Off My Mind: Why the New Batman Villain, Nobody, Will Become a Great Adversary

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Posted by G-Man (29418 posts) - - Show Bio

It's been mentioned before that Batman has the best rogues gallery. His villains range in style, form and ability to be a menace to the Dark Knight. Since DC's 'The New 52,' we haven't seen too much of Batman's classic villains. There has been a focus on creating new villains for the Caped Crusader.

Creating a new villain isn't an easy task. Actually, creating a great new villain isn't easy. There have been variations on classic villains over the years in an attempt to deliver more villains (such as Talon and the Court of Owls in the pages of BATMAN). To successfully create a new villain that will stand out from the others and have longevity, the right combination between new and old has to be utilized.

In the pages of BATMAN AND ROBIN, a new threat has arrived in Gotham City. Having a past with Bruce Wayne, Nobody is proving to be a deadly threat on multiple levels. The added revelation in issue #4 makes him an even more formidable foe. (Take note there will be minor spoilers for BATMAN AND ROBIN #4).

== TEASER ==

It could be questioned whether or not Nobody is actually a villain. After all, he is trying to put a stop to criminal activities, just as Batman. The difference is, Nobody's ways are much more extreme. It's an argument we've heard before. Capturing the criminals and locking them up is only a temporary solution. Upon their release, they will continue their evil ways, harming or killing more innocents. Nobody believes a more absolute solution is needed. What made Nobody's first appearance more interesting was the mention of Ducard, as in Henri Ducard, one of the men who originally trained Batman.

The idea of an anti-hero going around punishing criminals with extreme prejudice isn't a new one. That's not what makes Nobody stand out. What separates him from others is he knows Batman's secret identity. He knows Batman's past and some of his secrets. Nobody doesn't seem the type to exploit this information or sell it to the highest bidder but it does give him access to Batman's son, Damian.

The relationship between Bruce and Damian has been a little strained. Bruce is trying to keep Damian in line and trying to keep him from falling on his killer ways due to his upbringing with the League of Assassins. He is also trying to protect him. There are some things Bruce doesn't feel Damian should know. Damian sees this as an insult and lack of trust. With the line of communication crumbling between father and son, it's no surprise that Damian could be easily swayed to start listening to Nobody's advice.

This is where Nobody is taking advantage of the situation. He sees the tension between Batman and Robin and is going to exploit that. He believes a more violent stance against crime is needed and is determined to get Damian to follow his ways since Bruce refuses to see eye to eye on this.

It could just be that Nobody feels slighted by Batman refusing to agree to Nobody's tactics. There's most likely more to it than that. It was revealed that Nobody's father was Henri Ducard. Ducard was a teacher for Bruce when he was first training. Ducard taught Bruce detective and man-hunting skills. Ducard turned out not to be the best teacher as it turned out he had darker beliefs that didn't coincide with Batman's. His ways were more violent.

From DETECTIVE COMICS V.1 #600

We get the impression that Bruce and Morgan trained together. It could be that Ducard was impressed with Bruce and taught him things he wouldn't teach his own son. There could have been an almost sibling rivalry between the two. This would add to the why Nobody would try to convert Damian. If Morgan felt Bruce caused a rift between him and his father, perhaps he wants to do the same between Bruce and Damian. Or maybe it's just that Morgan completely believes in his father's ways and is disgusted by Bruce's less violent and final ways.

Nobody knows Batman's secret and is slowly bringing Damian over to his side. When Batman and Nobody fought, Nobody was able to get the upper hand. He's not an opponent to take lightly. Batman assumed he fled after their last encounter but he returned right away to continue his play on Damian. Knowing his secrets, having Damian by his side and being able to defeat Batman in combat is a deadly combination. Batman always has a plan for everything. He'd better get started on a new better plan in dealing with Nobody.

Staff
#1 Posted by ARMIV2 (7665 posts) - - Show Bio

It appears Nobody knows more about Batman than anybody else so far...

#2 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29331 posts) - - Show Bio

Nobody knows Batman's secret?

Wow.

Punny.

#3 Posted by SmoothJammin (2331 posts) - - Show Bio

Meanwhile, Dick is having sex with Raya on a private jet.

#4 Posted by GBrutality (191 posts) - - Show Bio

my only complaint is that it has just seemed short sighted a little of batman to have his own son be his robin. dick and tim got their father-son bonds with batman through being robin. they were both also well suited to being robin, each in their own right, compared to bruce's no nonsense batman. whereas when dick wore the cowl, he took a more likeable approach and damian was the intense one of the duo. they complimented each other well which is how damian grew not just as robin but a person as well. i know that he should be robin and everything, and nobody (they couldn't have come up with a better name?) is someone that studied with bruce but he studied with him under ONE teacher. the fact that batman is running into such hurdles is purely because damian is actually his son. dick and bruce got closer after they had grown apart, tim gained bruce's respect first which lead to their relationship growing on many levels, bruce understands what a father should mean to a son and thus imagines the feeling must be greater on the other side. he's lost a lot over the years but the idea of losing another member of actual flesh and blood isn't an option and clearly clouds his mind.

i only bring this up because batman isn't acting like the protector of his partner like he did with dick and tim through the years, almost like a switch he hit when he put the mask on. he's acting like any father would if their child were in danger. maybe it'll be how the story levels out when it concludes that they have to share and be more than just biological father and son. batman only sort of trusts and cares after years upon years of knowing you and going through the craziest stuff at your side. damian got shoe horned into the role. i just don't know if nobody will be that much of a threat after damian overcomes the temptation of embracing his rage.

#5 Posted by redhoodx (75 posts) - - Show Bio

I think nobody is a rip off of tony daniels and grant morrison jason todd. He the crazy version of jason todd. judd winicik and scott lobdell do a better anti-hero jason. I think we all hate what tony daniels and grant morrison did to jason todd in BFTC and batman and robin. though I did like grants version of damian which i guess survived the reboot.

#6 Posted by Miss_Garrick (1747 posts) - - Show Bio

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

#7 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29331 posts) - - Show Bio

@Miss_Garrick said:

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

His mask, clearly.

#8 Posted by Volpe (81 posts) - - Show Bio

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Bane knows Batman's identity? When did that happen?

#9 Posted by spiderturtle (66 posts) - - Show Bio

"Nobody knows Batman's secret and is slowly bringing Damian over to his side. When Batman and Nobody fought, Nobody was able to get the upper hand." Haha love the wordplay and article. Shouldve never dropped this comic =/

#10 Posted by Eyz (3095 posts) - - Show Bio

@Volpe said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Bane knows Batman's identity? When did that happen?

Bane "only" broke into Wayne manor to break his back :P

Anyways, I like this Nobody...even though he looks very Black Glove-y. (a rehash of such a recent concept? seems to be the motto of this whole new 52... Jaime's redoing his Facing the Reach-thing all over again, Brainiac and New Krypton seems to be happening all over again from hints in Superman,..)

#11 Posted by Gscythe (17 posts) - - Show Bio

@Volpe:

since 1993

#12 Posted by Saren (24334 posts) - - Show Bio

@Volpe said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Bane knows Batman's identity? When did that happen?

You didn't know that?!

Moderator
#13 Posted by Volpe (81 posts) - - Show Bio

@Gscythe said:

@Volpe:

since 1993

@Eyz said:

@Volpe said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Bane knows Batman's identity? When did that happen?

Bane "only" broke into Wayne manor to break his back :P

Anyways, I like this Nobody...even though he looks very Black Glove-y. (a rehash of such a recent concept? seems to be the motto of this whole new 52... Jaime's redoing his Facing the Reach-thing all over again, Brainiac and New Krypton seems to be happening all over again from hints in Superman,..)

Well that's embarrassing. xD

@CitizenBane said:

@Volpe said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Bane knows Batman's identity? When did that happen?

You didn't know that?!

I always pictured that infamous moment as out the front of Arkham. You know, Batman has just finished getting everyone back into Arkham and is completely knackered, then Bane appears and puts him out of his misery.

#14 Posted by Emperor Gonzo Noir (19709 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123 said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

His mask, clearly.

I'd wear it.

#15 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29331 posts) - - Show Bio

@Emperor Gonzo Noir said:

@InnerVenom123 said:

@Miss_Garrick said:

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

His mask, clearly.

I'd wear it.

Exactly.

#16 Posted by kingjoeg (693 posts) - - Show Bio

The Court of Owls are much better

#17 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (27379 posts) - - Show Bio

I think I'm going to drop this, I  loved Damian before the reboot, now not so much.

#18 Edited by ltbrd (552 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeah I think you may be playing up this character a bit G-Man. While you certainly bring up some good points about his mentality and knowledge, the fact that he knows Bruce is Batman and has history with him doesn't necessarily qualify him to be an outstanding new villain. In that category I'd put Ra's as the far greater threat.

What I don't get about this villain is the references to Henri Ducard and his mission. What mission? This smacks of retcon simply to connect the name to the Batman Begins film because the comic book Henri Ducard did not have an overriding mission or vigilante organizational mindset. He was simply a master detective and investigator who would do anything necessary to catch his target. But he was never portrayed as a cold-blooded vigilante that went around murdering criminals simply because they were criminals. Even the panels shown in this article about him don't necessarily point to him saying all criminals should be killed, he's simply reflecting on the world that he sees around him when he's brought in to investigate Bruce and makes the connection of him and Batman.

So I don't think Nobody is going to have an long career as an adversary to Batman. I could see him dying at the end of this story arc because he doesn't need to be alive in order to continue to subvert Damian. Simply planting the seeds is enough for future character development.

Lastly, though this arc clearly shows Bruce's disgust at Henri Ducard's "the ends justify the means" ideology, they have worked together in the past since Bruce became Batman. So if they have at least a professional relationship would it not be prudent to just call the man up and let him know his kid is running amok in Gotham and find out why Morgan has gone off the deep end of dressing up like Nobody cause your point about sibling rivalry may be valid and the Nobody identity is not his father's "mission" but Morgan's need to compete with Bruce by taking an identity to match Batman.

#19 Posted by TheMrBatrang (3 posts) - - Show Bio

@kingjoeg: Totally agreed.

And looks like Morgan/NoBody knows more about Bruce/Batman than we do.

#20 Posted by mikeclark1982 (424 posts) - - Show Bio

is it me or does Nobody's mask look like a squiddie from the matrix?

#21 Posted by _Marco_Smith_ (1621 posts) - - Show Bio

Hey, a Splinter cell!

#22 Posted by TheBane2890 (1958 posts) - - Show Bio

I like how these "so-called" new villains are suppose to become memorable characters, and sit among the likes of Joker, Two-Face, Catwoman, Bane, Riddler, Poison Ivy, Mr. Freeze etc. yet I wouldn't even put them at the same table as Firefly, Film Freak, Mad Hatter, Ventriloquist, or Scarface. The League of Owls or whatever they called themselves was defiantly better then this Nobody loser, but neither one will really be remember long term. The writers are trying way to hard to make a memorable character, and just letting the storylines fall by the wayside. I was hoping for a lot more out of these stories, but it doesn't seem like that's ever going to happen as long as the writers are just searching for the next "all time great" villain. The reason that characters like Bane worked so well, is because they had a very strong storyline behind them. Nobody and the Owls had a weak to semi mediocre storline behind them, and "nobody" is going to jump on a characters band-wagon if their stories are only weak or mediocre.

#23 Posted by fetchfox (3 posts) - - Show Bio

@Volpe: It's even more serious than that (your Arkham theory). Bane first breaks Bruce/Batman mentally by constant rades, robberies, murders aso. in Gotham City, giving B-man no sleep and a constant struggle to keep up. And when he's at his weakest... Bane breaks him physically. You should check out the the pertaining issues, quite entertaining.

#24 Posted by Hit_Monkey (580 posts) - - Show Bio

@mikeclark1982 said:

is it me or does Nobody's mask look like a squiddie from the matrix?

First thing I thought of mate.

#25 Edited by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

Hmmm...it may be just me but Nobody seems to resemble for Batman what this guy was for Superman....

Conduit

You all remember this guy...right? Not saying that Nobody will turn out just like him, but all I've seen thus far makes me see that Morgan and Braverman are all too similar...

#26 Posted by Mr. Dead Pool (2625 posts) - - Show Bio

Does this guy remind anyone else of a certain vigilante from TMNT?

#27 Posted by moywar700 (2775 posts) - - Show Bio

i love batman and robin

#28 Posted by entropy_aegis (13629 posts) - - Show Bio

@ltbrd said:

Yeah I think you may be playing up this character a bit G-Man. While you certainly bring up some good points about his mentality and knowledge, the fact that he knows Bruce is Batman and has history with him doesn't necessarily qualify him to be an outstanding new villain. In that category I'd put Ra's as the far greater threat.

What I don't get about this villain is the references to Henri Ducard and his mission. What mission? This smacks of retcon simply to connect the name to the Batman Begins film because the comic book Henri Ducard did not have an overriding mission or vigilante organizational mindset. He was simply a master detective and investigator who would do anything necessary to catch his target. But he was never portrayed as a cold-blooded vigilante that went around murdering criminals simply because they were criminals. Even the panels shown in this article about him don't necessarily point to him saying all criminals should be killed, he's simply reflecting on the world that he sees around him when he's brought in to investigate Bruce and makes the connection of him and Batman.

So I don't think Nobody is going to have an long career as an adversary to Batman. I could see him dying at the end of this story arc because he doesn't need to be alive in order to continue to subvert Damian. Simply planting the seeds is enough for future character development.

Lastly, though this arc clearly shows Bruce's disgust at Henri Ducard's "the ends justify the means" ideology, they have worked together in the past since Bruce became Batman. So if they have at least a professional relationship would it not be prudent to just call the man up and let him know his kid is running amok in Gotham and find out why Morgan has gone off the deep end of dressing up like Nobody cause your point about sibling rivalry may be valid and the Nobody identity is not his father's "mission" but Morgan's need to compete with Bruce by taking an identity to match Batman.

Agreed,and as much as I like Morgan Ducard I think we can agree that he'll have as much impact as his old man,in other words expect limbo.

#29 Posted by The Impersonator (4311 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123 said:

Nobody knows Batman's secret?

Wow.

Punny.

#30 Posted by Thunderscream (1789 posts) - - Show Bio

Hasn't the "vigilante who's methods are more extreme than Batman's invariably putting them at odds" bit kinda been done to death?

#31 Posted by entropy_aegis (13629 posts) - - Show Bio

Overall Morgan is a more interesting character than all the new Batvillains of the last decade(Hush,Hurt,Pyg,Gordon jr,Black Mask,Dollmaker etc).

Have to give him that,he could work rather well in a Suicide Squad book.

#32 Posted by Steps (657 posts) - - Show Bio

@entropy_aegis said:

Overall Morgan is a more interesting character than all the new Batvillains of the last decade(Hush,Hurt,Pyg,Gordon jr,Black Mask,Dollmaker etc).

Have to give him that,he could work rather well in a Suicide Squad book.

Putting him in the Suicide Squad, I could get with that.

#33 Posted by jsphsmth (1136 posts) - - Show Bio

He was trained by Henri Ducard, so he is already the greatest villain of the relaunch.

#34 Posted by Mayo88m (246 posts) - - Show Bio

He melts people in acid baths! That's a winner in my book. lol Seriously though, he is a decent villain. I don't think he'll make Batman's A+ rogues gallery, but it'll be interesting to see where this story line goes with him, and for him to make appearances down the road sometimes. He's not the best, but he's definitely not the worst villain Batman has.

#35 Posted by Red Rum (357 posts) - - Show Bio

1.) Not really use to the new villains for the Batman legacy. That includes Bat-Dick's enemies like Professor Pyg and the Flamingo.

2.) The red lenses coating his costume make me think that they're all cameras, so he has a 360 Degree view of the battlefield and can't be ambushed.

3.) When I read the title, I thought it would be metaphorical. Like if Batman had no more villains and criminals to fight, he would go insane from feeling utterly useless.

#36 Posted by Croaker (296 posts) - - Show Bio

@Miss_Garrick said:

So, we got a villian with conections to Batman's past, *COUGH*Hush*COUGH*, he knows Batman's identity, *COUGH* Bane*COUGH*Ra's Al Ghul*COUGH*.

I don't see what makes this villian cool.

Indeed. I don't really see anything extraordinary about this guy.

#37 Posted by ArturoCalaKayVee (10017 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin said:

Meanwhile, Dick is having sex with Raya on a private jet.

Win.

Online
#38 Posted by itsallitsall (3 posts) - - Show Bio

I think what makes Nobody a cool villain isn't so much the man himself, but what he represents in the story. Damian is treading a thin line between these two fates (becoming his father, or giving in to his darker instincts). I don't necessarily think that Morgan is great, but he serves as the opposite side of the coin! This is exactly the kind of story I was hoping to find in Batman and Robin! Exploring the relationship between Bruce and Damian is going to make for a very rewarding book, I think.

#39 Posted by Darkseid_Beyond (13 posts) - - Show Bio

I really wish they would integrate The Phantasm, (Andrea Beaumont), into the comics from the DCAU. She made for an interesting villain with ties to Batman's past, being as she was a former lover and all. According to the JLU she continued to be the Phantasm as a Mercenary so there are plenty of great story ideas that could be thought up with that.

#40 Posted by Wattup (648 posts) - - Show Bio

Pretty sure this villain will be forgotten and never seen again as soon as the story ends. Like countless others.

#41 Posted by insheepsclothes (169 posts) - - Show Bio

so i suppose then that post-relaunch, Bats has been trained by the same people and in the same ways as he was pre-new52??

#42 Posted by mynameis7 (58 posts) - - Show Bio

Like i said in my comment on this issue...I know he is a VERY new character but he is the only opponent of batman's that can give batman a real challenge, and he also knows batman by name and knows all his secrets(which is why i think he can give batman that better than anyone else challenge). I love where this story is going!

#43 Posted by Or35ti (1101 posts) - - Show Bio

@SmoothJammin said:

Meanwhile, Dick is having sex with Raya on a private jet.

F*ck yeah! With the New 52 the Bat-Family just got tons more awesome in every book, it's insane!

#44 Posted by SpidermanWins (3975 posts) - - Show Bio

Nobody has the potential to be such a great and special villain for Batman. I WISH I came up with him.

#45 Posted by BlackArmor (6121 posts) - - Show Bio

Everybody and their mother is busy swooning over Talon, calling him the best and most deadly new Bat villain of the 4 new Bat villains. But Nobody is the real standout here he's the best of the bunch Talon is a close second, Dollmaker is forgettable and White Rabbit gets props for having the best costume.

#46 Posted by Teerack (4549 posts) - - Show Bio

He looks like a metal gear villain.

#47 Posted by Fantasgasmic (1065 posts) - - Show Bio

Does nobody else realize this dude is just Pre-reboot Jason Todd?!

#48 Posted by RainEffect (3240 posts) - - Show Bio

What I don't like is the fact that Batman's already got his hands full with a new villain in the Batman series. It takes away the spectacular entrance when two new enemies are introduced in two different trades. I think it would be better for Batman and Robin to face an old rogue veteran, which allows the writer to further explore the relationship between the duo.
 
For example, here's a scene in my mind against Mr. Freeze.
 
"Robin, you follow my lead. I know how Victor works and I'll predict his movements."
"If you've beaten him so many times, then this won't be a problem at all." 
- Damian proceeds to do his own thing, which causes civilian casualties and royally pisses Batman off -

#49 Posted by itsallitsall (3 posts) - - Show Bio

@RainEffect: Sounds exactly the way it would play out to me! That would be fun- you know, except for the civilian casualties and all.

#50 Posted by entropy_aegis (13629 posts) - - Show Bio

@Fantasgasmic said:

Does nobody else realize this dude is just Pre-reboot Jason Todd?!

Not really.

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