5) Poison Ivy:
Pamela Isley is a walking kiss of death. Despite this, she is very loving and compassionate, at-least to plants and all of mother nature.
An eco-terrorist of the worst kind, Poison Ivy uses any ruthless methods she can think of to protect nature and destroy those who aim to destroy it. In her mind, Humanity is the problem and she is the solution. What make her more dangerous is the fact that she has superpowers, making her one of the few foes in the gallery with powers.
Among her power-set includes the ability to control and manipulate plant life, secreting pheromones from her body that either controls others or kill them and an immunity to all known forms of poisons.
Another trait of Ivy is her sex appeal, which she won’t hesitate to use on most men (and even women if necessary). The only man she hadn’t enticed is batman, which naturally make him her common foe. Her only friend (human-wise) is Harley Quinn and together, these two have proven to be a formidable duo.
Both beauty and brains, Ivy is forever a thorn in Batman’s side.
When you think about villains that challenge batman on an intellectual level, you immediately think of Edward Nygma, The Riddler.
Known for his green suit and question mark appearance, the riddler has challenged the dark knight with a vast array of riddles, mind-games and death traps, forcing batman to put his deductive skills to the test. Despite being one of Batman’s most intelligent foes, Edward is plagued with an obsessive compulsion to leave riddles at the scenes of his crimes. No matter how hard he tries, he can’t resist leaving clue, hoping his rival will try (and fail) to solve it.
The riddler has been an iconic foe for years, ever since Frank Gorshin played him in the Adam West TV show. Whether it’s a giggling psychopath or the smooth talking intellectual in recent years, the riddler will always be one of my favourites.
The worst kind of enemy is the kind that used to be a friend. In that case, Two-Face is Batman’s worst enemy. Once Harvey Dent, district Attorney of Gotham and ally of Batman, he life was destroyed when he had a vial of acid thrown into his face, driving him mad and turning him into Two-Face.
Dent is another favourite villain of mine, even more so than the riddler and even the joker. From the visual to the coin, which represents dent’s mental state. Face up, dent is in control, but face down, two-face is dominant. I love the idea of Harvey having psychological problems before his scarring and this played out in many great stories. Even if his face is healed, some stories have shown that two-face is still in control, scarred or not. Two-Face will always be one of the greatest batman villains.
2) Ra’s Al Ghul
If there is one villain who is more dangerous than the joker, it’s ra’s al ghul, the Demon’s Head. AN international terrorist, who has sustained his life through the Lazarus pits and leader of the League of Assassins, Ghul wants nothing more than to preserve the planet Earth, The problem is, Ghul is willing to kill off half the population on the planet to do it. Batman has always had a complicated relationship with the demon, as Ra’s has deep respect for “the Detective” and his strong will. He saw batman as the perfect husband for his daughter, Talia, and heir to his kingdom. While tempting, Batman knows that joining Ghul is the equivalent to shaking hands with the devil.
I’ve always seen Ghul as Batman’s secondary arch-foe after Joker and many of their battles have always left a lasting impact of Bruce life, in and out of costume. The newest robin, Damian, is the result of a one night stand between Talia and Bruce, further complicating the rivalry between the two. Despite that, Ra’s will allow no one (family or not) to stand in his way to “save the planet”.
1) Mr. Freeze
Most of the villains on this list are obsessed (two-face and his coin, ivy and plants and hatter with, well, hats) , but what sets Freeze from the others is a simple and noble goal: Save his wife.
Once Victor Freeze, a cryogenic scientist, he sought to preserve his wife Nora in a freezing chamber, but his boss interfered and cause an accident that transformed Freeze into the walking, cold nightmare he is today.
Freeze is very different the other villains, as he doesn’t want money or power, he wants to save his wife no matter what. Thanks to Dini and Timm, Freeze went from a one note villain, to a complex and layered man who is continually wronged . Unlike two-face, Freeze is forced to,live in a sub-zero environment, trapped in a world he can see, but can’t touch. I’ve watched Heart of ice so many times, and it still makes me want to cry. Hell, I cried at the ending of the Mr Freeze animated movie, Sub-zero. Sadly, the year that movie came out, it was the same year of Batman and Robin, and we all know how that ended.
It really is a shame that the character is underused nowadays, because he is such a compelling bad guy and the stories from the cartoon were brilliant. Many of the rogues in Gotham are tragic and sympathetic in one way or another, which makes their battles with batman even more exciting.
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