Follow me down the rabbit hole and let us examine an alternative!
I’ve rewritten the theory to add some missing details and naturally did it in my own style too, enjoy!
Some back ground
It’s long been established that the origins of Batman began the night his parents were gunned down. If it were not for that night, there would be no Batman.
Since the original version of the story, there has been half a hundred different versions retelling the same story – essentially the motivation and the identity of the shooter changed so much that it’s nigh impossible to establish what is in fact considered to be the true version. In some versions the killer is a petty criminal named Joe Chill…in other versions the killer was in fact a young Joker…and in at least three versions the killer is in fact never identified and never found.
The only thing we can really bank on is the fact that Bruce Wayne’s parents were gunned down in an alley on a cold winters night while he was a child. This raises the question though, if you’re going to bother to shoot the parents – why not shoot the kid too? From the muggers point of view, the kid could identify him…so why not take care of the problem right then and there? Perhaps we’ll never know why Bruce was spared on that fateful night…but there is a theory.
Somewhere in Batman’s yet unwritten future there will come a villain so powerful – powerful on a cosmic level, as in destroyer of time and space – that every hero in the Justice League is defeated and destroyed, leaving only Batman alive to deal with the situation in any way he can. Batman, being Batman and all – naturally finds a way to defeat this powerful villain. In desperation this villain (moments before death) tears a hole in time and space and hurls Batman through it in hopes to alter Earth’s past so that Batman might in fact never exist. This villain then dies, leaving Batman stranded somewhere in Earth’s past.
Upon arrival, Batman – having had his suit destroyed during the journey quickly steals some clothes off the washing line of what appears to be a a home doubling on the side as a business that does clothing alterations. Unfortunately he gets spotted by the man of the house nearby. After all a half naked dude stealing your sh*t off your washing line is hard to miss! The man pulls a gun on him but naturally Batman had no problems disarming the poor fellow and gently disabling him so that he could make his escape. Soon after finding a news paper he establishes that he is in fact in Gotham, on the very date, the very night his parents get murdered. Naturally he knew where this alley was so he went there…he couldn’t help himself. After all, would you do different?
Batman soon arrives in ‘Crime Alley’ and sure enough not long after his arrival – there they were – The Wayne Family. Batman stood in the shadows watching…waiting for the inevitable to happen…only it didn’t. As the Wayne’s proceeded through the alley no gunman came…no mugger appeared…there was no one there. The Wayne’s would leave alive, unharmed.
With a cold sweat hitting him like a brick – Batman realizes why he was sent here. If his parents don’t die this night – young Bruce would have a perfect life and NEVER become Batman. There would be no loss or pain or anger. There would never be a Batman. Therefore the powerful villain in the future would win and destroy all life in the universe. He is left with the impossible choice – The universe…or his parents? After what felt like hours of consideration – Batman realizes he still had that gun from the man at the house with the washing line earlier…he should use it, use it or doom the universe. And so Batman moved from the shadows and did to himself the unthinkable – he kills his own parents.
Shortly after this event, the person we know as Batman’s mind breaks, he goes variably bonkers with grief and being stuck in the past he had little choice or option so a few nights later in a drunken stupor – he hurls himself off a bridge and into the icy waters below the thin ice. As he sinks to the bottom his mind grows hazy, everything slows down…everything goes cold. This would be the end of Batman. This is how the story ends.
Later that same night Gotham Police pull a body from the water…an unidentified man in his mid 30’s with no ID, no finger prints, no identifiable labels on his clothing and pockets with nothing but lint in them – but ah…this body isn’t dead…it’s pale and white and half frozen but it’s not dead…huddled over him one policeman swears he heard a chuckle as the man awoke for a moment to let shine a chilling grin under the pale moon light before fading back into the darkness of unconsciousness.
So is Batman in fact the killer of his own parents? Did Batman become The Joker and is this the origin of the strange love/hate relationship between The Joker & Batman? We may never know but I for one think this is an awesome theory to consider and were it true – it would change how we see Batman, his life and his motivations.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments!
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