10 Gadgets Batman Has But Never Uses Again
Since his comic book debut in 1939, Batman has used hundreds of gadgets in his war on crime. Some of these gadgets, like the batarang, are so popular that they have become commonplace in social lexicons. Batman will never stop using the batarang, even if it’s just fancy bat-shaped shuriken.
Batman has a wide range of “wonderful toys,” but for every relevant device that has survived to this day, there is another that has become obsolete. As technology advances in the real world, the writers at DC Comics have created new bat-themed gadgets to ensure Batman stays ahead of the curve. As a result, gadgets like miniature cassette players and communicators were phased out, while devices like underwater boat jets and sonic bat-beacons saw few uses.
10 Lie detectors have proven unreliable
In the past, Batman not only carried a polygraph, but also had an interrogation room. Batman relied on space to get answers from his enemies, which would not get the Justice League’s approval. Psychologists have determined that polygraphs can be beaten and shouldn’t be used as the sole method of detecting lies, so Batman appropriately eliminated them from his arsenal.
He could carry something in his suit’s onboard computer to read his enemies’ heartbeats, but he wouldn’t rely solely on that either. These days, Batman is able to read micro-reactions with his own two eyes easily enough to tell when someone is lying.
9 Bat nets haven’t been seen in years
in the Batman: Gotham after midnight #2 by Steve Niles and Kelley Jones, some enemies tried to ambush Batman. Not only did they fail, but Batman responded with a new gadget. Batman deployed tiny tags resembling batarangs, and after a period of time they exploded, covering enemies in a giant web.
These nets were dense enough to make escape nearly impossible, but not so dense that the criminal could not breathe. While this would be an effective crowd control weapon, Bruce has seemingly retired this device and more often relies on a bolas to tie down opponents.
A beacon that summons bats through an ultrasonic frequency that only they can hear sounds like a great idea, especially for a bat-themed vigilante. It intimidates the opponent and makes it easier for Batman to fight large groups of enemies. You probably believe he’s some kind of supernatural being.
Batman used this device to summon a legion of bats to aid in his escape from Gotham’s police force during Frank Miller’s “Year One” storyline. The scene was also adapted into Christopher Nolan’s Batman begins, but the bat-summoning sonic device hasn’t been seen in years. Perhaps Batman simply resorted to less dramatic ways to scare enemies or escape fights.
7 Miniature cameras have been replaced with live stream cameras
For several decades, Batman carried a miniature camera on his belt for surveillance missions. Thanks to the development of cameras and cell phones, he no longer has to rely on something as archaic as mini cameras.
His suit is so advanced that he can stream footage through his lenses live to the Batcave’s computer. They’ll probably even send the footage back in 4K, meaning he can later watch whatever he needs in real-time at the highest quality. Matt Reeves The Batman Film featured those high-tech lenses Batman always uses to record his nightly excursions.
6 Microcassette recorders don’t even exist anymore
In the Dark Knight’s earliest adventures in comics and on television, Batman needed a way to eavesdrop on conversations and record them. Eavesdropping on previous conversations allowed him to crack cases and decipher clues, even when using code words.
It makes sense that Batman’s utility belt used to carry a mini-cassette player, but modern-day Batman prefers the sleekest, stealthiest technology around. Well, not only is this technology outdated, it doesn’t exist. Good luck finding a place that even carries a tape recorder for playback, let alone making cassettes at all.
5 Bat communicators are too simplistic for the modern era
Batman’s ability to talk to Robin seems self-evident now, but that was far from the case in the 1940s. The only way people could talk was over a landline, so being able to talk to someone from anywhere felt like something only a superhero could do.
Both Batman and Robin wore communicators that fit inside their utility belts, making their belts larger and more prone to damage. Nowadays it would be easier to just buy a Bluetooth headset and install it in the hood. Little communicators are so common that superheroes use them in team-up movies with no explanation needed.
4 Batman’s crayons are not an efficient method of communication
It seems ridiculous that Batman would ever walk around with crayons in his belt. But that’s exactly what happened in the 1950s, giving Batman the ability to create characters or communicate with people without using words. The Silver Age really was a strange and fascinating time for comics.
Batman’s adventures have gotten less campy since the ’50s, so events like this would never happen unless parodied by Bat-Mite. Also, crayons would not be durable enough to stay in the utility belt for long. Communicating over a phone or hacking into a video feed is more Batman-like these days.
3 Flashlights are too low tech for Batman
Versions of Batman were created to appeal to mass audiences. Some creators wanted Batman to act more like a regular guy; Anyone who can train like he can actually be the Batman. So he often used low-tech items like flashlights or regular handcuffs.
A flashlight could help him read files in the dark, so it would make sense for an average person. But Batman is a billionaire; he would have fitted special lenses into his hood. Batman: The Animated Series was set in a fictional world oddly equipped with high-tech gadgets and at the same time black-and-white televisions. Batman’s arsenal was the perfect mix of low and high tech in this series.
2 Guns go against Batman’s modern code
Batman’s relationship with guns has been relatively the same for decades. For some reason he refuses to use any weapon in combat, considering it “a tool of the enemy”. But that wasn’t always the case. When the character was first introduced, he had no problems with firearms.
In the 1940s, after comics received stricter guidelines, the creators took away Batman’s gun to satisfy censorship. Narratively, the writers incorporated this change in Batman’s backstory and mindset. Joe Chill murdered his parents with a pistol, and Batman wanted to distance himself from that man and everyone else who used deadly force.
1 Underwater boot jets were a smart addition to the Batsuit
During the popular “Hush” storyline, Batman and Catwoman had to flee underwater from a brainwashed Superman. Of course, Batman carries multiple respirators in case of underwater situations, but escaping the Man of Steel was another matter.
Luckily for him, he wore tiny jets built into his boots, and luckily they worked underwater. This was a gimmick Bruce had never used prior to this comic and he has never returned to them since. Given how often Bruce finds himself underwater, it’s surprising that this addition to the Batsuit wasn’t permanent.
NEXT: 10 times Talia Al Ghul was Batman’s best love interest
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