In TDKR, there is an interesting conversation between John Blake and Bruce Wayne, during which the former says that he knows Bruce is the Batman. He then talks of how he does not remember his mother’s death, but remembers his father’s murder well, and that the anger stayed with him. People understand, he says, but they don’t really know. They understand for a while, and they expected him to move on, to let go of the anger. But he couldn’t do it, and when people realised that, he was sent to therapy and foster homes.
He realised in time that for people to accept him, he would need to wear a mask that would hide his anger. He reveals that when Bruce visited the boys’ home he lived at years back, he immediately recognised that Bruce was Batman, because he himself wore a mask.
Thanks to various experiences, I think all of us wear masks. Some of them are not because of experience, but for acceptance among others. Either ways, it works as a coping mechanism, and depending on our skills, at various levels of invisibility to those around us. Sometimes we are conscious of the mask and try to reach a place where we can live without them, by becoming strong enough to either face the past or deal with ‘acceptance’ on our own terms. Yet, despite those efforts, many a time, circumstances are such that the mask becomes the man, consciously or unconsciously. Whether or not that is a good thing is completely context dependent.
But sometimes we are able to move on, just as Bruce was, embracing aspects of the Batman mask into his own personality. Or maybe it’s the other way – Bruce being a mask that the ‘true’ Batman personality wore.
until next time, masker aid