Just a quick reminder that you can always catch up with the latest Bat news on the News Page.
This whole thing started on my twenty-eighth birthday. My lovely girlfriend Mary Jane loves getting me gifts, and so a couple of months ago, I found myself unwrapping several boxes full of various trinkets that made her think of me. One of these was a juice bottle with a nozzle in the shape of Batman's head. Ridiculous? Yes. A tad demeaning and juvenile? Perhaps. Did I drink it? Absolutely!
As I sat there trying to gain suction on the poorly designed bottle so that I could suck out the sickeningly sweet, artificially flavored with 100% unnatural ingredients fruit concoction, I found myself thinking about just how completely Batman has saturated our culture. There I was, a grown man, greedily sucking down a somewhat disgusting fruit drink from a container made for five year olds, yet I found myself delighted just because the bottle happened to be shaped like Batman. What's wrong with me?
What exactly is wrong with me? Well, that's a question for another time, but I found myself wondering just how much Batman has seeped into pop culture and consumer products. I've seen Batman on toothpaste, coffee mugs, soap, T-shirts, pants, jackets, coffee tables, tote bags, watches, and magazines. Batman has been used to sell just about everything, and I decided it was my mission to measure just how deeply Batman has become ingrained in our culture and commerce. To measure this, I went to the mecca of American pop culture and commerce, Walmart.
I vowed that I would walk through every aisle of Walmart and chronicle each toy, movie, ball and shoe that bears the Bat symbol. Would I find a Bat item on every aisle? That seemed unlikely. Would I find Bat swag in every section? That seemed plausible, but just how far does the shadow of the Bat reach?
The Quest Begins
Entering Walmart, I immediately stumbled upon gold as I found double DKR's in Redbox, The Dark Knight Rises and the Animated adaption of The Dark Knight Returns.
I had already mentally charted my course from there. The plan was to travel the outer rim of the store and then work my way inwards marking down all Bat items along the way. I would go through the pharmacy section first where I expected little in the way of Bat items. Perhaps I might find some Bat vitamins, but it seemed unlikely, but beyond, there was the bath and body section where I would no doubt find soaps, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and many more hygienic items geared towards kids that tricky mothers could use to lure their young ones into cleaning themselves. I would then enter what I expected to be a desert for Bruce Wayne memorabilia for I had little hope of finding Bat merch in the pet section or the garden section. However, I had high hopes to find treasures in the car department and sporting goods. I had great faith that I would find much to sustain my love for the Bat.
I was completely wrong.