At Moviepilot we've been endlessly and eagerly discussing the impending finale of the Arkham Rocksteady trilogy with Batman: Arkham Knight. We've broken down trailers, digested plot details and salivated over the sheer awesomeness of the new batsuit, amongst...other...things. But there is one major detail that we haven't managed to get our collective head around yet - who the hell is the Arkham Knight?!
Who is the Arkham Knight?
Arkham Knight is a completely new character created especially for the game by a collaboration between Rocksteady, DC Comic's Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns, and DC co-publisher and comic artist Jim Lee.
He is an overpowered, weapon wielding badass with a metallic "A" branded on his chest, which must allude to time spent incarcerated in Arkham Asylum/City. So we know that much, but who could it be that lingers behind the mecha mask?
Who holds the rights to, possibly, being the greatest foe pixelated Batman has ever faced? Well, here are five of the craziest theories that have been bouncing around in me old noggin'. WARNING: there will be Arkham City spoilers...
"Surely not, he's dead," I hear you cry, and yes, indeed he did die at the end of Arkham City, but do you really think that could possibly be the end of Batman's oldest and most iconic arch-nemesis?
The surprise reemergence of Joker as Arkham Knight could prove a boon for the ending of Rocksteady's epic Bat-opera. What if he was pumped full with venom in a bid to finally match the Bat's superior combination of smarts and strength, and spent the year in between the events of Arkham City and Knight working on his sub-Bat-standard combat skills? That could be an epilogue I would dig playing!
Formally known as Dr. Thomas Elliot, a child of wealth like Wayne, but unlike him he hated his family and sought to murder them by cutting the brakes of his parents' car, killing his abusive father and seriously injuring his passive mother. That's pretty messed up.
In the Arkham City side mission, Identity Thief, we learn that Elliot has been secretly harboring a grudge against his childhood friend Wayne and intends on ruining his life by, literally, becoming Wayne's doppelganger and causing bloody mischief. He murders and removes the faces of people that share a resemblance with Wayne, and then surgically alters his appearance with the grafts. He's fairly meticulous, Elliot!
So, with this drive to destroy Bruce Wayne and his alter ego and, seemingly, sharing quite the peak physique, you'd put money on him being the Arkham Knight, wouldn't you?
Recruited as the second Robin after Dick Grayson took up the mantle of Nightwing, Todd, a reckless and arrogant youth, was an able sidekick to the Dark Knight, but at times suffered from great spells of hubris, which would eventually lead to his downfall. Killed by Joker and later resurrected via intervention from Ra's Al Ghul and his Lazarus Pit, Todd naturally swore revenge upon Joker and vowed to do what Batman couldn't - wipe all the scum from the streets of Gotham with bloody vengeance.
Jason Todd is yet to make an appearance in the Arkham games, but has been referenced on occasion by Joker, most tantalizingly in the Arkham City DLC - Joker's Carnival where Joker mistakes Tim Drake's Robin for Todd's. Upon Drake's arrival, Joker remarks "didn't I kill you already?," possibly referencing the death of Jason Todd. It's a tricky one, especially considering Todd's portrayal in the incoming Arkham Knight Red Hood DLC.
“I bring a message. Dark days are coming, Batman. The prophecy is coming true. You are the warrior who will close the gates of hell. You are the one who will save this day and in doing so events will occur that you cannot stop. From the ashes of Arkham, the fires will rage and Gotham will burn. And you, you will burn too.”
Creepy words from The Dark Knight's creepy rooftop stalker, Azrael. The cop- criminal-supernatural vigilante has quite a similar build to our titular hero and even took up the cowl when Bane broke Batman's back in the Knightfall comic arc. But his appearance in Arkham City wasn't one of villainous posturing, he was there to bring a message of...uh...positivity, or was he alluding to his possible evil doings in Arkham Knight? And with the massing of villains and the return of Scarecrow, it seems as if dark days are indeed on the horizon for Gotham, but, remember, the night is darkest before dawn.
Okay, maybe I'm pushing the boat out a bit here but if Jason Todd was reanimated via the Lazarus Pit, why couldn't old Amadeus be pulled back from the ether?
After euthanizing his mother and being driven to insanity by the rape and murder of his wife and daughter, a trip to the Pit, an insurmountable desire for justice, and the riches of his family could all come in handy when planning on taking on the Bat and the plethora of bad guys that will be springing up all over poor Gotham.
That's even if Arkham Knight wants to take on the bad guys! And think of the irony if Amadeus Arkham does turn out to be the big bad. The Asylum stands on the grounds of his family's former estate and he ended up dying a prisoner of said Asylum. It truly is a tale you can't make up. Actually, wait...
What do you think?
I am very excited to finally learn the true identity of the Arkham Knight, as I can imagine you are! You never know, Arkham Knight could be a disgruntled Alfred, tired of Bruce and the varying cast of the Arkhamverse's misfits running around tearing up the city. Rocksteady, I await your Batman swansong patiently. But patience comes with a price - my nails as I chew and chew the days away.