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Monday, June 15, 2020 

Polygon thinks Batman shouldn't have so much money

And that seems to be what the Joker War crossover is about. As the pretentious Polygon explains, the Clown Prince of Crime, who now knows the Masked Manhunter's secret identity, plans to rob all the Wayne estate's dough. They say:
All year, Batman comics have been gearing up for Joker War, a Gotham-wide crossover in which, well, the Joker does something big and bad. The difference with Joker War is that now the murderous clown knows that Batman and Bruce Wayne are the same person. And he also knows the identities of the rest of the Bat-family.
The blame for this can probably be laid at the feet of Brian Bendis, who went to such lengths to have Clark Kent drop his secret ID as Superman. Another annoying thing about this brewing Joker War is that Deathstroke's willing to make faustian pacts with the Joker:
The question on everyone’s mind is what the Joker plans to do with that information. Expose Batman’s secret to the world? Threaten his family? Desecrate his parents’ graves? No.

“You’re going after the Wayne fortune,” Deathstroke guesses, and nails it on the head.

For his participation in a five-way assassin attack distraction, Joker offers him all the money Bruce set aside for his nemesis, Dick Grayson. And while Batman is busy putting out those fires, the Joker will do the one thing most likely to destroy Batman forever: pick his pocket.

And you know what? Good for him.
And here's another irritating thing about Polygon - they're rooting for a villain. While the writers of this event conveniently throw all character development for Slade Wilson out the window, just so he can associate with vermin more murderous and morally questionable than himself, simply because he's being paid to pull a job he already tried to do in the Judas Contract storyline from New Teen Titans. But now, here's the part where the columnist believes Bruce Wayne is too wealthy:
I’ll say it, as a big Batman fan: Bruce should have less money. Now, granted, he’s been on a big recent push to pour cash into Gotham’s urban renewal, but until he’s just millionaire Bruce Wayne, he should keep going. The hero’s endless fortune doesn’t just invite questions about his civic responsibilities, it’s also come to function as a deus ex capitalism, handwaving any level of property destruction and excusing any reveal of a new gizmo or vehicle.

Batman’s money allows writers to transform him into a grim version of Silver Age Superman, who could travel backwards in time by accidentally flying too fast. And while that may be a realistic depiction of the power of a multibillion dollar fortune, it’s not particularly good for creating high stakes comics.
And I guess Iron Man's fortune allows him to become merely a mechanical version of Spider-Man? This is such a lame argument, hinting contempt for capitalism, suggesting a superhero can't possibly come within even miles of being wealthy to solve crimes. It's just an excuse to write up stealth attacks on capitalism, by people who can't possibly be true comics fans, let alone Batman fans or even Iron Man fans. At least it tells what they must think of Shell-Head with his vast fortune as the head of Stark Enterprises.

Anyway, Joker War's just another example of how the Joker's been overexposed nearly as often as Batman himself in the entertainment medium, when Two-Face could surely prove as good a villain to build such a story around. When the Joker's made into the prime spotlight of these events, you know they're artistically bankrupt.

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He needs to be independently wealthy, so that he can afford to buy all the Bat-equipment and not be tied down to a day job, not to mention paying Alfred's salary. But if he becomes crazy over-rich, it starts to beg the question of whether he is making the best use of his time rounding up criminals one by one when he could instead use all the power that money brings to make changes that would have an even greater effect on crime and benefit to America. Not to mention that keeping an eye on that kind of fortune would consume even more time than a day job.

(Green Arrow, though, became a much more interesting character when he lost all his fortune and had to run off to live at Sherwood Florist.)

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