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Batman #318 (December 1979)
Gotham Central #3 (March 2003)
Deadshot Vol. 2 #1 (February 2005)
Len Wein, Irv Novick
Ed Brubaker, Michael Lark
|Alter ego||-Joe Rigger
Costume contains napalm tanks to set things on fire
Firebug is the name of three DC Comics supervillains.
The unnamed Firebug debuted in Deadshot Vol. #1 and was created by Christos Gage.
Fictional character biographies
Firebug first appeared in Batman #318 (December 1979). Joe Rigger was a soldier and demolitions expert who returned to Gotham City when his family had been killed in three separate building-related accidents. His sanity slipping, Rigger vowed that those buildings would not kill again. Using his military training and a costume containing tanks of napalm, he became the Firebug and set out to burn all three buildings to the ground. He was defeated by Batman atop the towering Gotham State Building, and believed dead after his tank exploded.
Still later, Firebug escaped Blackgate Prison and applied for membership in Black Mask's gang, but was beaten by his rival arsonist, Firefly. He subsequently attempted to prove he was a better arsonist, and again appeared to be killed by his own inferno. He was later revealed to have survived. His close brush with death along with the scarring it caused prompted him to sell his Firebug costume and gear and leave the life of crime. He briefly helped the Gotham City Police Department apprehend Harlan Combs.
In The New 52 (a reboot of the DC Comics universe), Firebug is hired by an unknown party to blow-up several Gotham buildings to lure and kill Batgirl. She survives the attempt and tracks down Firebug. Upon his arrest, Firebug claims his employers will not allow an incarceration.
A new Firebug debuted in Gotham Central #3. At first, his identity was a mystery and he was wanted in the murder of a teenage girl who was killed after a babysitting job. Eventually, the Gotham police deduced that the culprit was Harlan Combs, the father of the child she was sitting and by all accounts a perfectly normal man. Combs had purchased the Firebug costume and armor from Rigger. He was injured fleeing the police and was quickly arrested where Rigger helped with his apprehension.
An unnamed character using the name Firebug debuted in Deadshot - Urban Renewal #1 (February 2005). He had won the name and costume from an Internet auction. After taking on the Firebug name, he enters the costume business.
In other media
- Firebug was the second-to-last boss, preceding Joker, in the NES's Batman game, loosely based on the 1989 film. He, Killer Moth, and Electrocutioner are supervillains working as thugs for the Joker. Firebug serves as the Joker's bodyguard, and wants revenge on Batman for defeating his brother. He could run at high speeds, punch rapidly, and throw giant fireballs from his hands.
- Firebug was mentioned in Batman: Arkham Knight. Since the villain Firefly is in Gotham City, a militia thug suggests that there is a "Firebug" too.
- Detective Comics #689-690
- Hero Hotline #5
- Gotham Central #4-5
- Batgirl Vol 4 #17 (April 2013)
- Batgirl Vol 4 #18 (May 2013)
- Gotham Central #3-5
- Deadshot Vol. 2 #1
- Deadshot Vol. 2 #4-5
- Batman #651-654
- Detective Comics #817-820