How did the Bat-Signal work on cloudless and moonless nights?

Bat signal

  • 4
    On a clear night, did the crime rate go up? – Major Stackings Sep 3 '12 at 3:05
  • 5
    They used the telephone. – Xantec Sep 3 '12 at 3:13
  • 1
    Its a Bat-Tech, man! – user931 Sep 3 '12 at 4:02
  • 11
    It’s Gotham. It’s always cloudy. – Paul D. Waite Apr 21 '13 at 10:36
  • 1
    Not so well. (Take that @Paul) – Möoz Apr 6 '16 at 5:01

Because the Bat-signal (being a searchlight, or, in the newer iterations, a laser system) works off of light, it technically couldn't be visible without something to diffuse the light (like clouds or smoke) or reflect the light (like a solid surface). When it is visible without clouds (usually in the animated series), it's simply movie magic.

But the Bat-signal wasn't necessary to contact Batman: when the Bat-signal was otherwise unavailable, the Bat-phone was used:

This was obviously updated for later iterations of Batman, as Wikipedia describes:

In the modern Batman comic book continuity, the Batphone made its debut in Detective Comics #786 (November, 2003), in the form of an encrypted cellphone that allowed Gordon to securely contact Batman, as well as allowing other calls just like a normal cellphone. It also carries a tracking device in case of trouble. Unlike the original Batphone, the device is not red and looks like a regular cellphone.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.