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Did The Batman Just Set Up Two Villains For A Sequel?

Jeffrey Wright and suited-up Robert Pattinson in The Batman
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS for The Batman are ahead!

After fighting crime in Gotham City for two years, Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne faced an unorthodox threat in the form of Paul Dano’s Edward Nashton, a.k.a. The Riddler. After killing elite Gotham City citizens tied to corruption on his own, Riddler also flooded Gotham and tasked his followers with killing mayor-elect Bella Reál, although the assassination was thwarted. Batman also faced some trouble on the side from Colin Farrell’s Oswald Cobblepot, a.k.a. The Penguin, Carmine Falcone’s lieutenant who is gearing up to lead his own HBO Max series.

With The Riddler having made friends with The Joker (who could have had more screen time) in Arkham State Hospital, and The Penguin now poised to take over the late Falcone’s criminal empire, this version of Batman already has enough trouble to deal with in the future in a possible sequel to The Batman, which would arrive in less than five years. But on top of them,The Batman might have also set up two other villains for Bruce Wayne to collide with down the line. Time will tell if Matt Reeves decides to use them, but the pieces are now in place for them to potentially appear.

Two-Face flipping coin DC Comics artwork

(Image credit: DC Comics)

Two-Face

Back in 2019, it was rumored that Two-Face would be one of the villains appearing in The Batman. Obviously that didn’t come to pass, but the events of this DC movie have opened the door for Harvey Dent to enter Bruce Wayne’s life. Among the corrupt Gotham City citizens who Riddler targeted was Peter Sarsgaard’s Gil Colson, the Gotham City district attorney. It was revealed that Colson was on Carmine Falcone’s payroll, and he knew the identity of the informant who provided the information that allowed the Gotham City Police Department to bust up mobster Sal Maroni’s drug operation. However, when he refused to divulge to Riddler who this person was (ironically, it was Falcone), Colson lost his head… literally.

So now Gotham City needs a new district attorney, and in keeping with classic Batman lore, that’s where Harvey Dent can come into the picture. Unlike his predecessor, Harvey is traditionally depicted as being a true justice crusader during his law career, and in stories like Batman: The Long Halloween and The Dark Knight, he teams up with Batman and James Gordon to bring down organized crime in Gotham City. However, upon having half his face scarred with acid, Harvey went insane, christened himself Two-Face and started making all important decisions with a scarred two-headed coin. Oh, and guess who’s usually the person who throws the acid in Harvey’s face? One Sal Maroni.

Since it’s never explicitly said in The Batman that Sal Maroni is dead, then it wouldn’t be difficult to have The Batman 2 feature Sal Maroni’s trial. If the sequel picks up at least a couple years later, that’s enough time for Harvey Dent to have nicely settled in as Gotham’s district attorney and perhaps even have built a working relationship with Batman, like James Gordon with the vigilante at the start of The Batman. That all goes to hell once Maroni tosses the acid, although instead of Harvey spending the latter half of The Batman 2 as Two-Face like what happened in The Dark Knight, maybe the sequel could instead show his face being scarred towards the end of the story, and the Two-Face persona could fully emerge in The Batman 3.

Hush DC Comics artwork

(Image credit: DC Comics)

Hush

Rather than being murdered by a random mugger (we’re looking at you, Joe Chill), The Batman leans into Thomas and Martha Wayne’s deaths being an arranged event. We learned that a reporter named Edward Elliot uncovered details about Martha’s struggle with mental illness, with this version of her being a member of the Arkham family (like in Batman: Earth One) rather a Kane, and intended to blackmail Thomas, who was running for mayor. 

While Riddler and Carmine Falcone initially presented information that made it seem like Thomas Wayne requested that Elliot be permanently taken out of the picture to protect his mayoral campaign, Bruce Wayne later learned from that his father only wanted Falcone to scare the reporter into dropping the story. When that wasn’t enough, Elliot was killed. Alfred heard from Thomas that he didn't want Elliot's murder hanging over him, so he planned to tell the police what he knew, but he and Martha were soon gunned down. Falcone alleged that Sal Maroni was responsible for their deaths, while Alfred Pennyworth surmised Falcone was behind it.

It's left ambiguous who ordered Thomas and Martha Wayne be killed, though Carmine Falcone feels like the safe bet. Either way, there's no question Thomas made a mistake trusting Carmine Falcone. At least Bruce knows that his father didn’t order Edward Elliot’s murder and was, for the most part, a morally upstanding man. However, as far as the public is concerned working off of Riddler’s info drop that didn’t present the whole picture, Thomas and Martha’s reputation is in shambles, and among those people who are now leery towards the Wayne legacy could be someone related to Mr. Elliot. I’m thinking specifically of Thomas Elliot, a.k.a. Hush, who’s been part of Batman’s rogues gallery for nearly two decades and deserves to shine in a cinematic setting after a younger version of him appeared in Gotham and the full-blown supervillain version caused trouble in Batwoman.

For those of you who think I’m reaching with this Hush speculation, there’s a moment in The Batman where during the sequence showing Thomas Wayne’s history with Edward Elliot, the word “Hush” is literally shown on screen; Matt Reeves knew exactly what he was doing. It would be easy enough to introduce Thomas Elliot as Edward’s son in The Batman 2, who’s out for revenge now that he’s learned the truth about what happened to his father… or at least what he thinks is the truth. Just like what Riddler did, Thomas would hold Bruce responsible for the “sins of the father.”

Admittedly, this would be a significantly different interpretation of Thomas Elliot, who, in the comics, grew up in a wealthy family like Bruce Wayne, but despised his parents and killed them both at separate times. Thomas became Hush when he learned Bruce Wayne was Batman, and his obsession with his former friend became so unhealthy that he got plastic surgery to make himself look like Bruce. I doubt The Batman version of Thomas would go that far, but he certainly has enough motivation to go after Bruce and make him pay for what he thinks Thomas did. Oh, and yes, Matt Reeves would need to find a way to make the face bandages work.

Warner Bros. hasn’t officially announced The Batman 2 is happening yet, but it’s only a matter of time. Once that happens, we’ll pass along updates on the sequel’s progress, including whether it features Two-Face and/or Hush. Until then, there are other upcoming DC movies to look forward to later this year and beyond.

Adam Holmes
Adam Holmes

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.