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Is Batman a State Actor? ‘Law of Superheroes’ Authors Dish on Comics in the Courtroom

Dec 10, 2012, 03:10 pm CST

Comments

Lots of interesting questions and analyses.  I especially enjoyed the discussion of how Superman should sequence the steps of the coal-to-diamond transmogrification to prevent gift tax consequences.

On the issue of serving Batman, I think that first, even though his identity as Bruce Wayne is secret, plaintiffs’ lawyers would glean from the sophisticated automobiles, motorbikes, planes, helicopters and boats (and all the cool stuff in the utility belts) that Batman is quite affluent.  Second, so far as the method of service, a sharp lawyer could hire a troop of actors, everyone bearing process, to stage a phony mugging in Gotham.  When Batman predictably shows up to intervene, voila!  He is served!

By B. McLeod on 2012 12 11, 7:16 am CST

My day just got waaaay better.  I totally have to find this book!

By RecentGrad on 2012 12 11, 2:35 pm CST

@ McLeod:
Well, that is how Ras Al Ghul found out that Batman and Bruce Wayne were one and the same.

By Guilin Expat on 2012 12 14, 2:49 pm CST

In my house, this is what’s called “squeezing the fun” out of the conversation.

By TQB on 2012 12 14, 5:32 pm CST

@1.  No need to risk a beating by faking a crime, McLeod.  Just turn on the Bat Signal and wait.  And Superman is much too goody-two-shoes to avoid any tax.  He would just pay it.

I know these things.  I have over 20k comic books in my attic dating back to he early 60’s.

By W.R.T. on 2012 12 15, 6:26 am CST

“lawyers would glean from the sophisticated automobiles, motorbikes, planes, helicopters and boats (and all the cool stuff in the utility belts) that Batman is quite affluent.”
Not so fast.  They would glean that EITHER Batman is quite affluent and funds his own operations OR Batman has a lot of supporters whose aggregate contributions are substantial OR Batman has a wealthy benefactor.  Since Wayne publicly backs Batman, the conclusion that Wayne IS Batman is not entirely obvious to people who don’t have access to information you happen to be privy to.

“Second, so far as the method of service, a sharp lawyer could hire a troop of actors, everyone bearing process, to stage a phony mugging in Gotham.  When Batman predictably shows up to intervene, voila!  He is served!”
Allow me to step in for Batman’s lawyer: 
“You say you served Batman.  How do you know?  All you can testify to is that you served some random person who happened to be wearing a Batman costume.”  If you can show me where service to a comparably-dressed person qualifies as service in the rules of court, I’d like to see your citation, please.”

By James Pollock on 2012 12 16, 8:49 pm CST

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