The tale of billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne (Batman’s real identity) was to follow in the traditions of the classic pulp heroes — a man who has endured great tragedy by witnessing the murder of his parents at a tender young age. Out of this unspeakable tragedy, young Bruce vows to dedicate his life to the eradication of evil. He masters multiple fighting styles, excels academically and trains himself to be the world’s greatest detective, in much the same manner as the detective of French literature, Arsene Lupin or the British counterpart Sir Arthur Conan Doyle‘s masterful sleuth Sherlock Holmes. ￼ Bob Kane, a young cartoonist from the Bronx, NY, had dreamed up Batman, some believe, as early as 1934. Kane was deeply inspired by the classic sketches of Leonardo da Vinci‘s; his early designs of Batman were of a man in a gliding bat-winged costume in much the same manner as the famed inventor da Vinci’s layouts of flying machines. An avid movie-goer and fan of Gothic literature and architecture, Kane loved the caped look of Bela Lugosi as the famous necromancer Dracula in the Universal Studio‘s monster movies. Although it was his collaborating partner, Bill Finger, who brought the Batman to life on the printed page, it was clear that Bob Kane’s designs and influences won out in the end. Once again revisiting the mythological gods of Grecian lore, Batman bore similarities to Hades, the deity who ruled and was greatly feared by the underworld; Batman is feared amongst the hoodlums and criminals of the seedy underbelly of Gotham City. The character of Batman gained instant popularity. Detective Comics sales featuring the caped crusader were an astounding success. They even surpassed the sales of Action Comics featuring Superman. In 1941, National Periodical Publications began labeling all of their stable of book titles with a ‘DC’ logo — an abbreviation of its most successful title to date…Detective Comics.
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