The Arkham Sessions Podcast, Episode #103: “Growing Pains”

Robin learns a tough lesson when he disobeys Batman and goes off on his own to pursue a mysterious case involving a young, lost girl by the name of Annie. Caught up in the belief that he could save Annie from an abusive father, Robin follows her to Gotham City’s sewers, where he encounters a disturbing realization about the way Annie and her father are “connected.”  Annie’s father is, in fact, the shapeshifting villain known as Clayface. To his horror, Robin learns that Annie is literally a “piece” of Clayface. A chunk of mud that formed into a small girl. To make matters worse, Clayface wants to “reunite” with Annie in order to be whole again, but will that mean Annie will cease to exist?

In this episode of The Arkham Sessions, we explore the concept of personhood and identity development. First, how do we define a person? What characteristics must one have in order to be considered a sentient being? Reviewing various definitions of personhood and sentience, we ponder where Annie fits by applying the criteria: Is she self-aware? Intelligent? Has the freedom to choose? If she has the moral right of personhood, then should Robin have given her a chance to live apart from Clayface?  Listen to the episode below for our full analysis of this unique Batman episode!

The Arkham Sessions is a podcast dedicated to the psychology of the show, Batman: The Animated Series. Have psychology related questions about Batman? Write to us via twitter @ArkhamSessions or on Facebook.

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