- "You tell yourself you are not like us. You tell yourself you are something more, something better. But fear reveals the truth, erodes your self-control. Soon you will kill and become that which you hate the most. Soon, the Bat will be broken!"
- ―Scarecrow to Batman[src]
A man of true intellect, Dr. Jonathan Crane fell from grace when he became absorbed by his own experiments that dwelled into fear and the incredible effects that it could have on a person's psychological condition. Abandoned by his parents to an abusively religious grandmother and bullied throughout his youth for his lanky appearance, Crane seemed to conquer his own fears and became a master at such a natural and primal feeling throughout his research.
After he developed an incredible panicogenic that amplified a person's worst fears and brought it to life in a horrifying fashion in his or her mental state, Crane murdered his grandmother and went on to become a professor, and used his students, medical patients, and even the Blackgate Prison and Arkham Asylum Inmates in his inhumane experiments. After he perfected his fear toxin, Crane renounced his previous identity and guise himself into the terrifying image of The Scarecrow, a name that was once a favorite taunt of the man's former bullies, and using his toxin to fulfill many of his personal desires, while he also developed an immunity towards that same toxin.
After Crane was ultimately exposed and captured by Batman and sent to the same institution that he used as a staging ground for his inhumane experiments, he realized that the hero had proved to be the only individual who was capable of inflicting fear on him. With his research the only motivating factor in his life, Scarecrow felt nothing but delight when he saw his countless victims' minds break into insanity and death from his weaponized fear toxin, and reveled in the sense of control that his experiments empowered him with. After he was recruited by The Joker for one of his more brutal plans, Crane used the opportunity to perfect an even more lethal dose of his signature fear gas. He hoped that not even Batman would be able to withstand its effects and planned to unleash it into Gotham City to break the soul of every citizen forever.
Despite the enhanced toxin, Batman managed to overcome his fears once again and put an end to Crane's plans. Mauled by Killer Croc after he attempted to poison Gotham's water supply (and Croc's current sewer lair in the process) with his fear toxin, Scarecrow disappeared for two years. Preparing the most deadly strains of his toxin imaginable, Crane bided his time as he planned a massive operation with the help of the Arkham Knight and Deathstroke, to tear Gotham to shreds with fear and condemn the rest of the world into oblivion. Consolidating most of the villains and their gangs under his leadership, Scarecrow initiated his plans to destroy the legend of Batman once and for all on Halloween Night.
Jonathan Crane was the victim of high school bullies who cruelly nicknamed the awkward child "Scarecrow" for his lanky, bookish resemblance. Although frightened by his attackers, Crane realized that his nickname would become the embodiment of fear. Ostracizing himself from his peers, he became determined to become the master of fear by studying the psychiatry of phobias and the body's biochemical reactions to being afraid.
As he grew up, Jonathan's advanced knowledge parlayed him into a Gotham University professorship and career as a psychiatrist to dedicate himself to helping people rid themselves of their deepest fears. He believed that since fear kept people from fulfilling their everyday lives, he would need to minimize those fearful impulses, and by doing so, his patients would achieve peace if they wanted to be the best. On the start of his research, Crane developed a thesis that to fight fear, one needed to substitute a fear that is controllable, and less inevitable, so it could replace the patients' overpowering dreads paralyzing them; for example, he replaced nyctophobia (fear of darkness) with hydrophobophobia (fear of rabies), and later arachnophobia (fear of spiders) with syphilophobia (fear of syphilis).
He performed successful experiments on phobic substitution, and was a frequent visitor at Blackgate Penitentiary and later became the head physician of Arkham Asylum where he gave out advertisements on curing phobias and other psychological issues related to the subject. Crane later discovered how fear was induced through biochemistry; the result of his discovery was an incredible panicogenic toxin that creates nightmarish hallucinatory manifestations of the patient's worst fears. His experiments were a success until his gift of entering a person's mind turned into a chronic obsession.
Jonathan's specialization in fear, unfortunately, went too far and his position was revoked due to the endangerment of his students and patients. Suffering a psychopathic breakdown after being kicked out of the university, he renounced his previous identity and donned his alter ego known as the Scarecrow, using his toxin and knowledge to fulfill his revenge against the faculty members responsible for his suspension.
Meeting for the first time face to face with Batman, Crane was then exposed and taken back to Arkham, this time as the institution's newest inmate.
Batman: Arkham Underworld
"I will take their hope and leave only fear"
Not too long after his emergence as the Scarecrow within the criminal underworld, Crane began to work with one of Gotham's newest crime bosses (actually the player of Arkham Underworld) consolidate power, under the condition that the boss will aid in his plans of luring Batman into a trap to test his fear toxin. The mission succeeds and Scarecrow is able to inject the Dark Knight with his newest toxin during a bank robbery, resulting in the hero retreating. Crane then held up his end and began attacking several, opposing crime bosses and aid in the fight against Carmine Falcone.
Scarecrow was one of the many inmates who was released from Arkham Asylum by the Joker during his plans to activate a dirty bomb within Gotham and the Suicide Squad's mission to infiltrate the institution. Crane injected his fear gas into some of the guards before he was ultimately recaptured.
Road to Arkham
Over ten years since Batman's emergence within Gotham, Scarecrow and the Dark Knight had countless battles, in which the hero proved himself time and time again that he could withstand even the most lethal doses of Crane's fear toxin. Lusting to create an enhanced version of his fear gas and force Batman to succumb to his fears, Crane's moment of opportunity presented itself when Warden Sharp hired Dr. Young, a reputable therapist, to work on research and experimental operations at Arkham Asylum.
Among the most ambitious of these operations was Project Titan, the research into creating a chemical serum that could bolster a person's strength and immunity in order to allow the Arkham patients to cope with the most extreme forms of therapy and hopefully become cured. Dr. Young, however, also became absorbed by her own ambitions to use the serum to create a unique class of meta-humans, that could be sold throughout the globe to interested parties. To that end, Young also became intrigued by the chemical compound, Venom, used extensively by the brute, Bane, after she had therapy sessions with the villain when he was temporarily moved to the asylum for treatment. Young believed that the chemicals derived from Venom could serve as the perfect foundation for her own serum.
Scarecrow himself learned of Dr. Young's plans and ambitions during their various therapy sessions together, where Crane's brilliance in both chemistry and psychology gained a deep respect from the naive woman. Convinced that Crane was well on his way to being reformed, with her respect for his brilliant mind clouding her judgment, and that the stories that surrounded the villain were exaggerated, Dr. Young informed him of her Titan Project, believing that his mind could be an invaluable asset. Crane then collaborated with the doctor during their subsequent sessions together, learning of the work that Dr. Young had done thus far on the compound and gave his own feedback and ideas.
However, the truth was that Crane had played the doctor, as he believed that the chemicals that were used in the Titan Formula could be instrumental in perfecting his own toxin. To that end, Crane informed his associate, the Joker, of the project and both villains collaborated on using the operation for their own ends by planning a brutal riot at the asylum. Joker used one of his oldest aliases, Jack White, and underground channels to fund the research and pull the strings to transfer Bane to the asylum, while Scarecrow continued working towards perfecting his toxin based off his own findings. Joker planned to complete the Titan Formula and use it to create an army of monsters under his control to destroy Gotham and finish his battles with Batman, while Crane lusted to create and use an enhanced serum of his fear toxin to break the mind of every Gotham citizen forever and finally expose Batman's greatest fears.
Having access to countless supplies and resources from Dr. Young, as well as access to outside his cell from bribed guards, Crane was successful in continuously strengthening the effects of his toxin. To serve as the ultimate test subjects, Crane began to use his fear gas on other doctors and professors at the asylum during his sessions with them. This ultimately exposed the fact to Dr. Young that Crane had not changed at all, but this did not disrupt the villain's plans in the slightest, as he had learned everything that he needed to from the Titan Project and still had access to his experiments through the help of Joker and his inside agents at the asylum.
As Crane continued with his inhumane experiments, an anonymous tip to the villain's activities noted in the Patient Interview Tapes in the form of a vial of Scarecrow's Fear Gas was left at the GCPD. Using that, Batman was able to create an antidote. Scarecrow was found by Batman using his Fear Gas to attack his state-sponsored psychologist, Dr. Kellerman. Batman apprehended Scarecrow and locked him back up in Arkham Asylum. It was revealed that the vial came from Dr. Kellerman. Even though Scarecrow was back in Arkham, he continued his plans from a secret loft that was hidden at the Intensive Treatment Center, plotted his next move, and even got his hands on the blueprints of Arkham Asylum.
Eventually, Dr. Young completed her Titan Formula, before she learned the terrifying truth that Joker had been the one who pulled the strings for the entire operation as Jack White. Horrified at this, Dr. Young sent Joker back his ill-gotten money and put a block on her account. In response, Joker threatened and blackmailed the doctor, escaped from the asylum, murdering three guards in the process. As Joker made his final plans in preparation for the asylum riots over the following two months, Scarecrow organized the last steps in his own agenda.
- "Orderly: Please, Dr. Crane, don't do this!"
"Scarecrow: There is no Crane..."
"Orderly: They're all over me!"
"Scarecrow: Only Scarecrow!"
- ―Scarecrow and his first victims[src]
Two months later, Joker resurfaced and was captured by Batman following a staged attack on Gotham's Mayor as he gave a speech at City Hall. Little did Batman know that Joker had planned to get caught and sent back to the asylum by him personally in order to commence the riots, locate the Titan Formula, create his army, and entrap Batman on Arkham Island. With over a thousand of the Joker's Henchmen transferred to the asylum due to a fire at Blackgate, that was caused by one of the villains' inside agents, Scarecrow was prepared to enact the plan that they formed. Harley Quinn was allowed to aid the orderlies and gained access to restricted areas after she deceived them into believing that she had reformed, and released several of the inmates on Joker's "party list," including Crane.
Hacking into the asylum's surveillance systems from his makeshift lair underneath the elevators, Scarecrow watched as Batman returned Joker to Intensive Treatment and met with Commissioner Gordon, waiting for the Clown Prince of Crime to commence the riots. As Harley Quinn took complete control of the security systems and Batman was forced to stay behind by the Arkham guards out of fear that his presence would unsettle the more violent prisoners, Joker violently murdered his escorts and escaped into the heart of the asylum, slaughtering dozens of guards and inmates alike and released large quantities of his laughing toxin into the air ducts. As Joker consolidated his control over the island and released all the inmates, Scarecrow donned his new costume and prepared his new strain of fear toxin, some of which was injected into syringes that were placed on each finger of his left hand via a glove.
As part of the Joker's scheme, after he assumed complete control of the asylum, Scarecrow led Batman to the Medical Facility, where the villain pumped the elevator that Batman was in full of Fear Gas. As Batman made his way to the bottom floor, he saw Scarecrow spray his Fear Gas into an operating room of Arkham staff and patients, and caused them to panic to the point of death. Eventually, Batman saw a vision of Commissioner Gordon crying for help, before he was dragged out of view. Batman found Gordon's body and sadly tried to call Oracle to tell her that he was too late. Batman could not contact her, however, as Barbara's voice said that the number that he was trying to reach was unavailable, and to hang up. Batman then made his way to the Morgue.In the Morgue, an echoing voice told Batman "You shouldn't be here!" and "Get out of here!", which slowly grew louder, and created an ominous, and ghostly feeling in the air. Batman turned around and exited the room, only to find himself entering exactly the same room. Three body bags lay there, two of which contained Bruce's deceased parents, Thomas and Martha Wayne, who spoke to him, and Scarecrow jumped out of the third. It turned into a cat and mouse game in a surreal other world that was made up of elements of the asylum, where a giant Scarecrow sought out the hiding Batman. Batman was able to finally break free from Scarecrow's hold by avoiding his assailant's gaze and shined a Batsignal, a manifestation of his willpower, at him, which destroyed the giant Scarecrow and ended the hallucination. Back in reality, Batman went back to Gordon, only to find that it was, in fact, the body of another security guard that Scarecrow had killed.
Scarecrow later attacked Batman with his Fear Gas again in the Library at the Arkham Mansion, after Batman destroyed Dr. Young's Titan Formula. That caused Batman to relive his parents' deaths, and him walking down a long, never-ending hall that turned into a city street in the pouring rain. As Batman walked down the 'street', he heard his parents and a younger version of himself talking in the background, before they were met and attacked by Joe Chill, whose voice was monstrously distorted.
Batman then briefly took the appearance of his eight-year-old self and heard Jim Gordon and another officer discuss the murder in the background before Gordon himself asked the young Bruce about the criminal. The voices soon ended, and another giant Scarecrow hallucination ensued, in which Batman escaped Scarecrow's hold once more by shining a second Batsignal at him. That time, upon returning to the real world, Batman found that he had somehow made his way to the top of Arkham Mansion's clock tower, and was locked in.Scarecrow used his Fear Gas for the third time when Batman re-entered the Intensive Treatment Center. The toxins caused Batman to relive the starting events of the game, but with the Joker and Batman in opposite positions. Much to Scarecrow's surprise, Batman was able to break free of his hold and woke up clutching Crane himself. Scarecrow injected Batman with even more Fear Toxin, which leads up to another giant Scarecrow hallucination, in which Scarecrow watched as Batman fought his army of skeletons, including two larger ones (actually Joker's Henchmen, and two Titan Henchmen). Batman broke free once again and caused Scarecrow to flee to the sewers below. Batman followed Crane there and confronted him by an underground river that led straight to Gotham's water supply.
Scarecrow threatened to drop a bag of his Fear Toxin into the water supply, and plunge Gotham's citizens into constant terror for up to one hundred years. Before Scarecrow could do anything, however, Killer Croc attacked him from the water and knocked the fear toxin bag harmlessly to the ground. Batman stopped Croc from eating Crane by activating his shock collar with a Batarang, which caused Croc to retreat back into the water, dragging Crane with him. Batman didn't attempt to save him from Croc a second time or to go looking for Scarecrow. Crane, however, apparently escaped Croc through unknown means. In one of the three alternate endings after the credits, Crane emerged from the water by the docks and grabbed onto a floating crate that contained Titan.
- "The only freak I ain't seen is Scarecrow. Maybe, maybe this is all one of his freakin' nightmares."
- Throughout Arkham City, various criminals and inmates mentioned Scarecrow's absence. Various mentions by the inmates included that he was the "only freak" that's not imprisoned, that Killer Croc "got him," and one particular comment suggested that they lived in one of his nightmares.
- During the events of Protocol 10, if you head to the rooftops of Amusement Mile, you could find gang members who were dressed similar to and who wore symbols that signified Scarecrow.
Scarecrow's old gas mask was seen amidst piles of hay. You must find his mask in order to solve one of The Riddler's Riddles: "If you're scared, don't be afraid to crow about it." Scanning it unlocked a story that could be viewed from the menu, and was as follows: No one has seen Jonathan Crane a.k.a. the Scarecrow since he was attacked by Killer Croc in the sewers below Arkham Asylum. Some say he escaped certain death by dragging what was left of himself onto a TITAN container and floating out to sea (as is seen in one of the random ending scenes in Batman: Arkham Asylum), while others believe he was eaten by Croc. Undeterred, Batman has spent months searching for Crane, refusing to believe that he is dead. If Crane is out there, plotting his revenge on Batman, then Batman knows Gotham will never be truly safe. The Gas Mask was gone during Harley Quinn's Revenge.
- During Hush's Side Mission, when a suspect who looked remarkably like Bruce Wayne was suspected to be a serial killer, Oracle threw out the possibility that Crane could have drugged Batman again, and caused him to unknowingly commit the crimes, but Batman quickly dismissed that.
Elsewhere in Arkham City, between Amusement Mile and the Industrial District (just east of Scarecrow's Mask), there was a boat that was moored between two buoy's, in front of the North Gotham Dock Sign. Using the Cryptographic Sequencer while on the boat with the password, "City of Terror" (which was the toughest code to crack in the game because it had level five security), opened a sealed hatch. Climbing down into the darkness disabled Detective Mode and moved into the first-person view. The interior was a long, darkened hallway with a number of containers on either side that held large numbers of beetles inside them, some of which were seen crawling around the interior of the boat. In the back, there was one of Joker's Henchman who sat hunched over in a chair under a lone light, unmoved. He appeared to have a symbol on his chest that looked similar to Scarecrow's mark. Upon approaching him, he suddenly bolted upright and screamed, before he arched backward in his seat and apparently died. Next, to him, there was a shipping invoice labeled #CRANE0016 from Falcone Shipping for the attention of Dr. J. Crane. The invoice listed 20 "Biological Containment Vessel Type 3" as well as shipping and sundry costs that totaled $560,550 (this is $550 more than the total listed costs). There was a customs declaration, "Live insects for medical research purposes." It also contained shipping notes that stated, "Jonathan, I hope you find everything to be satisfactory, Mr. Fine was very specific about the shipping details and we have followed them to the letter. By now you will have received the initial 15 shipments. The rest are in transit and will be with you shortly." followed by an unknown signature. During Harley Quinn's Revenge, the boat was sealed off.
Several fear gas tanks can be found around Arkham City. To the near west of Scarecrow's mask, some gas tanks can be seen lying on the ground. They have what appears to be Scarecrow's mark on them. After you have saved the second hostage from The Riddler, the area which was barbed-wired offed will have several Fear Canisters with Scarecrow's mark on them. Fear Canisters are also found in Hush's lair on the right as you enter the surgery room, suggesting that he had been helping him with his Identity Thief crimes.
If Batman scanned the airwaves using the Cryptographic Sequencer, he could find secret radio stations that gave off a seemingly random series of numbers followed by a musical chime. The first message, found at Station 500.00/900.00 gave off the following numbers: 5 15 9 7 21 18 18 14 3 5 24 15 12 7 22 3 10 5 15 9 22 3 8 25 26 15 16 25 10 15 17 25 *chime*. Decoding that message could be done by, first, assigning a number to each letter starting with "z" (Z=1, Y=2, X=3, etc.), and second, shifting up by three (so that Z=4, Y=5, X=6, etc.). Once decoded, it read "You will pay for what you have done to me." The second message, found at Station 700.00/500.00 gave off these numbers: 9 23 9 12 12 18 5 20 21 18 14 2 1 20 13 1 14 *chime* . Decoding that message could be done by matching each number to its corresponding letter in the alphabet (A=1, B=2, C=3, etc.). Once it's decoded, it read "I will return Batman." The final message, found at Station 200.00/500.00 gave off the numbers: 3 20 26 18 26 16 24 1 11 4 24 9 3 8 5 2 12 18 6 16 7 11 3 10 17 5 13 4 21 8 *chime*. Decoding that message was more complicated. First, match each number to its corresponding letter in the alphabet (A=1, B=2, C=3, etc.). That gave the sequence: C T Z R Z P X A K D X I C H E B L R F P G K C J Q E M D U H. Using an Atbash cipher, A was substituted for Z, Y for B, X for C, and so on. That gave the sequence: X G A I A K C Z P W C R X S V Y O I U K T P X Q J V N W F S. Finally, a Vigenere ciphere was used. A keyword was needed to solve the cipher, and the keyword for the code was "SCARECROW". Once decoded, it read: "Fear will tear Gotham City to shreds."
It should be noted that those messages only appeared after a certain point in the game and confirmed that Scarecrow was still alive, and sought revenge on Batman.
The Mad Hatter mentioned that he acquired and modified Scarecrow's fear gas to make Batman see his "Alices" as various Alice in Wonderland Characters who, in turn, were drugged by Tetch and were placed under his control.
- "This demonstration used just five ounces of my latest toxin. Tomorrow, this will seem like child's play. Gotham, this is your only warning…."
Initially operating out of a boat within Arkham City, Crane ordered hundreds of shipments of insects that contained the correct toxins to mix in with his own, courtesy of black markets broker, Sherman Fine. With the help of his newly gained followers within the prison compound (some of whom were killed during Protocol 10), the villain abducted countless individuals from the near limitless supply of inmates to perform his initial experiments on, and slowly perfected his new fear toxin until all his victims were literally frightened to death. With the continued help of Mr. Fine, Crane was eventually successful in converting an abandoned penthouse in Chinatown into his base of operations and safe house, continued in his inhumane experiments on abducted citizens, intending for there to be no mistakes this time.
At the same time, Scarecrow formed an alliance with the CEO of Stagg Enterprises, the unethical and amoral businessman, Simon Stagg, and requested his aid in developing a dispersal unit for his fear toxin with enough properties that it would engulf the entirety of Gotham. Stagg ultimately agreed as he wanted to sell the fear toxin for profit. However, by September 3rd, Stagg learned Scarecrow's true motivation was to use the device in his vendetta against Batman and decided to backstab him by neglecting to tell him of the device's completion, intending to sell it for commercial purposes. As a result, Scarecrow also was left unaware that the Cloudburst had already been completed by September 20th.
Having spent the past two years carefully making his plans and keeping out of Batman's surveillance over Gotham, as well as Hugo Strange's grasp during the Arkham City project, Scarecrow was finally ready to embark on his long lusted vengeance over Batman and the city he vowed to protect. However, Scarecrow was eventually visited within his safe house by a new villain in Gotham, whose appearance was made to both mimic and mock Batman with reminders of some of the worst nights of his life within Arkham Arkham, known simply as the Arkham Knight.
After murdering all of Scarecrow's guards, the Arkham Knight explained to Crane that he too wished to destroy Batman, but also wanted to make him suffer first through the worst way for the hero; through fear. Lusting to make use of Crane's fear toxin to torture Batman, the Knight offered his services in exchange, namely an entire army and military force to use as Scarecrow saw fit. The Knight lastly revealed that he knew everything about Batman, including who his closest allies were, and convinced Scarecrow to agree to the alliance.
Forming a deadly partnership, the pair eventually set up shop within the abandoned and condemned ruins of the Arkham Mansion after Arkham City's shutdown and TYGER's disbandment, refortified it with the Arkham Knight's makeshift security measures and moved all of the equipment that Scarecrow needed for his final experiments within the destroyed halls. The Knight also introduced Scarecrow to the lethal assassin, Deathstroke, who was previously hired by the Knight years prior, to oversee their campaign and assist in Gotham's occupation. With extensive funding eventually coming from the other villains in Gotham, as well as the stolen money from the city's banks, the villainous trio built up a massive army of tanks and drones and imported hundreds of specially trained soldiers to conquer Gotham.
To this end, Scarecrow exploited the criminal underworld's new landscape that surfaced when the Joker passed away during the events of Arkham City and took complete control over the power vacuum that was left in place of the Clown Prince of Crime. Contacting Gotham's most notorious villains and their gangs for a meeting at his safe house, Scarecrow first sent Harley Quinn on a mission to break into the Bludhaven Police Station and break out Poison Ivy, believing the former botanist was an ideal resource for his plans. Quinn succeeded in her mission, murdering numerous police officers in the process, and freed Ivy after the chaotic duo defeated Nightwing.
Upon Quinn returning with Ivy to his safe house in Chinatown, Scarecrow initiated the first in what would become a series of meetings with the other villains (Penguin, Two-Face, and the Riddler) to discuss their plans. Introducing his fellow rouges to the Arkham Knight, Scarecrow outlined his intentions for Gotham and Batman and ended the meeting by giving the villains time to think about his propositions. Throughout the successive meetings that were held, which mostly took place within the Arkham Mansion on the abandoned Arkham Island, the villains, with the exception of Ivy, agreed to Scarecrow's plans and began to collaborate their own schemes into Crane's agenda. Crane specifically lured Riddler away from the rest of the group in an obvious attempt at trying to appeal to the latter's ego, to which he implied that Batman may potentially outsmart Riddler for good if he didn't act as a distraction. Crane ultimately succeeded in convincing Riddler to put his own plans in effect on the same night that he would do so, and Nigma asked Crane only for the date that his plan was to be enacted on.
With Joker no longer around to create mindless chaos and destruction and pit the other criminals against one another, Scarecrow convinced the rest of Gotham's villains to unite under his leadership to finally achieve their shared goal; the death of Batman. Having lost to Batman a year earlier within Arkham City, the villains realized that working together was the only way to purge the one nuisance who prevented them from conquering Gotham for their own, twisted designs. However, Scarecrow did not want to simply kill Batman but destroy everything that he stood for, take away his allies and family, and ultimately unmask him for the world to see him as just a man before he destroyed Gotham and attacked the entire world itself with fear toxin.
While most of the villains agreed to assist Crane, the sole exception was Poison Ivy, who, on the eve of Halloween, when Scarecrow was about to unleash his plans on the city, refused his final offer to partake in his schemes for revenge. In response, Scarecrow had Ivy sedated and decided to use her as a test subject in a gas chamber that he had constructed within his Chinatown safe house, with ongoing supplies delivered with the assistance and funding of the Penguin, who similarly helped prepare the safe houses and weaponry for the Arkham Knight's Militia. The chamber would release the fear toxin and later be a pivotal asset to Scarecrow's plans, and an attack on Batman and his family.
With the entire criminal underworld under his control, the Arkham Knight and his massive army at his beck and call, and two years of careful planning and preparation under his belt, Scarecrow was more than prepared to give Batman the fight of his life on one more, final night of horror for the whole of Gotham City and beyond. With everything in place, Scarecrow finally initiated his plans on Halloween Night by causing a mass evacuation of the city under the threat of his new strain of fear toxin being explosively unleashed through a massive chemical weapon that was hidden somewhere in Gotham.
To validate his threats, Scarecrow had the Arkham Knight (disguised as a civilian in a red hood) unleash a small portion of his latest toxin within Pauli's Diner, which caused all of the customers and staff to hallucinate and viciously attack one and another, leading to countless deaths in the process. This "demonstration" caused a city-wide panic, as police and emergency services attempted to keep the populace safe and evacuated all citizens to the mainland. Once the city's six million citizens were evacuated, all of the villains' gangs overtook the streets, overwhelming the GCPD, and caused immense chaos and destruction.
Within mere hours, Scarecrow turned Gotham into a twisted playground for the villains and their various criminal organizations to murder, steal, and conquer for their own twisted ambitions, promising them that they were all under his protection and that the GCPD and all of whom they shielded would not be spared. Proclaiming to Batman himself through the city's electronic billboards that his years of protecting Gotham had meant nothing, Scarecrow stated his intentions to completely destroy Gotham and take everything and everybody that Batman held dear and leave his legacy in tatters.
Scarecrow ended with the chilling statement that he would turn his attention to bring similar destruction to the rest of the world once Gotham was reduced to nothing more than ruins and ashes, making it clear that his plans endangered far more than the city. With the Arkham Knight's immense militia, Scarecrow took complete control of the city and used his men, tanks, and helicopters to patrol the streets. Seizing control of the facilities within the Ace Chemicals Factory, Scarecrow called in for additional weapons, trucks, soldiers, and hazardous materials to make enough fear toxin to cover the entire east coast, which would eventually create a chain reaction that would cover the entire nation bit by bit, and ensure that the city was under his surveillance until he was ready to bring similar destruction to the rest of the world.
With his plans in order, Scarecrow and his men murdered several of the Ace Chemicals workers and a team of GCPD Officers that were dispatched to secure the facility, while keeping a handful as hostages to use as collateral, and situated himself within the central mixing chamber to prepare his toxin as the Arkham Knight's forces rigged the factory to blow in order to unleash the toxin into the atmosphere.
With the various gangs and militia taking countless lives with each passing moment, Batman was able to subdue one of Scarecrow's followers and intimidated him to reveal the location of the villain's safe house. Arriving at the location, Batman did not find Scarecrow, but the ramifications of his torturous experiments in the form of bloody surgical instruments, canisters and large containers of fear toxin that were attached to feed tubes that led to a gas chamber, and the militia preparing to record their hostage within that same gas chamber dying from fear toxin exposure; Poison Ivy. After Batman subdued all of the militia, Scarecrow's face was broadcast on a large monitor within the chamber and revealed to Batman that the chamber would give the hero a glimpse of the horror that was soon to be unleashed.
As the armed guard watching over Ivy within the chamber prepared to leave, Scarecrow released his toxin in the chamber, sacrificing the man in the process. Batman let Ivy out of the chamber, as she revealed that she was, in fact, immune to the fear toxin, before he learned of the other villains' alliance and had Ivy locked up within the GCPD before he narrowed his search for Crane. Activating a satellite at Panessa Studios, Batman headed toward the Falcone Shipping Yard to activate a micro tower for Oracle to use in conjunction with the satellite to pinpoint where Scarecrow was manufacturing his fear toxin based off toxicity readings. Scarecrow, however, was one step ahead, and sent a handful of his men to secure the shipping yard, and held a police officer hostage to use as leverage.
Batman was able to easily subdue all of the militia, rescued the hostage, activated the micro tower, and used it to pinpoint Crane's location at the Ace Chemicals Factory. As Batman infiltrated the factory, the hero learned that Scarecrow had ordered the evacuation of the city in order to seize complete control over the factory, as it was the only location within Gotham that had the resources to produce enough of his toxin. The blast radius of the chemical bomb that Scarecrow prepared would reach hundreds upon hundreds of miles, which meant that the evacuation would not spare any citizen.
As Scarecrow concentrated his plans on preparing the last of his chemicals to be dispersed into the mixing chamber and ordered shipments of the toxin to be transported out of the factory, the villain ordered the Arkham Knight to utilize his remote controlled tanks and helicopters to take over all regions of the city and keep them under lockdown to defend against outside interference. Even worse, Batman learned that Scarecrow's bomb that was to cover the entire east coast in fear toxin was merely the first phase of his operations, and, in the end, the deranged villain intended for the entire world to feel the effects of his toxin. Fortunately, Batman was able to subdue Scarecrow's men and confronted him, though the villain maintained that everything was going perfectly to plan.
Revealing that the Arkham Knight's forces had attacked Oracle at the Clock Tower, having been informed by the Knight that she had been working for Batman for years, Crane escaped and locked Batman within the chamber to die. With mere minutes left, Batman used the last of his strength to reduce the blast radius of the bomb a great deal, to the point that only the factory itself would be affected. However, the deep exposure to the toxin awakened the Joker's consciousness within Batman's mind, that was placed there by the Clown Prince of Crime when he injected the hero with his own blood back in Arkham City nine months prior. Joker revealed his plans to slowly take control of Bruce's mind and body and use his equipment and resources to destroy completely Gotham, kill his allies, and begin a bloody campaign on the rest of the world.
Despite the dire circumstances, Batman was able to escape the factory just as the bomb went off and completely destroyed Ace Chemicals. After he learned that Oracle was successfully abducted by the Arkham Knight, Batman concentrated his efforts on saving her and locating Scarecrow. Meanwhile, the Arkham Knight's forces continued to build up their army by constructing more tanks and equipment in underground tunnels, received advanced military-grade weaponry from the Penguin's Henchmen from stockpiles in Bludhaven that were smuggled into the city, and deployed explosives that became imbued within the streets of the city themselves to serve as deterrents from outside intervention.
Villains such as Firefly added to the chaos with massive waves of riots, crime, and destruction, while Riddler abducted Catwoman and held her hostage at the Cyrus Pinkney Orphanage to force Batman into his mind games and death traps. Deranged and power-hungry criminals, such as Professor Pyg and the self-proclaimed Deacon Blackfire, took advantage of the rising chaos to further their own plans and desires. To strike at the heart of Batman's immense funding and equipment, the Arkham Knight sent Thomas Elliot, known as Hush, who worked with the commander for years in order to replicate an identical face to Bruce Wayne through murder and experimentation before and during the events of Arkham City, to attack Wayne Tower and Lucius Fox.
Hush hoped to claim Bruce's fortune and company as his own, murder his former friend in pure vengeance and take his place as Gotham's most influential individual. However, Hush was unaware that Bruce and Batman were one and the same and was shocked when the hero revealed his true identity after Hush threatened to murder Lucius if Wayne was not delivered to him. Adding insult to injury, Lucius, after he escaped from Hush's grasp, smashed a glass vase into Elliot's face, which disfigured the new face that he spent years perfecting and was then smashed through Wayne's desk by Batman, and knocked the villain out cold to be arrested after the night's events.
Batman continued to thwart many of the villains and their plans in spite of the overwhelming odds and dismantled a large portion of the militia's checkpoints, bombs, equipment, watchtowers, and operations. To that end, Batman eventually learned from Penguin that Scarecrow had worked with Simon Stagg to perfect his deadly toxin and had viciously tested it out on hundreds of abducted victims, including Stagg's previous business partner, Alex Sartorius, when he attempted to expose the illegal operation. Additionally, Stagg had worked on an incredible aerosol device called the Cloudburst for Scarecrow, which would disperse Crane's toxin into the environment on a massive and amplified scale.
Batman learned that Stagg had operated out of Zeppelin laboratories that floated over Gotham; laboratories that were attacked by Scarecrow and the Arkham Knight, who intercepted the Zeppelins before Stagg could make a getaway. Stagg had previously worked with Crane to perfect a chemical agent and weapon that he could sell to other countries for commercial gain but betrayed him once he learned that the villain wished to use the Cloudburst in his plans for revenge, and kept the device for himself to sell. Stagg remained behind in Gotham, even in the wake of Scarecrow's plans, as he saw additional opportunities for profit, and waited for the appropriate moment to present itself to offer his assistance to both the criminals and the government in exchange for personal gain.
After he murdered dozens upon dozens of Stagg's employees, Scarecrow seized control of the Zeppelins and perfected the Cloudburst himself. Crane then instructed his forces to capture and kill Stagg and seize as many energy cells, one of the few lawfully legitimate projects that Stagg produced, as possible in order to power the Cloudburst, due to Stagg's earlier duplicity regarding the Cloudburst's status, resulting in it not being maintained enough to actually work as he wanted. When Batman arrived at the second Zeppelin and took out the militia who guarded Stagg and retrieved the remaining power cells, Scarecrow was forced to make preparations for extraction with the Cloudburst before it was fully powered.
After several, grueling battles and Joker induced hallucinations, Batman was able to save and incapacitate Stagg and corner Scarecrow again. Unfortunately, due to Joker's interference, Scarecrow was able to gas Batman once again and escaped with the Cloudburst. After he finally revealed the location of Oracle at the same safe house and gas chamber that Ivy was previously imprisoned at, Scarecrow revealed that Oracle's remaining time was limited. Reaching the safe house, Batman was horrified when he witnessed Oracle hallucinate from the fear toxin that was suddenly pumped into the chamber and seemingly committed suicide with a gun that was left on a table by Scarecrow to avoid further exposure.
Riddled with guilt, Batman resolved to stop Scarecrow once and for all upon realizing that there was one person within Gotham who was immune to the toxin; Ivy. In actuality, Oracle was still alive, with Batman's account of her death a byproduct of the fear toxin in his veins as he looked at Barbara while she was held captive within the gas chamber. She was eventually retrieved from the safe house by Scarecrow and the Arkham Knight's forces and brought to their base on Founders' Island. Once there, Scarecrow interrogated Oracle, eventually threatened to test his latest fear toxin on her and gave a graphic description of its various symptoms, although he was forced away from her by the Arkham Knight, with the latter disgusted with his intention of interrogating her in that manner.
Meanwhile, Batman visited Ivy at the GCPD Lockup and managed to convince her to help him destroy Scarecrow's toxin, as all plants within the city and beyond would also be affected, by using her unique ability to control plant life. Ivy revealed that the founders of the land that became Gotham believed in an abundance of nature and planted countless, massive trees. The oldest of those trees still resided within Gotham's Botanical Gardens and held the unique properties that could counteract Crane's toxin. After Batman escorted Ivy to the tree, rejuvenated its roots, and protected both Ivy and the tree from the Arkham Knight's Militia, Scarecrow played his hand and ordered the Knight (who had unveiled his true identity to Oracle as he guarded her), after he told him that the Cloudburst was fully operational, to disperse his toxin within the device.
As the Arkham Knight activated the Cloudburst, the chemical agents were released into the air, with the device amplifying their effects to the point that Gotham itself was covered in a perpetual cloud of the toxin and short-circuited the Batmobile's energy supply. Scarecrow revealed in the chaos as all of the remaining criminals, except for the Arkham Knight's Militia, began attacking and killing each other in blind fear. Crane revealed that his purpose was not to kill Batman but to destroy everything that he stood for and to make the world see him as a fallen hero and legend and that he would continue to use the Cloudburst on the rest of the world. To tie up all loose ends, Scarecrow sent a handful of the militia to search for and murder Stagg in order to prevent any further interference in his plans from his previous associate.
Despite the overwhelming odds, Batman was able to rescue Stagg before he locked him up in one of his experimental cages for the GCPD to pick him up due to his role in Scarecrow's plans and obtained one of Stagg's energy cells to power up the Batmobile again. After he dove head first into the cloud of toxin, Batman used the cell to energize the Batmobile once again with his mind slowly losing its sanity to Joker's consciousness due to the effects of the toxin. Batman entered his car and located one, final tree system to eradicate the toxin, that was hidden beneath the foundations of Gotham, rejuvenated its roots, and destroyed all of the responding militia tanks and drones that arrived to destroy the plant.
With everything in place to cure the fear toxin, Batman learned that the Arkham Knight had the Cloudburst mounted onto his tank and was patrolling with a group of Cobra Tanks. Using stealth and deception, Batman managed to destroy all of the Cobra Tanks and faced the Knight head-on in a showdown with their vehicles. In the end, Batman managed to overheat the Knight's tank, which blew up both the vehicle and the Cloudburst in one fell swoop. While the Knight was able to escape, Scarecrow was infuriated that the hero had managed to destroy his ultimate weapon and was no longer able to use it against the rest of the world. Ivy then used the last of her will and strength to amplify the ancient trees and destroyed all of the toxins with the pheromone, and tragically gave up her life in the process.
While Gotham was saved, the effects of Scarecrow's toxin led to hundreds of deaths, with countless corpses littering the streets of the city after the toxin was cleared, as Scarecrow refused to surrender and assumed complete control over the remains of the Knight's Militia. After he implemented one of his contingencies, Scarecrow entrusted Deathstroke to oversee all ground operations and promised him that he would be rewarded handsomely with a considerable bounty and a chance for ultimate revenge against Batman for his services.
As Scarecrow planned another attack on Gotham, Batman deciphered a message that was sent by Gordon, who tracked Crane down to kill him for taking Barbara and pinpointed the militia's base to an underground subway station and mall complex that was previously under construction. After he fought through the last of the militia, Batman located a tied up Gordon and was confronted by the Knight for a final showdown. The commander finally revealed his true face and identity to Batman; Jason Todd, the second 'Robin.' After he was previously abducted and tortured by the Joker within an abandoned wing of Arkham Asylum for over a year, Jason grew to despise Batman for never finding him and apparently replacing him with Tim Drake.
After he named himself after the facility in which he was tortured, Jason traveled the globe to perfect his skills and recruited others to be trained in Batman's abilities. After he managed to both defeat and reach out to Jason before the latter escaped once again, Batman freed Gordon and they both made their way to the roof to finally confront Scarecrow. Engaging Crane as he looked over the skyline, Batman was shocked when Gordon suddenly turned his gun on him, after he made a deal with Scarecrow for the life of his daughter, Barbara, who was still alive. Batman's witnessing of Barbara's death was actually the fear toxin in his body that portrayed one of his greatest fears.
Scarecrow had a tied up Barbara escorted to the roof, but revealed that had no intention of letting her go as he intended to slowly torture and kill every one of Batman's allies for the hero to watch before he destroyed Gotham. After he realized that he was played, Gordon shot Batman in his new shielded Batsuit to drive him off the edge of the building, which served as an escape for the hero. Scarecrow, who believed that Gordon had truly meant to kill Batman, took Barbara to the edge of the building and calmly pushed her off, only for Batman to save her at the last second. Scarecrow took Gordon hostage once again and left in a militia aircraft, while he ordered a squadron of tanks to pin Batman down in the meantime.
After he destroyed the tanks and took Barbara to the GCPD, Batman next learned that Scarecrow had ordered his forces to attack the Clock Tower to destroy her servers; without them, Batman and Oracle would be unable to locate Gordon again. After Batman subdued all of the militia that attacked the Clock Tower, Oracle was able to pinpoint Gordon's location near Gotham's bay just as Scarecrow ordered a full-scale assault on the GCPD. Working together with Oracle, who was sent a vulnerability within the militia's network (most likely from Jason) that enabled her to take control of the tanks and sabotage them, Batman was able to destroy the last of the army's tanks and helicopters. However, Scarecrow revealed that the attack had also served as a diversion, and allowed the villain to attack Panessa Studios, which was previously converted into a secondary base of operations by Batman, where Robin was also stationed.
Crane told Batman to meet at a storage depot in Kingston, that was previously used by the villain to receive his equipment and attire for the various gangs if he wished to ever see Gordon or Robin again. Upon reaching the location after he neutralized all of the villains and militia operations, Batman was forced by Scarecrow, via a monitor, to surrender his Utility Belt and walk into the back of a truck that was adjacent to the depot. When Batman did so, the truck began to drive away as fear toxin was pumped into the air, and caused Joker's consciousness to grow stronger than ever. After he had a brutal, and mental fight with the Joker in Crime Alley, Batman's mind was mere moments away from being consumed completely by Joker's consciousness.
After he arrived at the abandoned and destroyed Arkham Asylum, that was converted into a base of operations by Scarecrow, Batman was restrained and put in front of a camera, as Gordon and Robin watched from the side, that broadcasted to the entire world. Scarecrow revealed his intentions to unmask Batman and show the world that he was simply a man, a legend made bare, before he injected him with fear toxin, murder all of his allies, and destroy Gotham. Scarecrow forced Gordon to unmask the hero and shot Robin non-lethally to enforce his order. Batman urged Gordon to follow the order and told his long-time friend that he had everything under control.
Gordon complied and took off Batman's mask, which revealed to the world that he was Bruce Wayne. Scarecrow, genuinely shocked at his identity, injected Batman with his toxin to reduce him to a fallen and fearful man in front of the world. Meanwhile, Joker fully took control over the hero when Scarecrow injected him with the lethal dose of fear toxin. With Joker controlling his mind, the villain warped his mental images into a hellish nightmare that outlined his intentions and plans for Gotham, including murdering his rivals, their gangs, and Batman's allies before he used Bruce's resources and equipment to completely destroy Gotham, and ended by threatening to attack Wayne Manor and Alfred.
As Joker assumed control over Bruce's mind and body, Scarecrow told Bruce his intentions to not kill him, but rather release him back into the city just in time to see Gotham destroyed and all his allies being hunted down and killed as a final testament to his failure as Batman. To Crane's shock, however, "Bruce" (in actuality the Joker taking over his body) told him to "get ready for the encore" while he laughed insanely. Confused and outraged that Bruce wasn't even remotely scared, Crane decided to up the dosage of fear toxin into the Dark Knight, which ended up playing right into Batman's plan to rid himself of the Joker Infection once and for all. While a normal dosage of Crane's fear toxin had no effect on Joker's mind, the more lethal dose, that was directly injected into Batman's veins, made it impossible for even the Clown Prince of Crime to withstand its effects.
While initially confident that the toxin would have no effect on him as he seemingly had no fears, and even cracked a joke about his own cremation, Joker became very disturbed and progressively frightened at the new surroundings around him, including his grave shown to be small, overgrown and vandalized, no one but a sobbing Harley Quinn attending his wake, and Gotham, Batman, and even Harley moving on without him. The Joker eventually realized that, with all the horror he had inflicted on others, no one would mourn or miss him, and his legacy would be remembered as nothing more than a bad memory best left forgotten as Gotham and Batman moved on with their lives.
After he was genuinely frightened that he was trapped within the nightmare and that he would not be remembered by anyone, Joker was stalked by an invulnerable Batman but was slightly relieved when he believed that he had found an exit. Ironically, that was nothing more than a ruse by Batman, who finally turned the tables on his hated nemesis and regained control of his mind by preying on Joker's insatiable lust for attention to feed his massive ego. Batman revealed to the Joker that the villain was terrified of being forgotten and that he would indeed be forgotten by everyone. For the first time in their battles, the Joker was truly horrified and helpless against Batman as he was severely beaten and thrown into a cell within Arkham Asylum.
As Batman locked the door to the cell, Joker screamed and desperately pleaded with the hero not to imprison, leave, and forget him, as he would be locked away within his mind forever, and told the hero that he needed him. Batman, after overcoming his own fear of not being able to control Joker in his mind, bid goodbye to his nemesis and locked him away in his personal hell forever as the Joker slowly sobbed and faded away.
Immediately afterward, Batman regained his mind and sanity and, after he built up a tolerance to the fear toxin and was freed by a redeemed Jason (who donned the image of the Red Hood), injected Scarecrow with his own toxin. Scarecrow was reduced to a pathetic and cowering man in front of a live television, who screamed insanely as his fears took control, saw Batman as a demonic figure, and tried to escape until Gordon knocked him out. Humiliated, beaten, and mentally broken, Scarecrow was taken to the GCPD Lockup in the Batwing, where he remained locked up for the rest of his life along with his fellow criminals.
In the end, Batman was able to rebuild his family and keep Gotham safe, with his heroics always remembered as a legend that sustained the city, with Gordon unveiling a statue of the hero to commemorate him, while Scarecrow became the very thing that he had hoped and failed to turn Bruce Wayne into, a frightened and cowering man for the entire world to see. Rather than destroy Batman's legend, Scarecrow inadvertently helped to ensure that he would never be forgotten for the hero that he truly was, regardless of who was underneath the mask.
- "I once searched for terror in chemistry. I thought perfectly arranged atoms could unlock the demons in a man's mind."
- Psychiatry: He is even considered to be Arkham’s most prominent psychiatrist with a tremendous specialization in anxiety disorders, psychoactive drugs, and a clever form of exposure therapy he created known as phobic substitution (replacing the chronically frightening stimulus with a much less fearful stimulus). A phobia whiz since adolescence, Scarecrow is highly adept in reciting the name and description of nearly every known phobia. He is also an extremely intelligent manipulator as he managed to trick the asylum doctors into thinking he wasn't insane, especially Dr. Young who even believed in his charade.
- Toxicology: Crane’s chemical and toxicological expertise led him to develop his ingenious panicogenic fear-gas, a true weapon of terror atomized with powerful synthetic adrenocortical secretions and other potent hallucinogens; when inhaled or injected into the bloodstream, the victim will embrace nightmarish psychological manifestations of their worst fears. Scarecrow’s latest fear-toxin contained insect hormonal secretions that possessed similar chemicals that activate a stronger fear response in the brain. It’s almost inevitable to overcome the nuclear fallout of chronic terror-induced psychological trauma because the toxin’s effects are so strong, it could so easily break the minds of those with a sheer iron will and absorb through anything such as the skin, eyes, clothing, and gas-masks.
Leadership: Scarecrow took complete control over the entire criminal underworld and the Arkham Knight’s militia.
Intimidation: As the self-proclaimed Master of Fear, Scarecrow is a creature of the shadows, like the Dark Knight himself, who realizes the value in waiting for the right moment to strike fear in all who see him. He has weaponized fear itself with psychological tactics and psychoactive toxins that cause his victims to suffer hallucinations of their darkest fears.
Anxiety Disorder: Originally from childhood, Crane suffered from a form of ornithophobia known as corvidophobia (fear of crows) after being attacked by a murder of crows at the family aviary; he somehow managed to face this fear in adulthood. He is currently suffering from the chemical-induced chiropteraphobia (fear of bats) after his first encounter with Batman.
Obsession: Scarecrow became motivated by an obsessive need to create fear in others. No longer seeing it as a weapon, he preaches the concept of fear as a religion.
Fear-Gas: Though Crane does possess a great deal of resistance to his regular fear-toxin, he is not immune to the new batch he used on Halloween. Once injected with it, it broke Scarecrow's mind, leaving him a fearful, blubbering mess.
Broken Leg: Left leg permanently broken and secured in a leg brace.
- "Without fear, life is meaningless."
- ―Scarecrow to Batman[src]
Once a highly respected doctor in his successful fields of biochemistry and psychology, Scarecrow was in reality, obsessed with fear which caused him to have a low sanity and morality meter in adulthood, as he was determined in overcoming the worst fears of mankind and used that knowledge to control fear itself to gain power. Crane had the mentality of a scientist and believed the only way to achieve results was through experimentation, though his methods were unscrupulous, he showed little remorse over submitting living subjects to a literal nightmare, if he believed that their deaths were for a greater benefit, he would do so without batting an eye. Being afraid for most of his childhood due to being bullied into submission had destroyed Crane's psyche entirely as he vowed to never feel afraid again; he was willing to illegally experiment on humans by exposing others to their worst nightmares to advance his research further and achieve that.
Despite his sadistic nature, Scarecrow did seem to genuinely believe that his work was for the good of humanity. Or perhaps, he believed that initially, but as displayed on the night that Joker took control of Arkham Asylum, as shown by the way that he laughed joyfully to exposing orderlies, patients and multiple innocent civilians to his fear toxin and reveled in their madness, Scarecrow seemed to have shredded that (false) ideal to comfort humanity entirely and proved his nature as that of an evil psychopath in its fullest. Crane also seemed to genuinely believe that he was still a doctor, and ignored that his accomplishments and decorations as one have officially reneged ever since he unlawfully experimented on living human subjects. Crane treated his interrogation with Oracle as a therapy session, recorded it and stated her as his patient. That was the same situation during his therapy sessions at Arkham Asylum with Dr. Kellerman and acted as if he was in charge of the session until he poisoned him.
The radical personality shift that was seen in Scarecrow's character after the events of Arkham Asylum, that was displayed after he took control of Gotham could be attributed to his traumatizing encounter with Croc. Whilst Crane was initially depicted as a maniacal and sadistic villain and was accompanied by a loud, over-dramatic tone in a high bravado and highly outspoken towards his sadism upon inflicting worst fears upon people. The encounter with Croc had shattered that entire aspect of his personality and two years later, he returned as a calm, calculating apathetic and diabolical mastermind. Other than his cruel humor accompanied with a deep chuckle, Crane displayed a completely calm persona with little emotion and even less scrupled than earlier. Though he was initially depicted as an assisting factor of the Joker's plans, Scarecrow evolved even more grandiose in his designs, became in charge of his own operation and expanded his desire to release his fear toxin, which showed a degree of ambition in a Machiavellian sense.
Scarecrow's opinions on fear, and simultaneously highlighting the depths of his own insanity were not explored fully until his Interview Tapes from Arkham Asylum. Though initially, it was thought that Crane had viewed fear as a weapon in his arsenal for him to use against everything, while in reality, he treated the concept of terror as a religion. He governed it as an omnipotent force that controlled every action of life and everybody within life was dictated on how they acted due to an impractical phobia of sorts. That only appeared to have gotten worse as he claimed that fear was a fundamental factor of life, and that life itself was meaningless without fear. He declared a low opinion of hope, understood it as the catalyst of fear, had shown a multitude of times to be against its concepts, and was willing to rip hope from Gotham by destroying the myth of Batman and plunging the city into a reign of terror.
Matching his expansive brilliance in his field of biochemistry and the ability to turn one's fear against an individual, Scarecrow was also highly knowledgeable of other people's pressure points. As stated above, he was able to use fear to garner control over others and manipulating them based on their own worst fears coming true. Crane does that with Edward Nigma, by persuading him to join forces with the rest of the super-criminals by silently lulling his ego and the idea that Riddler's worst fear: being defeated and humiliated yet again may become a reality if he did not join forces with Scarecrow. Crane kidnapped Barbara Gordon and used her against Commissioner Gordon, and realized that Gordon's worst fear was his personal guilt over her paraplegia and his inability to save her, which he used to control him.
Crane was also glinted at having an obsessive mind and due to his damaged psyche, went to psychopathic lengths to achieve them into a reality. Scarecrow's obsession with fear became intensely warped as he described a desire to Batman to cover the entire world, beginning with the Eastern Seaboard, namely Gotham, in fear toxin. Noticeably, that was seen with his lingering obsession with enacting revenge on Batman. A large part of that resentment while due to what Scarecrow perceived as Batman assisting Croc into mauling him, it was also because how witnessing a man who was by all means fearless was an almost blasphemous shattering to Scarecrow's views on life. Thus, Crane refused several opportunities to immediately kill Batman, as he would simply by martyred as a legend and had no fear of death, which made killing him redundant to his full objective. By unmaking Batman, rebuff the claims that he was anything more than a man, and inject him with a concentrated dose of fear toxin, he would die afraid, like any man.
In the comic "Road to Arkham", which led into the events of Arkham Asylum, Scarecrow was wearing his classic outfit with his typical hat and mask, which is known from the regular comic series. In Arkham Asylum, however, his outfit has changed. Instead of a hat, he chose a hood combined with a gas mask. Being shirtless and wearing no shoes, his clothes appear as he had made them out of his regular prison clothing. After the vicious attack of Killer Croc, his appearance changed drastically. His Arkham Knight outfit seems to be a combination of his old comic book look and his Arkham Asylum cloths.
He suffered from severe injuries due to the attack by Croc, serving as one of the reasons for his long absence from Gotham. Using his injuries to his advantage in order to truly become one with his alter ego, Crane reconstructed his face by sewing his mask into his skin, making it his true face. It should also be noted, that in the entire Arkham series Scarecrow's real face was never fully shown.
- Genius in chemistry and psychology.
- Creator of fear-inducing gas that drives psychologically tortured victims to the point of suicide or cardiac arrest.
- Master tactician in psychochemical warfare.
- Obsessed with fear.
- Cares only for results in his twisted experiments.
Psychological Profile (Dr. Young)
"Possibly one of my greatest successes here at the asylum. Despite his tendency for extensive role-play (oddly common among Gotham City's criminals), it's unclear to me why Dr. Crane was ever considered insane. In our long discussions, I've been impressed with his genius for psychology and biochemistry, and I fully believe that if presented with a stock of his fear-inducing gas, he would feel no compulsion to use it. He seems to have entirely turned away from his former life of crime as the Scarecrow."
"He's valiantly battled a history of anxiety disorder, due to a difficult childhood and adulthood trauma, through an intense study of psychology and the causes of fear.
I've come to believe that the accusations that he experimented on human subjects are wildly exaggerated."
GENIUS at Chemistry!
Would he have something to contribute to 'Titan' research?
Patient Interview #1, January 7th
- Scarecrow: Patient Interview 1. The patient was referred to me after the incident with Dr. Murphy. He appears to have suffered a breakdown of sorts. I believe it was brought about by the loss of his wife and child. As yet, the patient has been unable to speak. Continued observation shows little mental activity. It's as if the shock of what he saw triggered his mental collapse.
- Security Guard: There's someone in here! It's him! We've found him! Break down the door!
- Scarecrow: Note to self. As ever, it is difficult to continue my research under such conditions.
- Security Guard: Step away from Dr. Combs. Now! Get down on the ground! We found them. Someone get a medic. Oh God, what's he done to him?
Patient Interview #6, January 22nd
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Patient interview 6. Dr. Crane has been back in custody for 3 weeks. Regular sessions have been inconclusive. I am not sure he is actually insane.
- Scarecrow: Good evening, Stephen. How are you tonight?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: I'm conducting the session, Jonathan.
- Scarecrow: Of course. If that helps you cope, I wouldn't have it any other way.
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Let's talk about the events 3 weeks ago. What did you think you'd achieve? Dr. Murphy is still in therapy.
- Scarecrow: I wanted to understand him. His personal demons. His fears. It's all quite fascinating, really.
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: But you are...were a respected doctor. A brilliant mind, now just another resident in Arkham.
- Scarecrow: Can I have a drink? A strong one? This kind of question bores me.
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: I'm afraid not.
- Scarecrow: Interesting choice of words, Doctor. Tell me, what are you afraid of?
Patient Interview #9, January 29th
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Patient interview 9. Dr. Crane continues to evade questions. I believe he is quite sane. Just evil. He takes no interest in the people he has hurt. His research appears to be the only motivating factor in his life. What is it about the fear that drives your obsessions?
- Scarecrow: Fear drives everything, Stephen. Everything. Your life is governed by fear. Every decision you make is a product of that fear.
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Don't be ridiculous.
- Scarecrow: You married your wife...Margaret, isn't it?...because you were scared of dying alone. You have children because you are scared of leaving nothing behind that really matters. You go to the doctors because you're scared of dying. Do I need to go on?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: No. I think that will be all for today. Guards!
Patient Interview #12, February 14th
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Today I have another interview with Crane. I cannot say I am looking forward to it. I've been feeling anxious. I don't like to admit it, but...I think he's getting to me.
- Scarecrow: How are you today?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: I keep telling you, this is my session.
- Scarecrow: It was your session, Doctor, but not anymore.
- Security Guard: Are you OK, doc?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: I think...yes..I...
- Scarecrow: Oh, he's fine. Just questioning his grip on reality. You should be doing the same any second...
- Security Guard: Mom, is that you? Wait, what are you doing?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Get off of me... Help. I need help here. I can't breathe...
- Scarecrow: Like I said... You're all part of my experiment now!
Asylum interview #1, February 14th
- Scarecrow: Asylum interview 1. My experiment is underway. Working alone, I have created my ultimate Fear Gas, its potency a revelation.
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Ah! Ahh! They're all over me!
- Security Guard: Please, daddy, don't do it! Ah! Ahh!
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Keep away! Keep away! Keep away!
- Scarecrow: I have pumped enough gas into the Medical Center to break 100 minds. It should only be a matter of time before (Sound of glass shattering.) What?
- Batman: Give it up, Now!
- Scarecrow: How...how are you still standing? How come it's not affecting you?
- Batman: Who says it's not?
- Scarecrow: I knew it. What was it like? What have you seen?
- Dr. Stephen Kellerman: Officer Cash. Get this formula to the air-conditioning system. Now!
- Batman: You failed, Crane. Again. I've been working with Dr. Kellerman, creating an antidote to the toxins in your cologne. He fooled you, Crane. How does that make you feel? Threatened, humiliated? Scared?
- Arkham Knight: You should invest in better guards, Crane.
- Scarecrow: And you should invest in some manners... Who are you? Another pretender to the cowl?
- Arkham Knight: Call me the Arkham Knight.
- Scarecrow: Another child of the Asylum set free. Tell me, what tortured soul cowers behind that mask?
- Arkham Knight: It doesn't matter who I am. I'm here because we want the same thing. Batman dead.
- Scarecrow: You made short work of my guards, but Batman is a very different proposition. One for which I am fully prepared.
- Arkham Knight: Those "guards" I killed? I could replace them with an army, an army trained in his methods.
- Scarecrow: Trained by whom?
- Arkham Knight: Me.
- Scarecrow: And what would you know about Batman?
- Arkham Knight: His fears.
- Scarecrow: Very well. You have my attention, Arkham Knight.
- Scarecrow: Three billion is a significant investment.
- Arkham Knight: People are willing to pay.
- Scarecrow: And what exactly would we be getting for our money?
- Arkham Knight: Tanks, drones, a highly-trained infantry.
- Scarecrow: You think you can just bring tanks into Gotham?
- Arkham Knight: We hold his city ransom. We create panic. Then chaos.
- Scarecrow: A distraction.
- Arkham Knight: As they run scared, we emerge, take over his habitat. Every rooftop, road and back alley. We draw him out of the shadows and chip away until he has nowhere left to hide and no one left to hide behind.
- Scarecrow: If you want him dead, why come to me? You seem... capable.
- Arkham Knight: He needs to suffer. I suffered. So he will too.
- Scarecrow: So it's personal. There are many in this city with a gift for causing harm.
- Arkham Knight: Not that kind of pain. The real kind.
- Scarecrow: Ah. You want him afraid.
- Arkham Knight: I've seen what your toxin does. I want that.
- Scarecrow: You're well informed about all of us, Arkham Knight. But you're wrong about something. I don't want Batman dead. I want him unmade.
- Arkham Knight: He's better off dead.
- Scarecrow: Kill him, and you martyr him, you make him a legend. But break him, humiliate him, terrify him and hold him up for the world to see. Then he's nothing but a man.
- Arkham Knight: Look, you can do what you want, Crane. But when you're done, I will kill him.
- Scarecrow: Very well. But know this: it'll be an act of mercy when you do.
- "Poor little bat. You're in my world now!"
- "What are you doing, little bat?"
- "I will break you!"
- "Oh, there you are!"
- "No, he's not. We really should feel sorry for him. He never fully got over his parent's death. It left him quite insane."
- "Everything you see is under my control!"
- "Is your mind playing tricks on you? Or am I?"
- "What are you, Batman? Chicken?"
- "Dare to step into my gaze!"
- "I think you need a little more!"
- "Tell me, what demons do you have left to beat? Shall we see?"
- "Are you enjoying the extra dose, little bat? Oh, I won't rush things this time. I'm going to savor every moment of your terror as I slowly destroy you."
- "You're fighting back. Good. It can only weaken your resolve."
- "How much more do you think you can take? Does it scare you to know that I have almost defeated you?"
- "How are you doing this? You have ingested enough toxins to drive ten men insane! What are you?
- "Why fight it, Batman? You're as crazy as the rest of us. You need us as much as we need you. And to prove it, I'll flood the catacombs with enough Fear Gas to break the minds of everyone in Gotham for a hundred years."
- "You cannot escape my gaze! You will die here!"
- "Look around you! These are the broken fragments of your mind!"
- "Your mind will shatter like glass!"
- "Are you scared, little bat? Do you need your mommy?"
- "Welcome to my world, Batman!"
- "I see you, Batman."
- "What was that?"
- "You're in my realm now. Everything is as real as I choose it to be."
- "What are you trying to do?"
- "Stand still. This won't hurt."
- "He's all yours, Joker."
- "How many more bones will you crush? How many lives will you destroy in the pursuit of what you call justice? You are the product of everything you fear: violence, darkness, helplessness. All that remains is for you to watch, as I drag your beloved Gotham into oblivion."
Game Over Lines
Batman: Arkham Asylum
- "Now madness takes you, forever."
- "And at the end of fear... oblivion."
- "You've failed. Now suffer!"
Batman: Arkham Knight
- "I wanted more than your death and Gotham's destruction, but you forced my hand."
- "This is the end, Dark Knight, you've got nothing to be afraid of anymore."
- "You have failed to stop me, Batman, now Gotham will fall."
- "Prepare yourself, Batman. My reign of terror starts now."
- "Die knowing that I will make them suffer, every one."
- "Didn't you know, Dark Knight, you can't fight fear?"
- "You die here, and your legend dies with you."
Injustice: Gods Among Us
Scarecrow had a cameo in Injustice: Gods Among Us in one of the stage transitions in the Arkham Asylum Stage. When the player attacked their opponent near the edge of the Cell Block Arena, they were knocked into a room where Scarecrow injected the fighter with fear toxin, and brutally attacked them at the gigantic size before they moved on to the Mess Hall Arena.
- Dr. Crane was a frequent visitor to Blackgate Prison, and he also gave advertisements to curing psychological problems, some of which were posted on the Final Offer. That implied that Crane already conducted his inhumane experiments on both volunteers and prisoners alike. However, he did not sign out of Blackgate by the time that Black Mask had conducted a raid on the prison facility, which indicated that he may have still been in the prison at the time of the riot.
- While Dr. Young and Dr. Kellerman had different opinions on Crane's true nature, they both believed that he was never truly insane. In the case of Dr. Kellerman, he believed that Crane was simply evil, while Dr. Young, believed he was both sane and redeemed until Crane showed his true intentions weeks later. It was unknown how Dr. Young reacted to her inaccurate assessment of the villain.
- Additionally, the mention of "Doctor Murphy" in Scarecrow's Interview Tapes may have been a reference to Cillian Murphy, the actor who played Scarecrow in Christopher Nolan's Batman films. The tapes also included a "Doctor Combs" which could refer to Jeffery Combs, the actor who was the voice of Scarecrow in the fourth season of Batman: The Animated Series.
- The needles on the Scarecrow's right hand bear a strong resemblance to the fictional serial killer, Freddy Krueger's claws.
- While under the influence of Scarecrow's toxin during the events of Arkham Asylum, any attempt to use detective mode will be met with laughter from the villain, showcasing the level of control the fear gas had on Batman's mental state.
- Within the challenge map, "Scarecrow Nightmare", Crane himself appeared in the background, rapidly taunting Batman as he fought skeletons under the villain's command.
- Like Joker, Scarecrow didn't have an identifiable cell at Arkham Asylum. Theoretically, he could have been held at the "Extreme Isolation" area of Arkham, which was the one place that the player couldn't explore.
- In Scarecrow's secret lair under the elevators, computer monitors showed security camera images of Batman escorting Joker through Arkham. That indicated that Crane may have already escaped his cell prior to the riot, or that he had a way of slipping in and out of his cell without being noticed, given the number of supplies that were present.
- Crane's appearance in Batman: Arkham Asylum was ranked as the 38th Greatest Moment in Gaming.
- Scarecrow's bio in Arkham Knight mentions him as the Master of Fear. In several stories in the comics, Scarecrow is claiming that name for himself. In the Batman Black and White story "The Bat no More...?" Batman acknowledges that name by admitting, that Dr. Crane is the "Master of dispensing fear to others," after being affected by the fear gas, which made Batman afraid of bats and consequently forced him to take a break from his crusade against crime in Gotham.
- During the post-game missions, if you talk to Barbara Gordon, she jokingly suggests that they push Scarecrow "over the edge," a reference to the DCAU episode of the same name that also featured Scarecrow (which featured similar plot points to the events of Arkham Knight relating to Batman, Commissioner Gordon, Scarecrow, and Barbara Gordon/her [former] identity as Batgirl).