Paley’s Blog for Pop Culture Warriors. Batman Celebrates 80th Birthday


Beverly Hills, Calif. –
“People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy, and I can’t do that as Bruce Wayne. As a man I’m flesh and blood, I can be ignored, I can be destroyed, but as a symbol, as a symbol I can be incorruptible. I can be everlasting.” — Bruce Wayne (Batman Begins)

Earlier this month was the eightieth anniversary of Batman. The character was created by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger. Batman first appeared in Detective Comics #27 in 1939.  Originally named the “Bat-Man,” the character is also referred to by such epithets as the Caped Crusader, the Dark Knight, and the World’s Greatest Detective.

Batman made his debut in Detective Comics #27 in May of 1939.  Cover art by Bob Kane, writer Bill Finger.

“I must have a disguise. Criminals are a superstitious cowardly lot. So my disguise must be able to strike terror into their hearts. I must be a creature of the night, black, terrible…a…a…a bat!” – Bruce Wayne – Detective Comics #33 (November 1939)

Paley Center curator David Bushman assembled a panel of experts for a podcast discussion (featuring Batmanwriter Devin Grayson, comic book experts Brian Cronin & Arlen Schumer, and more) on Batman’s legacy as one of pop culture’s most enduring and engaging characters.  

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