Riddler, Batman’s Sadistic Enemy and Full of Puzzles


Riddler really looks like a lively question mark

The worldwide screening of ‘The Batman’ led critics and film watchers alike to see how Batman returns to the big screen.

The atmosphere of Gotham City which has crime and corruption is quite dangerous, giving rise to Robert Pattinson who may be the darkest and cruelest Batman. His new role as Batman, should be able to catch Oswald Cobblepot (Colin Farrell), an iconic and growing mafia named Penguin. There’s also the unscrupulous waitress and thief named Selina Kyle (Zoe Kravitz), and the enigmatic serial killer, Edward Nashton (Paul Dano).

Edward Nashton, also known as the Riddler, spends his days hunting down Gotham City’s richest and most elite citizens, spreading his crimes with the most complex puzzles. The Riddler, along with the Joker and Catwoman, became iconic foes in the history of Batman comics. Bill Finger and Dick Sprang, who created these characters, gave rise to Edward Nigma, also known as Edward Nashton and Edward Nygma, who first appeared in Detective Comics #140 in 1948.

At that time, he tried to defeat Batman and Robin by giving them puzzles and trapping them in a glass maze that they had to avoid because there was a bomb that was about to explode inside. What happened next was that they had to lose Riddler again with a big question mark that Riddler always left wherever he went.

If we go back to the childhood of Edward or the Riddler, we will find the fact that he was a genius at his school. He got the best test scores and always tried to be superior to his friends. A challenge from the teacher about who can solve a puzzle the fastest, will get a prize. From here, Edward has an obsession with creating puzzles that tire his own mind at any cost. He won the contest and got a book of puzzles.

Edward grew up to be a person who felt dissatisfied and ashamed of his job status, people did not appreciate his genius. He who wants to earn a lot of money and be famous, uses his intelligence to become a criminal. In his initial business, he is assisted by two women, Query and Echo, to run an illegal carnival where he will give his customers puzzles which of course will be very difficult and inevitably pay. This didn’t satisfy him, so he had to level up by terrorizing Gotham City as the Prince of Puzzles, and others.

Different from other criminals who leave no trace when leaving, Riddler deliberately puts a mark which is certainly a difficult puzzle which, if solved, will help him commit a crime. Sometimes he gets annoyed if he easily outsmarts the highest level authorities. When he finds Batman a consistently worthy opponent, he becomes very excited and intrigued.

The thing behind Riddler’s actions is how people treat him. He is isolated and his abusive father doubts his intelligence. He creates puzzles that are difficult to solve and makes his father accuse him of cheating and even beat up Edward at his own game. He also has a desire to prove his genius through this puzzle he created.

Far from being the costume and mask he wears, the Riddler is a sophisticated human, even Bruce Wayne once asked him for help solving a very confusing case in Detective Comics #822 . Edward has also faced the threatening Green Arrow and Poison Ivy. He has also experienced several illnesses such as cancer, memory loss, psychotic disorders, and even a coma, but all of these have contributed to the evolution of the Riddler character.

Batman isn’t the first time he’s been in a film and won an award. Frank Gorshin, who played the Riddler in the 1960s in the series ‘Batman’, known for his goofy character with a simple storyline, made it into an Emmy nomination. Jim Carrey also became an equally striking Riddler in the 1995 film ‘Batman Forever’ decades later alongside Val Kilmer as Batman.

Early adaptations such as these drew inspiration from the pages of the Batman comics of the Gold and Silver Age, where the Riddler was the ardent antagonist. In the Fox series, ‘Gotham’, the Riddler is shown to be more advanced and dynamic. Actor Cory Michael portrayed it very well with a bit of reality check, but still within the Riddler’s sarcastic and performative personality.

Not only played by actors, Riddler also appeared in several unforgettable animations where he was voiced by Conan O’Brien, John Michael Higgins, and Matthew Gray Gubler.

So far, Paul Dano’s version of the Riddler in ‘The Batman’ is the smartest, most evil and calculating version. He vowed to unmask corruption in Gotham City to target political figures as victims.

In addition, the costumes used by Riddler in this version are so bland and designed to make him go unnoticed, this is so scary because it reminds the audience that the Riddler can be anywhere and anyone. Quoted from Collider, Paul Dano explained that the costumes that were made from scratch helped make the Riddler character like that.