Truth in superheroes

How long would Bruce Wayne have to train to become Batman?

In some of the timelines you see in the comics, the backstory is he goes away for five years—some it’s three to five years, or eight years, or 12 years. In terms of the physical changes (strength and conditioning), that’s happening fairly quickly. We’re talking three to five years. In terms of the physical skills to be able to defend himself against all these opponents all the time, I would benchmark that at 10 to 12 years. Probably the most reality-based representation of Batman and his training was in Batman Begins.

An interesting interview in Scientific American with a professor of kinesiology and neuroscience, tying into “The Dark Knight” and promoting a forthcoming book, Becoming Batman: The Possibility of a Superhero.

(And then of course there’s the question of who would win, in a universe of superheroes.  The battles have already been played out in the comicsverse, but of course not in the context of a rigorous, double-blind study.  Rigorous isn’t the right word, but HowStuffWorks looks at unlikely superhero match-ups in a vaguely science-y sort of way.  Starting off, quite naturally, with Superman vs. a Jedi.)

(Scientific American: “Dark Knight Shift: Why Batman Could Exist — But Not For Long,” by J.R. Minkel in conversation with E. Paul Zehr [14 Jul 2008]; and How Sutt Works: “Battling Blockbusters,” by Tracy Wilson and Robert Valdes [)