We've been introduced to many of the DC Extended Universe's interpretations of DC characters and we have confirmation that there are plans for several more, but DC has been publishing comics since 1934, and it has a LOT of characters. Knowing that there are already plans for Batman, Batgirl, and Nightwing movies, I started thinking about characters specifically tied to Gotham and the Bats. Here are some of the ones I want to see most of all in a future Batman-related movie.
I'm a huge fan of the Bat family. When the still from Batman v Superman where Bruce looks at the case containing Jason's Robin suit, with the Joker's writing still covering it, first came out, my heart broke into a million pieces. When I first heard that Nightwing will get his own movie, I freaked out and spent the next few days alternating between joy that my favorite character is going to get his own solo and terror over how if it's not good, I'll cry. So, naturally, I want Bruce's daughter to join the party as well.
Cass is the canonically most skilled fighter in DC. No non-meta can beat her because she knows what everyone's going to do before they do it. She was trained from birth to be an assassin. She's also compassionate, unable to effectively express herself, and oftentimes, very conflicted. She'd be a beautiful edition to the cast of characters — hers would be a story of self discovery, family, kindness, humanity, and growing past abuse.
My ideal scenario would be Cass as Batgirl in the upcoming Batgirl solo, as I mentioned here, potentially being introduced in the Batman solo. However, as I doubt that Cass will be introduced so soon and the Batgirl movie will probably be centered around Barbara, I'm instead hoping for Cass to show up in a future #Batfamily team-up movie.
2. Katherine Kane (#Batwoman)
Kate Kane, the soldier kicked out of the military for refusing to lie about her relationship with another woman, fits very well with the already established characters in the #DCEU because of her strong sense of ethics. The DCEU is all about hope, love, and justice in dark times. Don't Ask Don't Tell may have been repealed, but it's far from a distant memory and Kate will almost certainly be about Bruce's age in the DCEU, meaning she would have absolutely been affected by military prohibitions on same sex relationships. Her going on to fight crime and protect civilians after her poor treatment at the hands of the military for her sexuality would be a beautiful parallel to Clark still fighting for humanity after being rejected and ostracized for what he is.
Kate is one of the members of the Batfamily that's most often forgotten. She's still well known, of course, especially as #DC's most high profile LGBT character, but since she mostly does her own thing, it's easy for her to slip under the radar when compared to the core members of the #Gotham heroes: Batman, Robin, Batgirl. That's a shame, because Kate is an excellent character. She's not my favorite member of the Batfamily, but she's a solid character that would continue to present themes that have been present in the DCEU from the beginning, and as a Jewish lesbian hero, would contribute to building a more diverse cast.
While Artemis does exist in the comics, Young Justice remade her as a new character bearing almost no resemblance to her original incarnation, one that's a more fully realized and interesting character. This version deserves to shine in live action.
She's not anyone's sidekick. She started fighting crime alone, despite her supervillain parents, and without the money that most non-meta heroes have. Batman, Green Arrow, the Ted Kord Blue Beetle — they have the advantage of billions of dollars. Artemis doesn't, and as such, could fit in well with the DCEU's brand of realism. These movies are centered on the political, philosophical and religious impact of people with superpowers making themselves known to the world. Having Artemis in there would be fascinating, because she's human; in a world of aliens and demigods, she's breakable, to an even greater extent than Bruce because of her lack of resources. Archery makes so much sense for a regular human in this world. Fighting at a distance would be more effective than hand-to-hand combat with people that have super strength. Her vulnerability would make for great internal conflict and demonstrate why it's not superpowers or resources that make the hero, but tenacity and a desire to make the world a better place.
Having Artemis around would further develop Gotham as a city, because while she's one of many heroes that call it home, she doesn't wear the bat symbol or work regularly with Batman. She's an average Gothamite that wants to help. Through her, the audience could gain a greater understanding of Gotham, what it's like to live there, and why the heroes that do are so dedicated to protecting it.
Her relationship with Dick was one of the more interesting dynamics in Young Justice. They are both nonpowered humans from Gotham that started training at a young age. They have a lot of similarities and trust in each other, as well as vastly different ways of thinking. It would be nice to see that relationship developed, perhaps in a Nightwing movie.
4. Edward Nygma (#TheRiddler)
I'm a little hesitant on this one, because I sincerely love the Gotham incarnation of the character, and it'll be hard to imagine someone else in the role at the same time. Gotham has spoiled me for Batman-related media. It's over the top and ridiculous and the timeline is strange, but it's so much fun to watch that none of that matters. It's black comedy at its finest, while also managing to pull off emotional scenes well. Through a combination of writing and casting, it made the Riddler memorable and terrifying. Having the TV version is probably enough for me right now, but Nygma is a great character, and I'm tired of seeing the Joker in all Batman media when there are so many Batman villains that I find more interesting.
Nygma has so much flair. He's very smart, which is both his strength and his weakness. He's Lex with even more flamboyance. He's fun to watch, and he hasn't been overused. He would be a wonderful villain to use to show off Bruce's detective skills.
5. Jonathan Crane (#Scarecrow)
Batman is a flawed, broken, traumatized character. I'd love to see a Batman movie take advantage of that by being a psychological drama. And what better villain to use for that than the one that's weaponized fear even more than Batman himself?
In my view, one of Bruce's most important traits is that he's a father. He doesn't have his entire family yet in the DCEU, but he has at least two sons, one of whom died violently and the other of whom he's estranged with. A movie centered around Bruce's love for his children and fear of harm befalling them would be different from all previous Batman movies and would fit in perfectly with the genre-defying movies we've gotten so far. It would be an interesting lead-in to movies about other members of the Batfamily, and those spinoffs would show off who the people Bruce is so afraid of truly are.
Bruce has not conquered his fear. He's just learned to use it. And his biggest fears? They aren't bad things happening to him. They're bad things happening to other people that he can't do anything to stop. That's why he was so fixated on killing Clark in Batman v Superman. A movie completely revolving around all of these fears would be both terrifying and heartbreaking to watch.
6. Victor Fries (#MrFreeze)
Bruce is a hugely compassionate character. We saw that repeatedly in the DCEU, from his comforting a little girl that had just lost her mother to tracking down Diana's photograph. Batman: The Animated Series did a great job with giving villains depth and letting Bruce empathize with them. It established Victor Fries as the tragic villain he's been ever since then, and I'd love to see that in the DCEU.
I'd like to see more of Bruce's compassion a solo movie. Mr. Freeze would be the best villain to demonstrate that trait because, while he's a villain that's done terrible things and should be in prison, he's also easy to sympathize with: He wants his wife back, and his love for her was the motivation for his crimes. The villains that Batman has interacted with so far haven't been hugely sympathetic. Lex — however nuanced and complex — certainly wasn't. Deadshot and Harley have some redeeming qualities, but they aren't as tragic as Mr. Freeze.
The fandoms likes to paint Harley Quinn as a victim (and yes, the Joker is abusive and Harley needs treatment for mental illness, but that's an explanation, not a valid excuse. Her moments of conscience don't change the fact she's an unrepentant killer.). DCEU Harley was an accomplice to Jason's murder. Bruce doesn't owe her either his sympathy or forgiveness. Mr. Freeze, though? He's also a villain, one that Bruce will fight against to protect the innocent, but his crimes were born of desperation, not malice. He's not a remorseless killer. Bruce would find it easier to sympathize with him, because it's not personal. He can understand anger and the desperation to protect a loved one.
I'm excited to see #Nightwing as I discussed in this post, and once I get past my apprehension about the way Barbara will be handled, I'm excited to see #Batgirl, too. I'm certainly excited to see more Batman. But Gotham is more than just Batman and his children, and I'm incredibly ready to see the world expanding with new characters, each of which could provide more insight into Bruce as well as being fantastic characters in their own right.
Which characters from Gotham would you most like to see join the DCEU? Let us know in the comments below!
Who wore the Dark Knight's cape best? Check out every cinematic Batman at once in the following vid.