Is the Caped Crusader the first or perhaps the most creative DIYer?
DIY has come to mean so much more than it used to. Historically, the word is associated with home projects. Now we use it to refer to crafts, cooking, decorating projects, home improvement, and so much more.
I have been thinking a lot about this use of this word as I decide what my blog will really be about. I had a thought the other day that made me chuckle. Bear with the nerd inside me.
Is Batman the original DIYer?
I don’t claim to be an expert in any of this, so I welcome new information whether it proves me wrong or supports this idea. Another side note: comics are like mythology. There are tons of versions and stories, so I am picking the Batman lore that supports my theory.
Batman’s parents were murdered when he was just a boy. He grows up, with the help of his Butler Alfred, determined to solve crimes in Gotham. He goes abroad to develop skills from experts, but some things he has to do himself.
He needed a place to develope skills and tools, so he DIYed the caverns below his home, Wayne Manor, into the Batcave. From rock cavern full of bats to high tech lair! “The cave itself is a natural cavern beneath Wayne Manor; all you really need to do is run some power lines and some ventilation … it’s not like that requires a lot of contractors” (John Bode in Batman Convo). Batman did have tons of money, so his motivation to DIY was secrecy! We all have our reasons.
He needed tools to fight crime, so he DIYed them. A utility belt complete with tools of every shape and size. “The exact contents of this belt are not known because Batman usually changes it to suit his needs. His uncanny ability to carry unusually appropriate tools is legendary” (Batman Wikia). Isn’t this what all DIYers do? You have a space that won’t hold a piece of furniture you can buy in a store, so you build it. The vase you want for your kitchen is too expensive, so you spraypaint one to look like it. Batman needed specific tools for his exploits, so he built them.
Final argument for any skeptics. Batman does have money, and he may have paid for the original parts of his tools, but then he styles them, “Most of batgadgets aren’t really fully identifiable as batgadgets until they are styled, so they can be produced by any contractor – just as workers at FoxConn have no idea that components X Y and Z they are making are actually designed for the new iPhone” (DVK in Exile in Batman Convo). Again, even if he pays for pieces, just like a DIYer he makes it his own. A DIY project can be a re-fashion. It doesn’t have to be something brand new. Batman needs tools that are individualized and match his style, so he builds and adjusts them!
Isn’t this exactly what a DIYer does?!?! We see a problem and we solve it OURSELVES. We do not call and pay a professional. We seek information, and we figure it out. Batman is one badass DIYer.