Bruce Wayne may have won the title fight in Batman v Superman, but don't let that fool you into thinking the Man of Steel was truly defeated. As Henry Cavill reminds fans: Superman was holding back the whole time.
For comic book fans, the question of 'who would win in a fight, Batman or Superman' has been hotly debated, addressed, answered, and revisited too many times to count. They certainly aren't complaining, since Batman and Superman's best fights offer a brand of entertainment unlike any other. But when the two heroes finally came to blows on the big screen, there was no question it was Batman who emerged victorious, coming mere seconds away from ending Superman for good. But as star Henry Cavill points out... it wasn't exactly a fight to the death for both participants.
The playful return to his Superman role comes in response to an Instagram post by artist and DC Publisher Jim Lee. After a sketching session turned into a scene of Superman unleashing his heat vision on Batman's unsuspecting cowl, Henry Cavill chimed in to use the image as proof of his Superman's restraint.
It's a fair point for Cavill to raise, whether he's merely making a joke or not. It's true that in Batman: Hush, the story called out in the post by Jim Lee, Superman suffered from mind control at the hand of Poison Ivy, driving him to give Batman one of the worst beatings he had experienced to that point. However, the fact that Superman was still subconsciously holding back was part of that storytelling... and despite Lee's drawing, Superman never actually blew a hole clean through Bruce Wayne's head. In the end, it was only a Kryptonite ring that helped save Batman (proving Superman made the right call by entrusting it to him).
But when common sense is embraced by modern comics, and Superman can kill Batman with a single punch, it goes without saying that the Man of Steel is always holding back, lest he punch a hole through Batman, cook him with heat vision, throw him hard enough to kill... the list goes on and on. Which makes it less than honest to suggest Batman seriously "beat" Superman in any of their fights, up to and including Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck's bout in Batman v Superman. Or whatever fights and confrontations may rest in the future, if Henry Cavill ever plays Superman in another DC film.
We're not complaining about such an inherent handicap. After all, Cavill and Lee know as well as any DC fan that Superman's restraint is what makes him a hero. It's also what makes Supergirl more dangerous than he ever could be, but that's a conversation for another day.
Source: Jim Lee