Batman has encountered quite a number of villains already, most of which are usually criminally insane. From the comic books, these characters have been adapted to animated versions and some brought to life in films (with some alterations).
Compiled from various lists, these are the top ten villains that challenged Batman in his mission to rid Gotham City of criminals.
Top Ten – Poison Ivy
Considered to be one of the most iconic comic book female characters, Poison Ivy is the epitome of a woman’s charm – irresistible and deadly. She is Mother Nature personified and believes that plants are more precious than humans which leads to her eco-terrorism acts. She is fond of using weapons that are plant related such as grasping vines, sleeping pores and love potions. She is also capable of manipulating plants, some monstrous, in her favor.
Top Nine – Scarecrow
Seeing that he was originally a former professor of psychology who specializes on fear, The Scarecrow is not so much of a criminal driven by money but more of a deranged scientist who subjects the citizens of Gotham City to his fear-related experimentations. He employs diverse forms of hallucinogens that causes his victims to see whatever it is they fear the most. Partly inspired by the “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” he is known to carry a scythe as a weapon.
Top Eight – Bane
Bane is popular as the only villain to have overpowered Batman which earned him the title “The Man Who Broke The Bat.” He is probably the only one who caused Bruce Wayne to give up being Batman for some time. He was able to accomplish this because he is not only physically strong, but he is also a highly intelligent tactician. Although already at top physical condition, he further enhanced his superhuman strength using a drug called Venom.
Top Seven – Mr. Freeze
Perhaps Mr. Freeze is one of the few villains whose motivation is not entirely malevolent and, on the contrary, is merely misdirected. Victor Fries (pronounced as freeze) is a cryogenicist who placed his wife Nora in a cryogenic state in order to save her from a disease. An accident caused him to rely on a cryogenic suit and he blames Batman for it. He utilizes ice related devices such as freeze gun and ice grenade.
Top Six – The Penguin
The Penguin considers himself to be the “gentleman of crime” since he exudes a sense of aristocracy. With his obsession to birds, he is known to use bird-related gadgets. His most prominent weapon is his umbrella which fires like a regular machine gun and can also be used for gliding. Although listed as villain, Batman tolerates Penguin’s “soft” criminal activities as long as the latter provides information to the criminal underworld.
Top Five – Catwoman
Catwoman’s relationship with Batman is truly complicated because she is both a villain and a love interest. She has retractable metal claws and she wields combination of a whip and a cat o’ nine tails – both of which she uses as weapons and devices to help her move around.
Top Four – Ra’s Al Ghul
Translated from Arabic, his name would mean “head of the demon.” With the help of a pool of mysterious liquid called the Lazarus Pit, Ra’s is able to restore his youth which basically makes him an immortal. He formed an organization of assassins which attempts to bring his goal of balance – by killing off most of the human population. He considers Batman to be his rightful heir, Batman even developed a love-hate relationship with Ra’s assassin daughter Talia, but Batman did not share his murderous view.
Top Three – The Riddler
Edward E. Nygma (or Nigma) is well known for his green suit, question mark cane, and his penchant for mind boggling puzzles. He usually commits crime incorporated with a riddle with which his ultimate goal is to prove that he is smarter than everyone else, especially Batman. His weapons are usually puzzle-based such as jigsaw pieces, shock traps, and other toy explosives.
Top Two – Two-Face
How apt. Two-Face was formerly Harvey Dent, Gotham City’s prominent district attorney and Batman’s formidable ally against the super criminals. After an accident that damaged one side of his face, he became psychologically scarred and became a criminal mastermind. His name not only alludes to him being a former friend turned enemy to Batman, but it also infer to his obsession with the number two and dualities. He is also known to flip a two-sided coin to decide the fate of his victims.
Top One – The Joker
Inarguably, The Joker sits on the top spot and well-deserving to become Batman’s arch nemesis and he is proven to be the complete opposite of the Dark Knight. The Joker is a perfect blend of madness and brilliance. He acts as Moriarty to Batman’s Holmes caused most of tragedies in Batman’s life such as paralyzing Barbara “Batgirl” Gordon as well as beating Jason “Robin” Todd to death. Aside from the clown appearance, he is known to use circus-related gadgets such as throwing razor-sharp cards and laughing gas. He even caused his former Arkham Asylum psychiatrist to become his sidekick which we all know as Harley Quinn.
The list was generated by compiling information from Newsrama, IGN, Gamesradar, Moviepilot, and TheTopTens. These were the ones on the first page of Google. Honestly, I don’t totally agree with this list especially with Bane being too low on the order. All in all, the roster fairly enumerates the best villains Batman faced.
How about you? Who goes in your top ten list of Batman villains?