Complete Monster/Batman Arkham Series
"No Victor, she DIES! But I'll keep you alive just long enough to see her go!"—Ferris Boyle on Nora Fries while beating her husband to death, Batman: Arkham Origins
As one would expect from a Batman video game series, the Caped Crusader's foes run all over the morality spectrum from tragic Anti-Villains to amoral assholes to well-meaning yet destructive visionaries and everywhere in between. And of course, there are outright repulsive monsters that are in a class of their own.
- Surprising pretty much no one, The Joker is naturally one of these, committing one atrocity after another throughout the games while cackling madly and cracking jokes at the same time.
- During his first canonical appearance in Batman: Arkham Origins he plans to cast Gotham into chaos and establish himself as the top dog among the city's criminal underworld. He forces young crime lord Roman Sionis a.k.a Black Mask to kill his beloved girlfriend, then has him hauled off and tortured while he disguises himself as the influential gangster and hires eight dangerous assassins to hunt down Batman which puts a lot of civilians in danger due to their violent antics (such as the violent pyromaniac Firefly trying to burn buildings, brutal Knight Templar Shiva putting people in danger to test Batman's resolve, and cannibalistic psycho Killer Croc making meals of his fellow humans to name a few). Not wanting to miss out on the fun himself, the Joker also took an active role in the chaos as he abducts Blackgate Prison's warden and endlessly tortures him and threatens his family with death until he lowers the prison's security then proceeds to slaughter dozens of staff members for the sake of killing one man, the corrupt police commissioner Loeb who he wanted out of the way purely because he knew Loeb's death would cause a massive power vacuum. He also has several buildings rigged to explode and attacks a bank and slaughters most of it's staff as other side-activities he had planned. However, once Batman foils his plans to destroy the buildings he had rigged yet saves his life anyway, he grows a psychotic, unhealthy obsession with him and decides that Batman is the one person in Gotham who he can rely on to play his sadistic games with. At the game's climax, he takes over Blackgate Prison and attempts to force Batman into killing either himself or Bane by hooking Bane up to a heart monitor which would power up the electric chair he was sitting in, and had the prison rigged to explode if Batman tried to remove the monitor as a way to force Batman into breaking his no-killing rule.
- During the DTV animated film Batman: Assault on Arkham, Joker gets his hands on a nuclear bomb and tries to annihilate half of Gotham City with it. And once again, he engages in usual Joker activity such as abusing Harley and slaughtering people for fun.
- During the events of Batman: Arkham Asylum he lets lose all the dangerous psychopaths and sadistic Blackgate prisoners locked up in the Asylum and traps the staff there, causing most of the guards, doctors, and other innocent civilians to be brutally murdered by all the escaped crazies which would ultimately put all of their blood on his hands. His plan in the game is to get his hands on a special formula called "Titan" which would give him an army of roided-up monsters to take down Gotham City and Batman himself, with the added bonus of trying to bring Batman down to his level and drive him insane from all the havoc he wreaks on the island. Throughout the night it's revealed that he had Bane set up to be tortured and have his powerful drug Venom forcibly siphoned out of his body, he talks freely about being abusive towards his loyal and lovestruck henchwoman Harley Quinn and offers to let his men rape her as a prize for bringing in Batman, injects Poison Ivy and her plants with Titan in order to cause her to go on a dangerous rampage on the island putting even more innocent lives in danger, and then finishes it all up in the climax when he tries to turn Commissioner Gordon into a Titan-fueled monstrosity. It's also worth noting that his Bad Boss tendencies really show in this game, as he has multiple moments where he could alert his mooks to Batman's presence whenever they can't see him, but simply finds it funnier to sit back and watch them all get the stuffing beat out of them. Hell, he even leaves a couple of his henchmen to die in rooms filled with Joker Toxin simply for not escaping fast enough.
- In Batman: Arkham City the final game before his death at the end, he realizes that he's dying due to Titan poisoning and decides have samples of his poisoned blood shipped to Gotham's hospitals which would put thousands of lives in danger, and poisons Batman as well by putting some of his blood in him so he can take the Caped Crusader down with him should he not find a cure in time. It's been revealed that in order to find a cure, he's been having doctors kidnapped and dragged over to his headquarters and has been punishing them for their failures by brutally executing them until he kidnaps Mr. Freeze's beloved wife Nora in order to get force him to create a cure for him, and ends the night's festivities by murdering Batman's on and off again lover Talia Al-Ghul and joking about it for the pleasure of pissing him off.}} It's also worth noting that most of his henchmen are absolutely thrilled by the fact that he could possibly die due to his sickness because they're all sick of working for an unpredictable lunatic who is not only intolerant of failure, but also big on killing mooks of his out of the blue for his own amusement! Fittingly, his monstrous nature ends up being the death of him as he loses his cure by attempting to murder a now-cured Batman for it and instead causes him to lose his grip and drop it, accidentally destroying it and leaving it as a shattered, useless mess. But despite all the terrible things he had pulled not only that night, but all the years back to when he and Batman first met, Batman reveals that he still would have cured him anyway, a fact that Joker can only laugh at as he finally dies for good.
- And even in Arkham Knight, the game that takes place after his death, the Joker still manages to return as a hallucination that continues to torment the drug-induced Batman to the point of insanity from beyond the grave. Thankfully, he is finally stopped for good when Scarecrow injected Batman with fear toxin at the very moment Joker had completely taken over Batman's psyche, cause him to get scared when faced with his own worst fear of becoming forgotten and irrelevant, protecting Batman from further psychological harm and allowing him to lock the Joker away forever in the deepest depths of his subconscious.
- In Arkham City, if Joker hadn't had such a monopoly on the title of Complete Monster, Oswald Cobblepot a.k.a the Penguin would have it since he is also a truly vile man. While the guy is mostly a ruthless, though polite and occasionally helpful enemy of Batman in the comics, this version of him is a nasty, sadistic, and all around disgusting murderer and torturer. All around his museum hideout are display cases where he leaves the corpses of his victims in, and they all have recorded messages that go into detail about how he killed them and why he did it. While it may not seem like a big deal due to a lot of them being criminals, it's hard to say that they really deserve to die in such awful ways like being baked in a hot oven or being worked on with crowbars and blowtorches. And Penguin just doesn't have rivals to his criminal empire or street thugs who got on his bad side on display, he also has Mr. Freeze subjected to this fate and has plans to do this to Bruce Wayne who for all he knows is simply a rich boy whose ancestors were more successful than his! And in Mr. Freeze's case, he wants him out of the way so he can't cure the Joker. This would be understandable, but the Penguin is needlessly sadistic about it: not only is Mr. Freeze kept alive in his display case, but it's a custom-made one that acts as a microwave to fry the poor guy alive in it! And if Penguin's case couldn't be made any worse, he's also a cop killer and has a group of undercover police officers subjected to fates such as being drowned, fed to his pet shark Tiny, and being left to slowly freeze to death. And just in case you didn't hate the little Fat Bastard enough, right before the boss fights with him and Solomon Grundy, he tortures a cop over the museum's intercom by freezing his hand with Freeze's gun and shatters it off with a hammer all the while laughing at his screams and describing the pain that he's putting the guy through. Not to mention that like with the Joker, Penguin is also a Bad Boss extraordinaire who constantly threatens his lackeys with a slow death should they fail him, and goes as far as to laugh at a group of henchmen he strands on Joker's territory by blowing up several bridges that led there while saying that they may as well take as many of the clown's henchmen with them before they die.
- His brief scene in Assault on Arkham shows that he can show respect for people such as Deadshot, but not for his personality so much as he respects his skills as an assassin who doesn't botch jobs. Having respect from him ultimately means nothing since he flies into a rage and tries to have Deadshot and the rest of the Suicide Squad killed within seconds after noticing Harley Quinn among the group as she and Joker have gotten under his skin on more than one occasion, only stopping when Deadshot points out that his reputation would be ruined for it, which Penguin needs in order to be as successful as he is. And while he lets them live, he flat out tells Deadshot that he's dead if they ever cross paths again.
- Also from Arkham City, Professor Hugo Strange is a different sort of monster than The Joker and Penguin. While those two enjoy killing for fun, Strange is a perfect example of a Knight Templar who goes to horrific extents in order to accomplish his goals, which he believes to be necessary but are laced with unethical selfishness and egomania. A psychiatrist with an unhealthy obsession with punishing the wicked and wanting to become Batman's successor as Gotham's savior, Strange approached Arkham warden Quincy Sharp and agreed to help him win the election for mayor of Gotham City through his "friends in high places" which in reality was Ra's Al Ghul and his League of Assassins, on the condition that Quincy had to look the other way while he had free reign at Arkham Asylum. Taking an interest in inmate Jervis Tetch's hypnotism skills, he took advantage of the mentally ill man and had him help in hypnotizing Quincy into believing that he was possessed by the spirit of Amadeus Arkham, which combined with the schizophrenia Sharp tried to hide, caused him to snap and commit all sorts of atrocities such as violently torturing the inmates to death in the name of "cleaning the filth of Gotham". He rewarded Tetch by giving him "Alices" (innocent assistants) that Tetch would kill and quite possibly rape. After Sharp won the election and became mayor, he allowed Strange to set up Arkham City, which he would basically wall off a section of Gotham and use it as an enormous prison blockade in which to toss in any of Gotham's criminals, whether they belong in Arkham or Blackgate Prison, and have them live in awful living conditions while they tear each other apart. While some of the criminals who end up in Arkham City arguably deserve it, Strange also has innocent people who opposed his views tossed into the city as well, leaving them to fend for themselves against the various terrifying murderers, rapists, and cannibals imprisoned there. And let's not forget that HE is ultimately why the Penguin is able to torture those undercover cops Commissioner Gordon sent in: he personally ratted them out because he didn't like them snooping in his business as revealed in his taped interviews with Penguin. While he appears to treat his TYGER guards well, they are actually brainwashed slaves who were made loyal to Strange through hypnotism and torture methods such as electroshock therapy, and any who resisted the brainwashing were forcibly lobotomized and tossed into Arkham Asylum's holding cells where they were now reduced to animalistic, screaming savages with no resemblance of human thought anymore. And to top it all off, he decided to proceed with the very controversial "Protocol Ten", an event where he has his TYGER guards in helicopters slaughter every last inmate in the City, the ultimate step for him to cleanse Arkham's filth and ascend as Ra's Al Ghul's heir. Even worse, he reveals that he has plans to establish these kinds of facilities in other areas such as Metropolis and Keystone City as well! While Ra's thinks this is a necessary thing to do in order to make the world a better place, Strange is clearly obsessed with his psychotic ego and wants to be figuratively immortalized in history for his actions, not at all caring about trampling over anyone who gets in the way of his lust for power and glory, and shows no regret whatsoever when Batman forces him to watch the carnage that is caused by Protocol 10, claiming that it's a glorious sight.
- From the Batman: Arkham Origins DLC Cold, Cold Heart, we have Ferris Boyle who is even worse than he was in the award winning Batman: The Animated Series episode Heart of Ice from which this DLC is based off of. While appearing to be a kind-hearted philanthropist on the surface, Boyle is really an unethical sociopath who is using his company's legitimate businesses as a front while secretly developing dangerous and highly illegal cryogenic weaponry to be sold on the black market. Hiring the meek cryogenist Victor Fries to do the job for him, he agreed to provide funding for curing Victor's Ill Girl wife Nora's terminal disease. However, Boyle had no intention of actually keeping his word which Fries found out and instead decided to find a cure for Nora himself. When he found this out, Boyle was furious and went to confiscate Nora, going as far as to beat Fries to death despite the fact that Fries was still helping make weapons for him! After leaving Fries near death, Boyle tried to finish him off with a cryogenic weapon, but instead caused the accident that permanently disfigured Fries and made it to where he can't survive outside of sub-zero temperatures. Having caught other members of his staff in the blast, Boyle left them all to die in an attempt to cover his ass, which backfired spectacularly when Fries survived and came after him decked out in power armor and a cryo-cannon as the newly christened villain Mr. Freeze. At the DLC's climax when Batman has defeated Freeze and saves Boyle from his wrath, the slimy bastard freezes Batman and leaves him to his death due to him finding out the truth behind his illicit activites, then proceeds to brutally beat Freeze to death while promising that he'd keep him alive just long enough so he could force him to watch his wife die. While Boyle was already a monster in the original episode, he's much worse here thanks to his newfound sadistic streak that wasn't present in the animated series where he was more of a colossal Asshole Victim, which makes punching the son of a bitch out so much sweeter.
- The Scarecrow, Dr. Jonathan Crane, is a Mad Scientist dedicated to the study of fear. First appearing in Arkham Asylum, he participates in Joker's plan to take over the titular asylum and attempts to Mind Rape Batman several times with his fear toxin. Upon his final defeat, he threatens to contaminate Gotham's water supply with the toxin simply to spite Batman. Scarecrow returns in Arkham Knight as the Big Bad. This time around, he takes advantage of the power vacuum created by Joker's death and unites all the remaining villains against Batman. After a demonstration of his newest fear toxin causes a diner full of people to rip each other apart, Gotham is evacuated, allowing Scarecrow to take over a chemical plant and manufacture a fear bomb powerful enough to take out the eastern seaboard. He even gleefully speculates that the toxin will carry on the air across the county, creating a "nation of fear." Foiled in this, he steals a superweapon called the Cloudburst and uses it to drive all of Gotham temporarily mad with fear. He also has Barbara Gordon kidnapped and leads Batman to believe that his toxin caused her to kill herself. He then manipulates Commissioner Gordon into betraying Batman, and, after the Commissioner goes against orders and seemingly kills him, Scarecrow forces Jim to watch as he drops the still-living Barbara off of a building. In the end, he captures Batman and forces Gordon to unmask him on live TV. He then plans on letting Batman go so he can watch as Gotham is torn apart and everyone he loves is hunted down and killed. All of this was done to completely destroy the myth of the Batman as a savior, and force everyone to experience true fear by destroying their symbol of hope. Arguably, Scarecrow ended up proving to be every bit as evil and heinous as Joker.
- Victor Zsasz from the first two games is a creepy little man who is obsessed with killing innocent people and slashes a tally-mark onto his skin for every life he takes, and he has a lot of tallies. While Batman is able to stop most of his crimes before Zsasz can add more tallies to his skin, the intention is still present in the horrifying ways he tries to kill people. In the first game, you first find him having escaped captivity torturing a security guard with electric shocks, creepily threatening to fry him if Batman intervenes. Later on, he's holding Dr. Young at knife-point while taking what's heavily hinted to be sexual pleasure from the thought of ending her life. He's also been to work on other victims as you can find a couple of groups of dead Arkham staff members who are posed in life-like situations. In the second game, he's one of the inmates stuck in Arkham City and spends his time calling various phone booths around the city and kills the unfortunate schmucks who answer them. With Batman however, he makes him run all around the city looking for various phones that Zsasz is calling, giving him a small amount of time to answer them with three hostage's lives on the line should he fail. Here, he tries to justify himself through discussing his Freudian Excuse by talking about how he found that life is meaningless due to losing his parents and squandering away his fortune by gambling, and that he's trying to save people by "liberating" them from their perceived pointless existences. However, upon entering his hideout it's very clear that he really does take a sick pleasure in this due to the fact that he's menacing two of his hostages and creepily telling them about how slowly he's going to kill them, and has already killed the third hostage despite telling Batman that he wouldn't as long as Batman played by the rules. While not one of Batman's bigger foes in the series, he's still among the most terrifying.
- Julian Gregory Day, aka the Calendar Man, is a soft-spoken psychopath who commits crimes during and based on holidays. In Arkham City, he boasts about a sizeable rap sheet over the years, from murdering his parents and potential lovers to laying siege to maternity wards and poisoning entire gangs working for him, Day kicks off his next spree in the Arkham Knight tie-in comic by murdering dozens of people in stores across Gotham on holidays. Later capturing Batman, Day forces him to fight monsters continuously for an entire week while using an infant as a hostage, before revealing he has poisoned over 300 people in Gotham—-many of whom are children and toddlers—hoping for Batman to tire himself into exhaustion and allow Day to strike the killing blow. Day ultimately flings the hostage infant off a ledge to enable his own escape, successfully evading capture and ending his current spree solely to bask in Batman's coming defeat at the hands of Scarecrow.