10 Batman villains to forget about

There’s no shortage of iconic DC superheroes, but Batman’s notoriety has endured for more than 80 years and he remains one of the biggest names in the medium. There is a certain simplicity to Batman’s backstory and abilities that have made him a character that has received numerous interpretations over the years.


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DC’s Dark Knight also has one of the most creative rogue galleries in comics, many as famous as Gotham’s greatest protector. Villains like the Joker and Catwoman have been the focus of their own films, but there are hordes of lesser-notable DC Comics menaces that embarrass malevolence and should be forgotten.

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10/10 Penny Plunderer’s crimes don’t think big

First Appearance: World’s Finest Comics #30 (1947) by Bill Finger, Bob Kane & Ray Burnley

The Penny Plunderer is trying to steal a giant penny

Comic series take time to get a foothold and figure out what types of villains work best for their heroes and audiences. Joe “Penny Plunderer” Coyne is a cranky Batman antagonist who shows up World’s #30 Best Comics and unlikely to find its way into Matt Reeves’ next Batman film.

Penny Plunderer stays true to his name, and he’s a villain interested only in stealing pennies, a crime that rarely even registers on Batman’s radar. Perhaps a modern update can at least upgrade him to Quarter Catcher.

9/10 Doodlebug’s deadly art finds no audience

First Appearance: Arkham Asylum: Living Hell #1 (2003) by Dan Slott, Ryan Sook & Leigh Loughridge

Batman's Doodlebug threatens a victim

Daedalus Boch, also known as Doodlebug, is more of a meandering nuisance than a real threat. Boch is gifted, or perhaps cursed, with a connection to arcane arts, which become his muse and fill his head with prophetic visions.

Doodlebug is compelled to bring these prophecies to life on any canvas he can find, even if it’s a person. It feels like it was this gritty human screen concept that led to Doodlebug’s creation. It’s not enough, however, and Boch doesn’t have enough character to achieve all of this.

8/10 Amygdala’s lack of brain matter makes him a macho menace

First Appearance: Batman: Shadow Of The Bat #3 (1992) directed by Alan Grant, Norm Breyfogle & Adrienne Roy

Batman's amygdala is raging

Amygdala is a dangerous Batman villain whose name indicates that he lacks this emotional part of his brain. Accordingly, the amygdala can feel severe pain and is prone to aggressive and strong outbursts. It’s an odd idea that doesn’t have many places to go.

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Amygdala has returned in small roles over the years, whether as a member of the Secret Society of Super Villains or as a friend of Nightwing, but he never achieved a lasting legacy. His condition and powers are better represented by more memorable villains.

7/10 Paul Dekker’s Crazy Quilt has a dangerous rage that transcends his style

First Appearance: Blackhawk #180 (1963) by Dick Dillin & Chuck Cuidera

Batman's Paul Dekker Crazy Quilt commands respect

Crazy Quilt’s Paul Dekker is actually quite a tragic story. A blinded criminal volunteers for an experimental technology that restores his sight but expresses the world through vivid colors that slowly unravel Dekker’s mind. Dekker has a frightening rage that almost takes Jason Todd’s life, leaving fans who remember Crazy Quilt infuriated at the character.

A female version of Crazy Quilt has recently appeared and uses the same mind control technology as its predecessor. Crazy Quilt II isn’t a huge improvement, but it’s a little more memorable and has also managed to help the Secret Society of Super Villains, but also the Suicide Squad.

6/10 Eraser removes evidence from crime scenes for a bounty cut

First Appearance: Batman #188 (1966) by John Broome, Sheldon Moldoff & Joe Giella

The Eraser attacks Batman and Robin

The Eraser doesn’t have a long history of terrorizing Gotham and his signature looks Batman #188 is widely regarded as one of the superhero’s worst episodes. The Eraser feels more like some sort of government tax write-off than a villain in its own right.

Disguised as a large pencil, the Eraser promises to erase all clues at a crime scene for a 20% reduction in his loot. Funnily enough, the Eraser’s real name, Lenny Fiasco, is way cooler than his villainous alter ego. Fiasco’s evil intentions stem from Bruce Wayne getting in the way of his college romance.

5/10 Bookworm uses classic literature to inspire his evil

First Appearance: Batman TV Series (1966)

The bookworm boasts about his knowledge of Batman

Some of Batman’s worst villains get at least points for originality, but the bookworm preaches the opposite ideal. He is a failed novelist who decides to turn to a life of crime, where his crimes are inspired by famous works of literature rather than coming up with ideas of his own. It’s the sort of motif that feels more appropriate for a clunky 2000s serial killer movie.

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The bookworm has made its way into several Batman comics, but its origins actually lie in Adam West’s 1960s live-action TV show. It should perhaps come as no surprise that the character is more combative than criminal.

4/10 The whole identity of the watch is based on a shoddy idea

First Appearance: Detective Comics #265 (1959) by Bill Finger, Sheldon Moldoff & Charles Paris

Batman's The Clock brags about his plans

“Slugsy” Kyle actually serves the distinction of being the first criminal Batman catches and sends to prison. Kyle doesn’t turn a new leaf during his incarceration, instead developing an obsession with watches as a tongue-in-cheek revenge on Batman for making him “do time”.

Kyle becomes The Clock, who decides to bomb a clock dedicated to Batman and steal clock screws, all of which are low-level villains. Even if the watch somehow became a formidable foe in Batman’s rogue’s gallery, he would still pale in comparison to the watch king. The Caped Crusader really doesn’t need two clock-based villains.

3/10 Doctor Double X proves that two heads aren’t always better than one

First Appearance: Detective Comics #261 (1958) by Dave Wood, Sheldon Moldoff & Charles Paris

Doctor Double X robs a bank with himself in front of Batman and Robin

Doctor Simon Ecks develops a principle that allows him to separate his aura into a separate entity imbued with superpowers. Ecks creates this duplicate, Doctor Double X, and the two work together to commit crimes.

That could be powerful technology in the wrong hands, but Ecks and his double keep blowing their chances and losing track of each other in the process. Audiences shouldn’t expect Doctor Double X to appear any time soon, but the supervillain has also accepted his own mediocrity and being viewed as a bygone.

2/10 Colonel Blimp plays like a proud parody

First Appearance: Batman #352 (1982) directed by Paul Kupperberg, Gerry Conway, Don Newton, John Calnan & Carl Gafford

Colonel Blimp attacks Batman in the air

Colonel Blimp is an outlier on the Batman timeline that acts as an inside joke for die-hard fans. Horatio Blimp is a wildly cartoonish character who operates with delusions of selfish grandeur and an impractical fleet of airships as his primary means of attack.

Colonel Blimp never gets very far in his efforts against Batman, and his performances mostly poke fun at his stormy bravery. The whole character is meant to be a heightened update to Carl Kruger and the Scarlet Horde Detective Comics #33.

1/10 The calculator’s outdated ideas and clothing make him a laughing stock

First Appearance: Detective Comics #463 (1976) by Bob Rosakis, Mike Grell & Terry Austin

Batman's calculator villain shows up for trouble

Calculator is an obscure Batman villain who has built his entire routine around a legal loophole where he can’t be caught twice by the same superhero. He’s been knocked out by Batman, but also by other DC do-gooders like Green Arrow, Black Canary, and Hawkman.

Calculator doesn’t have any special powers to speak of, but his calculator costume definitely makes a statement. Calculator managed to open a new leaf Postcrisis as one of the biggest informants for Gotham’s criminal underworld, but most importantly, he’s also ditched the kitschy costume.

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