Is Batman a State Actor? ‘Law of Superheroes’ Authors Dish on Comics in the Courtroom
By Lee Rawles
Dec 10, 2012, 03:10 pm CST
Corrected: Long have comic book fans debated the minutiae of the genre. Lawyers James Daily and Ryan Davidson, authors of the two-time Blawg 100 nomineeLaw and the Multiverse, have taken the discussion from the comic book store’s backroom to the courtroom.
In their new book, The Law of Superheroes, Davidson and Daily map out what the legal implications would be for various superhero powers and storylines. Is Batman a state actor under the Lugar test? Is the Incredible Hulk liable for property damage created when he “hulks out?” Would a mind-reading psychic like Professor X be allowed to introduce telepathic evidence in court? When Superman crushes a lump of coal into a diamond and gives it to Lana Lang, is that gift taxable? The authors join ABA Journal podcast editor Lee Rawles to discuss those issues and share what comic aficionados’ responses to the book have been.
[Note on audio quality: Lee Rawles has a headcold and Ryan Davidson conducted the interview over Skype.]
Updated at 11:05 a.m. to correct that Lana Lang received the diamond from Superman.
Listen now: Is Batman a State Actor? ‘Law of Superheroes’ Authors Dish on Comics in the Courtroom
In This Podcast:
James Daily is an attorney licensed in Missouri and a graduate of the Washington University in St. Louis School of Law. He works for the Stanford University Hoover Institution’s Project on Commercializing Innovation and represents clients in intellectual property matters. (Portrait by Jen Vaughn)
Ryan Davidson is an attorney licensed in Indiana and a graduate of Notre Dame Law School. He practices in Fort Wayne, mostly in insurance law. (Portrait by Jen Vaughn)