Nora Fries

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Lazara
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance As Nora:
Batman: The Animated Series "Heart of Ice"
As Lazara:
Batgirl #70 (January 2006)
Created by (As Nora):
Paul Dini, Bruce Timm
As Lazara:
Andersen Gabrych, Pop Mhan
In-story information
Alter ego Nora Fries
Abilities Can reanimate the dead and conjure flame. Immortality

Nora Fries is a fictional character from DC Comics and a supervillainess enemy of Batman known as Lazara. She is the wife of villain Mr. Freeze, and was introduced in Batman: The Animated Series.

History on Batman: The Animated Series[edit]

After marrying Victor Fries, a cryogenics researcher working for GothCorp, Nora is diagnosed with a terminal illness. Fries uses the company's equipment to cryogenically freeze his wife until a cure can be found. GothCorp CEO Ferris Boyle cuts the funding and later goes into Fries' laboratory to shut down the project personally with some security guards. According to “Heart of Ice” and “The Batman Adventures Holiday Special”, Nora is presumed dead after the resulting scuffle, which destroys the lab. However, in the episode "Deep Freeze" Nora is revealed to still be alive within her chamber.

Victor, who has by then become Mr. Freeze, eventually retrieves Nora's chamber and keeps it in his cave in the Arctic until Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero, when Nora's chamber is broken. No longer frozen, Nora does not have long to live. In desperation, Freeze bribes an old colleague into helping her. This leads to Freeze hunting down Barbara Gordon, one of the few women on hospital records with Nora's rare blood type. Freeze plans to use Barbara for a fatal organ transplant to save Nora, but Batman intervenes. Nora is ultimately cured by Dr. Lyle Johnston of Wayne Enterprises (later retconned as Dr. Francis D'Anjou).

According to The New Batman Adventures episode "Cold Comfort", Nora waits for the missing and presumed dead Freeze for some time before she decides to marry her doctor. This subplot is expanded in Batman Adventures, a comic series based on Batman: The Animated Series, with one issue seeing Freeze working with Nightwing and Batgirl to stop a criminal who has abducted Francis D'Anjou out of recognition of Nora's feelings for him.

The web cartoon Gotham Girls also reveals that Nora has a younger sister named Dora Smithy. Dora is very close to Nora and hates Victor Fries for keeping her sister in a coma. Dora's campaign against costumed vigilantes and villains results in her becoming one herself in the series finale.

By the time of Batman Beyond, Nora is not seen; however, when Mr. Freeze (whose frozen body slows his aging to an almost immortal level) returns to his normal human self of Victor Fries in the episode "Meltdown", he starts a Nora Fries Foundation in memory of his wife.

Nora Fries has never had a voice actress; in her only appearances in the animated series, she is always unconscious (usually floating in the cryogenic tank). The only time she is only seen awake is in photographs, in issues of Batman Adventures and at the end of Batman & Mr. Freeze: Subzero, when a report is shown of her recovery. Jason Hall, who wrote her appearances in Batman Gotham Adventures #51 and Batman Adventures #15 establishes Nora as being a scientist herself. Nora's personality and reason for her devotion to Victor is further developed in that issue. Nora feels guilty over the fact that Victor neglects his condition while tending to her own, which results in his body deteriorating to only a head. Nora's new husband, Francis D'Anjou, is jealous of Nora's lingering feelings for Victor and hides all of the letters that Victor writes her. Once Nora finds out that Victor still cares, after finding one of the letters, she tries to pursue him. Nora is shown to be deeply in love with Victor and tries to make their relationship work, but Victor's criminal past keeps it from happening.

During a later appearance, D'Anjou[who?] is abducted by Grant Walker — a man who had forced Freeze to subject him to the same treatments as he had undergone — to research a cure for his condition, forcing Nightwing and Batgirl to team up with Mr. Freeze to stop Walker after Batman is incapacitated. After Walker is defeated, Nightwing and Batgirl remotely deactivate Freeze's body[clarification needed] to stop him killing Walker, but Freeze simply ejects his head and escapes.

Comic history[edit]

Falling ill[edit]

Nora is an attractive and gentle girl. She meets Victor Fries in a strict boarding school, and later marries him. Shortly after their marriage, Nora falls terminally ill. Victor discovers a way to put Nora into cryostasis, hoping to sustain her until a cure can be found. In time her husband will become one of Batman's well known enemies, Mr. Freeze. Over time she falls to pieces in her ice state, but Freeze puts her back together again.

Lazara[edit]

Freeze helps Nyssa al Ghul by creating a machine for the Society that can also be used to capture Batgirl. In return, Nyssa helps him restore his wife using the Lazarus Pit. Because of all the years of being altered and broken, Nora absorbs the pit's alchemy, acquiring the powers to conjure flame and reanimate the dead.

She becomes a supervillainess, calling herself Lazara.[volume & issue needed]

The New 52[edit]

Nora's history has been revised as of The New 52 event. Nora Fries is now Nora Fields, a woman born in 1943 and placed in cryostasis by her parents at age 23 due to her being diagnosed with an incurable heart disease. Her case was taken on by Wayne Enterprises employee Victor Fries, who fell in love with her, becoming obsessed to such a degree that he began believing that she was his wife. The project was terminated by Bruce Wayne, and in rage Victor threw a chair at him. Wayne dodged the chair, which hit a freezing chemical tank, leaving Fries's body permanently ruined due to the blistering cold while also causing Fries to become Mr. Freeze.

Some time later, Mr. Freeze escapes his cell and tries to steal Nora's body and flee Gotham while also vowing to kill Bruce Wayne. Batman intervenes and ultimately tells Freeze the truth concerning Freeze's "wife" with Freeze reacting angrily, saying that it's all lies. The two later engage in a fight with Batman eventually emerging as the victor and stopping Freeze.

This version of Victor and Nora's relationship has been acknowledged as far more disturbing than previous adaptions, to the point of actually bothering Batman, who comments to Freeze that Nora is old enough to be Freeze's grandmother. [1]

Powers and abilities[edit]

After emerging from the Lazarus Pit, Nora Fries becomes Lazara. Lazara is a supervillainess who can summon fire and raise the dead. She blames her husband, Victor Fries, for her transformation.

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

  • Nora also appears in the episode of The Batman entitled "The Big Chill". In the episode, she is briefly shown in pictures in her husband's car before the accident that turns him into Mr. Freeze. Not much else is known about her.

Film[edit]

  • Nora Fries is played by supermodel Vendela Kirsebom Thomessen in the movie Batman & Robin. She is cryogenically frozen throughout the movie, and the only lines she has are in her and Mr. Freeze's wedding video. In this film, her disease is the fictional MacGregor's Syndrome. Batman reveals that she has the most advanced stages of this disease, for which Mr. Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger) has yet to find a cure, although he has managed to cure the first few stages of the disease where nobody else is even close. At one point in the movie, Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman), who is infatuated with Mr. Freeze and his powers, pulls the plug on Nora’s cryogenic tank in an attempt to kill her and have Freeze to herself. She fails, as Nora lives, and Batman has her sent to Arkham Asylum so that Mr. Freeze can continue his research for a cure during his imprisonment there, simultaneously convincing Freeze to give him the cure for Stage One of MacGregor's Syndrome (from which Alfred is currently dying). Freeze also uses this opportunity to exact his revenge on Ivy for trying to kill his wife.

Video games[edit]

  • Nora Fries appears in Batman: Arkham City. She is seen once again in cryostasis. Mr. Freeze asks Batman to find her location in Arkham City, in exchange for developing a cure for the poison The Joker infected Batman with. The player can find Nora and relay her location to Mr. Freeze in a side mission, aptly named "Heart of Ice". Nora's biography states that she was a gifted dancer. Mr. Freeze's interview tapes recount him first meeting Nora at a reform school and marrying her soon after, only to realize Nora had a fatal illness and little time left to live. Freeze worked for weeks, literally without food or sleep for up to a week at times. Nora began trying to stop Victor's crusade until she agrees to be frozen, after which a tired Fries oversleeps. His experiment is discovered by Ferris Boyle, who claims that everything in Victor's test, including Mrs. Nora Fries, was legally his, causing her husband to attack Boyle. Boyle knocks him into his cryogenic chemicals and leaves him to die, after which Victor becomes Mr. Freeze and plans to murder Boyle and reclaim his wife. While he failed to kill Boyle due to Batman's interference, he thanks the Dark Knight for exposing Boyle and returning to him his beloved Nora. Dr. Hugo Strange, Arkham City's warden, reveals Nora is being delivered to the Joker as they speak, causing Victor to go into a rage and promise Strange he will rescue his beloved Nora before he returns to kill Strange. She is last seen reunited with Freeze who is grateful to Batman for finding her so that they can be together.
  • Nora Fries appears in Batman: Arkham Origins DLC, Cold Cold Heart, again in cryostasis. In this game her terminal disease is Huntington's Chorea. Victor Fries made a deal with Ferris Boyle, secretly developing weapons for Gothcorp in exchange for Boyle devoting his company's resources to finding a cure. However, when Fries discovered that Boyle never intended to uphold his end of the deal, Boyle removed Nora from his lab to another section. In the struggle that followed resulting in the accident that transformed Victor into Mister Freeze, he kidnapped Boyle to force him to release Nora. However, in the midst of the battle against Batman, Nora's cryo pod began to fail and Boyle freed himself to brutalize a helpless Freeze so he'd watch his wife die. Luckily, Batman managed to subdue Boyle and managed to save both Freeze and Nora.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Batman: Annual #1

External links[edit]