A batarang is a roughly bat-shaped throwing weapon used by the DC Comics superhero Batman. The name is a portmanteau of bat and boomerang, and was originally spelled baterang. Although they are named after boomerangs, batarangs have become more like shuriken in recent interpretations. They have since become a staple of Batman's arsenal, appearing in every major Batman television and movie adaptation to date. Recent interpretations of the Dark Knight find additional motivation to use the batarang as a ranged attack (alternative to firearms, which he rejects outright due to the circumstances of his parents' murder) and is used primarily to knock guns out of an assailant's hand.
|First appearance||Detective Comics #31 (September 1939)|
|Created by||Gardner Fox|
|In story information|
|Element of stories featuring||Batman|
Batarangs first appeared in Detective Comics #31 (September 1939). The earliest depictions were of scalloped, metal boomerangs used to attack opponents, which quickly flew back to the thrower. However, variations of batarangs include those that can fold to fit into Batman's utility belt, those that can be explosively charged, those that can be remote-controlled, and those that are electrified. A rifle-like grappling gun first appeared in Frank Miller's Batman: The Dark Knight Returns #1. However, the now standard hand-held version of Batman's grappling gun first appeared in the 1989 Batman film. It gradually replaced the batarang and a rope in the comics after artist Norm Breyfogle introduced a grapple gun in Batman #458 in January 1991. That tool became the standard in the subsequent animated series, comics, films, and video games such as Batman: Arkham Asylum and in Batman: Arkham City a more advanced version called the Grapnel was introduced which could be used to launch Batman into the air to glide using kinetic energy.
Batgirl also uses batarangs. Nightwing, a former Robin, is known to use his own modified batarangs called Wing-Dings, which are styled after a bird. Tim Drake, the third Robin, also possesses his own 'R'-shaped shuriken. In an issue of Teen Titans (Vol. 3), Drake claims that he hid the costs for shipping a Batmobile from Gotham City to San Francisco in "the batarang budget", which he tells the others is "bigger than you might think". The current version of Batwoman, who was introduced in the 52 continuity, uses a miniature batarang. Catman also uses weapons inspired by Batman's and calls them "catarangs". Like Robin, Anarky, an occasional antagonist of Batman, also makes use of shuriken formed after his own gimmick, the "circle-a".
A Throwing Bird—colloquially referred to as a "Birdarang"—is a roughly bird-shaped throwing weapon used by the DC Comics superhero Robin as a non-lethal ranged attack alternative to firearms. They are similar to batarangs. They first gained prominence in the 1997 live-action film Batman & Robin. The Throwing Birds in that particular film have silver edges with a red design. As with Batman, Robin can launch his weapon with a launcher located on his lower arm. They are also used by Robin in non-Batman media such as Teen Titans Go! where they appear under the name Birdarangs.
In JLA: Earth 2, Owlman has his own arsenal of "razorangs".
In the movie adaptations of Batman, the batarangs shown roughly match the adapted bat logo of the respective movie franchise. Following the backlash against the camp Batman television series, the franchise has avoided falling into the perceived overuse of the bat- prefix, for which the 1960s series was criticized. Though featured prominently, the batarangs are very rarely referred to by name, unlike the Batcave and Batmobile.
The television series Birds of Prey also features batarangs. However these versions are circular and bear the Birds of Prey symbol, rather than the traditional bat shape.
The batarang used in Batman was a foldable metal bat attached to a line and was used to ensnare an enemy's legs and manually drag them back. Batman Returns also featured a computerized version that could be programmed to fly after specific targets. Batman Forever featured two types of batarangs: one with a string which catches one of Two-Face's thugs in the Gotham City bank and a "Sonar Batarang" that uses the "Sonar Suit" to destroy the Super Box and the Nygmatech building. Other batarangs are seen in the Batcave, along with the one used in Batman Returns but not used during the movie. Batarangs also appeared in Batman and Robin.
While The Dark Knight uses the batarang in its promotional posters, it is not thrown in the film. As part of Lucius Fox's improvements on the Batsuit, he adds blades on the suit that shoot out of Batman's arm, which are similar to the batarang. To gain leverage over his fight with the Joker, Batman shoots these blades at him, distracting him and giving Batman the upper hand. His true batarangs are only seen once during the film; when Bruce Wayne puts away his Batsuit after deciding to turn himself in to the police, he takes a minute to pick up and stare at one of his batarangs, and then proceeds to put it away with the rest of his gear.
In The Dark Knight Rises the traditional batarangs as seen in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight are not shown but a similar weapon is used. Batman fires miniature bat shaped darts at Bane's henchmen which knock them unconscious.
In Batman: The Animated Series his use of batarangs is ubiquitous. The standard is a serrated crescent shaped. One version attached to a line allowed him to snare criminals as well as ascend and swing from rooftops but he relied on his grappling gun for transportation.
Batman Beyond, another animated series, which takes place 50 years in Gotham City's future, has a young high school student donning a high tech version of the batsuit to become the new Batman. This suit, among many other features, has the ability to automatically load ultra-compact foldable circular batarangs in the wearer's hand or shoot them through the top of the wrist. The batarangs are collapsible and come in a variety of forms including electrical versions to take down Inque, and explosive versions to demolish obstacles.
In the Justice League cartoon series, Batman employed a variety of Batarangs, including explosive Batarangs and electrically charged variants.
In the Teen Titans animated series, Robin uses similar modified batarangs to the adult Nightwing, referred to as birdarangs. The same weapons are used by The Batman's interpretation of Robin. Robin also uses circular Batarang type weapons in the TV series Young Justice.
In the animated series Krypto the Superdog, Robbie the Robin uses comical weapons called beakerangs, which are miniature projectiles that contain a highly exaggerated amount of purple incapacitating foam. Ace the Bat-Hound fires Batarangs from his flying platform.
In The Batman, a later animated series, the batarangs are mostly depicted as futuristic throwing weapons lined with fluorescent blue, and making a distinct humming noise while flying through the air. They are also portrayed as sharp enough to slice through metal pipes. The Batman has from time to time also used them in hand-to-hand combat (in one instance, during the fight with Clayface II, Batman attached a rotating batarang to his wrist, making it a makeshift miniature buzzsaw). Despite the regular batarangs, the Batman uses several other variations, including explosion batarangs, that explode after making contact; electrocuting batarangs, that discharge a strong electric current through a person or object; and, batarangs with a special technological virus, that infects and disables a machine or gadget, making it ineffective. Also, the Batman uses a very special remote-controlled batarang, that is a little larger than the other versions, can adhere to any surface, and has a miniature high-resolution camera. Despite them being futuristic, these batarangs have the most boomerang characteristics, and are shown return to Batman's hand. In The Batman vs. Dracula, Alfred Pennyworth treated some of the batarangs with garlic in preparation of the Dark Knight's battle with Count Dracula.
In Batman: The Brave and the Bold, the batarangs are not shown as high tech futuristic throwing tools like in The Batman, but as simple shuriken/boomerangs that he uses to fight crime (although he has been seen using explosive batarangs, and in the case of the Gentleman Ghost, Nth metal batarangs.) Batman has also been shown to be able to turn his bat symbol into a batarang, as seen the pilot episode, "Rise of the Blue Beetle". Also, Owlman, Batman's parallel universe counterpart, has a similar weapon to the batarang, however, his, instead of spinning at high speeds, fly straight like a glider.
In the series Beware the Batman, the batarangs have a shape similar to the Nolan universe counterpart with bronze and gray coloring. Some are collapsible. Others employ miniaturized scanners allowing Batman to study potentially dangerous objects from a far. Others carry explosive charges.
In Robot Chicken DC Comics Special III: Magical Friendship, in the Robot Chicken DC Universe Batman reveals to Robin that he created a Batarang entirely out of Kryptonite which he planned to use to kill Superman if he ever turned evil as one of the many methods he developed to deal with members of the Justice League if they ever turned evil. Later in the special, Batman stabs the Kryptonian-half of Composite Superman's shoulder with the Kryptonite Batarang to weaken him enough to allow Superman to defeat him with a punch to the groin.
The Batarang was a primary weapon in Batman: The Caped Crusader. It was used to climb and swing in Batman: The Movie
Lego Batman: The Video Game features batarangs (Each with a color), which can be used by four characters; Batman (batarang black and yellow), Robin (batarang red and green), Batgirl (batarang black and yellow), and Nightwing (batarang red and green).
In the Batman Begins video game, Batarangs were only used to interact with the environment, in order to scare henchmen.
In Batman: Arkham Asylum, Batman can wield a single Batarang from the beginning, and the player has the opportunity to unlock multiple as well as remote-controlled Batarangs and Sonic Batarangs, which can be used to attract enemies. In addition, the Collector's Edition of the game comes with a 14" plastic Batarang model (scuffed and scratched to suggest heavy usage) affixed to a display base. The Batarang appears in the sequel, Batman: Arkham City along with the remote-controlled Batarangs and a new type, a reverse Batarang able to loop behind an enemy and attack from behind. Batman: Arkham Knight, the third and final installment in Rocksteady's Arkham trilogy, also features the batarang with many of the same variants and abilities seen in the previous two games. Batman also has a new Batarang called the Bat Scanner he can throw high into the air around Gotham to scan a specific area and is used several times during Batman's hunt for Scarecrow and the Arkham Knight. Though the Bat Scanner resembles a remote control Batarang, it can fly much farther into the air, though unlike most gadgets it only appears during cutscenes. Toy and prop replica company NECA produced a batarang replica based in the Arkham Knight design, which can be purchased through video game retailer Gamestop. This batarang replica can be folded at its middle hinge and rapidly opened with the press of a button, and also has a removable LED light panel.
Batman's utility belt is a feature of Batman's costume. Similar belts are used by the various Robins, Batgirl, and other members of the Bat-family.Batman (2003 toy line)
In 2003, DC rewarded the rights to produce Batman, Superman, and Justice League/Justice League Unlimited figures to Mattel. Mattel, who took over production from Hasbro, released their first original comic-style toy line, Batman, in 2003, and it lasted until summer 2005.Batman (Sega Genesis video game)
Batman also known as Batman: The Video Game is a video game released for the Sega Genesis, which was inspired by the Tim Burton-directed Batman film from 1989. The Genesis version was also produced by Sunsoft. The game is more faithful to the film's plot than the NES version and features levels in which the player controls Batman's vehicles.Bombshell (DC Comics)
Bombshell (Amy Allen) is a fictional character, a comic book superhero published by DC Comics. She first appeared in Teen Titans vol. 3, #38, and was created by Geoff Johns and Tony Daniel.DC Nation Shorts
DC Nation Shorts are animated shorts featuring characters from DC Comics that aired in a series on Cartoon Network on Saturdays at 10/9c.DC Superheroes (toys)
DC Superheroes is a collection of action figures originally produced by Mattel in early 2006. It is divided into three different lines - the Justice League Unlimited toyline, with figures based on the animated Justice League Unlimited series; the S3: Select Sculpt Series, featuring more comic-accurate figures in the 6" scale; and a 12" figure line. The S3 line is further divided into two lines - one featuring Batman, and the other featuring Superman. Series 1 of the S3 line began shipping just after Christmas 2005 to Wal-Mart and began arriving in retailers like Target and Toys "R" Us approximately one month later. The figures have characteristics similar to the competing Marvel Legends line in terms of detailed sculpting, articulation, and including a comic book or diorama with each figure.Flamingo (comics)
Flamingo is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, commonly as an adversary of the Batman.Gearhead (DC Comics)
Gearhead is the name of two DC Comics supervillains.
The unidentified Gearhead first appeared in Steel #14.
The Nathan Finch version of Gearhead first appeared in Detective Comics #712 and was created by Chuck Dixon, Graham Nolan, and Bob McLeodMonk (comics)
The Monk, also known as Mad Monk, is a fictional supervillain appearing in comic books published by DC Comics, commonly as an adversary of the superhero Batman. The character first appeared in Detective Comics #31 (September 1939) and was created by Gardner Fox, Bob Kane, and Sheldon Moldoff.Necroplasm
Necroplasm is a will-controlled magical substance featured in the fictional Spawn universe.Powerless (TV series)
Powerless is an American sitcom series developed by Ben Queen, that aired on NBC from February 2, to April 20, 2017. The series was a sitcom set within the world of the DC Universe. The pilot, which was green lit in August 2015, was ordered to series on May 11, 2016. On April 25, 2017, NBC pulled the final three episodes of the series from its schedule, with no indication whether they would be rescheduled at a later date. The series was officially cancelled on May 11, 2017. The unaired episodes were made available on TVNZ OnDemand starting May 12, 2017.Spawn/Batman
Spawn/Batman is a 1994 one-shot comic book written by Frank Miller with art by Todd McFarlane and published jointly by DC Comics and Image Comics. The comic is an intercompany crossover between Batman and Spawn.The Bombay Boomerang
The Bombay Boomerang is Volume 49 in the original The Hardy Boys Mystery Stories published by Grosset & Dunlap.
This book was written for the Stratemeyer Syndicate by Vincent Buranelli in 1970.The Penguin Declines
"The Penguin Declines" is the 73rd episode of Batman, the conclusion of a three-part story in its second season on ABC. Its original telecast occurred on January 18, 1967 with a rerun June 21, 1967. It guest-starred Cesar Romero as Joker and Burgess Meredith as Penguin.Zeiss (comics)
Zeiss is a DC Comics villain, primarily an enemy of the Batman. He first appeared in Batman issue #582.