|The 1930 film even has a Bat Signal|
Watching the expressionistically filmed, Art Deco-ish opening to The Bat Whispers (1930), it’s easy to see how this could have inspired the Batman. Here we have a mysterious. masked, black-cloaked, roof-stalking, rope-swinging “Bat Man” who, like the Joker, taunts the police before pulling off his daring crimes.
Oddly enough that would be the same year that young Philip Wylie published his science fiction novel Gladiator, the direct inspiration for Superman.