Nightwing's Ten Greatest Villains #7-#5

The Countdown

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BatWatch is counting down the top ten greatest Nightwing Villains, a feat which nobody else has ever even attempted to try. If you want to see the villains who came earlier in the countdown or how this list was compiled, just click onNightwing's Greatest Villains #10-#8.

Last week's list featured the powerhouses of Hush, (#10) Ravager (#9) and Black Mask. (#8) Who managed to beat down these three and proved to be an even bigger threat to Dick Grayson?

# 7 Two-Face

Who Is He?

Despite a tough childhood, Harvey Dent became the District Attorney of Gotham City. Dent partnered with Batman by doing his best to prosecute the scum that Batman took off the streets. Sadly, a mobster motivated by vengeance threw a vial of acid at Harvey. The acid covered half of Harvey’s face damaging it beyond recognition. Though the physical wounds were horrific, the true damage was to Harvey’s mind. Harvey lost his sanity, and all the darkness of his childhood swelled up and overwhelmed him. As Two-Face, Harvey Dent is a criminal mastermind, constant enemy of Batman, and a man torn between his two natures.

Why He Made the List

Two-Face was one of the first villains Dick Grayson ever faced as Robin. He was also the first villains that ever truly hurt Dick. In the early days of Robin, Two-Face kidnapped both the district attorney of Gotham and Batman. Putting the two on a makeshift gallows, Two-Face intended to kill them as Robin watched. Grayson managed to break free of his attackers and cut the noose holding the mayor, but sadly, the day was not saved. Two-Face’s deathtrap was twofold, and when Two-Face pulled the lever for the mayor’s trapdoor, the mayor fell, handcuffed, into a tank of water. Robin had saved the mayor form hanging only to have him drown. Grayson tried to save the mayor, but Two-Face’s goons subdued him, and Two-Face then beat Grayson mercilessly. Two-Face probably would have beaten Dick to death had Batman not escaped and managed to save the day. Nonetheless, Two-Face gave Dick his first real defeat and his first real beating.

Two-Face’s crimes against Dick did not stop there. Two-Face fought the original incarnation of the Teen Titans on one occasion. During his solo career as Nightwing, Dick fought Two-Face many times. When Grayson took on the mantle of Batman, Two-Face again caused trouble for Nightwing most crucially when he managed to invade the Bat Cave via teleporter. When Grayson arrived to check out the disturbance, Two-Face shot him with a sedative dart. Upon awakening, Two-Face tortured Grayson for an unknown amount of time until Dick was finally saved by Alfred.

For creating Dick’s first real failure and torturing Grayson on multiple occasions, Two-Face has earned his role as Nightwing’s seventh greatest villain.

Where Is He Now?

Recently, Two-Face squared off against Kate Spencer in court. Two-Face attempted to kill her, but his plan was thwarted. However, Two-Face did manage to escape custody. Two-Face's current location is unknown.

#6 Mayor Hady

Who Is He?

Mayor Hady is the corrupt and sleazy mayor of Gotham City. Though his crimes are largely undisclosed, he has indirectly made trouble for both Batman and Nightwing.

Why He Made the List

I know what you are thinking. How can a corrupt mayor possibly deserve to be on the same list as such accomplished killers as Hush, Black Mask, and Two-Face? Unlike Rose Wilson, Mayor Hady was never an ally of Dick’s that later betrayed him.

The answer lies in the very nature of Gotham City and Batman. When we think of Batman fighting crime in Gotham City, we usually think of the big name villains, but in reality, it is the crooked police and political corruption which has given liberty for such evil to creep over the city. Many classic Batman stories such as “Batman: Year One” deal with the political rot which allows crime to fester in Gotham. Batman may have found an ally to fight crime in the police department via Commissioner Gordon, but he has never truly succeeded in finding a mayor willing to fight for the cause of justice.

When Dick Grayson acted as the Batman of Gotham City, he faced this classic problem with Mayor Hady. Mayor Hady not only allowed crime to continue, he actively participated. Mayor Hady hired Firefly to burn down a series of apartment buildings so that Hady’s construction company could start a new development on the land. He has also blackmailed political opponents in order to cement his role as Mayor of Gotham. Up until present day, Mayor Hady continues to bring darkness upon Gotham, and yet he has never been held responsible for his crimes.

For being the scum who got away, Mayor Hady earned his place as Nightwing’s sixth greatest villain.

WHERE IS HE NOW?

Mayor Hady is still the mayor of Gotham City. Red Robin recently discovered that in addition to his crimes, Mayor Hady has cheated on his wife.

#5 Joker

Who Is He?

The mysterious Clown Prince of Crime, Joker, is Batman’s arch-nemesis. Nobody knows where he truly originates, but it is commonly believed that his skin was bleached due to him falling into a chemical vat after a battle with Batman. In addition to his frequent tussles with Batman, Joker has often made trouble for Superman and Dick Grayson.

Why He Made the List

When readers think of the crimes of Joker, they frequently think of how he, more than any other villain, has deeply hurt Batman, but many of the same crimes that brought emotional distress to Batman caused nearly as much pain to Dick Grayson.

Joker is one of Grayson's oldest enemies. However, Joker did not really start to damage Grayson until he had shed the Robin persona and become Nightwing. The first major blow was the crippling of Barbara Gordon, the girl many fans believe to be Nightwing’s one true love. Grayson's love for Barbara is so great that he even proposed to Barbara at one point though various complications kept the marriage from ever occurring. Regardless of the depth of Dick and Barbara’s relationship, Joker was the first one to pierce the Bat Family’s air of invincibility, and in the same act, he horribly injured one of Dick Grayson’s greatest loves.

The second major blow came almost immediately after the first when Joker murdered Jason Todd by beating him to death with a crowbar. Though Dick was not as close to Jason as Bruce, the two were friends, and Joker destroyed, at least temporarily, the legacy of Robin. The death of Jason Todd caused Dick’s adopted father, Bruce, to fall into a deep depression, and in many ways, Bruce has never recovered from the loss. Furthermore, Jason Todd eventually resurrected and became a villain, and Jason, as Red Hood, tried to kill Grayson and his loved ones on multiple occasions before he finally managed to gain back his sanity.

In the years since the death of Jason Todd, Joker continued to be a menace to Grayson. Grayson battled Joker several times in his solo career, and Joker also came into conflict with Nightwing’s team of Outsiders at one point. When Nightwing was working as the Batman of Gotham City, Joker went for the hat trick of personal attacks by nearly killing Dick’s protégé, Damian.

By killing and maiming Dick’s family and friends, Joker earned his place as Nightwing’s fifth greatest villain.

Where Is He Now?

Leading yet another attack on the Bat Family, of course. If Kyle Higgins mysterious tweets are to be believed, it appears as if Joker’s machinations in “The Death of a Family” might cause yet another upset in Nightwing’s career.

More to Come!

Frustrated that your favorite Nightwing nemesis has not made an appearance? Remember, we are not done yet. Nightwing's Greatest Villains #4-#1 is primed and ready to go, but you still have to wait a week to find out. In the meantime, light up the comment section and let me know who you think should be in the top four.

Also, keep an eye out for Friday's commentary article, "Why Is 'The Ravagers' Failing?"

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

17 Comments
17 Comments
Posted by arnoldoaad

you know, most of this villains are more Batman villains than anything else

not Nightwing villains

where is Tarantula and Blockbuster and other guys from Bludhaven

Edited by SoA

i would think more classic teen titans villains would be his rogues or new villains like saiko from N52

Posted by Reignmaker

I think it makes sense that Batman and Nightwing would share a lot of the same villains considering their history together - but yeah, that doesn't make for an exciting list.

Posted by fodigg

I don't think it works to count Batman's villains unless there was a clear attempt to introduce them as Nightwing villains. For Two-Face, that's true, for Joker, not so much I'm afraid. I think with Joker you'd have a better case as a Jason Todd villain.

Posted by The_Soverighn

cool

Posted by nickthedevil

Saiko, Paragon, Deathstroke better be up in this.

Online
Posted by Lvenger

Love Two Face being on the list! He's caused as much trouble for Dick as he has Batman, maybe more.

Edited by BatWatch

@arnoldoaad: @SoA: @Reignmaker: @fodigg: @The_Soverighn: @Lvenger:

I would be interested in hearing who you guys think should be in the top ten. Nick is the only one who has made any suggestions.

@arnoldoaad said:

you know, most of this villains are more Batman villains than anything else

not Nightwing villains

where is Tarantula and Blockbuster and other guys from Bludhaven

@SoA said:

i would think more classic teen titans villains would be his rogues or new villains like saiko from N52

My intention was to make a top ten list of the villains who had the biggest impact on Dick Grayson not to make a list of villains unique to Grayson. When you look at all Grayson's appearances as a lead character, you can pretty well give about forty percent to the Teen Titans, forty percent to Nightwing, and twenty percent to his time as Batman. Teen Titans had a lot of villains outside Batman's rogue gallery, but a lot of those lost points in my formula because they were in the Bronze Age. The Nightwing series had a lot of unique villains and a lot of Batman villains, but many of the unique villains never did anything to really damage Dick in a big way. With Dick's time in the cowl, it kind of pushed the list in favor of the Batman villains.

That being said, there are four slots left unfilled.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

@Reignmaker said:

I think it makes sense that Batman and Nightwing would share a lot of the same villains considering their history together - but yeah, that doesn't make for an exciting list.

I'm sorry you feel that way. Considering the lukewarm response I've been getting, I kind of wish I had made it a list of villains that were specific to Dick Grayson, but as I explained above, the list is for those that did Dick the most damage not those that were the most specific to him.

I hope you will come around for the top four. That might just have what you were expecting.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

@fodigg said:

I don't think it works to count Batman's villains unless there was a clear attempt to introduce them as Nightwing villains. For Two-Face, that's true, for Joker, not so much I'm afraid. I think with Joker you'd have a better case as a Jason Todd villain.

Oh yeah! (chuckles) Joker definitely has to be on any list of Jason's villains. As I've been explaining, I was trying to get those that were most harmful to Grayson not those that were most unique to him. Joker may have only rarely come after Grayson directly, but he has unquestionably done him more damage than most.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

@The_Soverighn said:

cool

Glad you liked it! That makes one. (grins)

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

@nickthedevil said:

Saiko, Paragon, Deathstroke better be up in this.

Who? (tongue in cheek)

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

@Lvenger said:

Love Two Face being on the list! He's caused as much trouble for Dick as he has Batman, maybe more.

Two-Face is definitely my favorite villain for this section of the top ten. Grayson called Two-Face Robin's "Trial by Fire." He was Dick's first major defeat, the man who killed Jason's father and one of his first villains, and Tim's very first supervillain. I do not think anything has been done with Two-Face and Damian though.

For more news, reviews, and commentary for the entire Bat Family, check out BatWatch.net.

Edited by arnoldoaad

@BatWatch said:

@arnoldoaad: @SoA: @Reignmaker: @fodigg: @The_Soverighn: @Lvenger:

I would be interested in hearing who you guys think should be in the top ten. Nick is the only one who has made any suggestions.

@arnoldoaad said:

you know, most of this villains are more Batman villains than anything else

not Nightwing villains

where is Tarantula and Blockbuster and other guys from Bludhaven

Tarantula and Blackbuster doesnt count because... Why?

look, i know is your list and all but

Really? Hush as #10, I love Hush but he is not a one of NIGHTWING's greatest villains, He fought him once, and as batman, He just doesnt count he is not even in the #100

and Joker is debatable as well this mayor guy, who the hell even remembers the mayor?

Its just not a good list at all so far

I'm sorry you feel that way. Considering the lukewarm response I've been getting,

I actually find that funny

look, the problem is this is a NIGHTWING list, not a Dick Grayson List, i guess some of the ppl he fought as Batman can count but really, Hush? Mayor Hady?

no!

Edit: lol, i just notice this

When you look at all Grayson's appearances as a lead character, you can pretty well give about forty percent to the Teen Titans, forty percent to Nightwing, and forty percent to his time as Batman.

So, 120%

what?

Posted by Lvenger

@BatWatch: As long as you put Blockbuster and Deathstroke on there, I'm perfectly fine with that.

Posted by BatWatch

@arnoldoaad:

Sorry, I missed your suggestions. Blockbuster and Tarantula are interesting suggestions. As I mentioned, a lot of Nightwing's recurring villains did not have much of an impact on Grayson. On the flip side, if a character did do a lot of damage to Grayson, there is a very real chance he might be in the top 4.

I justified all my choices.

Good catch on the 120%. I meant that Batman's time as Grayson made about twenty percent of his headlining appearances.

@Lvenger said:

@BatWatch: As long as you put Blockbuster and Deathstroke on there, I'm perfectly fine with that.

Interesting choices. Did you see that Deathstroke Injustice Video? Very awesome.

Posted by arnoldoaad

@BatWatch said:

@arnoldoaad:

Sorry, I missed your suggestions. Blockbuster and Tarantula are interesting suggestions. As I mentioned, a lot of Nightwing's recurring villains did not have much of an impact on Grayson. On the flip side, if a character did do a lot of damage to Grayson, there is a very real chance he might be in the top 4.

Tarantula raped Nightwing and convinced him to let her kill Blockbuster

and blockbuster discover his secret identity and his death was one of the biggest things in Nightwing's continuity that even his zombie attacked him on Batman Blackest Night.

mind you that storyline had a lot of problems but they leave a mark much much bigger than Hush or Major whats-his-name

Hell Hush is even a bigger villain for Catwoman than Nightwing

I justified all my choices.

well I dont think its well justified

Good catch on the 120%. I meant that Batman's time as Grayson made about twenty percent of his headlining appearances.

Not even 20%, i would argue that even 10 is a little too much, he was batman for only 2 years, and it doesnt matter if it was in multiple books or not cause Nightwing was also in multiple books for a period of 20 years

regarding the next of the list, I will expect Deathstroke to be #1, and at least Jim Jr as #2

Posted by BatWatch

@arnoldoaad said:

You make a good case for the Blockbuster and Tarantula. Perhaps they will be in the final four.

What would your list be?

Regarding justification, fair enough.

Regarding the twenty percent, I stick with that considering the way I weighted things as explained in the my first top ten post.

Posted by arnoldoaad

@BatWatch said:

@arnoldoaad said:

You make a good case for the Blockbuster and Tarantula. Perhaps they will be in the final four.

What would your list be?

Regarding justification, fair enough.

Regarding the twenty percent, I stick with that considering the way I weighted things as explained in the my first top ten post.

regarding the 20%

I just assuming this but i think you havent read enough Nightwing to make this list

and me neither for that matter but some of choices are just debatable to be in the list, and others Like Hush and the Mayor there is just no real justification to be on it

about my list, Im not sure to be honest, like i said i havent read that much Nightwing, and other than Tarantula and Blockbuster the only other villain from Nightwing that i can think of is that guy from Robin Year One who later died in Infinite Crisis and i cant remember his name

but other than those, Professor Pyg could actually make it, ofcourse Jim Jr and Deathstroke, so thats my list of 5

Posted by BatWatch

@arnoldoaad

Interesting list. I'm familiar with all the others encounters with Nightwing, but I do not know of anything that Jim Jr. did to Nightwing that was worse than the average serial killer. Did I miss something.

As far as the justification, my picks were already explained, so I'm not going to repeat myself. I'll be more open to talk about why certain characters did and did not make the list after I come out with the final four Monday.

Posted by arnoldoaad

@BatWatch said:

@arnoldoaad

Interesting list. I'm familiar with all the others encounters with Nightwing, but I do not know of anything that Jim Jr. did to Nightwing that was worse than the average serial killer. Did I miss something.

As far as the justification, my picks were already explained, so I'm not going to repeat myself. I'll be more open to talk about why certain characters did and did not make the list after I come out with the final four Monday.

Jim Jr was created to be the anti-Dick Grayson, thats the whole point of the story being titled Dark Mirror, that he is a dark reflection of Dick's Batman, cause his greatest strength in BM is how he trusted other people while Jim Jr cannot feel empathy for anyone

he is just a very well created villain

Posted by BatWatch

@arnoldoaad said:

@BatWatch said:

@arnoldoaad

Interesting list. I'm familiar with all the others encounters with Nightwing, but I do not know of anything that Jim Jr. did to Nightwing that was worse than the average serial killer. Did I miss something.

As far as the justification, my picks were already explained, so I'm not going to repeat myself. I'll be more open to talk about why certain characters did and did not make the list after I come out with the final four Monday.

Jim Jr was created to be the anti-Dick Grayson, thats the whole point of the story being titled Dark Mirror, that he is a dark reflection of Dick's Batman, cause his greatest strength in BM is how he trusted other people while Jim Jr cannot feel empathy for anyone

he is just a very well created villain

Interesting. I'm hoping to get to Books A Million today and read through some older Snyder and Morrison plot lines. I've been reading Batman comics here and there for over a decade, but I have not made sure to follow each issue until recently.