Batman vs. Spiderman Smackdown! Bonus Open Thread: What Are Your Fave Apps?

You asked and answered and commented and argued and expressed and emoted, and we listened! Here’s some Q&A from our ‘Ask a Geek’ segment in which everyone got pretty hot and bothered about Spiderman and Batman, you guys had some weird computer malfunctions that I hope are resolved by now and everybody loves webcomics, apparently! Let’s get started!


Okay guys, this is clearly a hot-button issue. Here goes.

SPIDERMAN (Marvel, DOB: 1962):

+ Superpowers: One day unsuspecting science geek Peter Parker got bit by a radioactive spider in a fortunate/unfortunate turn of events. Afterward he’s got all kinds of powers, depending on who’s writing. Most people can agree that he’s got super strength, agility like whoa, some kind of healing factor (a la Wolverine), and the ability to be generally a kinda sticky dude who can climb all around, upside-down, you name it! Also he’s a nerd and invents stuff, naturally.

Also, he’s got a unfortunately named power called the “Spidey-Sense.” This is akin to gaydar, insofar as I understand it. Spiderman feels a “tingling sensation” when danger or queers are nearby. This is such an ambiguously explained superpower that Spiderman can probably check the DOW with it. Who knows. Cool, then, I guess. I’m sure the Spidey-Sense is super useful when Peter wants to get his twink on.

Requisite Personal Tragedy: A burglar murdered his caretaker, good ol’ Uncle Ben. Then Peter went all Project Runway and made a fancy outfit and started fighting crime.

Secret Identity: Poor Peter, he’s just a lowly photog for the Daily Bugle who repeatedly gets shit on by his editor. Often for being conspicuously late and still being partially draped in webbed costume parts. So maybe that’s understandable.

Gadgets: An important factor in the Spiderman vs. Batman showdown is the fact that Spidey’s webs are not actually a superpower. They’re a gadget he made, because he’s a nerd! They fit around the underside of his wrist and he presses down a button with his two middle fingers and voila! Webbing! This is pretty invaluable as far as Spiderman’s assets go. He uses his web-shooters to swing around town, cocoonify bad guys and leave them for the cops and for most essential Spidermanly things. Also, take this into consideration when you accuse Batman of being a cheat.

Attitude: Spiderman is kind of a wise-ass kid. He’s the kind of hero that never fails to issue a horrible pun unto whoever is getting their ass kicked at the time.

Costume: A very all-American red and blue getup that actually has seen surprisingly few permutations over time.

Villians: The Green Goblin, the Hobgoblin, Doctor Octopus, Venom, Carnage, Kingpin, Lizard and many more. Like I said Venom and Carnage are two of my faves across all comics, and Carnage the bloodthirsty sociopath wins hands down for being the most f*cked. I imagine that’s why you didn’t see him all that much. I still have this panel where he kills him grandma by pushing her down some stairs emblazoned in my memory. Who let me read that shit?!


(DC, DOB: 1939)

Superpowers: Er. None. So we’ll discuss his sub-super powers. He’s a highly skilled martial artist, he’s totally ripped, he’s really good at sneaking. And he’s filthy rich and handsome. Which opens doors, you know.

+ Requisite Personal Tragedy: As a kid, wee Batman watched his parents get murdered by a mugger. Uh, top that.

+ Secret Identity: Bruce Wane, owner of Wayne Enterprises, a technology firm. He’s a classy playboy and a well-known socialite who’s absolutely loaded. Sweet.

+ Gadgets: You name it. He’s got a utility belt full of smoke bombs, magic, snacks, little bat thingers he throws like sharp boomerangs, seriously everything. But no guns, because he is a man of principle (and impracticality). And he’s got the Batmobile, the pimpest ride ever of course. And the Bat Cave, the pimpest garage ever.

+ Attitude: Batman is grim, serious, growly and dark. He’s troubled and kind of emo.

+ Costume: While Batman’s costume’s been through many iterations, happily we now seem to be veering away from the blue and grayish Bat Costume era and toward sexy black on black numbers.

+ Villains: The Scarecrow, the Joker, Catwoman, Harley Quinn, the Riddler, Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, Two-Face, etc. This line up of villains is totally amazing, if you ask me. The Scarecrow is one of my all time fave villains, because making people hallucinate terrible things is the scariest thing I can image off the top of my head. So many classics here, like Catwoman, the Joker and the Riddler. I feel like Batman’s foes are all really unique and more cleverly conceived than Spiderman’s for the most part.

Yes, my personal bias runs absolutely rampant here. But it looks like Batman wins, based on these arbitrary criteria. I guess I was judging general superhero badassness. But if Spiderman and Batman were to get in a (really gay) fight I’d still have my money on Batman.

Batman’s obsessive personality is a key asset here (being a troubled misanthrope will do that to a guy). He’d probably stalk the shit out of Peter Parker, eventually driving him insane or to New Jersey. And I’m just not sure how successful a defense a restraining order is.

Also, Bonus Inexplicable Batman/Robin Gayness:

+ Why Vashti, how funny of you to ask! Technostraddle has a mega webcomix list-to-top-all-or-most-lists comin’ at cha in no time. So if you’d like to make sure your fave comic makes it on there, email me!

+ Dear Kelsey. Here are some tips!

1. Don’t use the mic. Mute all assholes. Play jazz instead! So relaxing, right?

2. One up them. And by this I mean funnel your equality-rage (queer superpower) into being a crazy ass mofo on the mic! Here you should pull out all the stops. Incant strange, unsettling proverbs. Pass off the mic to the drunkest or most irritating person you have at your disposal. Preach the apocalypse. Meow like there’s no tomorrow. Be creative and employ booze as needed!

3. That bush joke is funny.

+ Why, what a great World of Warcraft inspired question, Christina!

This is a prototypical girl next door vs. girl from the wrong side of the tracks dilemma! And by dilemma I mean, um, hello girl from the wrong side of the tracks. My pick would definitely be Sylvanas. We’d have to get it on at my place though, because the Undercity kind of grosses me out. Sylavanas is undead, yeah, but she’s an amazing archer and military commander to boot! I’ll turn a blind eye to her sketchier endeavors to make a plague to wipe out mankind.

And Jaina is cool and all but on top of being a little vanilla, Thrall and Arthas are the last two guys I’d want to compete with for anyone’s affections.

I know I’ve only answered a tiny handful of the questions you guys wrote in with, but the good news is that there’s more Q & A to come! And if you ever have an absolutely burning question, you can always email me!

And that brings us to the new Technostraddle open thread wherein we expect you to absolutely hemorrhage thoughts and feelings! This one’s a little selfish, because honestly I just want to know what you have to say. I have an iPhone and I’ve been pretty lazy about putting apps on it, especially since they handed me a new one over the counter, no questions asked, after my other one went kaput. That whole process felt very sketchy and illegal. It was exhilarating, really. But now I am almost app-less.

What are your favorite apps? If you could name 5 you couldn’t live without, what would they be? What kind of game apps do you play? What about music? Why do you like them? Appstravaganza!

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

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Taylor has written 136 articles for us.


  1. you made me change my mind about spiderman/batman. my life has been altered in ways i never thought possible.


        I have TinyTwitter and WeatherEye for my blackberry and I really like them. I must admit UrbanSpoon on my stepmom’s Ipod Touch is fun too

  2. The Lil’ Jon app on my co-workers iPod Touch has revolutionized how we communicate.

    So far we’ve restrained our urge to use it to have him shout “WHAT?!” when one of our students breaks the no-French rule without asking. SO FAR.

    But sometimes you just need the voice of Lil’ Jon to say “Bend over and touch ya toes!”

  3. i still think spiderman beats batman even though batman the movie was better than spiderman the movie.

    the apps i use most are tweetdeck and weathereye and then the rest are games.

  4. Any time I can get my hands on my friend’s iPhone I play Katamari until the battery dies. I still have not figured out why I find it so fun.

    • Whaaa? Katamari?

      I love katamari. Like so much. Like I’m at lunch and drooling over katamari, and not my lunch. Too bad I’m in the group with shitty phones. I can’t spell that d-word jen wrote (cause I’m typing on my shittty phone),but I am totally feeling it.

  5. I used echofon for Twitter (which is maybe strange). I don’t know why I don’t like tweetdeck, b/c everyone else does.

    I have an iPod touch so I miss out on some of the really cool iPhone apps, but anyway I recommend the following –

    Tetris – because you can never go wrong with Tetris, and because it lets you keep playing music, which some app games don’t.

    Sims 3 – good if you’re stuck in public transit traffic for a long time.

    Who Has the Biggest Brain – only really fun for like a week until it gets boring, but it is a good week while it lasts

    WebMD – seriously so cool if you like to pretend to be a hypercondriac, or if you actually are a hypercondriac. You get to pick a body part on this virtual human body and select ailments and symptoms and generally have fun pretending to be a doctor of the future or something.

    Also, the WordPress app is good if you use WordPress and Flixster is good if you like to go to movies on a regular basis.

  6. Also, I have a lot of love for Superman. In the Batman vs. Spiderman debate, I fall on the Batman side. And not just because the movie is better. But where is Superman in this? He is only the best superhero ever.

  7. Batman: Arkham Asylum for the 360 is a great reason why Batman trumps Spiderman. I feel so bad ass throwing my batarangs at thugs, doing silent takedowns, sneaking around, and using my coolio martial arts moves. Also, if you like the Scarecrow, you’ll love the nightmare sequences in this game. Thumbs up.

    P.S. Lady Gaga Revenge & Touchgrind are pretty decent game apps.

    • just downloaded the demo of it this weekend actually. i know i’ll love it! arkham is one of my fave comic setting ever.

  8. I always think Batman is going to win any encounter. Hell, even against Superman we all know Batman would win, because were Superman wouldn’t go, Batman would. Not to mention Batman thinks and plans, whereas Superman is all bust in without thinking. One could say in his genius Batman’s superpower is his brain … he designed, built and hid the Watchtower sattelite from the world after all.

    So Spiderman vs. Batman would just have me asking precisely how little wee Peter wanted his arse handed to him. Can you tell that Batman was always my fav superhero growing up?

    And my fav apps on my iPhone are Stansa, Twitteriffic, Facebook, NetNewsWire, and TransitNZ. I love, love, LOVE my iPhone :)

  9. Having poked at a few handful of apps for my side job I like this post because now I feel like I have something (slightly) valid to share! (I review apps, we’re hiring! Call mee)

    So off the top of my head..some games you may or may not know about and might want to check out..

    Physics-based puzzles: You know, the types where you knock blocks over and the laws of digital gravity apply
    – Angry Birds – This game looks hilarious and entertaining!
    – Bridge Odyssey – Easy, cute graphics, build bamboo bridges for little animal silouhettes!
    – Finger Physics – I like it because I like shapes and things that move on account of notme (that is, gravity) and pretty much the general design of the game
    – Doodle Bomb – I mostly just like the idea of the whole game looking like they were drawn on graph paper. And maybe also the throwing bombs and explosions thing. kaboom

    Tower/Castle Defense: Where you got waves of things coming at you and you have to kill them before they kill you
    – Battle of Puppets – simple/easy gameplay but beautiful design & graphics, think LittleBigPlanet
    – Hellementals – 3D graphics, more involved gameplay (read: niche-y)

    Word Puzzles: Someone smarter than me always encourages using my words
    – Wordcrasher – Kind of like Word Tetris, where instead of lines, you make words and letters will roll around the tank they fall in
    – Words With Friends – Like Scrabble, pretty good for playing with other people, beware: strangers are cheaters (sometimes)

    Simple Cartoony Shooters:
    – MiniGore – I think this might be one of my fav app buys ever. ‘Round and ’round with the shooting, killing them fuzzy black fire monsters dead! Pew pew pew!
    – Zombieville USA / OMG! Pirates – Similar controls/basic premise. If you have been noticing a trend with the look of all these games looking cartoony or drawn and not 3D realistic, you are correct! I tend to try to stay away from the games with the realism in it, as my playtime is no time for reallifetime. Pow pow dead!

    Time Management Games:
    – Sally’s Spa – Sally’s frickin Spa. Oh man. The best.

    – FastMall – I get all agoraphobic when it comes to the mall sometimes so this was a neato app. Point-by-point navigation to the closest bathroom? And it’s FREEE
    – Mint.Com – Well, I guess technically it’s a website that the app is accessing from but I like it because it links all your info like bank and credit accounts into one app, instead of needing an app for each of them. Seems like a legit, secure site but of course, enter information at your own discretion.

    Just a few I can think of..just in case anyone’s been looking for different apps or anything!


  10. Spiderman to me is centered around a simple wish fullfilment fantasy, that of a bullied teenage boy who gains supernatural power through chance. This doesn´t really evoke my interest. And i have always found its sexual undertone boring.

    Batman has some of the greatest story of the genre, Arkham asylum and the killing joke spring to mind. But the deconstruction Alan Moore does in Watchman both in the characters of the second Nite owl and Rorschach truly show the greatest strength of the superhero genre as a meditation on power.

  11. tots Spiderman, almost exclusively because I prefer my fave Spiderman comic (Straczynski) to my fave Batman comic (Morrison).

  12. Spiderman can fly. Batman has rad gadgets. Peter Parker is a sweetheart and Bruce Wayne is kinda dick-ish. Mary Jane Watson is like ten times better than Rachel Dawes. But I think I like Chicago more than NYC. IDK it’s so hard to pick. Film adaptations aside, it’s a tossup.

  13. Dear Technostraddle,

    I got a wee bit fucked up this morning, and moved the contents of my living room out onto the lawn. Now I can’t be bothered moving it back inside, and I’m worried the neighbours are going to steal my tv.

    Which season of Buffy should I watch outside tonight?

      • oooh that would explain the craving for pickles, and sudden urge to yell “YOU CANT TELL ME WHAT TO DO, YOU’RE NOT EVEN MY REAL FATHER!!”

        Actually after that I’m feelin some Faith-centric eps. Season 3, bring it!

    • seven! So that you can share the epic orchestral music that happens in the finale with the whole neighborhood.

  14. TweetCaster by Handmark for Android! I love it! GREED for RSS feeds (which AutoStraddle is in my feeds)! And, Google Sky is fun to fool with.. it shows you where in the Universe you are.. which stars, planets and constellations you are facing or under! Pretty neat-o! I love my ANDROID!

    Note to self: Register with AutoStaddle so you get a SWEET ICON with your COMMENTS!!

  15. Fall Down! (don’t forget the exclamation point) is my favorite game right now. My friend and I sat at a bar for 4 hours and tried to beat eachother’s score. You basically just tilt your iPod so that a ball falls down a series of neon lines and try not to get squished.

    I also love doodle jump.

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