Batman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character was created by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, and first appeared in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). Originally named the “Bat-Man”, the character is also referred to by such epithets as the Caped Crusader, the Dark Knight, and the World’s Greatest Detective.
Batman’s secret identity is Bruce Wayne, an American billionaire, playboy, philanthropist, and owner of Wayne Enterprises. After witnessing the murder of his parents Thomas Wayne and Martha Wayne as a child, he swore revenge on criminals, an oath tempered by a sense of justice. Wayne trains himself physically and intellectually and crafts a bat-inspired persona to fight crime. Batman operates in the fictional Gotham City, with assistance from various supporting characters, including his butler Alfred, police commissioner Jim Gordon, and vigilante allies such as Robin. Unlike most superheroes, Batman does not possess any superpowers; rather, he relies on his genius intellect, physical prowess, martial arts abilities, detective skills, science and technology, vast wealth, intimidation, and indomitable will. A large assortment of villains make up Batman’s rogues gallery, including his archenemy, the Joker.
Batman became popular soon after his introduction in 1939 and gained his own comic book title, Batman, the following year. As the decades went on, differing interpretations of the character emerged. The late 1960s Batman television series used a camp aesthetic, which continued to be associated with the character for years after the show ended. Various creators worked to return the character to his dark roots, culminating in 1986 with The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller. The success of Warner Bros.’ live-action Batman feature films have helped maintain public interest in the character.