- "You're just jealous, because I'm a genuine freak and you have to wear a mask!"
- ―The Penguin[src]
The second Batsuit was more armor-plated in appearance. It seemed somewhat more mass-produced than its predecessor, as Bruce Wayne had a walk-in vault to select and assemble from multiple suit-pieces that were present.
At some point after the 200th Anniversary Parade, the Batsuit was updated to a more angular armor plated version, with more industrialized seam lines that were shown rather than being hidden at joints or at the back like the previous sculpted muscle look, most notably down the center of the thighs. This new armor was shown to possess weak points, particularly in the pectoral seam or his lower sides, as demonstrated by Catwoman when she jabbed her claws into such a spot on two encounters.
However, the Batsuit still retained its defense against bullets, although, again, the impact of the bullets still knocked the wearer off their feet. It did not appear to leave bullet marks as easily the original torso after it took hits. A notable improvement allowed the cape to transform into a glider.
The same utility belt was still in use for the second Batsuit. The belt still had a small motor that was used for shifting equipment from the rear of the belt to the front. A handful of gadgets were typically stored on the back.
- The four capsules on the belt contained chemicals that had different purposes and could be mixed together to create explosives. Batman grabbed a Napalm Capsule from his belt and threw it at Catwoman's arm; after he shook it, the liquid glowed blue.
The "spring-action reel and line" was a multipurpose gadget that had integral functionally with the utility belt. The compact pieces slid from the back of the belt and were assembled by Batman. It had various attachments:
- Grappling hook launcher for vertical ascents and larger hook to catch himself in a fall. Batman used the new version to pull out concrete from a wall that the grappling hook was linked on to knock out the Terrifying Clown.
- A single-shot speargun that could be used on targets to tug them towards him or ensnare them on a line. It's only known use was on a Napier Hood at Axis Chemicals. Batman also seemed to no longer use the bola launcher or any other attachments, favoring zip-lines for fast travel during that era.
Double Grappling Hook
There was also a separate large horizontal zip-line (known as "The Gauntlet") that fired two lines that formed a path across a distance. Batman later took to using a small version of this item. The original device was so big that there was no way it could be stored on Batman's person.
A powerful new self-guided, computerized Batrang was used by Batman to dispatch several Red Triangle Henchmen. After it neutralized nearly all of its targets, it was snatched by the Ratty Poodle and used in the plot to frame Batman by the Penguin.
A key new of feature of this Batsuit was the cape's ability to transform into hang-glider wings.
- A remote that was primarily used to control the Batmobile. Issuing certain voice commands ("Shields", "Stop", "Shields Open") directed the vehicle to perform certain actions.
- Ultrasonic Bat Beacon
- Batman Returns
- See: Batsuit (Batman Returns)/Gallery for additional images.
Behind the Scenes
Bob Ringwood created rough illustrations for the second costume, going back to their original concept of armor plating.
For reasons unknown, the Kenner Batman action figure mold was not updated to reflect the new costume. Very few figurines from other licensees attempted the new art deco plated armor design.
Legacy and Cameo-Appearances
- The Paraglider-Cape in Batman Returns was quite similar in concept to Christopher Nolan's "Memory Cloth" Cape in Batman Begins.
- Catwoman made reference to the weak spot her movie-version found in Batman Returns in the Cry of the Huntress comic book miniseries and shared the information with Huntress.
- Bruce Wayne’s updated 2010 Batsuit, that was first shown in the Batman Incorporated Storyline, was conceptualized by artist David Finch as an amalgam from the Batsuits in Tim Burton's and Christopher Nolan's Batman Films.
- The concept of the Batsuit being a technological suit of armor, that most notably protecting Batman from bullets, continued into future films.
- The gauntlet/zip-line, that was used twice in Batman Returns, went on to appear in comics and was an obtainable equipment piece in Batman: Arkham Asylum.
- The costume was constructed using sculpted foam latex pieces over a neoprene bodysuit. The costume in Batman Returns was made out of a thinner, slightly more flexible foam rubber than the previous costume.
- Nike once again manufactured the boots for the costume, this time based on Air Jordan VIs.
- The chest was made more traditional in the sequel, due to fan complaints. Burton had wanted to "toughen it up a little" according to his commentary track for the dvd.