Batman exists in the Arrowverse, but where is he? Gotham City and its watchful protector, Batwoman, will be introduced in the Elseworlds crossover, which is also planned to lead into a Batwoman TV series. But it's been confirmed that the Dark Knight definitely exists in the Arrowverse as well, although his whereabouts are a mystery.
The Arrowverse was built around Green Arrow, with Oliver Queen essentially serving as an alternative to Bruce Wayne. There was a reluctance to feature Batman at all to begin with (in part due to a ruling blocking using movie properties like Suicide Sqaud in DCTV), and what references there have been are rather slight. Nevertheless, there are plenty of clues that The CW's various superhero shows have dropped about Bruce Wayne and his crime-fighting alter ego.
Here's everything we know about every Batman in The CW's multiverse, and what we can expect from him and Batwoman in Elseworlds.
Batman Exists In Arrowverse Earth-1
The Batman's existence in the Arrowverse has been alluded to multiple times in Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and even DC's Legends of Tomorrow. One early and significant name drop of Bruce Wayne occurred in the pilot episode of The Flash, when it showed the front page of The Central City Citizen newspaper from 2024, which had the headline "Wayne Tech/Queen Inc. Merger Complete." This was a strong indicator that the Gotham billionaire exists not just in the Arrowverse, but is on Earth-1. Then, in Legends of Tomorrow's pilot episode, Time Master Rip Hunter tried to inspire his original team of Legends by stating that he had seen “Men of Steel die and Dark Knights fall.”
Last year, the Arrow season 6 episode "Tribute" shocked fans with a direct name drop of Bruce Wayne by then-Mayor Oliver Queen. Under pressure by the media and city officials to reveal his true identity as the Green Arrow, because of a leaked photograph that showed an unmasked Oliver in costume, the beleaguered mayor called the photo a fake and quipped, “They could have put Bruce Wayne’s head on that body!” Then, the Arrow season 7 episode "The Demon" saw Talia al Ghul reference Batman again when she told an imprisoned Oliver that she "ran afoul of an old foe in Gotham." It was taken as confirmation of Batman's existence in the Arrowverse.
Batman Definitely Exists In Arrowverse Earth-38 (And Others)
Batman's existence on Supergirl's Earth-38 has also been referenced several times. The Girl of Steel and her friends, like James Olsen, have acknowledged that her cousin Superman has "a friend" in Gotham who wears "a scary mask." Kara Zor-El even took her disdain for "Clark's friend" further by saying, “My cousin worked with a vigilante once. Tons of gadgets. Lots of demons. I mean, vigilantes are nuts!” Besides there being a Batman on Earth-1 and Earth-38, The Flash's episode "Welcome to Earth-2" referenced "Bruce" as one of the names on Earth-2 Barry Allen's speed dial, along with "Hal" and "Diana," the latter two being the first names of Green Lantern and Wonder Woman's alter egos, respectively. But all the Batman references didn't stop there. In fact, they seem to have only increased as time goes on.
Elseworlds Will Reveal Gotham, Batwoman & Batman's Absence
Elseworlds looks to answer questions about Batman in the Arrowverse, now that the network is finally including Gotham City. The Elseworlds crossover will not only feature Oliver Queen and Barry Allen switching bodies as the Flash and Green Arrow - necessitating Supergirl's involvement as the only one who can see the true Oliver and Barry - but it will also involve a threat to the Multiverse where reality is being rewritten thanks to Arkham Asylum doctor John Deegan and an alien known as the Monitor. Of course, the heroes will travel to Gotham City, where they will encounter Batwoman, and in turn get some solid info about the Batman. Elseworlds has also teased that one of the inmates of Arkham could be the Joker.
Through the Elseworlds crossover, fans will learn that Batman has been missing in action for 3 years. As a result, the unchecked criminal element in Gotham has taken a turn for the worse, as Gotham has turned into a wasteland, which is where Batwoman comes into play as the city's defender. It's unclear what event led to Batman's disappearance, but when Green Arrow, the Flash, and Supergirl arrive in Gotham, they will be debating whether Batman is even real or, as Oliver believes, is just "an urban legend" (which is an ironic position for Green Arrow to take). And although CW President Mark Pedowitz has confirmed Batman will not appear in the Arrowverse, there is still plenty for fans to learn about The CW's version of the Dark Knight.