Want to know what makes me more happy in the morning than my fresh-brewed coffee? The thought of Batman shot in the head. He thinks he is smart that no one could beat him. So the idea that he could be outwitted and defeated in the worst way possible is appealing.
Apparently I was not the only one. Writer and illustrator Brian Bolland created a story for Batman Black and White (issue 4 from 1996) called An Innocent Guy, where someone fantasizes about killing Batman. Before I continue, I should point out that this series to me is overall useless fluff garbage targeted for Batman fans. They are not canon with anything else and seem to be totally random black and white stories from different artists. So there is not much appeal, except for perhaps one thing: seeing Batman shot in the head.
So what is the premise of An Innocent Guy? An average young man fantasizes about committing a murder. He admits that he is an average, normal guy. He goes to church and treats women right. But inherently we are all evil. Like when you are a kid, you break windows with rocks because you want to destroy something beautiful. It is just the natural way of things. Sort of like wanting to be famous. The “Innocent Guy” in this story would like to kill someone famous like The Pope. But to kill someone unprotected would be more exciting, and would like something like this to happen. For example, Batman shot in the head.
What is ironic is that this story was retold in the hardcover version of Batman: The Killing Joke Deluxe Edition…. in color. Since it was intended for black and white, it seems strange to choose this story and colorize it. The meaning of An Innocent Guy has seemed to elude people, so perhaps I will clarify it here: overall it has no meaning. It is just a story. But the idea that even good people can be evil helps explain why this story was chosen to be paired up with The Killing Joke. In the same way, evil can overcome anyone, because it is in everyone. Even an innocent guy. Leave a comment below with your thoughts.