Batman’s Most Controversial Accident Is Kevin Smith’s Fault

By Zack Zagranis | Published

batman kevin smith

Batman might seem superhuman at times, but underneath that pointy cowl, he’s nothing more than a mortal man. He breaks like us, bleeds like us, and even… pees like us? That’s right, Batman can canonically have the p*ss scared out of him, and we have Kevin Smith to blame for it.

Kevin Smith, Comic Book Writer

kevin smith

Kevin Smith might be best known as an indie director and podcast mogul, but occasionally he writes comics. There was a time when Smith’s star was still rising, and both DC and Marvel figured slapping his name on a book would lead to big sales. Most of Smith’s storylines, like Daredevil: Guardian Devil, were fairly well regarded—until Batman: The Widening Gyre, that is.

The Widening Gyre

Specifically, Batman: The Widening Gyre #6, in which Kevin Smith decided to revisit the classic Batman story Year One and put his smelly, yellow stamp on it. The scene in question follows Batman and a new vigilante, Baphomet, as the Dark Knight reassures the younger man that every hero stumbles a bit when they start out. How does Batman convey this message?

With a story about how he once wet his suit during an early adventure.

Batman Should’ve Brought A Diaper

batman kevin smith

There is a famous scene in Batman: Year One where Batman crashes a dinner party full of Gotham’s corrupt elite by blowing up a wall and striding into the room amidst the smoke and debris. It’s a great moment and highlights just how intimidating Batman can be.

In Batman: The Widening Gyre, the Caped Crusader describes that night from his point of view, telling Baphomet, “The incendiary went off hotter than I expected, and when I felt the size of the explosion and the sudden blast of searing heat…well…I had a…bladder spasm.” When Batman fans caught wind of this, many of them called for Kevin Smith’s head.

Backdraft Was To Blame

The thing is, despite potty humor being part of Smith’s whole schtick, the decision to make Batman lose control of his bladder wasn’t done simply for the gag but rather to make the normally stoic hero more relatable. Smith went on record during one of his podcasts as saying that he never intended to imply that Batman had a full-on accident but only that a few drops of pee came out. The director also went on to say that what happened to Batman was inspired by his own real-life experience on Universal Studio’s Backdraft ride.

Humanizing The Bat

batman kevin smith

On another podcast, when discussing the Batman situation, Kevin Smith doubled down and claimed he had talked to a firefighter friend who told him that everyone loses control of their bladders when a wall of fire hits them. While that is most likely true, it’s debatable whether fans ever wanted Batman to be that level of just-an-average-Joe relatable or not. Superhero comic books are escapist fantasy, after all; nobody wants to read a comic where Superman is scrolling through his phone on the toilet.

Well, someone probably does, but that’s beside the point.

Keep It Between You And Your Doctor

Even if the attempt to show Batman’s human side was done with good intentions, Kevin Smith probably should have written his own scene rather than co-opting one of the most famous Batman stories ever written. To paraphrase the famous children’s book, everybody pees but not everybody wants to hear about it.