The Batman has been a run away success, both at the box office and with fans.
Naturally, it has left everyone and their dog clamouring for a sequel.
But following a film featuring infamous villains such as The Riddler, Penguin and Carmine Falcone, who should be next in line to take on the caped crusader?
Here’s six Batman villains that would be worthy.
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1. Mr. Freeze
With its dark and realistic tone, The Batman managed to do an excellent job of staying loyal to the comic books. It’s for this reason that fans want to see how far this can be pushed. Enter Mr. Freeze.
An expert in the field of cryogenics, Victor Fries took a walk down the dark side when his wife, Nora, became terminally ill.
He placed her into suspended animation so that he could buy her time as he searched for a cure. Then, a horrible accident meant that Victor was forced to wear an ultra-durable suit that kept his body temperature below freezing – without it, he would die.
While having obvious villainous tendencies, Freeze has become a bit of an anti-hero. With a back story such as his, it would be fascinating to see what Matt Reeves and Robert Pattinson could do with such a story.
Bryan Cranston would be perfect casting for the role.
2. Calendar Man
I know what you’re thinking. Does this bad guy actually exist or have I just made him up? Well rest assured, he’s real.
From birth, Julian Day was obsessed with the idea of time and the calendar. He patterned his life around obsessively observing holidays and dates, something that eventually caused his mind to fracture.
He then turned to a life of crime, using his love for the calendar to add a flare of the dramatic to his crimes. While perhaps not a headline villain, Julian could serve as a nice warm up act in the next film.
He also proved to be a helpful figure when behind bars in “The Long Halloween” comic story. Think Hannibal Lector’s role in “The Silence of the Lambs.”
“The Long Halloween” is also a good source material for the next villain on this list as you’re about to see…
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*Minor Spoilers* In “The Batman”, Gotham City’s District Attorney becomes one of the Riddler’s victims. So who better to fill in that position than Harvey Dent? Well probably a few people considering how his story goes – but for dramatic purposes, it’s a perfect fit.
We’ve seen Dent in a live action film before, in “The Dark Knight” but this could be a great chance for us to see an alternate take on the character.
A bit like Mr. Freeze, he’s somewhat of an anti-hero as he only becomes villainous when acid is thrown in his face and he spirals into madness.
From then on, he makes every decision based on the outcome of a flip of a coin – thus practising his own brand of justice.
There are several different storylines you could follow for Two-Face.
And this version of Gotham City in Matt Reeves’ Batverse is ripe for many of them.
Like with Calendar Man, “The Long Halloween” could prove to be some great inspiration.
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A lesser known Batman villain for casual fans, Scarface is still perhaps one of the most sinister.
In the comics, Scarface is the name given to one or several ventriloquist dummies used by the Ventriloquist.
The puppet personifies the Ventriloquist’s dissociative identity disorder, which often acts as the violent personality in counter-balance to the villains’ typically more timid one.
As you can see from the clip below from “Gotham”, there’s a lot of potential here to creep the audience out.
Nicholas Cage has said he’d love to play a Batman villain and Kevin Smith thinks that Scarface would be a perfect fit:
“Could you imagine he played Scarface so he was The Ventriloquist, but they made him up to also look like the dummy as well?” Smith said.
Following on from the dark and twisted Riddler we’ve seen in the first film, nothing seems off the table.
Born in a prison on a remote Caribbean island, Bane was raised without pity or compassion. As an adult, he served as a test subject for the super-steroid called Venom. (No not that Venom, that’s Marvel).
Superhumanly strong, Bane escaped his hell and headed to Gotham City—where he chose to make his mark by defeating the Batman.
Like Two-Face, we’ve seen Bane before – both in film and TV.
The most recent of which was in the Batman Prequel TV show, “Gotham”.
One of the most famous storylines from the comics that Bane has featured in is “Knightfall.”
This could be great to adapt, at least in part, because we would see Pattinson’s Batman pushed to his physical limits and would be a nice twist away from a villain like the Riddler whom he had to out-think.
6. The Court of Owls
The Court of Owls is an aristocratic secret society which is centuries old with immense power and influence embedded into the very architecture and history of Gotham City.
Seeing the version of Gotham that is present in the new film, The Court would fit in perfectly and make for another excellent detective noir style story.
Everybody knows that Gotham is corrupt but these people really do take it to the next level.
Heck, when they see what a good job Harvey Dent is doing at cleaning up the city, they might be the ones that decide to step in and trigger his change into Two-Face. At this point, the film basically starts to write itself.
The New 52 Batman run of DC Comics saw a brilliant storyline unfold featuring these fiends that would be ripe for adaptation.