We know Batman survived the nuclear blast at the end of The Dark Night Rises. I'm just curious as to how he achieved it. The bomb had a blast radius of 6km (correct me if I am wrong).

Batman had corrected the auto-pilot software. Did he eject before and sent out the Bat with the bomb over the bay (there is a scene where there is a huge explosion on top of a building and Blake shouts 'explosion')? Or, did Batman drop the bomb over the bay, and sped away on the Bat like a Blackbird (SR71)?

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2 Answers 2


The whole point of the epilogue scene in which Lucius Fox is informed that the auto-pilot is functioning perfectly, was intended to address this....

'The Bat' had an auto-pilot which Fox "Couldn't get [...] to work", meaning he (and us as the audience) believed the craft could only be piloted manually. It is revealed that at some point in the film, Wayne has repaired this function, so yes: Batman will have ejected outside of the blast radius (possibly very early on) and allowed the Bat to navigate itself into the bay.

The punctum of Lucius's revelation is predicated on this realization, it's the whole point of the scene.

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    Good point. Does Lucius retrieve the original bat, i thought it would have destroyed in the blast?
    – Firee
    Dec 22, 2014 at 12:08
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    @Firee If the original bat had been retrieved more or less in one piece, the bomb would have had to have been dropped into the ocean with still enough time left for the bat to fly an at least somewhat save distance away, negating the need for an autopilot in this particular instance. Because then Bruce would only have had to survive a crash landing into the ocean, which shouldn't be too tough for Batman. (OK, the crash plus whatever fallout an exploding fusion reactor creates.)
    – BMWurm
    Jul 9, 2018 at 15:17
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    They need not necessarily retrieve the Bat, or even have a spare. They could simply be aware that its configuration had been changed that would enable the autopilot to function correctly. This could simply be code analysed, after the fact. Jul 9, 2018 at 22:36

The short answer was given by Napoleon Wilson in the comments: we don't know. The movie never addresses that, so we can only speculate (which we here call "primarily opinion-based".

The franchise is full of happy, almost impossible coincidences and "how did he do this" situations, some of which were already addressed on this site. From Bruce finding the right top of the mountain and climbing it with no equipment and almost no supplies (those things are biggish), to spying on Crane and Falcone at the exact right moment when they are discussing Rachel, to intercepting a (random!) attack on her,... all the way to him getting back in Gotham with no resources, from the who-knows-where-it-is pit.

The movie is not trying to be realistic, even though it kinda looks realistic to a certain level. It follows the comics in a somewhat more realistic tone than the previous franchises, but it does not skip one of the most significant Batman trademarks (Q: "How did he <insert something awesome>?" A: "He's the Batman!") for the sake of realism.

He survived what seemed impossible to survive. That's a part of being the Batman. Any revelation of how would either be disappointingly silly, or would have to water down his achievement.


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