As Batman teams up with Fables’ Big Bad Wolf, he reveals his “best superpower” is the key to tracking down their mutual enemy, Bookworm.
Warning: contains spoilers for Batman vs. Bigby! A Wolf in Gotham #5!
It’s common among comic fans to joke that the traditionally powerless Batman‘s real superpower is his money. While it’s a humorous running gag, DC Comics actually just confirmed that the assertion isn’t far off from the truth. The confirmation comes in Batman vs. Bigby! A Wolf in Gotham, a six-issue crossover series pitting the Dark Knight against Fable‘s Big Bad Wolf.
Having realized they’re pursuing the same enemy, the two sleuths have called a truce and agreed to work together against Gotham villain Bookworm. Fortunately, it turns out that while Bookworm is stronger than ever, he’s still reliant on tactics that allow the Dark Knight to weave his particular brand of magic and track down his base of operations.
In Batman vs. Bigby! A Wolf in Gotham #5 – by Brian Level, Bill Willingham, Jay Leisten, Anthony Fowler Jr., and Lee Loughridge – the World’s Greatest Detective beats even Bigby’s tracking skills by tracking down Bookworm despite major injury. When asked by Bigby how Batman knows for certain that they’re at the right place, Batman responds, “I did a deep dive into Bookworm’s recent financials. It’s my best superpower.” On the surface, this is just a clever inside jab that acknowledges how readers feel about Batman’s only “superpower,” but actually, this line seems to highlight that it’s far more complicated than just having a lot of resources. It’s not Batman’s money that’s his power: it’s his understanding of it.
It’s a known fact that behind the mask, Bruce Wayne was born into billions of dollars. He’s continued to use his fortune to fund his war on crime, but his experience with wealth doesn’t just buy batarangs and batmobiles. Maintaining and utilizing his fortune has given Bruce Wayne insight into how others use their money. While Bruce recently lost his billions in DC’s mainstream continuity – and seems to be putting his money towards explosive armor in the alternate reality of Batman vs. Bigby! – this insight remains, and it’s natural that his investigation would take in financial matters where other vigilantes would be stuck stalking the Gotham underworld searching for clues.
While Batman has world-class fighting skills and a host of advanced technology, it turns out he considers his financial detective work his “best super power,” and for good reason – it gets results. Bigby and Bookworm are able to descend on Bookworm’s lair, finally getting the break they need in a case which has so far seen both face a series of embarrassing losses. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re ready for the villain’s mysterious supernatural partner, and Batman may soon come to appreciate Bigby’s own superpowers as much as his own financial acumen.
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