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Off THEIR Mind: Comic Creators On Who the Next Bat-Villain Should Be

Even the pros are fans and like to speculate over who they'd like to see on the big screen.

As we all wait for any bit of information on the next Batman film, one of the biggest questions we all have is who should the next villain be? Rather than get our thoughts on this, Comic Vine thought, why not ask a few comic book professionals (who are also comic book fans) who they want to see as the next big screen Bat-villain? We contacted a few pros to give us their top picks.

Keep in mind this is in no way any official confirmation or endorsement for the next Batman movie. This is just the thoughts of some really cool people who just happen to work in the comic book industry. 
 == TEASER ==
Mark Waid (Editor-in-Chief BOOM! Studios, writer: Irredeemable, Incorruptible, Amazing Spider-Man, Kingdom Come):

I'd love to see Catwoman in the next Batman movie. Given where the character was left-- a true vigilante, a wanted man skirting the law--it'd be fascinating to cast Catwoman as his opposite number in that world, a bad girl tempted to do good.

Jeph Loeb (Executive Vice President, Marvel Television, writer: Ultimate X, Hulk, Superman/Batman, Batman: Hush):

Batman has sooo many...  Catwoman revised through Nolan's eyes would be my first choice.
Solomon Grundy would rock.  And it'd be awesome to see Hush!

Mike Allred (Artist/Creator: Madman, I Zombie,  Wednesday Comics, X-Statix, Catwoman):

The best have been done. More than once too. I think Man-Bat would be very interesting, or Clayface.

Mel Caylo (Marketing Manager Archaia Entertainment):

I think Christopher Nolan has done a stupendous job with reinvigorating the Batman movie franchise, and his interpretations of Ra’s al Ghul, the Scarecrow, Two-Face and the Joker in the first two movies have renewed my excitement for the Dark Knight on film. I know the Riddler is rumored to appear in the third installment, but the villain I would most like to see show up is Catwoman, and not because I’d like to see a beautiful actress suit up in shiny patent leather—well, ok, maybe a little. Rather, I’d most like to see Nolan’s interpretation of Catwoman/Selina Kyle because he is so good at transforming these outlandish, flamboyant and over-the-top comic book characters into a real person with depth—an individual with an agenda with a reason for their madness. With all due respect to Michelle Pfeiffer and Halle Berry, I think audiences have been waiting for a better cinematic portrayal of the feline seductress, and I, for one, hope the filmmakers heed my request!

Jim McCann (writer: Hawkeye & Mockingbird, Dazzler, Return of the Dapper Men):

I think Bane would be pretty cool, but he'd have to be funded by someone, maybe Hush?  Harley Quinn is pretty great too, but without the Joker may be tough to intro to a film audience...

Jimmy Palmiotti (writer: Jonah Hex, Random Acts of Violence, Time Bomb, Countdown to Final Crisis, Catwoman, Power Girl): 

No more supervillians...the latest movies established as close as we should get to costumed villains. I think the next film should be about Batman having to deal with there being no reason for Batman to exist because the police have become so Batman haunts a new town in South America that thinks he is a demon where he takes down drug lords.

What do you think about their ideas? Have their thoughts changed your opinion? When do you think we'll find out who the next villain will be?
178 Comments Refresh
Posted by Namor1987

Bane, Mr. Zsaz, or maybe Red Hood lol

Posted by jlat89

Jimmy Palmiotti's made me laugh haha

Posted by dondasch

I am all for the idea of including Bane as a major villain, and not the mono syllabic moron he was made out to be by Joel Schumacher.  If they could ever do a Knightfall storyline, wow, I just shiver with excitement as to how awesome it could be.

Posted by Chane

Something like the Zsasz storyline in Knightfall would be cool.

Posted by reaper2923

Ra's and Talia

Posted by ComicMan24

I see that a lot of them want Catwoman to appear. That would be my choice too.
Posted by batmanbeyond234

Zsasz-A killer Bats chases, B-List villain 
Hush-Main villain 
Harley Quinn-woman who falls in love with Joker and takes on his gags 
Bane-Funded by Hush to kill Wayne
Edited by johnny_spam

I would love to see the original Reaper or Black Mask. If Nolan was crazy enough then Mad Monk or Doctor Phosphorus or Man-Bat but he wouldn't go in that direction. But in general a new villain not seen on screen before.
I think it would be more interesting not to see Catwoman, Riddler, Penguin but this is a Batman 3 thread soon the wishes of a Riddler played by David Tennet or Johnny Depp (both would be terrible) will be said by someone. 
Hush is just a Black Mask ripoff and Harley Quinn would not really work both are to weak for a movie.

Posted by moviegeek17

Black masm would be an awesome choice, catwoman would be cool ridddler if done right would be amazing, but i really to adapt hugo strange and the prey story arc that he appeared in it was amazing and it had him and catwoman in it, so two birds with one stone

Posted by johnny_spam
@moviegeek17: @moviegeek17 said:
" Black masm would be an awesome choice, catwoman would be cool ridddler if done right would be amazing, but i really to adapt hugo strange and the prey story arc that he appeared in it was amazing and it had him and catwoman in it, so two birds with one stone "
I forgot Hugo Strange but yeah he is a very sinister villain without appearing to be.
Posted by SuperGamera

I would want to see Bane or Hush or possibly Zsasz
Posted by moviegeek17
@johnny spam: 
yeah and he would be different than the other villains that bats has faced before, he'd be way more of a psychological threat than a physical one and i love that element in a villlain
Posted by logan48227
@dondasch said:
"I am all for the idea of including Bane as a major villain, and not the mono syllabic moron he was made out to be by Joel Schumacher.  If they could ever do a Knightfall storyline, wow, I just shiver with excitement as to how awesome it could be. "

I totally agree. But first, they'll have to make Batman not so hated by the G.C.P.D., which to this day made no sense to me.
Posted by CylonDorado

I like the Bane/Hush angle, but Catwoman would be cool too. I also like the Man-bat/Clayface idea, but that has no chance at all, lol.
Posted by scorpius72

Zsasz would be great. he would translate well to the screen. hes prob the most believable batman character. Id like to see clayface and mad hatter just for the sheer joy of seeing this underated but colourful characters brought to life. (mad hatter was only in the batman tv show a few times)

no catwoman, so overated. bring back Two-face!! 

Posted by dirtymik

Great article and Palmiotti's quote put a shiver down my back lol. 
I like how Nolan skews the villains to as human as possible with no real superpowers. It grounds the movies nicely. That's why I don't really see Bane happening in part three. Maybe we'll see Maxi Zeus as a player?

Posted by Baddamdog

Hush and Cat-woman would be cool, but I think the Jason Todd/Red Hood/Robin story would be awesome! Especially if Nolan was doing it!! Ahh Geek heaven!!

Posted by MuadDiab

Very interesting. Knowing Nolan, it'll be someone we don't expect 
*(hurray for my first Comic vine comment)*

Posted by Midnight Monk

The villian should be someone who can translate well similar to the way Ra's Al Ghul,Joker,& Scarcrow did. I say either Black Mask or Hush alongside Catwoman & The Riddler. Also maybe Hugo Strange for good measure

Posted by doordoor123


Posted by IronPatriot78

clayface and killer croc.

Posted by Urthiln

Black Mask makes the most sense I think, at least the way Nolan works.  But I'd love to see Clayface and Solomon Grundy in there, but I can't see how they could be in the same movie together.  

Posted by joshmightbe

Bane could be made a realistic character he's basically just a guy jacked up on powerful steroids but id much preferre him to be working for black mask, catwoman would also be cool 

Posted by SirSparkington

I'd like to see either Hush or Catwoman. Catwoman would be far harder to pull off however.

Posted by wallymonster
  • Mr. Zsasz - brilliant opportunity for a serial killer without a kitschy costume. 
  • Catwoman-its a major foil for Batman, and i think Nolan could really do good things with the character....and yeah i'll admit, i wouldn't mind seeing the costume. =)
  • The Ventriloquist would be creepy has hell in a live action Nolan movie. 
Posted by Joey Ravn

I actually love the idea of  Hush as a main villain, now that they mention him. He's very down-to-earth in Batman standards, so he would suit pretty well with the Nolanverse. Zsazs is a good choice too. As long as it something "realistic", I'm fine with it. Leave Clayface and Croc for other adaptations.

Edited by Mbecks14

Catwoman and the Riddler would be my first choices.
a Harley Quinn out for revenge for the Joker maybe. Hush would be cool too!
But i think Catwoman and Riddler should be next

Posted by Jean_Luc_LeBeau

David Cain and Lady Shiva. The last remnants of the League of Assassins (Shadows in the movie), have hired the World's greatest assassins to kill Bruce Wayne/Batman.

Posted by Chris207

Lex Luthor. Think about it - Batman's wanted by the police, but Bruce Wayne still owns Wayne Enterprises so he has to stay in Gotham. Lex smells an opportunity to buy WE out, AND gain a foothold in another city. Wayne has to fight off Lex's plans, which would have him using his detective skills and cunning. Plus, Bruce could stumble upon Lex's plans for creating a Metallo or Bizarro-type character which would connect to the Nolan Superman film. 
Even if it can't be Lex, it should be another business-type character with ties to Metropolis...

Posted by goldenkey

The Batman franchise is (dare I say it) grounded in realism.  No one is gonna see Man-Bat or Clayface.  It's gonna have to be The Riddler or the Peguin just because they are so much easier to translate on film without losing the core of what the films have been, the gangster background.  The Riddler in a sense should be interesting. Nolan like to make you think,  obsession has been the driving force for his character in a couple films so far, so having the Riddler obsessed with out witting Batman should come easy.  Memento had the obsession of finding the wifes killer, and The prestige had the obsession of out preforming the other magician.   
     Then there is the obviousness of the Penguin.  The only major villian in Batmans rogues to not be insane.  He's goes to blackgate because he's just a criminal with a nick-name and fondishness for birds.  A black market freak that would translate with ease on film.  Personally I want to see the Ventrilogquist because I thought his intorduction episode in BMTAS was creepy enough alone that it can be done well in film also.  That and his appearance in the fan made batman movie posted on here a few weeks ago.  Just dark. 
Posted by kimimiki

I think Catwoman would fit best in the third Batman movie. Rachael Dawes has just died so it makes sense that Catwoman should come in now and become Bruce's new love interest. Also, seeing as how Batman is on the run from the law now it is more likely that he will meet Catwoman, who might be more likely to approach him since he is no longer sanctioned (and I use sanctioned very lightly) by the GCPD.

Posted by SpiderMew

Jimmy Palmiotti 's idea is lame
Edited by Bruce Vain

I like how a majority of the guys said Catwoman, and honestly I would to see her in it. Besides me wanting Black Mask and for Two-Face to return. I would LOVE to see Bane in it. He deserves better after what Joel did to him in Batman and Robin.
Posted by Asymmetrical

Palmiotti's idea FTW! 
movie-goers will never see it coming, it's brilliant!

Posted by Decept-O

Mel Caylo said it best, actually, and I agree. Mike Allred had good suggestions. I rather like Clayface but I don't know if that character would work in Nolan's rendition of Batman.  I'd love to see it but I don't think Nolan would do it.    I say The Riddler and Catwoman, and not working as partners but independently against Batman for their own agendas.
What is Jeph Loeb talking about?  Solomon Grundy?  Please tell me Mr. Palmiotti is joking.  Joker from the 1989 Batman movie:  "Do I look like I'm joking?" 

Posted by Icarusflies

I would love to see Hush 
At this point, with Batman so close to the brink, Hush could be that little nudge that pushes him over. All of the torments of the past brought back by an enemy who cannot easily be outsmarted. Perhaps he could be working with/against someone like Mr. Zsasz?
And I'd like to see Scarecrow return, even if only for a cameo. ^_^

Posted by Golden Cod

Villains that work in Nolan-land

Black Mask
-CEO who finds his calling as a kingpin.   
-His story brings up the issue of whether the mask worn by villain and hero are their true identities and that the faces underneath are the real false identities.
-Man with split personality carves a criminal empire for himself.  
-A means to introduce more of Batman's detective skills
Hugo Strange
-Rogue psychologist who manipulates Arkham inmate minds to unleash madmen and test Bats.
-The sinister precursor to Dr. Hurt.   A means to explain Gotham's sudden rogue's gallery surge.
-A man who finds an intellectual equal in Batman.
-A means to introduce more of Batman's detective skills.

Bane or Prometheus
-Intelligent and powerful.
-Literal opposites of Batman.
-Socialite who kills criminals after losing his wife to one.
-A DC Punisher who can make Batman question his golden rule.

Villains that MAY work

-Burglar / love interest
-She's only in this category because I personally don't find her that interesting.
Poison Ivy
-Requires reworking without superpowers.    Not pyschologically compelling.
Deadshot (original story)
-Criminal who orchestrates events by pretending to be a detective.
-Possible detective-work required.   Not very interesting.
Harley Quinn
-Psychologist who falls for the Joker.
-Not a very strong character on her own.
Killer Croc
-A man with an extreme skin condition.
-Boring brawling character.
-Mad arsonist.
-Boring brawling character.
Killer Moth (pre-Neron)
-Attempts to help criminals the way Batman helps the police.
-Boring character.

Villains that WON'T work

The Clayfaces
-Shape-shifting bank robbers.
-The characters are inherently tied to their superpowers and are thus unusable for a Nolan-Batman film.
-Transforms into a man-bat hybrid.
-No superpowers allowed.
Jason Todd
-Angry ex-Robin.
-Christian Bale said no Robins and Nolan implied as much.
-Wannabe Bruce Wayne.
-Hush's story requires too many extra villains.  Some may disagree.
Dr, Phosphorus
-Radioactive skeleton.
-No superpowers.
Mr. Freeze
-Cryogenic scientist who wants to take revenge on the world.
-Ice gun = superpower.
Posted by .Mistress Redhead.

HUSH! Of course, how could I forget HUSH! 

Posted by PieFace

Catwoman's been done to death, if they put her in I'd be seriously disappointed. I'd like to see how Nolan would handle one of Batman's powered rogues; maybe give Poison Ivy another chance, try to  undo the damage of Batman and Robin. On the other hand, somebody like the Riddler or the Ventriloquist would fit really well into the universe they've set up so far

Edited by kungnima

Black mask? Great white?  
Mad hatter, though that would be kinda hard..
Guess it'll be riddler or penguin.   
Jason Isaacs could be Nigma. Now that would be awesome!

Edited by BenB
@Decept-O:  " I say The Riddler and Catwoman, and not working as partners but independently against Batman for their own agendas."
Thats not a bad idea. Rather than having an oh so overused bad guy team up against the superhero, it would be cool to see a three way free for all.
Posted by Duo_forbidden

Wow at Jimmy Palmiotti's comment.
Black Mask would make a good choice as a villain since he's almost as crazy as the Joker. The other villains I wouldn't mind seeing would be Riddler, or Hush. 

Posted by Captain13

I read this book about how it would be possible for there to be a Batman, but he could only do it for about 3 years. Since he's Batman, I'll say he can do it for 5.
Nolan said his third Bat movie would actually have an ending for Batman. The previous movies touch on this whenever Alfred tells Bruce to slow down for a bit and Bruce says that Batman can't have limits, because Batman is a symbol for Gotham. I'd like to see this played up more in the next movie.
Wouldn't it be great if Black Mask takes control over all of Gotham's major gangs? He could hire Bane to get rid of his Bat problem. Bats would be pushed to his limits fighting off Gotham's united, strategic gangs, the police, and Bane. Along the way, he meets a Cirque du Soleil acrobat named Richard Grayson who lost his parents and starts working with Batman impersonators to fight crime. Batman tells him to stop, but he deduces Batman's identity. Alfred is killed, leaving Bruce more alone than ever. Bruce beats Black Mask and Bane, but at the end of the movie, Bruce can no longer be Batman because Bane broke his back. He passes off the mantle to Dick (who will never be Robin) to continue being Batman, Gotham's protector. Bruce will help him solve mysteries Batman Beyond style while mentoring him. The movie ends with Bruce and Dick learning about a new threat: The Riddler.

Posted by ironshadow

Black Mask takes control of Gotham's gangs and hires Deathstroke to kill The Batman, and he does since it's the last Batman movie.

Posted by rlmay3

I would just really love to see Killer Croc on screen. He's NOT that far-fetched of a villain to not appear in Nolan's series.

Posted by Golden Cod
Christian Bale said he won't do a movie with Robin and Nolan implied as much :(
Posted by Joe Venom
@wallymonster said:
  • The Ventriloquist would be creepy has hell in a live action Nolan movie. 
Dude! yes I would love to see this pulled off correctly! 
But what I don't want to see movie is a Bat-plane, Bat-copter, nor a Bat-boat (even tho I know they will).
Edited by Captain13
@Golden Cod said:

" @Captain13:   Christian Bale said he won't do a movie with Robin and Nolan implied as much :( "

Yeah, but the way I told it Dick never becomes Robin. He goes from acrobat to Batman impersonator (like the ones in the Dark Knight) to second Batman. No Robin in the mix. it's basically my movie adaptation of batman Knight fall.
Posted by coolbeans

Mr. Zsaz or the Riddler would be cool
Posted by Archetype

I like Mike Allred and Mel Caylo's answers.I think he hit the nail on the head wen he said that a lot of them had been done before and while some portrayals weren't as great in some movies I don't really want to see any that have been done before.That said I do think Catwoman would work as a third character...she can't be the main  villain because she simply isn't much of a villain but she could add some intrigue and romance.