So, you may have noticed that in my bio, and on my Facebook, and on my Twitter, and basically everywhere else I have to write an “About Me” it says that I’m Batman.
Yes, I am the Batman. There you have it folks: my official public announcement comes in the form of a column for the New Paltz Oracle. Yes, I brave the brisk New Paltz nights hunting down evil-doers and beating bad guys to a pulp outside of bars with my enormous muscles and the gadgets on my utility belt. Beware, New Paltz, the Dark Knight is here!
Alright, you’re right – that doesn’t sound like me at all. I mean, I wear skinny jeans and plaid shirts everyday, not a cape (though that would be kind of cool). Also, my strength is probably equal to that of a boiled noodle. But in all honesty, I can safely say that Batman, without a doubt is the best superhero there is (I’m sure Pierce is going to have a problem with that statement), and I have had an obsession with the caped crusader from a very young age.
My Batman obsession started many moons ago when I was just a wee lad. When I was about three years old my family moved from one town in New Jersey to my current place of residence. I only have vague memories of the apartment my family had there. However – one thing sticks out in my mind and still haunts me to this day: I had a Batman action figure that I lost during the moving process. This Batman action figure was by far my favorite toy, and losing him is what I would equate to losing a first love or something dramatic along those lines. The figure was not a run-of-the-mill Batman either. He had a yellow suit with black lightning bolts running down the side. He was bad-ass. I still think of this Batman from time to time, and it haunts me.
My obsession grew as I did. During my pre-pubescent years my problems of the day usually consisted of me deciding if I should play with a Jurassic Park dinosaur or have an epic battle with my Star Wars action figures. But one day, I happened upon what quite honestly might be the greatest thing ever made – “Batman: The Animated Series.” Not only was this series a great tribute to my all-time favorite character, the series was thought provoking and smart. The voice acting was incredible, and Mark Hamill’s voice will ALWAYS be the voice of the Joker in my eyes. I still watch the animated series today and love every second of it. Around this time I also began to watch the classic Tim Burton movies, as well as Joel Shumacher’s unfortunate take on the franchise (which I will admit, I liked as a kid).
Fast-forwarding a few years, we happen upon my teenage self and his interest in the superhero who rules the night. I had since shrugged off Shumacher’s take on Batman as an atrocity (seriously, nipples on the Batsuit? A sculpted butt? A Robin symbol in the wall after his motorcycle crashes through it?!) and Chris Nolan’s dark, gritty, real-life take on Batman was exactly what a more mature Andrew needed to delve into the character and examine him more deeply.
It was around the release of “The Dark Knight” where I began reading Batman comics on a regular basis, and now it is bordering on a problem (especially for my wallet). I now collect new issues every Wednesday and pick up a classic graphic novel when ever I can. The comics are truly some of the best pieces of literature I have ever read, and I love every second I spend flipping the pages of my newest comic.
Batman has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, and I know that the cape wearing knight of the night will be for years to come.
Andrew Wyrich is a coffee drinking, book reading, autumn loving, “Arrested Development” watching, needle fearing, music listening, movie watching, peanut butter enthusiast who watches the Mets religiously and wishes they didn’t lead him into a deep dark depression every October. He is a Journalism major and hopes that maybe one day he will be lucky enough to cover the Mets for a living.
He is also Batman.