Criminal Justice in Gotham: The Role of the Dark Knight
Of all the facets of the Dark Knight’s life and career as the protector of Gotham City, none is more interesting than his relationship with the police department and how he conducts himself alongside and in contrast to his official counterparts. In his more rational moments, Batman’s description of his role resembles police officers or detectives, limiting himself to solving crimes and apprehending suspects. He explained to a young Dick Grayson that “the people we’re after have broken the law. It’s our job to find them, stop them, and arrest them. Do your job well, and you make that arrest stick. Do your job badly… and you might not get a second chance.” Even the classic images of Batman thwarting a mugging or robbery, and then leaving the assailant tied up and hanging from a lamp pole with a note attached to the police with a bat-symbol on it, symbolize this aspect of his behavior—as does his reputation as the World’s Greatest Detective, solving crimes already committed and helping the police find the suspect.