The Batman Builds Its Own Universe, Beyond the DCEU

The Batman establishes that Bludhaven, the city protected by Nightwing, exists in its universe, and it could be explored in the film’s sequels.

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for The Batman, in theaters now.

The Batman has finally arrived in theaters, bringing a fresh new take on the Dark Knight to the big screen. Focusing on a younger Batman as he struggles to make a dent in the underworld of Gotham City, both Batman and a feline friend run afoul of The Riddler and crime boss Falcone. This makes the movie far more “insular” than the unrelated DC Extended Universe, but it also establishes some other parts of the DC Universe. The film mentions Bludhaven, and though it’s something of a throwaway line, it shows how this new universe reaches beyond Gotham. In fact, this new city could show up in future installments of the ReevesVerse, so here’s how Bludhaven is introduced and its relevance in the wider world of Batman.

What Is Bludhaven in The Batman

In the conclusion of The Batman, Gotham City is in ruins after the machinations of The Riddler and his followers. With the city flooded after a series of bombs, Batman is more dedicated than ever to save the city and help it recover to a shinier and more hopeful future. However, Selina Kyle is done with the city, with the feud with her father, Carmine Falcone, over after his assassination. When Batman asks where she’ll go, the answer is another major DC city.

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Beside stating that she could head “upstate,” Selina also mentions the city of Bludhaven as a possibility. Though she tries to get Batman to go with her, he declines, needing to remain in Gotham and protect it now more than ever. Climbing atop their motorcycles, the two ride off before diverting at a fork in the road. It’s unknown if Selina truly did leave for Bludhaven, especially with so many of Gotham’s roads still underwater, but the city being established is a big deal for the future ReevesVerse sequels and spinoffs.

How Is Bludhaven Important in the Batman Universe?

Bluhaven, DC Universe

Bluhaven debuted in the first issue of the second volume of Nightwing, with the city quickly becoming the base of operations for the former Boy Wonder. Portrayed as being between Gotham City and Atlantic City, the city’s bloody moniker was sadly more than deserved. Though it had tried in the past to recreate itself and become a hub of commerce and manufacturing, Bludhaven was consistently a city rife with crime and corruption, arguably even worse than Gotham itself.

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Upon truly establishing himself as his own man, Nightwing became the city’s hero, ending the reign of the villainous Blockbuster while there. Unfortunately, the city would be destroyed during an attack from the villainous Chemo, though the reboots of both the New 52 and DC Rebirth have reversed this.

This connection to Nightwing has made Bluhaven one of the most important locations in the Batman mythology outside of Gotham City. Its dangerous state can also lead to several story opportunities, especially in seques and spinoffs for The Batman. While name dropping cities like Metropolis and other DC locations are likely just fun Easter eggs, this mention has the potential to manifest in Batman himself actually going to another city. Given that Bludhaven seems to be fairly close to Gotham, this could certainly be the case in any of the TV shows spinning out of the movie.

Ironically, the DCEU so far hasn’t mentioned Bludhaven, so it wouldn’t feel trite to explore it further here. Another interesting idea would be for Nightwing to already be an established adult vigilante without Batman, protecting Bludhaven on his own. Whatever happens, future follow ups to The Batman should definitely take advantage of the bloody namedrop.

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Andrew Naughtie

News reporter and author at @websalespromo