This Cartoon Show Vladimir Putin Beating Batman With Bug Spray

Batman works for the CIA, by the way. Just so you know.

LifeNews, a Russian media outlet with close ties to the security services, published a video on Wednesday titled "Vladimir Putin in India" that for some reason features the Russian president defeating Batman.

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As the title indicates, the video starts with Putin arriving at the recent BRICS* Summit in India, living his best life at the luxury five-star hotel Hotel.

*BRICS is a loose grouping of once rising emerging economies Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

We cut to Batman (?!?) arriving at the CIA where he gets his instructions: eavesdrop on Vladimir Putin**.

**It's a pretty great homage to The Dark Knight, but with less extraordinary rendition.

Batman sets off on his mission but finds that his stealth skills fail in the face of Putin's keen senses, as the Russian president takes out the Caped Crusader with a can of common bug spray and calmly watches him plummet.

Okay, a couple of things to unpack here. First off, bats are not bugs.

Bill Watterson/ Universal Press Syndicate

As Calvin and Hobbes taught us well.

Second, we have to note the irony in Batman working for the CIA, given that the Russian military's intelligence branch — the GRU — basically stole Batman's symbol***.

Afp / AFP / Getty Images

***They did not, but look at it. Warner Bros. call your lawyers, you could have a case.

Next, Batman is an odd choice to play the US surrogate, a role usually filled by Superman.

Frederic J. Brown / AFP / Getty Images

Superman is all about truth, justice, and the American way. Batman punches people at night.

Fourth, it's weird that LifeNews, given its cozy relationship with the Kremlin and, would cast Putin in the supervillain role.

Alexander Nemenov / AFP / Getty Images

Anyway, congrats on supplanting the Joker as Batman's archnemesis, Mr. Putin.

Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty Images



A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.