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For the first time ever, Kevin Conroy will appear as Batman in a live-action DC television series. Now that the initial shock of "Crisis on Infinite Earths" getting one of the biggest superhero castings of the decade has worn off, however, it's time to start asking the questions none of us were equipped to care about when we first learned the news.
Frankly, there's a lot to consider now that we know "future Bruce Wayne" will be a part of what looks to be the most ambitious crossover the Arrow-verse has done to date. Here's a few of the major things I'm thinking about as each day brings us closer to the debut of Kevin Conroy's live-action Batman.
What Earth Is He From?
"Crisis on Infinite Earths" is going to feature a lot of different DC heroes from a lot of different worlds. Kevin Conroy's Bruce Wayne could potentially be from any world, including worlds we've seen before. For all we know, this could be the Earth-1 Batman who is currently missing from Gotham City. Black Lightning has referenced Batman as well, so perhaps he's from that world's future?
It would be far more interesting to the story if Kevin Conroy's future Bruce Wayne is from one of the existing Arrow-verse shows. With that said, it feels unlikely considering establishing the existence of a future Bruce Wayne in any show's Earth then puts the pressure of revealing the younger Bruce Wayne on the series. Unless the point of bringing him in for "Crisis" is to do exactly that, then chances are this Bruce is just from some random Earth.
Will Bruce Travel Back In Time, Or Will Heroes Travel To The Future?
At this time, all we know is that Bruce Wayne from the future will be featured in the five-part "Crisis on Infinite Earths." Whether he's traveling to the past to kick some ass, or he'll be found in some future remains to be seen. With Legends of Tomorrow being centered on time travel, it isn't so crazy to think they could've snagged him from somewhere and brought him into the fray.
Of course, it's also possible some heroes jump into the future and enlist future Bruce Wayne to help gather intel on what happened in the past. The easiest way to combat a plan is to know exactly what's going to happen, so it seems like a great idea to hop ahead and attempt to anticipate what the plan in the present will be. Bruce would know exactly what happened, and may have even developed a plan to prevent it.
Will Bruce Be Terry McGinnis' Mentor?
One of the most exciting things about seeing a Bruce Wayne from the future is that it may mean Kevin Conroy is portraying the same Batman seen in the iconic animated series Batman Beyond. If this is the same Bruce, then there's a solid chance he'd be mentoring the Batman of the future: Terry McGinnis. This would mean there's a chance at a McGinnis appearance, which is incredibly exciting to imagine.
Especially when considering The CW is hoping to kick off a new Arrow-verse series in the 2020-2021 television season. Imagine if a live-action Batman Beyond series is on the way, and that "Crisis on Infinite Earths" is the backdoor pilot of sorts that will usher in another new Batman series to television! That would be insanely thrilling, especially if Kevin Conroy got a regular gig as the live-action Bruce Wayne.
Will Kevin Conroy's Bruce Wayne Suit Up As Batman?
If a younger actor were portraying Bruce Wayne during "Crisis on Infinite Earths," there'd be almost immediate speculation whether he'd suit up as The Dark Knight. In the case of the 63-year-old Kevin Conroy, obviously there's less of an assumption he'd suit up. In Batman Beyond, Bruce developed a heart condition, which made effectively continuing as Batman impossible. He did suit up on rare occasions, but was far from his prime.
Then there's the future Bruce Wayne from the acclaimed Kingdom Come in which Bruce maintained his strength and agility through the use of an exoskeleton. If Kevin Conroy's Batman is like that Bruce, then suiting up as Batman would be possible, but he'd definitely look different. So for anyone who's thinking there's no chance in hell Conroy won't wear the cape and cowl during the mega-crossover, don't be so sure!
Will Any Future Batman Villains Appear?
Now that it's known a future Bruce Wayne will appear during "Crisis on Infinite Earths," we have to wonder if that means older versions of villains will appear as well. For example, what about one of Batman's biggest enemies, or his greatest enemy? Imagine Kevin Conroy as a live-action Batman, and Mark Hamill playing the Joker of another Earth to oppose him!
If ever there was a time to do it, this is it. Especially with the future angle in play as Mark Hamill would fit the bill as an elderly Joker at 67-years-old. Plus we've already seen him on The Flash as Trickster, so it wouldn't be a huge stretch for the Arrow-verse to have him play another prank-based villain with bad intentions. Other Bat-villains would be acceptable as well, but obviously having the "definitive voice" of Batman take on the "definitive voice" of Joker would be a fantastic thing to see.
Will Kevin Conroy's Bruce Wayne Return After "Crisis"?
The Arrow-verse finally has an actor to play Bruce Wayne, and that's a wonderful thing. It could be short-lived, however, as Kevin Conroy's tenure may be over as soon as the end-credits roll for "Crisis on Infinite Earths." Is that what the Arrow-verse is planning, or is there any chance Conroy could reprise his role on a show post-Crisis?
Never say never, especially when the Arrow-verse has welcomed back its past actors to play different, past, imagined, or resurrected versions of their characters. If fan response to Kevin Conroy's Bruce Wayne performance is great enough, it seems likely that The CW will try to find ways to work him into other heroes stories.
The "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover event kicks off on The CW with Supergirl Sunday, December 8 at 8:00 p.m. ET. Stick with CinemaBlend in the meantime for more news on things happening in the world of television and movies.