In the closing moments of The Dark Knight, Batman and Jim Gordon discuss Harvey Dent’s fall from grace and decide to protect his secret by pinning the murders committed by the District Attorney on the Caped Crusader. The scene contains an iconic monologue delivered by Batman in which he echoes Dent's famous line, “you either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain.”
Now, the definitive voice of Batman in Kevin Conroy read that famous monologue, providing his unique take on one of the most famous scenes in the superhero’s cinematic catalogue.
Speaking with Rob Paulsen on Nerdist’s Talkin' Toons podcast, Conroy took up his iconic role while Paulsen played Gordon while reading the exchange between the two characters in closing moments of Christopher Nolan’s classic film.
While Christian Bale’s own Batman voice is definitely unique, Conroy’s version has become the staple for multiple generations. Hearing his gravely tone belt out the classic lines from Nolan’s film is pretty awesome.
Read the speech below and see if you can do as well as Conroy did.
Commissioner James Gordon: The Joker won. All of Harvey's prosecutions, everything he fought for: undone. Whatever chance you gave us of fixing our city dies with Harvey's reputation. We bet it all on him. The Joker took the best of us and tore him down. People will lose hope.
Batman: They won't. They must never know what he did.
Commissioner James Gordon: Five dead, two of them cops—you can't sweep that up.
Batman: But the Joker cannot win. Gotham needs its true hero.
Commissioner James Gordon: No!
Batman: "You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain." I can do those things, because I'm not a hero, not like Dent. I killed those people, that's what I can be.
Commissioner James Gordon: No, you can't! You're not!
Batman: I'm whatever Gotham needs me to be. Call it in.
Commissioner James Gordon: They'll hunt you.
Batman: You'll hunt me. You'll condemn me, set the dogs on me. Because that's what needs to happen. Because sometimes… the truth isn't good enough. Sometimes people deserve more. Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded.
With the help of allies Lt. Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and DA Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), Batman (Christian Bale) has been able to keep a tight lid on crime in Gotham City. But when a vile young criminal calling himself the Joker (Heath Ledger) suddenly throws the town into chaos, the caped Crusader begins to tread a fine line between heroism and vigilantism.