CW has finally answered the age-old question of whether or not the Dark Knight is in the Arrowverse. With the premiere of Batwoman, our favorite caped crusader has made his way to the small screen and has us excited for what's to come. Unfortunately, like the CW has been doing since 2012, Bruce has only been teased and has not quite made an onscreen appearance.
With the Pilot of Batwoman establishing that Batman has been gone for three years, we have to wonder where Batman has gone. With little clues to his whereabouts, we are left to speculate Batman's whereabouts. Here are 10 theories as to where Batman is and why he's been missing for all this time.
10 He’s Dead
This is the simplest if grimmest answer to Bruce Wayne's whereabouts. Throughout the years, we've seen Batman take huge risks to solve a crime, sometimes barely escaping with his life. If we look at the Arrowverse timeline and the Batwoman TV show, it's established that Batman has been around for a while.
With that in mind, there's a good chance that he's faced some of the worst villains in Gotham and maybe this time, his efforts just weren't enough. It's almost blasphemy to think about it, given Bruce Wayne has never met his death in the comics, but maybe that's the reason he hasn't been in his beloved city.
9 He Was Recruited By The Monitor
In the first episode of Arrow's final season, Oliver Queen revisits the island he was stranded in and in the background, there is an arrow going through Batman's cowl. With Stephen Amell's Green Arrow drawing several similarities to Batman, maybe the Monitor originally recruited Bruce Wayne who couldn't get the job done.
Similar to the first theory, Bruce might have met his demise trying to stop the Crisis and is no longer a part of the Arrowverse because of it. Maybe Gotham's only hope is Batwoman. Although Oliver was on Earth-2 and it's possible its that Earth's Batman, one can't help but wonder if Olly is just cleaning up Bruce's mess.
8 He's In Another Universe
Bruce is no stranger to traveling the multiverse. This theory would suggest that Bruce knows about the upcoming Crisis event but instead of getting help from the Monitor, he decides to take matters into his own hands and travel the multiverse to get help.
Similar to how Harrison Wells in the Flash has his Council of Wells, maybe Bruce goes looking for his Council of Bats to help him save the universe. It wouldn't be far fetched and like having different Supermen from different multiverses, having Batmen helping the Crisis would be a huge help. Maybe Bruce is bound to save the day in the Crisis.
7 He Was Broken by Bane
This next theory would be a page right from the comics. In a story that shook the comic community, the supervillain Bane was able to take down the Dark Knight in a way no one has ever done before: by defeating him in physical combat and breaking his back. In last year's crossover, we saw a short glimpse of Bane's mask, only visible for about 2-3 seconds but nevertheless there.
This at least proves the existence of Bane in the Arrowverse, so why not include one of the most famous Batman stories. It explains his long absence, as Bruce is very prideful and would most likely refuse to let someone see him at his weakest. Bruce might just be healing his back and waiting for an opportunity to come back.
6 Jason Todd's Death Broke Him
Another story that could be adapted from the comics. Jason Todd's death really took a toll on Batman, making him a more distant and reckless hero. It also took him a long time to get over it, so maybe that's just what he's doing. With the Joker already confirmed the Arrowverse, it's a plausible theory and one that can be adapted easily into the show.
Although in the comics Bruce never left for an extended period of time, it's very possible Earth-1 has a different coping mechanism than his comic counterpart. This could also open up possibilities for the Batwoman show as a whole by introducing characters like Red Hood.
5 He’s Retired
The Arrowverse timeline puts Bruce Wayne as Batman for about 15 years before his disappearance in 2015. That makes Bruce Wayne a very grizzled veteran whos seen just about everything. With Arrowverse shows throwing easter eggs, we know the existence of several villains and Batman allies like Harley Quinn, the Joker, Oracle, and more.
Maybe Bruce simply got tired of protecting Gotham and simply left to recover from his years of stress. Although it's highly unlikely due to Batman being fiercely loyal to Gotham, its very possible he knew of Kate Kane's abilities and felt he left the city in good hands.
4 He's Setting Up Batman Beyond
Now Terry Mcginnis might be a few decades too early but due to his popularity, he might be making his way into the Arrowverse sooner than expected. With the current Batman Beyond recruiting an older Barry Allen to help him, maybe the writers can use inspiration to bring Mcginnis in.
Maybe in this reality, Bruce is training a young Terry to take over the mantle and is currently preoccupied. Although we haven't seen or heard any easter eggs, it could be a really fun take. Seeing an older Bruce act as a mentor to both Batwoman and Terry as they patrol Gotham City and this way Bruce doesn't take the limelight from Ruby Rose.
3 Beth Kane Killed Him
The pilot episode of Batwoman introduces Beth Kane as a villain and a victim of an accident Batman wasn't able to shake off. We know Beth is hell-bent on taking over Gothman and has the power necessary so who's to say she didn't kill her cousin?
Maybe in a brawl, Batman saw his demise and is buried underground for over three years. This might explain Beth's confidence in taking the city and her shock when she thinks she sees Batman. Although Batman has taken much more intimidating villains, he also has a soft spot for family, a weakness Beth could've very well exploited.
2 The Cold Trail Got To Him
The Pilot also reveals that Bruce never stopped trying to figure out what happened with the car accident that (supposedly) killed Beth and her mother. To Bruce, this is one of his biggest failures and maybe the search for answers drove him to insanity.
Maybe he decided to get so into the case, it led him away from Gotham and just completely consumed him. It's also possible he didn't see himself fit to protect Gotham after feeling like he failed his aunt and cousin. After all, Bruce has a bad way of dealing with his emotions
1 He Left For Family Reasons
With all the attention to Batman's disappearance, it's easy to forget he may not be the only one. In the comics, Batman has disappeared several times and several times Dick Grayson is the on to take over the mantle. Even different Robins like Jason Todd and Damian Wayne have taken the mantle so with Batman disappearing, why hasn't anyone stepped up? Or at least helped find the Dark Knight?
It's very possible that for whatever reason Bruce disappeared, maybe the rest of the Bat-Family disappeared as well. Or maybe one of them disappeared first, causing Bruce to leave Gotham in search of his partners.