Superhero's name

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dautismat

Member
Vietnamese
Hello everyone,

I have watched and read comic books for a while, and there is something that I can't get my head around.
Here is a title from a magazine moviepilot.com
Is Batman Still The Most Popular Superhero? Here's Why The Flash Is Catching Up
My question is that why do we call Batman, but not The Batman, and call The Flash but not Flash?

Are there any rules in naming and calling superheroes' names? Or is it just because the writers want it that way?

Thank you in advanced. :D
 
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  • Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    The explanation is simple: It is what the author decided to call him.

    The original "Flash" was Jay Garrick and there was no definite article attached to that name.



    DC Comics re-invented the character as Barry Allen and that became "The Flash".

     

    Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Part of the answer is in the nature of the name. "Flash" is a regular noun. This superhero is one specific Flash, so we can use "The" to identify him. "Batman" is not a regular noun. It is a name. Names generally don't take articles.

    So, we have Superman and Catwoman (with no article) but The Joker and The Hulk (with articles) - because joker and hulk can be used as regular nouns in ordinary conversation, but Superman and Catwoman can't. There may be exceptions, but it's how articles are generally used or not used in this context.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Part of the answer is in the nature of the name. "Flash" is a regular noun. This superhero is one specific Flash, so we can use "The" to identify him. "Batman" is not a regular noun. It is a name. Names generally don't take articles.

    So, we have Superman and Catwoman (with no article) but The Joker and The Hulk (with articles) - because joker and hulk can be used as regular nouns in ordinary conversation, but Superman and Catwoman can't. There may be exceptions, but it's how articles are generally used or not used in this context.

    I agree--mostly.

    We had a student in our dorm in college that was beyond strange. But additionally would walk as fast as most people would call a "fast jog". We all called him "The Blur" because his features seemed blurred by the speed in which he walked.

    But when we were addressing him (Andy was his real name) we would say, "Hey, Blur ..." and never "Hey, The Blur..."

    I would imagine that "The Flash" would be addressed simply as "Flash" without the definite article.
     

    pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    Also, characters have different authors in different books and movies. Batman was originally called The Batman in the comics, and is often called that in the Dark Knight trilogy of films. [The] Catwoman was originally simply called The Cat.

    So, other than Packard's direct address example, it's true that there are no rules.
     
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