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Batman’s Greek God Form The Power of Two Infamous Villains

Batman instills fear into his enemies, but it also became a true power and granted him a new form that rivals two of his classic villains. Possessing three of Batman’s major villains is not enough for Ares’ evil trio of children. Wonder Woman #164 begins the storyline “Gods of Gotham,” which reveals the possession of Poison Ivy, Scarecrow, and the Joker. However, the god of fear has much bigger fish to fry.

Deimos, and Eris have big plans to take over Gotham. These Greek Gods know how to sow discord, induce fear, and spread terror. Even though Wonder Woman has a deal with Ares around this time, it does not apply to his children. Phobos, Deimos, and Eris may have taken over Scarecrow, Joker, and Poison Ivy, respectively, but Scarecrow is definitely a weak link. His powers may let him spread fear, yet amplifying his powers still doesn’t beat the power that the god can get off of another host whose nighttime activities induce even more fear. The creative team of the storyline “Gods of Gotham” from 2001 includes Phil Jimenez, J. M. DeMatteis, Andy Lanning, Pam Rambo, Cam Smith, Jamison, and Comicraft. This four-part storyline, beginning in Wonder Woman #164 and ending in Wonder Woman #167, brings the titular heroine’s mythic enemies to Gotham City as she teams up with Batman. Unfortunately, during this team-up, the Dark Knight finds himself possessed by Phobos, the god of fear and panic, who knows exactly how to take advantage of him.

Batman thrives on fear. Even though he fights against it whenever he fights Scarecrow, he still utilizes it against his enemies regularly. It is one of the core reasons he chose his alternate identity. Yet his possession by Phobos doesn’t just allow him access to Scarecrow’s typical powerset on a higher level. It also gives him an appearance more similar to a bat. Effectively, the combination of Batman and Phobos creates an amalgamation of Scarecrow and Man-Bat. Both villains are rather terrifying on their own, but they are certainly no match for Batman’s usurpation of them both. This appearance emphasizes Batman’s cowl in a more organic way, while also playing upon mixed elements like fangs and a Greek-styled helmet. Batman direct access to powers of fear is like giving children free money to spend in a candy store. He falls prey to his own fears, while also being able to exert fear onto others around him. Most of the hero’s existence is based around his lifelong and newly-acquired fears. While he is able to eventually be freed from Phobos’ possession, Batman proves that, given the opportunity, he could easily be a worse villain than Man-Bat and Scarecrow combined. He is dubbed the “Ultimate God of Fear” and for good reason. He knows how to employ fear for good to save Gotham, but he is also ruled by fear. This leaves him vulnerable to an internal struggle with fear that is now manifested by Phobos. Were he ever to truly fall to darkness and submit to fear instead of using it as a tool against evil, Batman would leave no room for Scarecrow or Man-Bat to operate within Gotham.