Arrowverse Producers Explain Batman’s Absence From Elseworlds

Although The CW’s Arrowverse has name-dropped Batman on several occasions, Bruce Wayne has yet to make an appearance within the shared universe. This year’s Elseworlds crossover seemed like it would have been the ideal time to bring Batman into the fold. After all, the storyline kicks off with a mysterious incident at Arkham Asylum, which has been known to house Batman’s deadliest enemies. But alas, the Dark Knight is confirmed to be sitting this one out. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, consulting producer Caroline Dries explained why.

According to Dries, the Arrowverse version of Batman has been MIA for years, allowing Gotham City’s crime rate to rise. “Our approach is: What does Gotham look like after the Batman has been gone for three years?” Dries told EW. “So if you have the law and order, protector, and hope gone, what happens as a result? Some people are thriving in his absence because now they can start to do their own thing without the oversight. A lot of other people are suffering and they’re losing hope, and the city itself and infrastructure is falling apart. So it’s not a happy place. Our guys walk into a grimy, scary Gotham.”

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Dries’ fellow producer, Marc Guggenheim, explained that the effects of Batman’s disappearance will be felt immediately. He described Gotham’s lawless landscape as “a dead city” and “practically a ghost town.” The crossover’s heroes, meanwhile, will have their own little debate over whether the caped crusader is even real. “Oliver is like, ‘He’s not real! They’ve made him up! It’s a hoax just to scare the citizens.’” said Flash actor Grant Gustin. “Barry is flabbergasted by that and all he wants to do in Gotham is meet Batman. It’s a pretty funny scene.”

In Batman’s stead, Ruby Rose’s Batwoman will make her Arrowverse debut during the crossover to provide aid to Green Arrow, The Flash and Supergirl. If all goes as planned, the character will get her own series in 2019. Batwoman’s potential show will be written and executive produced by Dries.

Elseworlds begins on Sunday, December 9 with an episode of The Flash. What do you think about the Arrowverse’s take on Batman? Give us your impressions in the comment section below!