The Dark Knight and Big Data

The highly anticipated conclusion of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, “The Dark Knight Rises”, hits the big screens in the United States this weekend. Christian Bale returns to play the Caped Crusader, starring alongside other favorites such as Michael Kaine and Gary Oldman. Tom Hardy joins the cast to play the hulking villain Bane, while Anne Hathaway portrays Selina Kyle/Catwoman- Batman’s femme fatale. Morgan Freeman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Marion Cottilard round out the finale’s all-star cast. Batman is widely recognized as one of the most famous superheroes ever created. His character has a much darker story than other famous superheroes, such as Superman and Spiderman. The Dark Knight first flew onto pages in 1939 when DC Comics first introduced him. Just a year later, in 1940, Batman was given his first solo title, a sidekick- Robin the Boy Wonder- and two infamous villains- the Joker and Catwoman (we’ll have to see how villainous Hathaway’s Catwoman is soon). At different points in Batman’s history, including in the movies in the 90’s, DC has tried to shift the character away from his dark origins towards a lighter, more humorous concept. However, this has never been nearly as successful as the portrayal of the Caped Crusader as a superhero with tragic undertones.

I see some similarities between myself and the Bat, especially when it comes to superpowers. Unlike many other superheroes, Batman does not have any of supernatural powers; he is just a man. Instead, his abilities derive from his wealth and the gadgets he builds with it. The same could be said for yours truly. It’s true that I give superpowers to marketers, but it’s also true that they are derived directly from the data I collect. Without big data and other systems, I would not have any superpowers to share with the marketing world.

Interestingly, in the second movie in Nolan's trilogy, The Dark Knight, Batman creates a giant information system that taps into all of the mobile phones in Gotham City in order to track his nemesis, the Joker. Although his intentions are good, this system is an extreme violation of privacy. Once the system has fulfilled its purpose, namely, helping Batman catch the Joker, Batman makes sure it is destroyed. Obviously, there is great power in big data, but we have to remember to use it responsibly.

Still, it is not solely this access to wealth, in the form of money and data alike, that sets Batman and I apart. Batman’s super-human abilities include incredible athleticism and strength. He also has unparalleled intelligence and, in the movies, he has trained as a ninja with the League of Shadows. Similarly, I, Captain Dash, don’t just use the data from your company to give your marketers helpful superpowers. Rather, I also consider outside factors, such as weather, political and environmental activities, and demographics, when producing results for your company.

With this being the final installment of the trilogy, it’ll be interesting to see how Nolan ends the series. It is worth noting that in the comic books, Bruce Wayne’s reign as Batman comes to a halt at the hands of Bane who breaks the hero’s back. Furthermore, if you’ve seen the trailer for the movie, you’ve also heard Batman tell Catwoman that so far he hasn’t give the people of Gotham everything just yet.  So how do you think the series will end? Will Batman finally meet his match? Or will the Dark Knight prove even greater than he was in the past. To find out, make sure you head to the cinema to see Christopher Nolan’s stunning conclusion!

Nanananana, The Captain!