WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?
PAGE 1, FRAME 1 (Large top panel)
EXTERIOR, MIDWAY OF GOTHAM'S KANE KARNIVAL - Evening
The scene is similar to Coney Island, with Ferris wheels, roller coasters and such in the distance. The midway that we can see has shooting galleries and concessions stretching off into the distance.
We can also see, prominently, an attraction that could best be described as a funhouse of horrors. It is a garish monstrosity whose front is covered with cartoonish monsters, ugly helium balloons, multi-colored lights, mockup word balloons of screams, spiders, snakes and (a portent of things to come) a corner turret in shape of a clown's head. The entrance has a marquee reading "Wendell Wacky's Wild World!" The entrance is a pier surrounded on both sides by water, extending into the darkened entrance. The pier is blocked by a sawhorse with a "Closed for Repair" sign. A shadowy, bulky figure of a henchman can be seen emerging from the entrance; he's carrying a toolbox.
The midway is packed with people of all kinds. A group of nuns can be seen trying to herd twenty uniformed children who are obviously wanting to run in different directions. Some young people are openly cuddling. At one of the baseball-pitching games, we can see a tall, gawky, redheaded man. His brunette companion is shorter but stunningly beautiful; she clutches several very large stuffed animals. Her expression tells us that she probably can't carry any more.
In the foreground is reporter MELINDA POTTER, a plastic surgery-featured blonde with a microphone and a camera lens aimed at this whole scene.
MELINDA: I'm Melinda Potter for WGM News. The crowds are even more packed than usual here at Kane Karnival due to the "Ledby Hand and Tinker" concert later tonight. Over twenty thousand music fans have gathered on the fairgrounds to catch the singing duo's first performance in seven years
NUN: Now, now, get back here. Don't put that in your mouth, Michelle. Taylor, don't run off.
BRUNETTE: Oh, come on, I don't even know where I'm going to put these!
The thuggish henchman walks up to a van marked Breyfogles Repair. A familiar chalk-skinned figure sits at the wheel, his face hidden by sunglasses and a rather oversized Panama hat.
HENCHMAN #1: All finished, mistuh Jokah.
JOKER: You took your own sweet time. Have trouble reading the blueprints? Have trouble reading in general?
HENCHMAN #1: Oh, uh. I got dee-layed wit trap number five. Ummm how fast do the poison take effect?
Joker gets out of the van and begins dressing in his familiar purple costume. The henchman is looking at his humongous fore-arms.
HENCHMAN #1: Cuz I didnt have a knife to suck da poison out!
JOKER: Morty, the snake obviously never punctured your skin, or youd be dead by now. What would be the purpose of using a slow-acting poison on Bat-boob?
The Joker, now fully attired, gestures towards the TV crew, who can be seen in the extreme foreground. He brandishes a walkie-talkie in his left hand.
JOKER: Ah, I should have gone into show business. I can hear a camera a mile away. Shall we signal the others, Mortone? My public awaits!
Melinda is interviewing a California surfer-dude. Both his T-shirt and baseball cap bear the Ledby Hand and Tinker logo.
SURFER: These dudes are, like, so ret-ro! Ledby Hand and Tinker totally kick butt. My girlfriend and I saw this concert in Gotham and were just like, Lets go! They are like Simon and Garfunkle reborn, dude!
MELINDA: Simon and Garfunkle arent dead.
The Jokers gloved hand and cane enter the frame. The cane touches the surfer dude and electrocutes him. Melinda screams.
JOKER (off): If I have to hear Bridge Over Troubled Waters one more time, they will be.
Joker enters. Water squirts from his boutonniere on Melindas face. Her hands fly towards her face and the Joker ably swipes her falling microphone.
JOKER: Ill take over, thank you!
MELINDA: Agh! My face! My face!!!
The cameras fully on the Joker. The roasted surfer dudes baseball-capped head pokes from the bottom. Joker regards Melinda (off).
JOKER: Oh, puh-leaze, its just lemon juice. If I did that acid boutonniere thing every time it would become old hat. And speaking of old hat
Joker flips his old hat away and doffs the dead surfers baseball cap. The brim is singed and still smoking.
JOKER: This should put me in touch with the youth of today. Ah yes, already I have the urge to go moshing.
Joker smiles a nice wide grin at the camera and holds up his walkie talkie.
JOKER: Hello, all you dozens of viewers out there! Ill bet when you tuned into the WB tonight you werent expecting a good comedy!
JOKER: (towards walkie talkie) Now
A wide shot of the midway as dozens of henchmen appear firing automatic weapons into the air. They appear from between the stands and above rooftops. A couple were even posing as carnies. The crowds of people panic and scream. The Joker throws his arms wide in a grand gesture.
SFX (many): BRRRRRRAP!
JOKER: Well be dealing out thousands of happy smiles tonight the EASY way or the HARD way!
The crowd is subdued; everyone is on their knees. As far as the eye can see, dozens of henchmen have guns trained on the crowd of thousands of people. Joker is slowly walking across the crowd, gesturing almost like a reporter.
JOKER: Now, the easy way Batman shows up within the hour. See, its our anniversary and all these years Ive been forgetting to celebrate! So I have cooked up the loveliest present for him.
Close-up of Joker, as he gives a dead-serious glare at the camera and shows a device with a bright purple button in his right hand.
JOKER: As for the hard way well, if Batman doesnt show his pointy rubber ears before Pinky and the Brains Fourth of July Special comes on .Ive planted gas canisters all over the park and the trigger is right here.
Close-up of Joker, now giving a sheepish smile.
JOKER: You probably already guessed that. As I said, my materials getting rather old.
JOKER: What can I say? Ive been reading about overpopulation and want to do my part!
Close-up of Joker. Very deadpan.
JOKER: So lets hope Batsys appointment book isnt full!
Pendleton Home for the Aged is the kind of non-private facility you dont want your grandmother to end up in. One large, gothic room, lit by the sunset through one large, stained glass window. There are about 40 metal beds, each with an elderly person sleeping. There are no privacy partitions or any other sign that these people are respected, loved or treated well.
Kadaver stands at the far end of the aisle, a serene but gleeful look on his face. Kadaver, the man in love with death and all aspects of dying, is not insane, just happy. Behind him are about eight interns and nurses, sitting unconscious on the floor in a circle, propped up with their backs to each other. Batman is at the front of the aisle, his back to the reader.
KADAVER: Im surprised to see you here, Batman, considering what a trifling affair this is. Surely 40 decrepit elderly people arent worth your time.
BATMAN: Im surprised to see you here, Kadaver, considering you were shot dead.
KADAVER: Oh, dare I repeat that delightful Monty Python line? I shall! Im getting better.
BATMAN: Ill bet you have the Dead Parrot skit memorized, too. Now release these people from their death trance.
KADAVER: This is no death trance. This is beloved death! Ive given them all a genetically engineered virus developed by one of Americas less honorable opponents.
BATMAN: To test it?
KADAVER: Hundreds of soldiers have already done that. I mean to cure it.
BATMAN: I thought your field of interest was death.
Kadaver calmly sits on the edge of the nearest bed, caressing the foot of its sleeping occupant.
KADAVER: I want to know more about death! Look at them. They lie at the point of the reapers sceptre. And with the cure Ive developed, theyll come back with news of the twilight realm.
Batmans balled fist fills the foreground. Kadaver nonchalantly ignores his threat. Seated at the foot of the bed, he pulls a list from his cloak.
BATMAN: If youve got a cure, administer it now!
KADAVER: Lets skip the theatrics, my dear fellow. Theres no way youll beat me up when Ive the key to reviving these people. And while I know what the cure is, I cant make any of it on my own. You see the ingredients are owned by rival labs. Even with my black market connections, I was only able to steal the specs for my computer simulations. It may not even work. We wont know until you steal the ingredients.
CU of Batmans furious face, with a few beds in the background.
BATMAN: I will do no such thing!
KADAVER (off): Again with the false pretenses! Of course you will. I dont really care if they die. Death is a warm lover and many of these brittle people would welcome the release. But if you want to see them alive, this is the only way.
Kadaver hands Batman the list and a small transceiver.
KADAVER: Get moving. Their nervous systems fail in about four hours and theres really no retrieving them beyond that point. One more thing. To prevent your plotting against me, you will wear this transceiver at all times.
Batman is climbing into the Batmobile. The message board has a blinking light.
SFX: Breep Breep
Batmans hands race across the keyboard. The following
words are displayed onscreen:
The Joker and his men are standing around. Joker looks at his watch. Some of the crowd (none of their arms are up anymore) are rubbing their legs. One henchman is lifting one leg, obviously getting tired.
The Batmobile races down the city street.
BATMAN: Yes, commissioner?
GORDON (on radio): Where have you been? The Jokers getting impatient!
BATMAN: Joker?!! What does he want?
GORDON (on radio): You dont know?! Hes holding thousands of people hostage at Kane Karnival! Youve only eighteen minutes to get here or hes going to kill them all!
Batman grimly contemplates the situation.
GORDON (on radio): Batman?
Batman drives the Batmobile. His face is hardened, steeling himself.
BATMAN: Youre the police. Its a hostage situation. Deal with it.
GORDON (on radio): Youre not serious!
BATMAN: Im on a mission only I can perform. You have hundreds of cops at your disposal. Deal with Joker as you would any terrorist.
Gordon stands hunched by his car, gripping his radio in his hand. Dozens of police cars surround the entrance. Officers with rifles kneal behind their cars. The Jokers henchmen can be seen on rooftops in the distance.
GORDON: But the Joker specifically asked for you.
BATMAN (on radio): Since when do we give terrorists what they want?
GORDON: Thousands could die!
BATMAN (on radio): And if I dont do this, 40 people will die.
The same scene.
BATMAN (on radio): Im sending contact information to your terminal now. Perhaps you can reach Superman, Flash, Nightshade someone who can evacuate hundreds of people fast. Beyond that, I cant help you.
BATMAN (on radio): Look at the bright side, Jim. Get one sharpshooter in position and you can justifiably kill the Joker.
Joker stretches his arms wide, gazing at nothing in particular. Some henchmen are looking at their watches. Some people in the crowd are looking at their watches. One of the henchman is scratching his buttocks with the barrel of his machine gun. The cameraman leans out from behind his camera to ask a question.
CAMERAMAN: Uh do you want us to be shooting this?
JOKER: With your prime time line-up? Why not?
Same view. One of the hostages is starting to get up. A henchman threatens him.
HENCHMAN #2: You there! Dont move!
HOSTAGE #1: Ive gotta go to the bathroom!
Several hostages are chiming in. Joker hangs his head in his hand. Henchman #1 (Morty) leans close to the Joker and whispers an aside.
HOSTAGE #2: I have to go to the bathroom.
HENCHMAN #1 (whispers): Boss, I didnt want to say anything earlier, but I really have to
The Joker explodes with rage at the crowd and the camera. The crowd shrinks back to its knees.
JOKER: Shut up, all of you! The lack of toilet facilities will be a moot point in just three minutes!
JOKER: You hear that, Batman? 180 seconds until these people are waiting in the ticket line for St. Peter! And just to prove it, Ill start executing some of them now!
Gordon, Bullock and Montoya are gathered around a small TV setup on a police car seat. Joker is on the TV; a news overlay reads Joker at Karnival - LIVE. Gordon grabs his radio. Bullock and Montoya react to Jokers announcement.
GORDON: You hear that? Get in place! Everyone get your masks on! Kamigowa, do your snipers have a clean shot at the Joker? Then get your team closer, were going to have to charge in there
We see four hands, two belonging to a man, two to a woman. Shes clasping his left hand tightly. His right hand holds his gold wedding band, which he places in her other hand. She wears a diamond wedding ring on her left hand.
MANS VOICE (off): Ive got to do something now.
WOMANS VOICE (off): I know.
MANS VOICE (off): I love you.
WOMANS VOICE (off): I know.
The Joker holds a small gift-wrapped purple and green package. He is standing by the Catholic schoolchildren, yanking on the end of the ribbon, obviously preparing to lob it into the crowd.
JOKER: Well, sisters, Im glad youve prepared these children for the afterlife
MANS VOICE (off): STOP!!!
A red-headed man steps forth from the crowd. He is built like Batman, his face even bears a slight resemblence to the structure of Bruce Waynes. He wears shorts and a "muscle shirt" that shows his midriff. He doesnt appear to have any chest or arm hair. He steps forward with confidence and a very imposing manner.
JOKER: Who are you?
REDHEAD: Im Batman.
Gordon stops and stares at the TV.
GORDON: Waitaminnit! All units, hold your positions. Do not move! Do you hear me? Dont move!
Joker and the Redhead face each other.
REDHEAD: I was investigating undercover when you attacked. My costumes in the car. I was hoping the cops would intervene before the hour was up.
JOKER: Anyone could claim that.
REDHEAD: True. So why dont you spring this surprise youre talking about. If I survive, youll know Im really Batman.
JOKER: Batmans not supposed to survive!
REDHEAD: I always do.
Gordon is on his radio while watching the scene play out on TV.
JOKER (on TV): Hmmm, I dont know.
GORDON: He sounds just like you!
BATMAN (on radio): I see him on my TV. I dont know him.
GORDON: So hes not one of those other Batmen?
We can see KordChem in the background. Batman is exiting the Batmobile.
BATMAN: No. Whoever he is, hes bought you some time. Make use of it.
KADAVER (from transceiver on belt): What a busy night youre having. Quite right to make the police do their jobs for once. Now get on with your shopping spree!
BATMAN: Dont push it, Kadaver! Im gambling thousands of lives on the whim of a slime like you.
Batman approaches the building.
BATMAN: Listen, Kadaver. I know these labs. The owners arent unreasonable. On a mission of mercy like this
KADAVER (on transceiver): Ah-ah-ah! I wont have you calling them. If even one says no, we wont have our serum and theyll be alerted to trespassers.
Redhead takes a step closer to Joker.
REDHEAD: You want proof that Im Batman? Fine!
On the TV, Redhead leans very close to Joker and whispers. Joker looks taken aback.
REDHEAD: (Illegible word balloon, connoting an inaudible message)
GORDON (off): What? Whatd he say? Montoya? Did any of you catch that?
Jokers face is terrified and hes taken a step back from Redhead. He brandishes the bomb trigger in his hand like its a gun, and indicates the entrance to the Wendell Wacky's Wild World ride with his other.
JOKER: All right, youre him. Now, go through my little funhouse. Well watch you from the security cameras. If you die, I let everyone go.
REDHEAD: And if I survive?
JOKER: Thats not really a concern.
Redhead passes Henchman #1 as he approaches the entrance. The henchman chortles and lowers his gun slightly.
REDHEAD: It should be.
HENCHMAN #1: Haw haw! I never figured Batmand be a carrot-top!
Redhead twists, pulls the gun away and rams it into the henchmans stomach.
REDHEAD: Its a disguise, moron!
Redhead holds the machine gun in his hands; hes turned back towards the Joker, but hes not aiming the gun. Eight henchman train their guns on him.
SFX (multiple): K-clack!
Redhead tosses the gun into the water at his side as he turns back towards the entrance.
REDHEAD: I dont use guns.
The Joker points a thumb towards Redhead. Redhead disappears into the shadowy entrance.
JOKER: Thats Batman all right!
Redhead is at the edge of the pier, pulling the gun out of the water. The pier stretches back to the entrance in the distance. It is not obvious how hes retrieved the gun. Water drips from the barrel. Hes looking to the entrance to make sure hes not seen.
REDHEAD: Hope water hasnt damaged this.
Batman is retrieving a beaker from a vault which hes obviously broken into. We can see a window tilting inwards in the background.
BATMAN (thought): Ted Kords old company. Ill have to see what I can do about making restitution for these break-ins. At least I didnt have to contend with any guards.
BATMAN: A thought occurs, Kadaver. Whats to stop you from just walking away with all the serum?
Kadaver drums his fingers on a sleeping mans skull.
KADAVER: Its not out of the realm of possibility, is it? However, given that I need to test it, I feel were both best served by waking these people, hmm?
Joker approaches his van. The side has opened up to reveal some electronics equipment, including several monitors. The largest monitor has static on it. Two henchmen are working the equipment.
JOKER: Shall we observe his progress?
HENCHMAN #3: Hes taken out camera number one with something, but we can track his progress on the infra-red sensor.
Redhead is weaving his way through the mirrors. He nervously looks back and forth, waiting for a trap, as he uses his fingers to prevent his running into anything. His reflection is distorted and stretched on dozens of mirrors. The machine gun is strapped to his neck and shoulders.
CAPTION: Hes at the mirror-maze.
REDHEAD (thought): Already spotted three trapdoors. Gotta keep on my toes.
A long drill darts out of mirror, almost skewering Redhead. He quite nimbly bends backwards to avoid it. It buzzes only inches from his face.
REDHEAD: Whoah!!! Oh-ho-ho, mama!
Redheads foot trips an almost invisible laserbeam. He stares up at the ceiling as Jokers voice emanates from a PA system.
JOKER (off): Ah-ha, youve reached the middle of the maze. I should tell you that Ive planted an industrial laser at the exit and its going to fire a laserbeam into the maze in just 30 seconds. Nothing like funhouse mirrors for refracting light, eh?
REDHEAD (to himself): It took me ten minutes just to stumble this far!
Redhead levels the machine gun at the far wall.
JOKER (off): Theres no way youll find that exit in time!
REDHEAD: One way.
Redhead strafes the machine gun in every direction. Glass flies everywhere. Huge portions of mirrored glass fall to the floor.
Redhead sees the exit. Separating him and it are row upon row of jagged glass jutting from the floor. The edges glint in the dim light. There is sharp glass everywhere!
REDHEAD: Oh, that was smart. Now I'll slice myself to ribbons.
The Joker waves his hands in frustration as the henchman works at the knobs of the equipment.
JOKER: Whats happening?! I want to see him die!!!
HENCHMAN: I cant tell with this infra-red stuff
Redhead is past all of the sharp glass (he doesn't appear cut) and running for cover as a large laser cannon fires at the remaining mirrored glass. Laser beams shoot everywhere!
CAPTION: ..it looks like he made it!
REDHEAD (thought): Looks like Im in the haunted part of the house. Now what?
Redhead is surrounded by floating Grim Reapers who swing their scythes in wide arcs.
SFX: Swoosh! Swoosh!
REDHEAD: Great! I needed a haircut.
Redhead leaps and ducks past the scythes, racing for a lit end of the forest.
REDHEAD (thought): There! The exit. Looks like its one of those funhouse spinning tunnels.
From the inside of the tunnel, we can see back into the forest. Redheads come to a complete halt. The tunnel is painted like a barbers pole, which is supposed to disorient people as they walk through but this tunnel is spinning like a centrifuge!
REDHEAD (thought): Whoah! If I touch those walls, Ill be more than just dizzy!
Batman is climbing across the ceiling of a different lab with suction cups. His cape is gone. Below him is a web of laser detection beams. Through a window we can see a sign, Stagg Industries R & D.
BATMAN: Now that Ive disabled the sound detectors, perhaps you could answer a question.
KADAVER (off): As Id love to tell a firing squad: "Shoot!"
BATMAN: What else do you have hanging over my head?
Batman is picking the lock on a cabinet on the far wall.
KADAVER (off): I dont follow.
BATMAN: Your getaway. What have you got planned to keep me from nabbing you when you have the serum?
KADAVER (off): Oh, thaaaaaat! Yes, well, you remember the nurses and interns piled on the floor?
Batman scoops up the vial he needs and tucks it into his belt.
KADAVER (off): Its the same ploy I used in faking the Penguins death. I drugged them into a death-like coma that can only be released with a secret phrase which Ill give you once Im safely away! Stop my escape and theyll stay vegetables!
Joker, frustrated, begins whacking Henchman #3 with his cane.
JOKER: Whats he doing? Why isnt Batman dead yet?
HENCHMAN #3: He keeps disabling the cameras!
The brunette woman clutches an oversized teddy bear. Her eyes are wide open but tears flow down her cheeks and shes biting her finger to keep from sobbing.
JOKER (off): By now Batman should be fried, shredded, sliced, diced and disintegrated!!!
Gordon is talking to Montoya.
MONTOYA: Everyone's in position. Are we going to wait for that "Batman" guy to come out?
GORDON: Renee that thing's rigged to kill one of the most brilliant athletes I've ever known. That brave man stands about as much chance of surviving as I would.
Batman is cracking open a vault.
BATMAN (thought): I hate this.
Redhead is past the spinning tunnel. The reapers are seen beyond it (so we know he's on the other side). There is an air grate (used for blowing women's skirts upwards). Green gas is shooting out of it. Redhead is racing past with his hands over his face.
REDHEAD (thought): I really hate this!
Batman grits his teeth as he drives.
BATMAN (thought): performing at a madman's beck and call
At the edges of the frame, we can see the trapdoor which has fallen open. Redhead hangs onto the edge of the trapdoor. Below are several dozen snakes.
REDHEAD (thought): listening to him taunting me, goading me the whole way
Batman is sidestepping a guard's drawn gun and cuffing him in the head.
BATMAN (thought): But what choice do I have?
BATMAN: I'm sorry.
Rear view, waist up: Redhead is running down a long, narrow hallway. The walls are moving together.
REDHEAD (thought): So many lives are counting on me.
The walls have just crashed together. Redhead lies on the floor panting.
SFX (booming): THOOM!
REDHEAD: Oh, man! I thought those walls were going to permanently flatten me.
Redhead rests his back against the wall formed by the crushed hallway, the machine gun in his arms.
REDHEAD (thought): I'm exhausted and there are probably a dozen more traps to survive. Think, man, think! What's your plan, anyway?
Redhead thunks his head against the wall and closes his eyes. His head is tilted upwards.
REDHEAD (thought): You can't just walk out that exit. Joker promised to let the people go if I die. He probably has something equally nasty if I live.
Redhead looks up and sees a small circular air vent in the ceiling. It's too small for the average human and looks to be about 20 feet high.
REDHEAD: Hey! An air vent and it can only be about 20 feet up!
Batman walks up to a small podium in front of a sliding metal door. He removes his right glove.
BATMAN (thought): At least I won't have to commit a crime at every destination on the list.
Close-up on the podium. Batman places his hand on the palm scanner podium. A small logo reads "WayneChem". In the background, the doors are parting.
Jokers beating the infra-red panel on the van. Henchman #3 is shrugging.
JOKER: Wheres he gone? I thought you had those sensors everywhere!
HENCHMAN #3: Maybe Batman got crushed in the tunnel. Dead smears generally dont show up on infra-red.
Seen from the direction of the funhouse rooftop. A huge shadow falls across the Joker and his men. Henchman #1 is looking in the direction the shadows coming from.
HENCHMAN #1 (MORTY): He dont appear too flattened.
Redhead is crouching atop the roof's edge like a gargoyle.
VOICE (OFF): Hey! Batman got out!
JOKER (OFF): Stop gawking and shoot him, dimbulb!
Long shot of previous panel - Redhead drops back behind the edge of the roof as bullets riddle the spot he was just in. A dozen henchmen are concentrating their fire on the roof, ignoring the crowd they'd been guarding. The Joker is in the middle of the street, leaping up and down and waving his arms in frustration. Most people in the crowd are now on their feet. The pretty brunette is edging closer to the Joker.
JOKER: You idiots! How can you miss him!?
The Joker raises his arms over his head for all to see. In one hand, he holds the bomb detonator with its shiny purple button. He extends his other index finger in an exaggerated point at the button. Behind him, the crowd panics and runs. (The crowd can be seen panicking and running behind all of the following Kane Karnival panels.)
JOKER (shouts): BATMAN! I told you Id let these people live only if you died!
The brunette hits the Joker from behind, knocking him in the back of the head with one hand and grabbing his detonator arm with the other. The detonator flies from his hand and bounces on the pier.
BRUNETTE: Some people want him alive.
The detonator bounces from the pier to the water and fizzles. We can see Joker and the brunette in the background. The Joker is alarmed. The brunette continues to hit him.
The Jokers turned to face the brunette, drawing a very deadly-looking pistol and aiming it between the brunettes eyes. She begins to back away.
BRUNETTE: Uh you wouldnt shoot a woman, would you?
JOKER: Unless my aim is off, yes.
BRUNETTE: OH, GOD!!
The Joker is staring at the barrel of his gun. Yes, a small flag with the word bang hangs from the end.
JOKER: Argh! I always make this mistake.
BRUNETTE: You really do need some new material.
An arm falls upon Jokers shoulder. Joker turns his head slightly.
REDHEAD (off): Excuse me? Did you just try to shoot my wife?
Redhead lands a mighty punch in the middle of Jokers face.
We can barely make out Redhead and Brunette. Their heads are at the bottom of the panel, turned away to look at the commotion in the background. Dozens of policemen and S.W.A.T. officers are storming in, apprehending the henchmen. Some of them are involved in gunplay but most of the henchmen are running away.
REDHEAD: Sorry I took so long getting down here. Those thugs had me pinned down.
REDHEAD: Looks like Gordon and his men can take care of the rest. Lets get out of here.
Brunette pulls Redhead close for a passionate kiss. We see them silhouetted by the cops and thugs in the background.
BRUNETTE: Dont scare me like that ever again.
REDHEAD: What about you? Taking on the Joker all by yourself.
BRUNETTE: Guess were two of a kind.
Kadaver sits at a tiny table where hes been amusing himself by playing a boardgame with one of the patients. The board game is Life by Milton Bradley. He turns to see Batman framed by the large double doors at one end of the room.
KADAVER: Good! Another half hour and I wouldnt have had time to prepare the serum.
BATMAN: The radio just announced that the police managed to subdue the Joker. Lucky for you.
Kadaver extends his hand for the vials. Batman holds them tightly in his fist.
KADAVER: Or youd have killed me.
KADAVER: Because Batman doesnt kill.
BATMAN: Because youd enjoy it too much.
Kadaver carries the vials to a table. Hes assembled a small array of beakers, hypodermic needles, pipettes and other lab equipment. Batman follows a safe distance behind.
KADAVER: Oh, true, I love death. The problem with death is that, unless youre Superman or Metamorpho, you experience it only once.
Kadaver mixes the formula.
KADAVER: How can I die only once? What if I overlook a more enjoyable method? That is why I undertook this endeavor. With the virus and the remedy, I can experience death again and again and live to tell about it!
Batman watches as Kadaver administers a shot to the nearest patient.
BATMAN: So youve realized how precious life is and decided to not appreciate it.
Close-up: The patients eyes open wide.
KADAVER (off): Oh, dont bother to preach. My course is set. See, my serum works!
Kadaver turns and bows with a grand sweep of his cloak.
KADAVER: Well, Ive left enough of the serum for everyone. 10 ml each. Im off! Ta!
BATMAN: Youre not going anywhere.
Batman blocks Kadavers exit.
KADAVER: I warned you. I will not awaken the staff if you stop me.
BATMAN: You couldnt. Theyre dead.
Kadaver backs away, afraid, drawing a hypo from his cloak.
KADAVER: No, no! I put them in a death-trance, really! I swear! See? I used this inducing agent.
Batman leaps at Kadaver, wrestling him for the hypodermic.
KADAVER: Stop! Ill never tell you the secret phrase unless you let me go.
BATMAN: I think you will.
Batman and Kadaver tussle on the floor. Batman presses the hypo into Kadavers neck.
BATMAN: What is the phrase? What?! Say it! Say it or spend the next half century in deathless sleep!
Batman presses the plunger. Kadaver screams.
KADAVER: Edgar Allen Poooooeeeeee!!!!!!!!
Kadaver is handcuffed to the floor. The interns and nurses are administering injections to the patients. Batmans silhouette (barely visible due to streetlights outside) can be seen watching from behind the stained glass window. Two cops are walking through the double doors to apprehend Kadaver.
Batman talks to Gordon on his radio.
BATMAN: Sorry I wasnt able to assist you, Commissioner. Is the Joker in custody?
GORDON (off): Yes.
BATMAN: Any casualties?
GORDON (off): No one was killed, thank God. Some people were injured during the stampede to get out.
BATMAN: Jim, I made the right decision tonight. Id make it again if I had to. But if its any consolation, I suspected youd have inside help.
GORDON (off): How?
BATMAN: Are you alone?
GORDON (off): Yes.
We see a close-up of Batmans face. Overlayed with that, we see headshots of the Metal Men in their human cover identities from decades ago.
BATMAN: Years ago, Ledby Hand and Tinker were cover identities for Lead and Tin of the Metal Men. As tonight was their comeback concert, I suspected the entire team would be there watching. My doppelganger was undoubtedly one of them. Did you talk to him?
The Batmobile races across a suspension bridge.
GORDON (off): He managed to slip away in the commotion. The TV crew didnt get much footage of the final confrontation, but witnesses claim a raven-haired woman also intervened. She seemed to know the man.
BATMAN: Makes sense. The Metal Men were very protective of their cover IDs.
GORDON (off): Oh, and I heard about your run-in with Kadaver. Im sure youll be happy to know that well be charging him with the laboratory break-ins. As he tells it, you were an unwilling accessory.
Batman presses a switch; Alfreds face appears on the dashboard viewscreen.
BATMAN: Yes, Alfred?
ALFRED (off): Sir, I have the TV footage of your double talking to Joker. Upon enhancing the image, I also made a disturbing discovery.
BATMAN: What is it?
ALFRED (off): You read lips as well as I do, sir. See for yourself!
We see again the shot of Redhead and Joker talking, only the image is zoomed in to only their faces. The digital word ZOOM appears at the bottom of the screen.
REDHEAD (onscreen): You want proof that Im Batman? Fine!
Redhead pulls to only inches away from Jokers face
CAPTION: I know you killed Robin, you twisted freak!
Batmans eyes widen with surprise.
BATMAN: He knows who I am!
Batman has a list on the big screen. On it is a list of names (unreadable). Batman sits in his chair with a cup of cocoa. Alfred stands nearby.
BATMAN: Well, its not one of the Metal Men. They dont know my identity.
ALFRED: Its a good thing you werent depending on them. Ledby Hand and Tinker were delayed by bad weather and never even arrived at Gotham Airport.
We see only the top of the list of names. There are
four labeled columns. These are the names we see:
BATMAN (off): For a secret identity, there sure are a lot of names to go through
Batman muses. Alfred points at the screen.
BATMAN: Close friends whom Ive told, a few girlfriends, The Outsiders, people who know Dicks identity, too many of my opponents
ALFRED: Im surprised the Joker doesnt know. He killed Robin, but a boy named Jason Todd was found in the debris. It doesnt take much to guess that his guardian was Batman.
BATMAN: The only time in my life I was ever grateful that he doesnt contemplate his past crimes.
Batman faces Alfred.
BATMAN: And that incident is whats so frustrating. Many people know who I am and who Jason was, but Superman is the only one outside my close circle who knows that the Joker was responsible for his death!
Alfred ticks his fingers as he thinks.
ALFRED: Lets narrow down your list. Eliminate the women, non-caucasians, villains and anyone were certain is outside of Gotham City.
BATMAN: Were looking for a man who could figure out my identity on his own, used detailed analysis to figure out how Jason died, has the fighting ability to survive a deathtrap I dont know, Alfred. I dont recognize his face. Maybe its someone totally new like Tim once was.
Alfred smiles ever so slightly.
ALFRED: I know who it is.
Batman turns fully towards Alfred, bewildered.
ALFRED: You do know him. Hes a great detective with red hair. He can alter his appearance. His rich, brunette wife is familiar with you because you dated once during her debutante days. And between the two of them, they figured out your identity years ago.
Batman rests his hand on his forehead, slightly embarrassed.
BATMAN: Of course! So much for the worlds greatest detective.
ALFRED: Please, sir, I had an unfair advantage. Ive seen your appointment book for the next week and knew they were in town.
Bruce Wayne is working on some papers at his desk. Sunlight is streaming in the windows. Lucius Fox is at the door.
LUCIUS: then the planning meeting for the new hospital and were to meet with the lawyers at 4:00. Actually, I can handle that. Do you want me to handle your 2:30? It looks like a simple sale of stock
BRUCE: No, Id like to do it myself. Theyre old friends.
LUCIUS: Ill show them in.
Bruce reads from his calendar.
BRUCE: 2:30 Meet to discuss sale of stocks in Omaha Carbonated Bottling Co. OCBC, a holding of Wayne Enterprises, the owners of 40,000 acres of Yucatan fruit trees
Bruce looks up and shakes the hand of the man whos just walked in. The arm is six feet long.
BRUCE: and the makers of Gingold carbonated fruit drink. Hello, Ralph.
Ralph Dibny, The World-Famous Elongated Man (Redhead) and Sue Dibny (Brunette) are standing in the doorway. Ralph is smiling his wide, cheesy smile. He wears a dark purple business suit and a lavender tie. His right arm extends across the room to Bruce (just barely seen in the foreground). His other arm is wrapped around Sues shoulder and then down across her waist. Sue looks radiant as ever in a beautiful summer dress. She holds a leash with a small white dog on the end. Behind them, several staffers are looking in their direction and pointing at the celebrities.
RALPH: Is it safe for us to talk here?
BRUCE: Close the door.
Bruce sits at a comfortable chair. Ralph and Sue sit together on an opposing sofa. Sue holds the dog in her lap.
BRUCE: So did the World-Famous Elongated Man have any trouble posing as Batman?
SUE (to the dog): Sit, Frasier.
Ralphs head is in the upper corner, narrating. His narration is laid over overlapping scenes of his experiences in the funhouse. In every panel he appears in his Redhead guise, carrying the machine gun. We now see the things that happened off-panel or outside of the picture frame:
Ralphs arm extending into the water to find the
RALPH: It was rough, but nothing I couldnt handle. The toughest part was taking out the security cameras with the machine gun so that he couldnt see me using my powers. Ive never fired a gun in my life!
Bruce smiles. Ralph kisses Sues cheek
BRUCE: One thing I dont get. Youve never been afraid of publicity. Why didnt you reveal yourself in the end?
SUE: Because Ralph retired to protect me from harm and having the worlds most notorious homicidal maniac bear a grudge against us is something we dont need!
RALPH: Yeah. You can keep him!
"Who Do You Think You Are, Bruce Willis?" © Michael Hutchison 1998
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