Oftentimes, fan art helps fill in the gaps in the narrative of popular stories or reimagine classic characters in new and exciting ways. Freelance artist Pablo Ruiz managed to do just that with his recent Instagram post, which imagines Chris Evans as Captain America engaged in a pitched battle with Ben Affleck as Batman.

The image shows one of the Captain's signature moves, the Superman punch. Only this time, the move is against the Dark Knight of Gotham City, who stands ready and prepared to counter the attack. It is unclear where this fight is supposed to be taking place, but judging by the destruction surrounding them, it has been going on for some time.

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The debate over who would win a fight between the two characters has been raging ever since the two debuted in comics. But what makes the imaginary battle particularly intriguing is that it takes place between iterations of the character that fans have got to see in action on the big screen in great detail, leading to a more informed discussion of the relative merits of Captain America being able to kick Batman's ass or vice versa.

To start with, we know that Captain America is an enhanced soldier, with abilities far beyond the realm of ordinary humans. He can make a massive dent in a hummer car with a kick alone, stop a helicopter from taking off literally with his bare hands, and punch Thanos in the noggin' without immediately shattering his fist.

Then we have Batman. But not just any Batman. This version of the Dark Knight is repeatedly shown to be past his prime, feeling the aches in his bones after a long day of crime fighting. Add in the fact that at his best, he could only boast of peak human abilities rather than superhuman abilities, and things are not looking too good for the DC Comics icon.

On the other hand, this version of Batman has proven to be much more ruthless and violent. He also has an arsenal of fancy weaponry at his disposal that would make Marvel mainstay Tony Stark salivate. Given enough prep time, we can totally see Batfleck studying Captain America, figuring out a counter for his power set, and coming up with some traps to incapacitate the star-spangled hero before finishing him off.

Of course, the answer to the question of who would win a fight between the two has already been answered by the comics, in a fashion. During the events of the 2003 JLA/Avengers crossover series, Batman met Captain America atop a lonely rooftop.

After a few tense seconds of sizing each other up, the two engaged in a quiet, almost gentle round of punches and parries to get a feel of the other's ability. In the end, Batman admitted that Captain America might be able to beat him. but proposed that a better use of their time would be to get to the bottom of the threat the world was facing at the moment. Captain America agreed, and the two then teamed up. Because that is what superheroes do after the initial obligatory battle brought about by a misunderstanding.

Neeraj Chand