Welcome to the second installment of Batman Vs. Where Batman is pitted against various foes in a test of his physical and mental prowess. Here the question is not “who wins?”, as the answer will always, of course, be the Dark Knight Detective, but rather “how does Batman achieve victory?”

BATMAN VS

THE CHAMPION:

Batman. Protector of Gotham City. Superhero Legend. Inventor of the Whirly-Bat.

THE CHALLENGER:

Neo. Hacker turned Savior of Humanity. Mr. Anderson. Trusting Pill-Taker.

THE BATTLEFIELD:

A simulacrum of Gotham City inside the Matrix construct.

WHAT’S THE SCENARIO?:

Neo, hearing rumors throughout the resistance of a near mythical vigilante, travels to Gotham City to enlist his help in the war against the machines. Once there, Neo hunts down any lead he can find on the mysterious crimefighter. Eventually, Neo comes to the realization that in their quest to completely duplicate human reality, the machines have gone too far, and have recreated the Batman!

THE FIGHT!:

Attempting to make contact with the Batman, Neo soars to the top of the Gotham City Police Department. Once there, he activates the Batsignal atop the building and shines the beacon into the sky. Almost immediately, a strange figure comes out of the darkness towards Neo. Taken aback, Neo attempts to explain that he has been searching for the Caped Crusader to help in his mission. The World’s Greatest Detective has known for some time that he is not in the real world, but instead a computer simulation.

Wary of a trap set by the machines, Batman strikes out at Neo attempting to subdue him. However, the One deftly sidesteps Batman’s attacks and again tries to reason with him. Martha Wayne’s baby boy realizes that his adversary moves unnaturally and is somehow manipulating the coding of the Matrix. Now convinced that he is an agent sent by the machines, Batman simultaneously unleashes a barrage of explosives at his combatant and a smoke screen as he evades him.

As he lashes out against the Batman, Neo smashes parts of the rooftop. Whether unsure of his assailant’s motivations, Batman is now convinced that he is a danger to Gotham City if left unchecked. Confronting him head-on, Batman unleashes a flurry of martial art attacks. Neo counters at lightning fast speeds. However, as much kung-fu as Thomas Anderson knows, Batman is a master of multiple forms of martial arts and other fighting disciplines.

Eventually, Batman deciphers a pattern to Neo’s movements and is able to land several strikes. Not letting up, Batman continues his brutal assault. Dealing out maneuvers that would kill an ordinary man, as he knows several, the Dark Knight pushes on. Stumbling, Neo can no longer put up a defense against his aggressor. As Neo desperately tries to explain the reality of their situation to him again, Batman let loose a devastating blow to his chest. Falling to his knees, Neo’s heart stops.

Aboard the hovercraft, the Nebuchadnezzar, the crew rushes to Neo’s aid in the real world. As what happens to someone’s body in the Matrix, affects them in reality, Neo is now near death. His compatriots disconnect him from the Matrix and shock his heart back into action. Exhausted and battered, Neo looks up at a screen scrolling the code of the Matrix. Within the code, he sees Batman, fighting still.

Back on the rooftop inside the simulation, Batman turns as the rooftop doorway bursts open and a swarm of identical agents flood out. Surrounded, and backed into a corner of the roof, a chorus, speaking in the same voice, orders him to surrender. Outnumbered, Batman raises his hands, revealing a defibrillator from his utility belt. While his enemies try to determine his intentions, Batman swiftly shocks himself with the device. The agents open fire on him as he smiles, now out of their reach.

Awakening amid a cloud of red goo, Bruce Wayne recalls the resuscitation techniques he learned to restart his own heart. He then proceeds to will his body to move and repeatedly strikes at the top of his prison. Finally bursting out, he stands and removes the various tubes and contraptions attached to him. Free, he surveys the fields of humans still ensnared within the Matrix. Looking to the blackened sky, he contemplates how the world in now full of shadows from which Batman can strike out at the machines.

 

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