Why Batman?

Posted By on May 29, 2012

“Why Batman?” Most people who interview me ask that question, meaning either “Why is Batman so popular?” or “Why did you write a book about the psychology of Batman?” In other words, why do we and why do I find the Caped Crusader so intriguing? People on Twitter and Facebook speculated on how I must answer.

Here are a few of their guesses:

  • ‏@Drakmarth: Answer to both: Because he’s awesome
  • @kristenmchugh22: He’s a fundamental mirror of the human struggle, and because he’s a great lens for principles we find hard.
  • @GamerGirl4Evr: Batman is a true hero he don’t have super powers like others do, when ever he gets knocked down he gets back up and fights
  • @revsully: For Me, Why #Batman? He is the Patron Saint of Problem Solving. A great archetype to call upon @ work [The discussion inspired him to follow up by blogging about it: “The Tao of Sully Presents…Why Batman?”]
  • @MorganDerera: Alternatively they think you’re Batman and are sincerely asking “Why?”
  • @Ambassador_Curt: Answer to both: He’s Batman.

Batman’s the superhero with no superpowers. He can walk into a room full of people who fly, read minds, and run faster than light, and yet he’s the one who intimidates them. His personality defines him, not superpowers. His origin defines him as well, so much so that it’s part of his personality. Bruce Wayne doesn’t hail from some alien planet or mythical island, and his abilities don’t come from any magic ring, secret formula, or radioactive mishap. He was – and in many ways is – a little boy whose parents got gunned down before his eyes. When this character’s creators decided what must drive this man to instill fear in the wicked, Bob Kane and Bill Finger tapped into our most primal childhood fears.

Why don’t children fear this hero who dresses like a monster? Because he’s their monster. He’s ours. Children learn that magic will not save them, nor will a hero in blue really fly out of the sky, so they develop more realistic hopes. They hope someone will help or they dream that they themselves will find the strength to overcome. In Batman, they see the wounded boy who makes himself big and strong to turn fear against the fearsome. He’s the part of us that wants to scare life’s bullies away.

* Most recent interviews

All Fall Down: Being Human (U.K.) Season 4 Recap

Posted By on May 6, 2012

And then there were none. And then there were three.

This season, Being Human showrunner Toby Whithouse pushed his series’ world-building to the limit, wrapping it around both the fate of humanity and one little girl. As it turns out, this approach was more than a swan song – it was the opening strains of something (sorta) new.

Big SPOILERS ahead from this point.

In the end, Annie got her gun.

More accurately, a bunch of explosives – with an F-bomb thrown in for good measure in the original English broadcast; boo on you, BBC America – and with them, the destruction of not only the much-ballyhooed Old Ones, but, somewhat surprisingly, baby Eve, as well. Annie’s sacrifice turned out to save humanity from the vampire uprising we heard about in the season premiere and gave Annie her final Door to a peaceful fterlife.

Even considering the generous handwave by alt-future Eve, who explained that only her death would save the world, for Whithouse to literally pull the trigger on the kid showed some guts (but, thank goodness, no blood and guts. On her, anyway.)

Though it’s hard to say how much of the character’s arc was set in stone before Lenora Chrichlow’s castmates said goodbye prior to this year, the writing was on the wall for Annie pretty glaringly once we saw Hal’s budding paramour, Alex, still kicking around as a spirit. After all, the show moved through guest-creatures so rapidly this year, for one not to shuffle off should’ve twigged everybody’s antennae.

And so now we’re left a whole new take on the show’s familiar set up. Next year, it’ll be Two Bros and A Brogue. But in keeping with the Power of Three rule, let’s talk about three things the show did well this season.

    Seeing The Band Get Together: When the series began wayyyy back in 2008, Annie, Mitchell and George after they’d established themselves as a unit; Annie was the newest member, but she was already haunting their home in Hull, and Mitchell and George’s brotherly bond had already been forged. Annie being the last person left forced her to seek new bonds with Hal and Tom the werewolf.

The upside for the viewers was, it allowed the creative team to define Hal and Tom as Not Mitchell And George. Who knew Hal and Tom’s biggest shared quality was the fact they were both walking anachronisms? Hal was an Old One, but Tom was disarmingly old-fashioned, giving their shared explorations of modern culture a new spin on the series’ trademark relatable charm, without revisiting George/Mitchell territory. Also, spare some sympathy for Damien Molony; you know the guy’s going to be asked to sing like this for the rest of his days.

    The Revolving Rogues Gallery: As noted earlier, this season the show threw seemingly more Special Guest-Villains at us than ever before. And as frustrating as it could be to see our heroes not talk their respective issues out until it was almost too late, at least the antagonists were entertaining, beyond Mark Gattiss’ reliably oily turn as Mr. Snow.

Top of the class honors have to go to Cutler, who, besides serving as one of the Big Bads, was a useful tool for Whithouse and friends to tweak the show’s vampire lore. Cutler’s exasperation at his species’ archaic ways and self-absorption dovetailed nicely with his love for social media, and eventually gave the revelation of his history with Hal more oomph, setting the stage for one of the series’ more memorable exits.

Also, honorable mention to James Lance’s turn as Kirby – not only was his episode a great use of the old Yoko Factor trope, but it gave us this. And even if their introduction was a bit suspicious – suddenly we find out there’s been another Shadowy Group beyond the reach of even the vampires? Really? – if nothing else, it’ll be interesting to see just how far Mr. Rook and his Men In Gray reach.

    The New Band: For a number of reasons, even if Annie, Hal and Tom overcame their differences, their trio just never clicked; after the events of last season, Annie’s insistence on keeping a chipper face seemed strained at times, and this season’s pace allowed for less bonding time between herself and the new boys. Though Annie did lampshade this, admitting the losses of George and Mitchell had gotten to her, it did seem to take us a little too long for her to live up to her potential.

Annie’s gloominess, though, did set up Alex as more of a breath of fresh air – her reaction to not just passing on, but to Hal’s role in it, was amusing in its frustration and a welcome change of pace from the usual angst. And though the end of the season brought with it a return to the familiar (the ghost is the only woman in the Trinity) at least there’s a new jumping off point for fans, and for Whithouse to draw in more corners of his characters’ strangely relatable world.

Filmmaker Focuses on the Fans of Batman in New Documentary – Including This Superherologist

Posted By on April 16, 2012

Documentary film “Legends of the Knight” captures the impact of Batman and how this modern myth has affected our culture.

While Batman fans await the summer blockbuster “The Dark Knight Rises,” filmmaker Brett Culp is turning the camera on them.  His documentary film “Legends of the Knight” will tell the stories of people who have been inspired by the legacy and tales of Batman.

Not only will this film focus on the fans of Batman, its creation is dependent on the support of the fans via the crowdfunding campaign that begins April 12, 2012 (www.indiegogo.com/batmanfilm).

“Batman has become contemporary mythology,” Culp said.  “Our goal with this film is to show how enduring stories like this shape us.  As all great stories have the power to do, Batman has been a symbol that has inspired real people to achieve amazing things.  The purpose of ‘Legends of the Knight’ is to show that heroic stories have the power to lift us up, and we need more of them.”

Culp is a life-long Batman fan.  He and his team are capturing stories from around the U.S. and across the globe.  They are filming with individuals whose love of the Dark Knight has inspired them to overcome devastating obstacles, to motivate and encourage young people, and to contribute to their communities.

Well-known Batfans who have confirmed their participation in this project include:

  • Michael Uslan – executive producer of “Batman”, “Batman Begins”, “The Dark Knight”, & “The Dark Knight Rises”
  • Denny O’Neil – legendary Batman writer
  • Rabbi Cary Friedman – author, “Wisdom from the Batcave”
  • Dr. Travis Langley – author, “Batman & Psychology”; teacher of university course in psychology called “Batman”
  • Gotham Chopra – co-author, “Seven Spiritual Laws of Superheroes”; son of best-selling author Deepak Chopra

“Human beings have always been stirred to greatness by the tales of heroes,” Culp said.  “We connect with Batman because he is the super hero with no super powers.  Just as he has committed himself to making the world better, we can dedicate ourselves to a noble cause and make a difference.  This type of inspiration is a core function of storytelling in society.”

The production team for “Legends of the Knight” is now raising funds for production costs through crowdfunding.  The 40-day funding campaign gives supporters of the project the opportunity to pre-order copies of the finished film and other incentives as a way of funding this documentary project.

LINK to funding campaign:  www.indiegogo.com/batmanfilm

Release date will be early 2013.

Official website:  www.legendsoftheknight.com

The Variants Season 3 Kickstarter

Posted By on April 4, 2012

DALLAS, TX— “The Variants,” the original web television series
about life inside the comic shop, launched a Kickstarter campaign
April 3rd to fund their third season. After self-funding two seasons,
the award-winning comedy is asking viewers and fans to help reach its
goal of $8,000 produce the new season.

“We’ve done as much as we can out of pocket,” said series
co-creator and writer Ken Lowery. “But to move forward and give this
show the production values it needs, we’re going to need a little

Kickstarter (http://www.kickstarter.com/) is the popular crowd-funding
site for projects ranging from music to publishing to television and
movies. Contributors to “The Variants” Kickstarter will be offered
incentives for their contributions at various levels including season
DVDs, artwork, t-shirts and even a Karaoke party with the cast.

The Kickstarter campaign also released details about the new season,
including the addition of two new cast members. Curt Franklin and
Chris Haley of the Web comic strip “Let’s Be Friends Again”
(http://www.letsbefriendsagain.com/) return as a wealthy investor and
his attorney from their guest-starring roles at the close of “The
Variants” second season. They join cast members Keli Wolfe, Richard
Neal, Barry Fuhrman and Ken Lowery for the fall release of season

“Joining the cast of the Variants is a dream come true to Chris and
I,” said Franklin. “The kind of dream you have after eating an
entire pizza and drinking cough medicine all day."

Mr. Lowery and Mr. Neal also announced that should season three get
the green light, they will move from a monthly to a weekly update

Keep an eye on “The Variants” website
(http://www.thevariants.com/) and Twitter feed
(http://www.twitter.com/variants) for further updates on the
Kickstarter event, promos for the new season, and more. Or directly at

The first two seasons of “The Variants” are available free online
at http://www.thevariants.com and the DVD for Season One of “The
Variants” is available for order now at http://www.thevariants.com.

Journalists or bloggers interested in interviews or more information
can contact Ken Lowery at ken@thevariants.com.

Pre-Order Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight

Posted By on April 1, 2012

Comics Bulletin Interview: Getting Inside Batman’s Head

Posted By on March 31, 2012

Comics Bulletin writer Laura Akers attended one of my WonderCon presentations this month and later interviewed me about some things I had to say about what goes on beneath Batman’s cowl.

My 2012 WonderCon panels:
“Psychology of Batman” Robin Rosenberg & Travis Langley. My part: “Batman vs. Hamlet”
“Lessons Learned from Batman about Female Superheroes and Trauma: Resilience, Recovery, & Relaunch.” Andrea Letamendi, Robin Rosenberg, Travis Langley, & Bryan Q. Miller.
“Focus on Bob Schreck.” Bob Schreck & Travis Langley.
“All I Really Need to Know, I Learned from Batman and Bart, Man: Embiggening Brains without Crayon Implant.” Travis Langley, E. Paul Zehr, & Karma Waltonen.

Interview by Laura Akers

This year’s Comic Arts Conference at Wondercon was really diverse. From panels that carefully analyzed how meaning is created on the standard comic-book page to the tension between biology and technology in Batman and Iron Man to how comics are used in the classroom, there was something for everyone. Travis Langley, author of the upcoming Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight, gave us two presentations, one on how he uses Batman to teach psychological concepts to his students and a second on the question of Batman’s personal psychological issues and possible diagnosis. His analysis of Batman was so interesting that we had to ask some follow-up questions:

Laura Akers for Comics Bulletin: In your classes, you use Batman and related characters (from the comic books, movies and TV) to talk about specific psychological conditions. Why does the Batman universe lend itself so well to discussing these kinds of issues?

Travis Langley: He’s the superhero with no superpowers. His origin taps into a primal fear that we all understand, but even before that origin, his creators Bob Kane and Bill Finger invested our primal fears in his very look. They created a hero we could all imagine might exist in real life — no secret formula, magic ring or rocket to Earth required. He’s the part of us that wants to scare life’s bullies away… [Go to Comics Bulletin for complete interview.]

Where Does Batman Get His Self Control?

Posted By on March 4, 2012

Answering the question of where Batman’s self control comes from would be as complex as asking the same question regarding any one person. How he learned it in the first place is a different issue from why he maintains it as a adult. How he learned it: Behaviorists would say his parents and Alfred reinforced (rewarded) him for demonstrating self control. Bandura would say mastery experiences helped him feel capable and in control. Freud would attribute it to his toilet training. We can’t really know because the comics don’t depict many of the relevant early life experiences. He was already developing better than average self control before his parents died.

Relevant excerpt from chapter 12 of Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight:

Alfred’s parenting style (his general approach to childrearing) is mostly authoritative (not authoritarian), encouraging his surrogate son’s independence with warmth, nurturance, and verbal give-and-take, while also exerting authority, enforcing rules, and making maturity demands (expectations for age-appropriate conduct). Difficult as it may be to imagine Alfred telling Bruce at 10 or 11, “No, you may not,” Bruce’s social competence and self-control suggest that Alfred found ways to place limits and exert discipline, nothing corporal to be sure. The authoritative parent communicates well, listens receptively to the child’s questions and requests, and teaches through explanation. The authoritative parent teaches the child more than what to do or not do; this parent teaches the child to think about why. The fact that Bruce is so accustomed to getting his own way might suggest that Alfred and Bruce’s birth parents before him preferred to risk erring a little on the side of permissiveness.

A permissive parent sets no limits, fails to guide and discipline, and rarely controls, restricts, or punishes the child. Some permissive parents are warm and responsive, available to help the child without seeing themselves as responsible for shaping who that child will become (democratic-indulgent permissiveness), while others are distant, uninvolved, even ignorant about what the child does (rejecting-neglecting permissiveness). Bruce’s responsive, supportive father and more nurturing mother set limits, maybe not enough. Sam Hamm (screenwriter for Batman and Batman Returns) concluded that “Bruce had become Batman as a result of being spoiled. He had grown up with sufficient money and leisure to luxuriate in his own tragedy, to wallow in the false sense that it made him somehow unique. In other words, Bruce had never learned to cut his losses.” Bruce shows too much self-discipline to have been completely spoiled. Alfred likely applied authoritative guidance based on logic, ethics, and Bruce’s inherent guilt.

Bruce’s parents show strong maturity expectations for Bruce. They don’t speak down to him. They discuss grownup ideas with him, answering questions and explaining patiently.

In a journal entry in The Forensic Files of Batman (Doug Moench, 2004, p. 17), Bruce Wayne writes:

“And then, when they were under the ground, he became my guardian and friend, nagging constantly and sometimes caustically, never letting me neglect my schoolwork, always keeping my obsession in check. . . . With him, I remained driven but disciplined, anchored to vital reality through his sternness and arch humor, my soul tempered by his firm kindness and steadfast humanity.”

It has always seemed a bit like Bruce Wayne, for the most part, raised himself. After the murders, the boy Bruce takes control of his life. Alfred helps, but together they conspire to keep Bruce independent of everybody else.

From chapter 4 of Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight:

By most accounts, Bruce grew up expecting to operate within the law even while he also started cheating the system. To pursue justice unimpeded by well-intentioned adults who wanted to care either for him or for the orphan’s fortune, “He wrote letters that weren’t exactly forgeries and weren’t exactly anything else—and they enabled him to leave Gotham City at age 14 and begin a global quest for what he wanted to know.”

Some people, when traumatized by horrifying events that left them feeling helpless, give up and feel broadly helpless in many areas of life, possibly as a consequence of PTSD. Others, who react instead with posttraumatic growth, make meaning out of meaningless events by taking control of their lives. For Bruce Wayne, taking control and becoming fiercely independent help him cope. Control becomes integral to his self concept. To relinquish control would mean giving up part of himself and accepting the chaos of this world.

His self control has practical aspects as well. Law enforcement figures who work with Batman or at least tolerate the costumed vigilante – including Commissioner Gordon, some other police officers, and superpowered heroes – wouldn’t let him stay in the Bat-business if he lost control. As long as he has at least one rule he won’t break no matter what, those who could stop him will not.

In chapter 9, I discuss how Freud would have used Hamlet to illustrate why Batman shouldn’t kill, but explaining that takes more than a blog post.

In Post-Crisis reality, Alfred helped Bruce stay at Wayne Manor instead of moving to Uncle Philip's place. In every reality, Bruce showed great motivation and self discipline. Even as a boy, he was a self-made man.


Review: Being Human Season 4 Premiere with Big, Hairy Spoilers

Posted By on February 22, 2012


Instead of reshuffling the deck, Being Human showrunner Toby Whithouse apparently decided to buy a whole new set of cards.


We knew going in, of course, that the fourth season would build on George the werewolf’s promise that the vampire Wyndham and the Old Ones would “have a fight” on their hands.” But nobody who didn’t read the British press before the premiere could have expected the turnaround “Eve Of The War” presented.

In the cold open, Whithouse’s script zooms past a fight and into full-on Underworld territory, hurling us into a horrible future: vampires haven’t just been outed to the world, they’ve taken it over.

Back in our time, the politics foreshadowed in the new cast poster above start to play out. Before we catch up on George or the ghostly Annie, we see the first glimpse of the world to come through an adventure with young Tom, a guest player last year now acting as a lone wolf (har) vigilante against the ever more aggressive vamps.

At least part of the reason Tom’s on the job is that George has been left nigh-catatonic. After he killed Wyndham, his baby-mama Nina was attacked and killed in revenge, leaving him to guard over a baby he’s too grief-stricken to name, with Annie trying to rally him.

And the stakes get considerably higher when it comes to the unnamed child. Whereas we were led to believe the little girl was “the first” child borne of two werewolves – come on now, in all this time no loving lycan couple got down doggy-style? – now we discover she’s the mythical War Child, meaning she alone will stand against the vampires , the demons, and the forces of darkness … no, wait, that’s another girl. But in a hastily-introduced bit of vampire mythology, we come to find out she’s destined to rid the world of vampires – if she survives not only this local bunch, but the imminent arrival of the Old Ones.

Adding to the turmoil is the most surprising departure: George triggers a half-transformation within himself outside of a full moon, killing himself along while saving the baby from the vampires. It’s the trickiest plot point in the whole show, but Russell Tovey brings enough love and desperation to the moment to make it stick in a mind-blowingly quick send-off for him.

So if you’re keeping score, 75 percent of last season’s core characters are now off the show – and two of them were taken out off-screen. That’s an escalation, all right.

And amid all of this, Whithouse still manages to introduce almost a whole new ensemble’s worth of core players in not just media-savvy vampire Cutler (Adam Gower, un-intentionally bringing to mind Stephen Dorff in Blade) but an entirely new set of roomies : vampire Hal, werewolf Louis and ghost Pearl, who somehow have been living together, off the grid, for decades. And then there’s maybe the most ominous ghost of all, the unnamed young woman who comes back from the war to make sure baby Eve (see what he did there?) doesn’t get the chance to fulfill her destiny – one that’s suddenly as uncertain as the show’s. Whithouse was able to get the most out of the thrills and spills of the show’s personnel changes, but now he faces a tougher task: getting his new ensemble to gel in time to deliver on what could be his show’s last stand.

Interview: Ghost Rider Creator Gary Friedrich

Posted By on February 9, 2012

Ghost Rider creator Gary Friedrich not only lost his lawsuit against Marvel Comics, having alleged the powerhouse comic book company failed to register the character properly upon first appearance, but now owes them money. For more on this sad situation, read Kiel Phegley’s report at Comic Book Resources.

Gary Friedrich created the first two versions of the supernatural superhero Ghost Rider with Roy Thomas and Mike Ploog. Other notable works include Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos, Monster of Frankenstein, Kid Colt, Two-Gun Kid, Rawhide Kid, and other works for Marvel Comics, frequently comics that were in transition or about to be cancelled. Interviewed at San Diego Comic-Con International.

Here’s our interview with Gary from when we spoke with him at a very noisy Comic-Con International.

Video by Marko Head.


The Bat of the Shadow: Batman’s Role Models

Posted By on December 18, 2011

Many people helped Bruce Wayne become a masked man fighting crime with his gadgets and fists while motivated less by the need for revenge than by the inspiration to protect others from becoming victims, values he tries to convey as a role model to others. “Remember when I said our purpose was to protect people from crime?” he asks Jason Todd, the second Robin, while trying to teach this Boy Wonder a more mature definition of victory[i]. “What makes you think that’s any less vital than pursuing criminals? Ensuring that the victims of crime are taken care of always comes first.”[ii] The mugger who introduces him to violence and the authorities who show him that grown men might ignore the law all exert their influence, but from there he could have followed many different paths. Conceivably, he have become a cutthroat businessman angry at the city which killed his parents; a cynical district attorney willing to violate criminals’ rights, conceal evidence, and twist the law to keep his perfect conviction rate; or a gun-toting killer like anti-hero Frank Castle, Marvel Comics’ Punisher.

Albert Bandura[iii] held that people learn when and how to aggress, as well as against whom, through social learning, primarily learning social behavior through observation and imitation of others and only secondarily by receiving direct reward or punishment for one’s own actions.[iv]  “Viewing violence (1) breeds a modest increase in aggressive behavior, especially in people who are provoked, and (2) desensitizes viewers to aggression and alters their perceptions of reality.”[v] Voluminous evidence from social psychologists’ empirical research shows that observing aggressive behavior heightens aggressiveness in complicated ways. Children are more likely to mimic violence that gets rewarded and goes unpunished[vi] and in nearly every version of Batman’s origin, the mugger gets away scot-free, but sympathizing with the victims, seeing their pain and suffering, makes that violence aversive to those capable of empathy.

Bruce’s first, best role models were his altruistic parents. Empirical evidence is clear: Prosocial models promote prosocial behavior. More people will offer help to a driver fix a flat tire after seeing someone else help a different driver a mile earlier[vii] or donate blood after hearing someone else agree to donate.[viii] Adults and children mimic many actions they observe, with long-lasting effects visible in children absorbing information and experience at a greater rate than adults. Parents who both preach and practice altruism raise children who become more altruistic adults.[ix] Adults’ modeling of prosocial behavior can show powerful and enduring repercussions on their children’s altruistic inclinations.[x]

The butler Alfred Pennyworth, patient, supportive, wise in many things, having functioned as a caregiver, not servant, to the boy when his parents were still alive, does not replace them in Wayne heir’s life so fully that Bruce can let them go, but neither does he leave the boy feeling unguided, alone, or unloved, which happens to some orphans. Dr. Leslie Thompkins, the physician who first discovers the boy after the murders and becomes the only stranger to comfort this child as he grieves at the crime scene, becomes a maternal figure to complement paternal Alfred – in relation to Bruce, not one another. A friend and medical colleague to Dr. Thomas Wayne, she devotes her medical practice to helping Gotham’s poor and her very life to protecting others, eventually sacrificing her possessions, practice, and reputation to help a girl named Stephanie Brown fake her death to escape Gotham and start a new life.[xi] For all her positive influence in helping Bruce devote his life to helping others, Leslie feels that as a role model to him she has failed, for she disapproves of Bruce’s vigilante activities and worries about his influence on underage crime fighters like Stephanie and all the Robins.

The boy finds role models in figures less down-to-earth than Alfred and Leslie. The Shadow and Zorro, fictional characters that inspired Bob Kane in the real world to create his own masked man within the fiction inspire Bruce as well. An adult Batman gets to tell the Shadow, “I’ve never told anyone this – but you were my greatest inspiration.”[xii]

Zorro figures into Batman’s origin directly because, in the comic books, the Waynes are returning from a screening of the old movie The Mark of Zorro[1] when they cross paths with the killer Joe Chill. Where others might avoid that film as a reminder of that night’s tragic end, especially anyone gripped by PTSD, Bruce values its inspiration and treasures it as the last good time his mother, father, and he ever shared. After Bruce returns from having been thought dead, he brings Alfred and three of the Robins, all the boys but Jason Todd, together for movie night at Wayne Manor.

Dick: “Um, Bruce, you sure you want to watch this?”

Bruce: “It may have been the worst night of my life, Dick, but up until Chill stepped out of the shadows, it was one of the best days of my life. Wasn’t often I got to spend every waking minute with both my mother and father. The whole day felt special. Looking back, this movie not only marked an ending, but a beginning. Of a new road, new path. So it feels like the right time to see it again – with the whole family.”[xiii]

[1] Maybe the 1920 silent version starring Douglas Fairbanks, maybe the 1940 film with Tyrone Powers. Every generation has its own Zorro. This has been true for a long time.

[i] Friedman (2006).

[ii] Detective Comics #568 (1986).

[iii] Bandura (1979); Bandura & Walters (1963).

[iv] Despite a common misconception and even some textbooks which incorrectly credit Bandura with first proposing social learning theory, that acclaim belongs to Julian Rotter (1945).

[v] Myers (2008), p. 374.

[vi] Rosekrans & Hartup (1967).

[vii] Bryan & Test (1967).

[viii] Rushton & Campbell (1977).

[ix] Moore & Eisenberg (1984); Rosenhan (1970).

[x] Fogelman (1996).

[xi] Robin/Spoiler Special (2008).

[xii] Batman #253 (1973).

[xiii] Batman and Robin #20 (2011).