Disclosure: I’m not knocking on Prometheus or Wrath although it may seem like it, and I’m limiting myself to canon (New 52 and post crisis) story lines exclusively.
Whenever people think of an “evil Batman”, for lack of a better term, besides Owlman of course, most people would think of Prometheus or Wrath, for obvious reasons. I, on the other hand, think of Bane. I’m not talking about “anti batmen” like the Joker who are opposites of Batman, I’m talking about dudes so similar that if there was just a small push they could practically be Batman. Bane has so many parallels to Batman in terms of skills and abilities, story, and personality. Whether intentionally or unintentionally I think he is a perfect foil for Batman. He’s one of the smartest and skilled villains and his origin in Santa Prisca has many correlations with Batmans origins.
I think the obvious one to get out of the way first is Banes physical and mental prowess is on par with Batmans abilities. Bane was able to identify Batmans identity faster than the few people who found out without Batman telling them. Finding out Batmans identity alone is quite the accomplishment on its own considering the great length he goes into when hiding it. There is definitely something to be said about Banes intelligence rivaling Batmans. Bane is also one of the few to actually beat or hold off Batman in a fair fight. Batman was able to one hit knock out his most obvious physical rivals Lady Shiva and Deathstroke, whether you love it or hate it:
However Batman was never able to beat Bane so easily:
More examples of them being physically on par would be: they both one shot Nightwing, they both beat Kingsnake with ease, they both humiliated Killer Croc and KGBeast, and they both have a fighting record with Azreal that is in the green:
He is also the only one to ever one shot him, except for Batman one million:
The similarities between them physically seems obvious, the only problem is Banes lack of resources, I believe that if Bane were somehow able to have as much resources as Batman, then he could be a villain that rivals the Justice League.
Bane and Batman share many personality traits as well, more so than all other of the Bat villains, dare I say. They both adhere to a creed that they made of there own accord. An code of honor is something that all Bat villains seem to lack, even Lady Shiva, for example, says she has one but even then it seems pretty loose. Batman has said Bane would NEVER run from a fight and Bane has protected children and friends on more than one occasion. Batmans morals are obviously a lot stricter, but characters created with the sole purpose of being “evil Batmen”, such as Prometheus, seem to lack morals entirely. They both seem socially awkward as well. Obviously Bruce Wayne seems very charismatic, but Batman, the man everyone claims to be the “real one” is very south of normal. An example of their strange social skills from the top of my head is that only had one scene of intercourse. In the entire 75 years Batman had only one scene of banging:
Kind of weird considering Bane and Batman, people who reached the peak of what humans can be, have had less sex than one eyed, old people, insane clowns, and zombies. Another MSFW example is that they have trouble letting people get close. They both have been shown to have no trouble working well with others, yet they still don’t trust people, there both extremely paranoid. I think it’s also interesting to note they both have fancied Talia al Ghul at points in their, canon, history. A point I will touch on latter. Bane also wants to protect Gotham, Same as Batman only he takes more extreme measures. Bane has saved and helped civilians in Batmans absence, such as Arkham War when he took over Wayne Tower to hide civilians and killed people who were stealing water, and when he saved little ones from bad guys in Secret Six:
Something strange I've noticed is that I don’t remember him ever killing anyone who were in some way able to defend themselves. I think they also both have a deep philosophical understanding as well. Batman, mostly, has been portrayed as a Catholic:
He also understands Buddhist philosophy from his martial arts training.
And Bane, whilst not Christian like his heroic counterpart, also harbors an understanding of philosophy, since most of his time in jail was spent reading:
I think there similarities, in terms of personality and physical abilities are shown best in Batman Bane Blood Brothers:
There they made a marvelous team, the only thing that broke up the team was Bane was more extreme and he had his own mission, which Batman gave his blessing for. A Bane Batman team up is an interesting prospect however. Bane was also the few villains that teamed up with Batman for a righteous purpose.
Bane and Batman share many story events that seem to mimic each other.
They could have shared the same biological father for starters:
To me that resonates the tragedy of Bane. He was born in a horrible birth place obviously and Bruce Waynes roles could have been reversed with Banes, a creepy thought. Another similarity is Bane was also Ra's al Ghuls protege, same as Batman, only Bane chose to except his mentors will, whilst Batman didn't. Bane wanted to be Talias love interest, whilst Batman had to be drugged by Talia in order to create Damian. See the pattern? Banes stay with Ra's was a twisted version of Batmans visit:
Ras al Ghul and Talia remarked on how they share similarities whilst Bane stayed with them as well.
It also should be noted that Bane and Batman had both struggled with venom addiction, and it’s implied they overcame said addiction via a similar way:
I think the greatest story similarity is their origin. They both felt tragedy by seeing their parental figures being murdered in front of them, however my opinion is that their childhood brutalities isn’t what makes their origin similar, it’s a strange sense of divine intervention, like their entire life has been leading to them battling each other for eternity. Like fate has been building up a rivalry between them that only the Joker vs Batman rivalry can beat. Batmans major shift from vigilante to superhero was caused by a bat flying through the window at the right time, at the right moment, perfectly, TO perfectly. What set Bane on the path of villainy was a dream that showed young Bane an image of the future, and a terrifying dream, that again seems TO perfect.
I’m of the opinion that all the pain they have seen was leading them to an ultimate battle of good vs evil. I think more proof of how it was a “set up by destiny” is that Bane fights with as much passion as Batman in all his battles, he’s inflicted with a sense of self righteousness and believes his goals are just. He's said over and over that he believes he’s innocent:
At their core they are both emotionally scared, socially awkward, BA men who want to protect Gotham, just they exicute there plans differently.
Who do ya’ll think is the perfect “evil Batman” and why? Excluding Owlman and the people created to mimic Batman on purpose, naturally.