Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Riddler - Wise Men Fold - Rol Hirst

The story so far…

The Riddler has fallen in love and renounced his evil, duplicitous ways. Batman is suspicious but gradually comes to believe that Edward Nigma has turned over a new leaf. The Joker, of course, is having none of this. He kidnaps Nigma’s bride-to-be and when Batman and the Riddler arrive to rescue her, he murders the woman before their eyes. Batman captures the Joker and ships him back to Arkham. The Riddler disappears… until, one night a few weeks later, he returns – more vicious and driven than ever. He lures Batman into a trap, captures and imprisons the Dark Knight inside an unbreakable plexiglass prison. Then he gets out his gun…

Panel One.

The Riddler points his gun (an old-fashioned revolver, but BIG) at Batman. The Dark Knight has little room to move within his cell. There’s no way to dodge this bullet.

Riddler: It’s broken, yet it keeps on working. What is it?

Batman: Edward…

Panel Two.

Close on the Riddler, over the top of his gun, his face wracked with pain. No tears. He’s past tears.

Riddler: What begins but has no end… yet it’s the end of everything that begins?

Panel Three.

Close on Batman, looking grim.

Batman: Edward, you don’t have to do this…

Panel Four.

Edward cocks his gun, ready to fire. Batman is pleading now, his palms against the glass.

Riddler: What’s the one crime the Batman won’t ever be able to punish me for?

SFX: Click!

Batman: Edward, please—

Panel Five.

The gun fires – Batman screams out.

BATMAN: Noooo!

Panel Six.

Batman can only watch as the bullet ricochets off the unbreakable plexiglass wall and strikes Edward in the heart.


  1. Damn...

    That's a good page to open this weeks challenge with.

    Well paced with rising tension and a great last panel. Nice work!

  2. Cheers, Dan.

    I forgot to mention, there's a special Sad Geek Muso Loser Award for anyone who can work out the riddle of this story's title.

  3. Nice script, Rol. Agree with Dan, the tension builds nicely, and the final panel was a shocker.

    The set-up struck me as a little cliche at first - but then again, I suppose Joker being the one to kill Riddler's bride-to-be demonstrates the awful symmetry of Batman's world.

    Nice one, mate!

  4. As said, a great tension filled panel - although I was wondering why Edward would go after Batman..or is that the point. That he is just lashing out at everyone?

    Oh, Rol - from the song "The Riddle"?

  5. Rol - pretty tight start, man. I want to offer some editorial guidance but I don't think you need it. That ending is brutal. Like it a lot.

  6. Ben - I deleted a line from the first draft of this script that might have more explicitly spelt out the Riddler's motivation here. Basically he doesn't blame Joker (that's what Joker does) and he doesn't blame Batman - he blames himself. The Riddler knows what he's doing here... he knows that bullet will bounce back... he just wants Batman to witness his final crime: "the crime Batman can't punish him for" is his own suicide.

    Never took you for a Nik Kershaw fan. ;-)

  7. Wow Rol, a really sad and dark opening page but one full of emotion and perfect pace. You handled the character in a way I never expected but really loved. I felt the dialogue was some of your strongest here. I felt you captured a troubled Riddler brilliantly.

  8. ""the crime Batman can't punish him for" is his own suicide."

    I was thinking it being Batman's murder, so the turnaround was great. Very good page.

  9. A nice, tension-filled page. As others have said, the switch at the end works really well. Quality page, but I feel pretty bad for Edward. He just can't catch any breaks.


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