Malaysia's main news medium print reported in mid-November that one Singaporean young man Batman son of Suparman was sentenced to a jail term for a string of crimes he committed in the island country. Due to his unusual name, the story of Batman took off well beyond Singapore, making the list of best read stories on the BBC website. The interest raised was more about his name than this crimes - theft, heroin consuming, house breaking, as both his father and himself were named after legendary, righteous heroes of comic book characters. Batman was sentenced to serve his time for two years and nine months.
His mother was not bemused to hear that Batman's name was being talked about. She complained, "A person's name is not a laughing matter". She was clearly irritated to be asked if her son had been named after the comic hero. She tried to explain that Batman, 23, was a normal Javanese name that should be properly pronounced as "But-Mun" instead. One veteran Malay language teacher Abdul Rahim Omar told the Sunday Times of Singapore that Batman has no specific meaning in Malay or Javanese. Wall Street Journal language columnist Ben Zimmer told BBC that the issue regarding the name was an "juxtaposition of local naming with Western culture", in response to enquires of international media. Mr Abdul Rahim Omar opined that Batman's parents were inspired by the ever popular comic story.