How would you portray your favourite villains?

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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby themaddoc » Jun 12th, 2012, 8:11 pm

What the Riddler often forgets (or doesn't want to know) is that intelligence has nothing to do with ability to answer riddles, not only that but it is also far easier to create a riddle rather than answer them. In this way the Riddler is actually nothing special and that is what hurts him. Skilled at riddles perhaps but not hyper-intelligence. The way I see it riddler wants to be intelligent so much that he's even fooled himself into believing it, as doc Young in AA said he's deluded. His interest in Batman is because Riddler recognises Batman's intelect and is determined to best him, not to show Batman but rather to show himself that he can do it and he is not, as his father said, a moron. The only reason Riddler originally turned to heavy crime (outside of petty scams) was to make batman actually pay attention to him, if he posed no threat then bats wouldn't take the time to play mind games, but it grow into an adiction to not only outsmart Batman but the law and then into full blown extermination of the 'stupid'
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby Enigma » Jun 12th, 2012, 8:35 pm

TheJester wrote:You have no idea how much fun I have writing about my favourite Bat villain :D

I thought that your favourite villain was Scarecrow... or Harley... or Joker... I knew that you liked Riddler, but I didn't think he was your favourite. Cool. :oldyella:

TheJester wrote:Indeed he does. As I said before, he knows that he has an above average IQ; even his doctors say that he has a genius intellect. As a fairly intelligent person myself, I know for a fact how annoying it is to be ridiculed/ questioned by someone who is clearly, the put it bluntly, an idiot. In a way, I can emphasise with Riddler's view on stupidity and ignorance in general, although the extents he sometimes goes to are obviously a bit extreme.

One of the reasons that I like the character is because I can relate to him. Apart from the obvious things, I think he is a very human character, as I mentioned in brackets. (Actually, a lot of Batman's rogues gallery is human on the inside. So this could be said about nearly all of them.)

I like it when his views on ignorance are extreme...

TheJester wrote:I recall one comic where he hijacks a bus, asking every passenger a riddle. If they answered incorrectly, he shot them in cold blood and tossed their bodies out onto the road. His view that 'stupidity should be erased' is something I think a lot of people can relate to at times, but the basic principals of this theory are bonkers. This is where Riddler's insanity comes in; similar to Ras al Ghul, he wants to purify the world - in this case, getting rid of idiots. This of course entirely depends on what Riddler classes as an 'idiot', and usually his ego gets in the way.

...except when they're taken to lengths such as this. I'm not too familiar with the comic myself but what you've described doesn't sound very 'Riddler' to me. Two reasons:

1. One of the things that set apart the Riddler from other villains is that he is not so prone to murder. As I prooved in the topic I made about it, a lot of people feel the same way about him. So shooting a bus-load of people in cold blood like this doesn't sound very much like him to me.

2. The crime lacks the over-the-top nature of the character. Quite like the Joker, as you know, the Riddler loves for his plans to be incredibly ostentatious and attention-grabbing. They're both going for the front page (for different reasons). Shooting random people on a bus for not answering a riddle goes completely against the character's ideology, doesn't it?

Both problems can be solved by taking the bus hostage - in an elaborate method, of course - and using them in a deathtrap to attract Batman's attention. The rules of the game would be more fair. The murder, if it happened, wouldn't be far more indirect. The whole ploy would be more 'Riddler' in the fact that it would be more over-the-top. Proven ignorant people would be the prime cherries for the picking to use in one of his deathtraps, too. Not random people who he doesn't even know. I think he would know that doing so and calling them an ignoramus would make him look silly. So, again, appearance is everything to him.

TheJester wrote:Like I said earlier, being questioned by an idiot annoys me. Being questioned by a person who has average intelligence doesn't. Riddler on the other hand is usually portrayed so self-centred that he sees everyone else being beneath him intellectually, including those with a high level of academia. IMO, Riddler should at least acknowledge the intellect of others (what would be the point of him using deathtraps/riddles to prove someone's intellect if he already classed them as stupid anyway? That's ignorant in itself) and he should also know that the Batman is very intellectual. I know I'm repeating myself here, but Edward thinks that by beating the Batman, he is proving he has some self-worth via concurring another intellectual that he accepts has the same/higher IQ than himself.

"You are beginning to impress me, Batman. You may still reach a level just below my genius one day." This quote is taken directly from Batman: Arkham Asylum. While some may argue that it acknowledges Batman a little too much, I think it's a perfect example of what he should be like. Accusing Batman of being an idiot, as you said in brackets, goes against the purpose of using him as your adversary. The Riddler should see him as the most intelligent of all the people in Gotham City... apart from himself. He shouldn't be so ignorant as to shove everyone in the world down below 'idiot' status. I am repeating myself as well, but that would make him look a bit silly, and he knows it. Hopefully.

No real comment on your last paragraph again. One of the other reasons that I love the character is summed up in it nicely, though. :riddler:

themaddoc wrote:What the Riddler often forgets (or doesn't want to know) is that intelligence has nothing to do with ability to answer riddles, not only that but it is also far easier to create a riddle rather than answer them. In this way the Riddler is actually nothing special and that is what hurts him. Skilled at riddles perhaps but not hyper-intelligence. The way I see it riddler wants to be intelligent so much that he's even fooled himself into believing it, as doc Young in AA said he's deluded. His interest in Batman is because Riddler recognises Batman's intelect and is determined to best him, not to show Batman but rather to show himself that he can do it and he is not, as his father said, a moron. The only reason Riddler originally turned to heavy crime (outside of petty scams) was to make batman actually pay attention to him, if he posed no threat then bats wouldn't take the time to play mind games, but it grow into an adiction to not only outsmart Batman but the law and then into full blown extermination of the 'stupid'

You could say that about him. I like to think differently. I like to think that he is truely on par with Batman, as he claims himself to be, although no one else will recognise him for this, for different reasons. While you could argue it's not as tragic, I think it sounds both more human and more generally interesting than the deluded genius route. I think that Dr. Young backs my view up better. She doesn't outright call him deluded; she says that she has yet to make up her mind whether he is a true genius or just deluded. (Not an exact quote.)

See? As I said, no one will recognise him for his genius. Not even his psychologist at Arkham Asylum, due to his extreme perceptions of other people and his obviously existant ego.

As for the fact that riddles don't prove intelligence, I agree. Which is why they should be the icing on the cake. For example: Riddler uses one of his schemes to steal some money from a bank (which would to too cliche, I know). He could leave some sort of riddle or puzzle behind as a bonus, to point whoever in the right direction. The true puzzle is how he robbed the bank and didn't leave a trace (besides the intentional clue). His deathtraps will often not have a riddle as the centerpiece of the puzzle, either. Perhaps just a side note or some clue to advance forward through it?

In universe, I think he would be called 'The Riddler' because that's what the media labelled him as. You know, the Joker shows up in Gotham City one week, and the next, Riddler does. The only clue to his identity is a riddle he left behind, and inspired by 'The Joker', they dub him 'The Riddler'.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby themaddoc » Jun 12th, 2012, 9:54 pm

Enigma wrote:
themaddoc wrote:What the Riddler often forgets (or doesn't want to know) is that intelligence has nothing to do with ability to answer riddles, not only that but it is also far easier to create a riddle rather than answer them. In this way the Riddler is actually nothing special and that is what hurts him. Skilled at riddles perhaps but not hyper-intelligence. The way I see it riddler wants to be intelligent so much that he's even fooled himself into believing it, as doc Young in AA said he's deluded. His interest in Batman is because Riddler recognises Batman's intelect and is determined to best him, not to show Batman but rather to show himself that he can do it and he is not, as his father said, a moron. The only reason Riddler originally turned to heavy crime (outside of petty scams) was to make batman actually pay attention to him, if he posed no threat then bats wouldn't take the time to play mind games, but it grow into an adiction to not only outsmart Batman but the law and then into full blown extermination of the 'stupid'


You could say that about him. I like to think differently. I like to think that he is truely on par with Batman, as he claims himself to be, although no one else will recognise him for this, for different reasons. While you could argue it's not as tragic, I think it sounds both more human and more generally interesting than the deluded genius route. I think that Dr. Young backs my view up better. She doesn't outright call him deluded; she says that she has yet to make up her mind whether he is a true genius or just deluded. (Not an exact quote.)

See? As I said, no one will recognise him for his genius. Not even his psychologist at Arkham Asylum, due to his extreme perceptions of other people and his obviously existant ego.

As for the fact that riddles don't prove intelligence, I agree. Which is why they should be the icing on the cake. For example: Riddler uses one of his schemes to steal some money from a bank (which would to too cliche, I know). He could leave some sort of riddle or puzzle behind as a bonus, to point whoever in the right direction. The true puzzle is how he robbed the bank and didn't leave a trace (besides the intentional clue). His deathtraps will often not have a riddle as the centerpiece of the puzzle, either. Perhaps just a side note or some clue to advance forward through it?

In universe, I think he would be called 'The Riddler' because that's what the media labelled him as. You know, the Joker shows up in Gotham City one week, and the next, Riddler does. The only clue to his identity is a riddle he left behind, and inspired by 'The Joker', they dub him 'The Riddler'.


Young says she isn't sure as Riddler is smart but not as smart as he likes to think, in that he's deluded.
The way I see it Riddler would steal from a bank if it got the same results as stealing from a charity shop or top-secret Government facility. Riddler's crimes aren't about self gain but about outsmarting the victim.
As for the true puzzle being the crime I don't think Riddler's ingenuity in his crimes are much better (if any) than Joker, Two-face or Scarecrow. I just enjoy seeing Riddler overly-arrogant, he thinks he's done better than any other member of the rogues gallery could but he's average, just doesn't know it.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby TheJester » Jun 12th, 2012, 11:25 pm

Enigma wrote:
TheJester wrote:You have no idea how much fun I have writing about my favourite Bat villain :D

I thought that your favourite villain was Scarecrow... or Harley... or Joker... I knew that you liked Riddler, but I didn't think he was your favourite. Cool. :oldyella:

It does say at underneath my profile buddy ;) Haha I've always liked the character, Scarecrow was my main love for a while, but after the hype of his Easter eggs in AC, I went back to good old Eddie :3 Speaking of love...

Harley Quinn
Harley is a very hard character to nail down properly; some want her vicious and psychotic, others want the typical ditzy and playful type. Personally, I feel neither work by themselves. The perfect blend of the two is what is needed to make the character work. HOWEVER, I think the pyscho side of her is very rarely addressed. Sure, she fell in love with a madman, but would anyone, no matter their intelligence, be willing to kill and torture in order to gain their love? It seems unnatural.

Which is why I am particularly fond of the New 52 origin story they came up with. I wrote a pretty lengthy review for TCC a while ago about it, and I do feel it's a fresh and logical story that explains her descent into madness better. The ending is so-so, and I know many people can't look past the redesign, but the actual context of the origin is what is significant.

So, Harley becomes a psychiatrist at Arkham, same old same old. However, upon her first session with the Joker, it is clear she isn't fascinated by him at first. She is portrayed as logical and actually very smart, in addition to having a dry sense of humour. She even threatens Joker at one point, saying that if he tried to use the weapon behind his back, "[she'd] kick his nuts straight through his mouth". This feistiness certainly impresses Joker. In their tenth session, it is revealed that the Joker knows of Harley's father, who was killed in a driving accident. He then produces the finger of the man responsible for the accident, stating he was sorry "I couldn't bring the whole body", thus taking revenge for Harley and setting the wheels turning in her head. THIS is what stands out to me.

Of course Joker woos her into falling in love with him, but typically all he had to do was make her laugh and toy with her emotions. In this case however, Harley ALREADY had psychological scarring from the death of her father, and the Joker heals this wound (though of course not in the sanest manner). Here, we see Harley has gained a more personal connection to the Joker, meaning when she does eventually fall in love, there is some reasoning behind it. I mean c'mon, most people are attracted to those that do nice things for them, right? The fact they added more of a backstory to Harley meant that she could have more of a reason to fall for the Joker, rather than just eagerly falling into his grasp. Her violent acts are also now more logical due to her rough past.

I really do hate the typical blonde bimbo stereotype Harley has gained for herself. Although Mad Love showed that she cheated (and wooed) her way to good grades, I feel this sort of makes the character even more lacking. She should at least be slightly intelligent, heck not many people can become psychologists with grades under a B to be honest. This would make her love for the Joker even more dramatic - even the greatest of students can be distracted by love. Let her be carefree though - not really to the point of where she's ditzy, she knows fine well what she's doing is wrong, but she has a deep urge for the Joker to accept her.

Which brings me onto the domestic abuse in the JxHQ relationship. Joker sees Harley as a plaything, just another toy for his amusement. Though sometimes he does seem to show some emotion towards her, in general he has other things on his mind. Harley however, forever in his debt having been brought out of her stale and broken life by him, constantly wishes to show her affection for him. She seems like the type that would have gone out with the douchbag Football player in highschool, so I think she would see Joker as a much better person. When reacting violently towards her, I believe Harley accepts this not because 'it's ok, he loves me', but because she acknowledges his mental state and she fell in love with that person. Think of it like raising a teenager; they have moods swings and hormones, but you accept that because they mre teenagers, you should expect it. In a similar way, Harley accepts that her Puddin' is insane and so may act violently, but thinks she can cure him over time by winning him over.

One last thing to add - she should think Batman is just as crazy as Joker. It's one of the key triggers that led her to becoming more empathetic with Joker.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby arkham maniac 22 » Jun 12th, 2012, 11:34 pm

This is something I just made up for Scarecrow.

Scarecrow is scared of bats(like always) but he needs bats for a part of his fear gas. So everytime he creates a batch of fear gas, he gets less afraid. But he is still really afraid of Batman. He knows Batman is just a man but it still pops in his mind that he is actually a giant mutant bat that preys on the weak(cause Scarecrow is weak). So his motive is to kill the bat so he might not be freightened by them anymore. Scarecrow would be really skinny, kind of tall and would sorta slouch. He would have a metal that goes all around his face and has straps attached to the end of the mask that go around the rest of his head to keep it in place. he has a sort of hood at the top of his head that attaches to the ripped top he wears. around is waist there is like a belt that has pockets, where he keeps his fear gas. But the fear gas are in tiny little balls that resemble smoke pellets but the only difference is that it releases fear gas. He then has shorts. He sticks tape around his ankles and thighs. He has a tattoo that is a crow on his shin that he got for good luck for him. And he wears no shoes but ties more tape around his foot.
"Now madness takes you forever" - Scarecrow
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby Enigma » Jun 13th, 2012, 10:15 am

@TheJester
You have some interesting ideas regarding Harley Quinn. Out of the two main personalities for Harley, I prefer the innocent girl out of her depth. Or more specifically, the original Harley from BTAS.

The Scarecrow
My ideas for Scarecrow haven't really changed all that much, to be honest. I just feel like writing something constructive in this thread.

Now, as I said in my original post, I like the duality in the character. There's always been quite a difference between Jonathan Crane and the Scarecrow. To put it in simple terms, the Scarecrow is Jonathan Crane without restraints. The Scarecrow should be an absolute monster, who relishes the fear - not the death - of his victims.

And because I think that Scarecrow is "an absolute monster," I've always liked the idea that there is some sort of supernatural edge to him. While I wouldn't go so far as to say he is really supernatural, there should be this aura that you get from being in his presence. Just think of how street-level thugs fear the giant bat creature who preys on them in the night. The same logic should be applied to the 'Scarecrow' man, who drives people to insanity in his cruel experiments. I don't like it when the character is reduced to 'Jonathan Crane inside a fright mask'; there should be more than a man inside that costume to people.

The duality of the character is another thing that interests me. And come to think of it, like the illusions of the two, this is another way that Batman and Scarecrow are alike. They both have a human identity that they try to push behind them as they take on a costume to exact their specific ideology and scare people. This is one of the reasons why I didn't like the simple mask in Batman Begins. The Scarecrow should wear a full costume, not solely to help inspire fear in his victims - which could be accomplished with the mask alone - but also because he doesn't want the gawky, awkward Jonathan Crane showing through. Think about it; if people had no doubt that Batman was a simple man in a costume and knew that he was Bruce Wayne, he would have found it far more difficult to achieve his ledendary status. Well, the same applies directly to Jonathan Crane and Scarecrow. Although, if it came down to it, I think both individuals could manage to frighten someone, given the right situation. I liked how Jonathan Crane was able to drive two men to suicide with his voice alone.

Another interesting take on Scarecrow that I like is how, through years and years of exposure to his own fear agent, his ability to naturally experience the sensation has been nullified, driving him to use an artificial stimulant to achieve the feeling he so strongly craves. (The dream thieves from Inception spring to mind. How they, through years of using the dreaming formula, now require it in order to sleep.) It gives him a reason to hang onto his fear gas, as well as giving him another reason to go after Batman, rather than the simple revenge plot.

So there you have it; my ideas for the Scarecrow. I updated the post because I was seriously rushed for time when I originally posted it.
Last edited by Enigma on Jun 13th, 2012, 8:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby TheAardvark6 » Jun 13th, 2012, 5:09 pm

MY SCARECROW
My idea for the scarecrow was always mostly that he's pretty tough, and not just a one note "I must complete my research by terrorizing Gotham" guy. I mostly think this because the first I ever heard of him was when I leafed through KNIGHTFALL this one time and found the bit where he tries to gas Joker, but is eventually beaten with a chair. I always thought that was an unfair view of scarecrow, as he looked pretty scary for an old days villain, him, Killer croc and Cornelius stirk being the only ones in the book that frightened me. I always preferred the view where he is a complete psychopath, who actually gets a high off of seeing fear in other people, and who could scare the shit out of anyone (Normal that is) who he meets. I don't think he's the kind to create a gang, being more anti social and nerdy, but is clever enough to create more and more powerful batches of fear gas, to the point were he might even be able to rifle through fear like a book. I also don't like him to be to dependent on his fear gas, as that was something I didn't like when I leafed through a BATGIRL novel and saw the following interlude-
"Wait a second scarecrow, you're nothing without your fear gas!"
"I don't need it..."
"I think you do!"
At which point Batgirl kicks him in the face.
I always preferred the scarecrow who talked two men into committing suicide just whilst having a conversation with them. I also liked him when he had a proficiency with sickles, scythes and pitchforks, because I always felt the gun took away from his image

And there you have it. My perfect image of Scarecrow.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby jaga 321 » Jun 14th, 2012, 8:00 pm

Ra's a ghul,
he has to be a awsome leader of the league of assasains, what we see in AC is crap, he just wants to be killed, and there is none of his LOA people, plus his fight was stupid, he is a imortal ninja, not a sorceress! he needs to have scheming plans at the center of everything, and hurt batman both physicly and mentally. also he needs to be a great fighter, he is a ninja afterall!
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby TheAardvark6 » Jun 15th, 2012, 5:02 pm

jaga 321 wrote:Ra's a ghul,
he has to be a awsome leader of the league of assasains, what we see in AC is crap, he just wants to be killed, and there is none of his LOA people, plus his fight was stupid, he is a imortal ninja, not a sorceress! he needs to have scheming plans at the center of everything, and hurt batman both physicly and mentally. also he needs to be a great fighter, he is a ninja afterall!

SorcerESS?
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby Thomas Armbruster » Jun 15th, 2012, 7:44 pm

If I had any say in the matter, Killer Moth would be a force to be reckoned with instead of a second-stringer. Perhaps my years are showing, but I have early memories of the Bronze Age Moth who boldly fought Batman hand-to-hand, with a unique gadget for every situation (like his heroic counterpart), and a powerful Mothmobile to boot. Don Newton did an excellent job of drawing the character around this time, and his depictions of a muscular, caped, villain with a beaklike projection added to his mask to emphasize the grotesque continue to win a special place in my collection.

The Shadow of the Bat storyline, Underworld Unleashed, and Batgirl: Year One reintroduced Drury Walker as a nobody who often had nightmares about friend and foe alike laughing at his motif - in action he was a lightweight thug who was easily outmatched by Barbara during her debut. Then the failed concept of Charaxes was thrown in, but the new character never gained popularity and was callously disregarded during the Infinite Crisis.

Deserved better, to say the least.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby fearless11 » Jun 15th, 2012, 11:04 pm

I hate that I can't give an appropriate answer because I've never read any comics or even seen any of the Batman movies previous to Christopher Nolan's.
I see Batman/Bruce Wayne, Harvey Dent, Ra's Al Ghul, Alfred, The Joker, Scarecrow (and all the others that have been both in the Nolan movies and the comics) as they are in those movies, and I have never been interested to research different takes on the characters because I am completely satisfied with Nolan's (except for some back stories of characters like The Joker, to get an insight into his character in general).
But if I had to pick a villain and fit it in this Batman universe, the most obvious one I would like to see done by Nolan's hands would be The Riddler, though in a way I wouldn't want it done in that universe simply because Heath Ledger's Joker was so perfect and unique that I wouldn't want to have a villain that is the most similar to that character in the Batman universe as a whole.
As Nolan's Batman universe is so based on reality and on how the Batman story and characters would fit in our current society, I would never want to see a character go beyond the reality limits 'imposed' in that world. Though, in a separate universe, possibly a future one, I wouldn't mind seeing a more supernatural take on the characters, but I fear that it would get too Men in Black-ish, something which would destroy Batman for me at least. I wouldn't like there to be a Joker, for example, that fell in chemicals that irreversibly made his skin completely white and his hair green because 1. that would destroy Ledger's immaculate performance of The Joker, and 2. that would be too unrealistic for me to truly accept it as a reality, if that makes any sense. (2.) is due to the fact that Christopher Nolan's take on Batman is as applicable to our world as Batman can be and I'm so accustomed to it that moving from a makeup-wearing Joker to a chemically-changed white-skinned Joker would be too much fantasy for me to 'believe' in that movie.
But really, I'm sure there will be a lot more Batmans and Jokers and takes on the Batman universe and stories in my lifetime, and I'm looking forward to them, but never as much as to The Dark Knight Rises...
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby ozf » Jun 15th, 2012, 11:40 pm

I'd really like to see a Zsaz who was similar to how he was in the Last Arkham storyline. A smart, coherent and deadly individual. He showed that he came from an educated background, and he manipulated everything around his imprisonment, he managed to get in and out of Arkam without anyone realising by paying off a builder, and he managed to manipulate Jeremiah Arkham. He wasn't a raving psycho as he's now portrayed.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby Thomas Armbruster » Jun 16th, 2012, 12:09 am

ozf wrote:I'd really like to see a Zsaz who was similar to how he was in the Last Arkham storyline. A smart, coherent and deadly individual. He showed that he came from an educated background, and he manipulated everything around his imprisonment, he managed to get in and out of Arkam without anyone realising by paying off a builder, and he managed to manipulate Jeremiah Arkham. He wasn't a raving psycho as he's now portrayed.


Notice that the unrealistically maddened eyes which were used only for effect in the closing of the Last Arkham are now permanent.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby Enigma » Jun 18th, 2012, 7:33 am

ozf wrote:I'd really like to see a Zsaz who was similar to how he was in the Last Arkham storyline. A smart, coherent and deadly individual. He showed that he came from an educated background, and he manipulated everything around his imprisonment, he managed to get in and out of Arkam without anyone realising by paying off a builder, and he managed to manipulate Jeremiah Arkham. He wasn't a raving psycho as he's now portrayed.

This here is something that I can completely agree with. Rather than mindless beasts intent on turning Gotham City into hell on Earth, I prefer villains with a more intelligent side to them. And the thing with Victor Zsasz is that he genuinly seems like a very intelligent individual. I think it's a common misconception when people accuse the character of being unintelligent and dumb; they're confusing his intelligence with his insanity. It's perfectly normal for insane people to be intelligent. So, as you said, instead of the raving psycho, he should be portrayed as a cunning, cruel and frightening serial killer. Not only frightening because of what he does to people with a knife, but because of the intelligence hidden underneath him. He should be a very, very dangerous individual, and a top candidate for extreme isolation at Arkham Asylum.
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Re: How would you portray your favourite villains?

Postby A1Nutboy » Jun 18th, 2012, 11:37 am

Enigma wrote:
ozf wrote:I'd really like to see a Zsaz who was similar to how he was in the Last Arkham storyline. A smart, coherent and deadly individual. He showed that he came from an educated background, and he manipulated everything around his imprisonment, he managed to get in and out of Arkam without anyone realising by paying off a builder, and he managed to manipulate Jeremiah Arkham. He wasn't a raving psycho as he's now portrayed.

This here is something that I can completely agree with. Rather than mindless beasts intent on turning Gotham City into hell on Earth, I prefer villains with a more intelligent side to them. And the thing with Victor Zsasz is that he genuinly seems like a very intelligent individual. I think it's a common misconception when people accuse the character of being unintelligent and dumb; they're confusing his intelligence with his insanity. It's perfectly normal for insane people to be intelligent. So, as you said, instead of the raving psycho, he should be portrayed as a cunning, cruel and frightening serial killer. Not only frightening because of what he does to people with a knife, but because of the intelligence hidden underneath him. He should be a very, very dangerous individual, and a top candidate for extreme isolation at Arkham Asylum.


I don't think he was entirely dumb in Aa/Ac. He found people for instance, etc. Comics always depends. It's a mixed bag there. He wasn't anything in Nolanverse though.
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Favourite Villain: Batman
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