Doctor Aesop is a criminal who commits crimes based on tales in Aesop's Fables. He was seemingly killed, but has recently resurfaced. He debuted in 2008.
His first appearance is in Detective Comics #846, where a criminal named Doctor Aesop sends a wolf after a low-rent thug named Lefty Knox while recounting the tale of the "Boy Who Cried Wolf". Catwoman appears on the scene and scoops Lefty out of the alley before the wolf can reach him. She immediately recognizes that Lefty is actually Batman in disguise. The two compare notes, then swing off in search of Doctor Aesop.
Meanwhile, the masked criminal Thomas Elliot, aka Hush, returns to the shambling corridors of the Sacred Heart Convalescent Home. Though the exterior of the hospital has been boarded up for years, Hush has been renovating the inside. His staff consists of a strange menagerie of zombie-life drifters wandering aimlessly through the halls. Some of these people are used for menial labor. Others are used as organ donors.
Hush calls to mind his youth, when he orchestrated a car accident designed to kill his parents. Though his father died in the incident, his mother survived, much to Tommy Elliot's chagrin. He recalls visiting his mother's room and seeing her wrapped in bandages. Marla Elliot offered her son words of encouragement and love even though he was secretly plotting on finishing her off. He also remembers a private detective named Sam Bradley who had been poking around the hospital asking questions.
Elsewhere, Batman and Catwoman track down Doctor Aesop to the Gotham Storage Center. They interrupt him as he is preparing to execute one of his own for skimming from his profits. Doctor Aesop begins to run, but the sound of a bullet rings out and the criminal falls over dead. Standing above him with a smoking gun is Hush. Hush then fires two shots at Batman, but misses. Batman hurls a batarang, which lacerates Hush's face. Hush turns, leaps out the window and escapes.
Gotham City SirensEdit
He resurfaced in Gotham City Sirens #9, at the end of the story, Nigma makes his way to the crime scene and realizes that it is a setup since the victim has been made to look like the Gotham City Sirens killed him. He seems at odds with himself during his inspection, a recent bomb blast has brought out his bad side and he is wrestling to keep it under control. The thing that keeps both his sides going is the puzzle that is presented of the frame up of the Sirens. Further investigation leads him to the basement, and causes him to have to fight off a jungle of animals kept there. Avoiding a lion’s attack, the Riddler is confronted with the real mastermind behind the murder, Doctor Aesop.
His recent appearance is in Gotham City Sirens #10, we learn that Aesop had been trying to buy the building the Sirens now live in some time ago, and was prevented by losing a lot of money, as well as his near death by Hush, he was last seen in. The dead body used to frame our heroines, was Aesop’s rehab nurse. He had his muses make it look like her wounds were caused by the Sirens before dumping her through the skylight to make them run and allow him to take the place over.
We see the Sirens, perched on the skylight, eavesdropping on all this. They used Riddler as bait, essentially, to see what was happening in their home. Harley Quinn, at least, has the grace to feel a bit bad about this. They sneak in and lure Aesop’s henchwomen, Calliope, Clio, and Erato, away and replacing them. Riddler buys himself time by claiming he’s not really reformed, that he put himself in his current position so he can occasionally steer the police where he wants them to go. Aesop considers this, while Riddler’s narration boxes imply that he’s basically both stalling and trying to keep from being killed. Finally, Aesop agrees there may be some value in Riddler as an ally, and lets him out of the cage he’s been in.
This is when the Sirens make themselves known, dressed as the Muses they already defeated. Aesop glares at Ridder, calling him a traitor, and the somewhat surprised Riddler proclaims he had nothing to do with it. Catwoman backs him up on this, leading to a squabble among the allies about using Riddle as bait, he somewhat understandably feeling betrayed. Aesop takes the distraction to turn loose his little zoo to attack them. Selina naturally charms the lions into submission, but then gets knocked cold by Aesop, who suddenly is recalled as a master of Jogo Do Pau, a very obscure stick fighting form from Portugal. He uses his cane to fend off Harley, while Poison Ivy uses her vines to snare most of the animals as Riddler tends to Catwoman, waking her up to calm the lion that escaped the plants. Aesop beats Harley, and then charges out the door right into a large contingent of Gotham City Police Department, and then gets arrested.