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Alex Ross Explains Batman’s Scars

For nearly 80 years, Batman has given Gotham’s criminals a reason to fear the night while offering a beacon of hope to the citizens of his city. Bill Finger and Bob Kane’s comic book creation has proven to be a timeless hero across all media, even though Batman himself is ultimately human. He can be hurt and he can be killed.

One of the most famous illustrations by comic book painter Alex Ross is a striking black and white image of Batman’s alter ego, Bruce Wayne, with his shirt off and several scars running down his body. It’s the cost of being a superhero, as explained by Ross in a recently released video.

As noted by Ross, the original illustration appeared in the Batman: Black and White anthology. Here’s a better look at the image.

Batman scars Alex Ross

The story that Ross cites as his primary inspiration was from The Brave and the Bold #197; which featured a story by writer Alan Brennert and artist Joe Stanton. In that tale, Batman enlisted the help of Catwoman to find his missing friends and loved ones after an encounter with the Scarecrow. After Batman was burned, Catwoman helped him treat his wounds when she finally saw the scars for herself.

Batman shares his scars

Note that readers never actually saw the scars that shocked Catwoman. However, variations on this scene have played out in other Batman comics over the years. More recently, Batman actually lost most of his scar tissue during Bruce Wayne’s most recent return to the cape and cowl. This means that Batman will just have to get more “reminders” of his never-ending battle against evil.

What did you think about Ross’ new video? Let us know in the comment section below!

Images: DC Comics

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