Batzarro. Art by Ed McGuinness.
|First appearance||(in shadow) Superman #181 (April 2002)
Superman/Batman #20 (June 2005)
|Created by||Jeph Loeb|
|Alter ego||Wayne Bruce|
|Notable aliases||World's Worst Detective|
Batzarro (Wayne Bruce) is a supervillain in the DC Comics Universe. He is a twisted doppelgänger of Batman, in the same vein as Bizarro, the similar doppelganger to Superman. While a Bizarro version of Batman had first appeared in pre-Crisis continuity in World's Finest Comics #156 (March 1966), his first appearance in post-Crisis continuity occurred in Superman/Batman #20 (June 2005), which was written by Jeph Loeb. Loeb 'secretly' inserted the character into a panel in Superman #181 (April 2002), in which Batzarro's silhouette appears in the window of a bus Bizarro is being led onto by Ignition.
His origin is unknown, but his speech patterns are almost identical to those of Bizarro. Just as Bizarro has a reversed "S" on his chest, Batzarro has Batman's bat-logo on his chest, but it is upside-down. He also wears a utility belt like Batman's. However, he wears it upside-down as well with the pockets open. He calls himself the "World's Worst Detective." He uses a large steel chain as a weapon and as a grappling hook, but no other items. He seems to lack eyes and has yellow fangs. He was also said to have, opposed to Batman's origin, shot and killed his parents. Batzarro has a tendency to think aloud, often repeating what has just been stated in his thought boxes, the opposite of Batman's custom of quiet contemplation.
In his first appearance in Superman/Batman, Batzarro introduced himself as "Batzarro, the world's worst detective" to Bizarro. He is seen with dual pistols, gunning down couples who walk down Crime Alley, the opposite of Batman's origin story. Bizarro feels sorry for Batzarro since he does not get out much on account of his lack of friends. Batzarro claims that he comes from the same place that Bizarro does and wants to be a hero like his idol Batman. Bizarro offers to team-up and Batzarro agrees. The two shake hands and suddenly Bizarro starts to feel strange. Batzarro is amused by this and reveals the Blue Kryptonite shard he found after the meteor shower. Bizarro flies away and returns to normal (so to speak) and tells Batzarro that he will be back to help him solve the murders Batzarro has just committed. Batzarro thanks him and adds that he has not touched anything so the crime scene is not contaminated. This entire exchange is done in the usual Bizarro negative speak.
At times it seems as though Batzarro is trying to aid Batman, but his mangled dialogue and inexplicable actions make it difficult to be sure. According to Bizarro "Him no come from same place as Bizarro #1. That am why we am so different." However, this statement was actually reversed due to Bizarro-speak. It was revealed that the Joker created Batzarro, therefore he comes from the same place as Bizarro #1. Both were created by the Joker, who had cosmic powers left over from an earlier adventure.
Batzarro apparently met his end when he jumped in the path of a bullet shot by the Joker to save his idol's life in Superman/Batman #24. Before then, Batman never even knew that Batzarro existed, as the Joker reveals that he created Batzarro so he would have the pleasure of killing 'a Batman.' He was last seen being put into the Phantom Zone by Bizarro in an effort to heal him. Mister Mxyzptlk, in cleaning up the chaos, reverses the murders Batzarro had performed.
He appeared in the Infinite Halloween special with Bizarro, who apparently succeeded in healing him. He appears to be more intelligent and a more competent crime fighter. Bizarro seems to disapprove his methods and calls him Not-Bruce. Notably this story takes place before Detective Comics #822 since The Riddler is still a crook.
Due to the sweeping changes throughout the DCU shown in Infinite Crisis, there is apparently a separate Earth in the multiverse where Bizarro-like inhabitants dwell. This could be a possible explanation to Batzarro's origin, because of the involvement of more cosmic characters (like Mister Mxyzptlk) in this storyline.
Escape from Bizarro World
Action Comics #856, written by Geoff Johns and Superman director Richard Donner, with art by Eric Powell, introduced a Bizarro Batman, created by Bizarro #1 on his new Bizarro World. This is a completely separate character from Batzarro.
Disambiguation from the original Bizarro World
Batzarro is not to be confused with a less distinctive, silver-age character from the original Bizarro World. The pertinent character was "Bizarro-Batman", who first appeared in March, 1966 in the story "The Federation of Bizarro Idiots" as a member of the Bizarro version of the Justice League of America. He had crystalline skin like the other Bizarros, talked like them, and was neither 'dark' nor vicious; his costume was shabby, with crumpled ears on his cowl and a silver-age Batman emblem on his chest that had an irregular outline with corners. In his "useless belt", equivalent of the utility belt, were items that the other Bizarros said were important or valuable.
- Superman/Batman #22–25 (October 2005 – May 2006)
- World's Finest (vol. 1) #156 (March 1966)