DALLAS -- A 21-year-old college student has accepted a top award for an intriguing paper he penned about the striking similarities between President Donald Trump's rise to the White House and Batman.
Andrew Boge, who attends Hastings College in Nebraska, says he first started to think about a connection when he saw a 2015 YouTube clip of then-candidate Trump giving a family a ride in his helicopter.
"And the little boy asks, 'Are you Batman?' And he says, 'Yes, I'm Batman,"' says Boge.
He says professors encouraged him to expand on some initial thoughts and he came up with the research paper titled "Donald Trump is Batman: How Archetypal Appeals Assisted in Determining Our President."
The report has a number of central themes, including that Trump's personality and actions can seem to change quickly and often appear contradictory.
"The darkness and the light, and how that can be both contained inside the person," says Boge. "It's like Bruce Wayne on one side, the businessman and appeal, and then the darker side of him being Batman."
Another point is that Batman always needs a "villain" or opponent. Boge says Trump's candidacy and even presidency, especially on Twitter, is the same.
"He's going to save us from ISIS, stop us from crooked Hillary. All of the people in Washington right now, they're doing bad things, the establishment," Boge said.
Finally, he argues that the American electorate can be a lot like the residents of Gotham City.
"It's the show and the spectacle he created that gets the attention," he says. "And people in both need to feel safe. Immigrants and rapists, talking about that."
Over the weekend, Andrew and others from Hastings College attended the National Communication Association's conference in Dallas.
He won the prestigious Michael Smith Award for the Batman paper, beating out other entries from colleges across the country involved with the national honorary, Lambda Pi Eta, which has more than 550 active chapters.
"I just hope the paper's topic gets people talking," he said.