Batman wasn’t always as butch as Christian Bale and others portray.
Jokes about the hero’s relationship with Robin abound, but, as Tyrion Lannister notes, the gay rumors were once no laughing matter:
The accusation that Batman was a homo, as strange as it might sound to our own ears, was taken quite seriously by government and public alike. It wasn’t leveled by a marginal nut or crank, but by a world-renowned psychiatrist, Dr. Frederic Wertham.
Batman and Robin, Wertham charged, inhabited “a wish dream of two homosexuals living together.” They lived in “sumptuous quarters,” unencumbered by wives and girlfriends, with only an aged butler for company.
“Only someone ignorant of the fundamentals of psychiatry and psychopathology of sex can fail to realize the subtle atmosphere of homoeroticism which pervades the adventures,” wrote Wertham.
“The Batman type of story may stimulate children to homosexual fantasies.”
Oh, please! Even straight Batman could inspire fantasies.
Anyway, as you can guess, a concerted effort to make Batman more manly began – and thus the dark hero we know and lust today…