|Real name:||Basil Karlo|
|First Appearance:|| Batman: Arkham Asylum (Detective Comics #40)|
Batman: Arkham City (true form)
|Created by:|| Bill Finger|
|Abilities:||Shapeshifting due to clay body|
|Portrayed by:|| Rick D. Wasserman|
Duane R. Shepard Sr. (Cash)
Tom Kane (Sharp/Gordon)
Mark Hamill (Joker)
Basil Karlo was once a famous actor, but soon fell into madness after he learned that one of his classic movies was being remade with a new star in his previous role. Fashioning himself in the mask of the movie's villain, Clayface, Karlo assumed the character's name as his new identity and murdered several of the cast and crew before being apprehended by Batman and Robin. Using a substance from a group known as The Mud Pack, Karlo gained the appearance of a massive monster of clay, able to shape-shift into anybody he wishes to.
Putting his acting skills to the ultimate test, Clayface mimics both the personalities and appearances of those he turns into for his own pure amusement and to commit his own signature crimes. Having escaped from Arkham Asylum in the wake of a massive riot caused by The Joker's sick designs, Clayface has not been seen or heard from since Arkham City's construction. However, never one to give up any grand role, Clayface has allowed himself to become a party to an insidious and complex plot of The Joker's creation to condemn all of Gotham to oblivion.
Initially an actor in horror films and impressionist, Basil Karlo went mad when he learned a classic film of his was to be remade with a different actor in the lead role. He took on the mask of the film's villain, "Clayface", and killed several of the remake's cast and crew before being stopped by Batman and Robin. Later, Karlo joined the Mud Pack, an alliance of shape-changing, mutated villains who had subsequently used the name Clayface. While that group was defeated, Karlo tricked his allies, injecting himself with the essences of several of them, becoming a superhuman imbued with the abilities to change shape, melt others into protoplasm with a touch, and mimic the powers of heroes or villains he copies.
- Can change his physical form, adopting the appearance of nearly anyone
- His malleable physical form makes him extremely difficult to injure or contain
- His touch can be poisonous
Batman: Arkham Origins Edit
Many posters containing Basil Karlo's performance as an impressionist are seen at Jezebel Plaza.
Batman: Arkham AsylumEdit
Batman, while searching for Arkham Warden Quincy Sharp, came across a cell behind a clear wall with no bars. A sign next to it read "Danger. Do not approach. Inmate may be impersonating other personel". The cell contained a female mannequin, white hand-prints, and excess Clayface goo. What appeared to be security guard Aaron Cash was pacing behind the wall, urging Batman to let him out of the cell. However, after rescuing the warden in the room above, another man looking like the warden appeared in the cell, claiming that the one rescued was an imposter and begged to be let out.When Batman turned around, a morphing noise sounded and in the cell appeared what seemed to be Commissioner Gordon. He simply laughed at Batman. Detective Mode revealed that the shapeshifter had no skeleton, and scanning him revealed him as Karlo/Clayface. His profile could then be read and the Riddler's riddle, "A case of mistaken identities?" was solved. Clayface commended the detective for discovering his identity, and asked him to keep it a secret, as he had a reputation to keep.
After all but one of the hidden chronicles are found around Arkham, Quincy Sharp has disappeared from his santuary. Clayface will mention how the warden left in a hurry despite Batman's insistence that he stay hidden, all while impersonating Commissioner Gordon.
Batman: Arkham CityEdit
When the rescue teams of the GCPD swept through the ruined Asylum after Joker's plans, one uninformed guard believed that Sharp was trapped within the same cell Batman saw and let him out, while in reality it was simply Clayface taking advantage of the situation to finally escape. It was only after the real Warden Sharp was found did the guard realize his lethal mistake, but Clayface was long gone by that point.
Basil Karlo enters Arkham City completely undetected. Assuming the guise of numerous inmates and security personnel alike, the monstrous mudpack eventually makes contact with the Joker, who is revealed to be his cryptic employer. At first, Karlo is reluctant to form an alliance with the dying clown, but is quickly convinced to aid the Joker and embroils himself in the Clown Prince of Crime’s last megalomaniac master plan.
Despite not actually being imprisoned in Arkham City, Clayface has sided with the Joker for one key reason; to play “the role of a lifetime”. At the request of the Joker, Karlo poses as the healthy crazed Clown Prince of Crime and willingly carries out the vast amounts of chaos the actual Joker would if he was capable. Clayface interacts with Batman on numerous occasions, and countless others including Talia al Ghul, managing to fool and suede all within the city into believing that the Joker had made a full recovery. Until it was far too late, Joker and his doppelganger even managed to hide the deadly yet truthful nature of the clowning duo from Hugo Strange, Batman, and for a brief period of time, Harley Quinn.
With Clayface’s vast and nearly unstoppable abilities, the Joker knew he had all but conquered Arkham City. Joker also had Clayface carry out several other tasks besides the impersonation: appropriating the Black Mask’s base of operations (opening up the Sionis Steel Mill to Joke) and convincing Mr. Freeze to develop a cure for the clown’s growing illness (although Hugo Strange had already taken Fries’s wife, Nora, hostage by that point). The Joker was almost sure he was clearing a pathway straight to his salvation and with the spotlight focused on his doppelganger he knew that he could easily stay hidden in the shadows long enough to see through his final act.
The plan was not realized by Batman until Talia was taken prisoner by the Joker at the Monarch Theatre. However, Talia managed to free herself and disarm the Joker, proceeding to stab him. Not long afterwards did Batman remember something that had been said to him previously and pieced together that Joker had been impersonated the entire time.
The actual Joker, his illness continuing to eat away his flesh, revealed himself and shot Talia dead on the spot after the ruse had been seen through. Clayface arose and took on his natural form, a hideous, monstrous mass of mud that Batman was then forced to fight if he was to retrieve the only remaining vial of the cure. He primarily used Mr. Freeze's cryogenic explosives to slow Clayface down, although he thawed when he tried to get the vial out of the hole. Clayface eventually was frozen solid by the explosives, causing Batman to use Talia's sword (which was still impaled on him) to cut his frozen body up.
He was eventually thawed after the Joker blew up the floor of the theater to give Batman a "change of scenery" to "help ease the pain" (referring to Talia's demise), although the process also caused him to be unable to retain his natural form outside of a half-melted appearance, and resorted to utilizing miniature Clayfaces to attack Batman. After a long and exhausting struggle, Batman was finally able to disable his enemy into the Lazarus Pit Chamber beneath the Theatre. The aftermath of the ensuing battle left the Monarch in complete ruins. Basil Karlo's fate is unknown, although he may have survived due to the fact that he was knocked into the life-replenishing Lazarus Pit.
Batman: Arkham UnhingedEdit
While Clayface doesn't actually appear in the webcomic taking place after the events of Harley Quinn's Revenge, he was mentioned by the Joker in a posthumous message to Batman, revealing that Joker had him rig the isolation cell that Batman locked him up inside with dozens of explosives, including his murder book.
Psychological profile (by Dr. Young)Edit
While his bizarre ability to shape-change opens him up to the obvious-if controversial-diagnosis of multiple personality disorder, Karlo seems instead to be suffering from borderline personality disorder, with a special emphasis on identity disturbance. He is difficult to pin down on any subject, and defends his wild changes in affect as evidence of his dramatic abilities, which he considers to be wildly underrated. Rarely does he take his own shape, but frequently mimics me when I attempt to interview him.
His identity is at risk of splintering, due to the growing frequency of his adopting the identities of others to the exclusion of taking on his own.
I find his imitation of me to be especially unflattering; I am most certainly not the bitter, calculating academic he attempts to portray me as.
STRONG ESCAPE RISK!
Game Over LinesEdit
- "Next, I will become YOU, Batman!"
- "It was the performance of a lifetime!"
- "Get up, Bats! Hey, you ain't looking so good!"
- "Oh, Bats! If you only knew what I have planned! You'd just die!"
- "Aren't you supposed to be up on your feet and trying to stop me?"
- The mannequin and handprints in the cell are a reference to Preston Payne, who was 'married' to a mannequin he referred to as 'Helena'.
- Clayface will only congratulate Batman for discovering who he is if he is disguised as Sharp or Cash; as Gordon, he will only laugh mockingly.
- Karlo's name appears on the party list, indicating that Joker had intended for Harley to let him out of his cell and join his army in assaulting Gotham once he infused enough of his men with Titan and killed Batman. This also foreshadowed Karlo's role in Joker's next scheme as the pair seemed to be on good terms.
- Clayface's page in Dr. Young's book had a question mark. The reason is that the riddle said something about mistaken identity which is what Dr. Young wrote. Clayface is known to have bars on his window in his cell, so Riddler told him to escape since he is known for escaping and identity theft.
- If viewed in Detective Mode, no bones will be present and only his shape is visible. His status will heavily explain that it's Clayface. The BPM is " ??? " and the feelings or whatsoever is " unknown ".
- In Arkham City, if one uses Detective Mode during the battle with the Joker at the Steel Mill, Joker has no bones, foreshadowing the reveal of Clayface.
- The movie that was showing in the Monarch Theater was "The Terror", an old movie that Karlo starred in, hinting his appearance in the game. The poster for this movie can be scanned to solve one of the Riddler's riddles.
- It was hinted in Arkham Asylum that Clayface and the Joker had a partnership due to the partylist having a smiley face next to Clayface's name.
- When returning to the steel mill to get the cure during the video of Clayface claiming he's the Joker, coughing can be heard. This may be the real Joker.
- Occasionally, when defeated by Clayface, one of his game over messages as Clayface-Joker will play instead of his regular messages.