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The Riddler (Jim Carrey)

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The Riddler
The Riddler (BF)
General Information
Real name: Edward Nygma
Aliases: Riddler
Mr E Nygma
Alignment: Bad
Affiliation: Harvey Dent/Two Face (ally)
Sugar (ally)
Spice (ally)
Fred Stickley (supervisor)
Characteristics: Gender - Male
Eyes - Brown
Hair - Auburn (Edward Nygma's natural color)
Brown wig (as Edward when imitating Bruce Wayne)
Red wig(s) (as the Riddler)
Portrayed by: Jim Carrey
Appearances: Batman Forever


"Riddle me this, riddle me that. Who's afraid of the big black bat?"
―The Riddler[src]

The Riddler was the chosen alias of criminal genius Edward Nygma. After being rejected by his idol Bruce Wayne for one of his inventions, he turned to crime and used his scientific knowledge for evil.

HistoryEdit

Batman ForeverEdit

EdwardNygmaJC

Nygma conducting his experiments

"I'm sucking up your IQ, vacumming your cortex, feeding off your brain."
―Edward Nygma sing-songingly taunting his boss, Fred Stickley, while utilizing his neural energy.
[src]

Edward Nygma became a researcher under the employment of Wayne Enterprises, and had developed a device to beam television directly to a person's brain. Bruce Wayne, Nygma's secret idol, convinced that mind manipulation would raise too many questions, turns the idea down, but Nygma continues to work on it after hours. When Fred Stickley, the head of the research department, discovers Nygma's clandestine overtime, Nygma knocks Stickley unconscious, ties him to a chair, and then uses him to test his device, discovering that he can use it to absorb people's knowledge. Realizing Wayne was right about it being mind manipulation, Stickley fires Nygma, but Nygma murders Stickley, doctors the security tapes to make Stickley's death look like a suicide, and then resigns from Wayne Enterprises.

Edward Nygma, who has been stalking Wayne and leaving riddles for him, is inspired and delighted by watching Two-Face's raid at the circus on live television and creates his own alter-ego in the form of The Riddler, a master of puzzles and quizzes. He perfects his brain-manipulation device into a system, "The Box", which beams signals to and from the human brain in order to simulate an immersive television viewing experience.

This has the side effect of allowing the Riddler to read viewers' minds, as well as augmenting his own intelligence. Using his device, the Riddler finds Two-Face in his lair, and proposed a deal with to use his brain-manipulation device to discover Batman's true identity. Seeing the advantage of the device, Two-Face agrees (due to his coin marking heads in favour of the deal), and they become partners-in-crime in order to fund mass-production of the device. With enough capital to start mass-production of his invention, the Riddler then readopts his Nygma identity and opens his own business called NygmaTech, selling thousands of his devices to many Gotham citizens, who finds his invention very impressive. The Riddler then builds his main base of operations on Claw Island which was ten miles away from Gotham City.

After this is completed successfully, the Riddler starts to feed on the minds of the citizens every time they use his inventions, making him more intelligent. Two-Face also receives his share of feeding off the citizens' minds, making him more intelligent as well. Following his successful marketing of the invention, Nygma hosts a launch event for a set-top version of his device, to which many citizens attend, including Wayne himself. Nygma convinces an unwitting Wayne to try it, resulting in Riddler and Two-Face discovering Wayne's alter ego.

At the night of Halloween, the villains later converge upon Wayne Manor, where the Riddler discovers the location of the Batcave. He then proceeded to destroy it and all of its equipment with bat shaped bombs while Two-Face shoots at Bruce, grazing his head with a bullet and leaving him unconscious. Two-Face attempts to finish Wayne off with a second bullet, but the Riddler talks him out of it, stating that "If you kill 'im, he won't learn nothin'." and leaves a final riddle for Wayne, while Two-Face orders his henchmen to kidnap Dr. Chase Meridian.

  • First Riddle 1/3
  • First Riddle 2/3
  • First Riddle 3/3
  • Second Riddle 1/2
  • Second Riddle 2/2
  • Third Riddle
  • Fourth Riddle 1/2
  • Fourth Riddle 2/2
After Bruce regains consciousness, he and Alfred eventually solve the greater riddle concealed in the riddles left for them when they notice each one has a number in it:

1. "If you look for numbers on my face, you won't find thirteen any place."

2. "Tear one off and scratch my head; what was once red is black instead."

3. "The eight of us go forth, not back, to protect our king from a foe's attack."

4. "We're five little items of an everyday sort; you'll find us all in 'a tennis court'."

Each number corresponds to a letter in the alphabet, with 1 and 8 being digits for the number 18. 13 being "M", 18 for "R" and 5 for "E", M-R-E, or "Mr. E"- mystery, or enigma- Mr. E. Nygma. Changing into Batman in the sole remaining Batsuit, a prototype with sonar-imaging lenses built into the cowl, Bruce asks Alfred whether he should use the Batboat or the Batwing. Dick suggests both as he enters the Batcave- now dressed in a "Robin" costume of Alfred's design. Bruce decides two against two are better odds, and finally agrees to Dick becoming a partner. Meanwhile, back at Claw Island, the captive Dr. Meridian tells the Riddler that Batman will come for her, but upon expecting to see that he would be scoffing at it, he instead admits that he is counting on Batman to come as part of his plan.

Riddler Batsignal

The Riddler's altered Batsignal.

Batman and Robin use both vehicles to enter the aquatic lair; however, the machines are destroyed by the Riddler and Two-Face. The heroes end up swimming to an island made of metal, where they are separated. Batman fights his way through the Riddler's deadly traps, while Robin finally fights Two-Face. He manages to send the villain over the edge of a ledge, where he clings to dear life. Realizing that he would rather have Two-Face arrested and locked up for life than kill him, Robin helps him up instead. The villain thanks him by pulling out a gun and trapping him. Meanwhile, Batman finally reaches the Riddler, who sits in a large throne beneath the glass chamber that collects the brainwaves of Gotham's citizens, surrounded by obfuscating laser lights and holograms. He reveals Chase and Robin, bound and gagged with duct tape imprisoned in large glass containers over a large, deadly pit of water and metal spikes.

The Riddler, challenging Batman with the greatest riddle of all ("Can Bruce Wayne and Batman ever truly co-exist?"), gives him the choice of rescuing either Chase or Robin. Batman distracts the Prince of Puzzles with a riddle of his own; unable to resist, the Riddler takes his hand off of the control that would drop the two and listens eagerly. Batman gives his Riddle: "I see without seeing. To me, darkness is as clear as daylight. What am I?". The Riddler scoffs and gives him the answer: "Please! You're as blind as a bat!". The Dark Knight affirms this answer, and activates the Batsuit's sonar-imaging lenses, allowing him to accurately hurl a Batarang at the brain-wave hub, shattering both it and the Riddler's massive intelligence. Before the Riddler collapses, he springs the trap doors in Robin's and Doctor Meridian's cages, sending them plummeting to their apparent doom. Fortunately, Batman rescues both of them before confronting Two-Face.

The Riddler defeated 2

The Riddler after the explosion of his lair

After Batman kills Two-Face by leading him to fall down into the deadly pit, he returns to the Riddler's now-destroyed lair and finds Edward, his mind now enfeebled by the brainwave reversal and his body is horribly scarred from the explosion of the brain-wave hub. Taking light to his former employee's plight, Batman finally answers Nygma's riddle saying "I had to save them both. You see, I'm both Bruce Wayne and Batman. Not because I have to be, now, because I choose to be". Just as Batman moves closer to him, the Riddler screams in terror as he sees a giant bat flying towards him.

With the villains defeated, Batman turns Nygma to the authorities, who then sentenced Nygma to be committed to Arkham Asylum, and Chase is asked to consult on his case by Dr. Burton. She is told that he has been screaming for hours that he knows who Batman is. Wondering if the Riddler has indeed remembered the information taken from Bruce Wayne's brain concerning Batman's identity, she goes to Nygma's cell. She identifies herself and then asks The Riddler if he remembers her. When he answers affirmatively, the Riddler offers to reveal the identity of Batman to her if she says "please". She does so, and the Riddler responds by telling her that he thinks he himself is Batman, and as if to prove his point, he starts flapping his arms as if to imitate a bat, laughing manically. This might mean that the Riddler's intelligence is completely damaged caused by the destruction of the brain-wave hub, thus he has lost all his sanity. At that point, Chase comes out to tell Wayne that his secret is now safe.

Batman & RobinEdit

B & R Criminal Property Locker

The Riddler's outfit in Arkham Asylum

A couple of years later, when Mr. Freeze was being held in Arkham, one of Nygma's green Riddler outfits was still being held in the confiscated goods room, along with one of Two-Face's, when Poison Ivy and Bane break Freeze out.

Behind the ScenesEdit

Rumors suggest that while Tim Burton was slated to direct Batman Forever, his intention was to have Michael Keaton return as the title character, and use the Riddler (Edward Nygma) as the main villain. Robin Williams was the first choice for the role, but he turned it down. Burton went on to cast Micky Dolenz, who screen-tested for the role. The Riddler was to be depicted as psychopathic, and oddly enough Burton's version of the character was rumored to have a question mark shaved on his head. Dolenz's involvement ended once Joel Schumacher was hired to direct, who instead decided to bank on Jim Carrey for the role as well as introducing Two-Face into the equation.

In reality, according to an interview with Janet Scott Batchler, Tim Burton's only involvement with Batman Forever was approving Joel Schumacher as director and Lee and Janet Scott Batchler as the writers. Burton did not contribute story ideas. Due to the character's popularity, the Batchlers decided to use the Riddler as a villain against Bruce Wayne and wrote their own origin for him. In the early drafts, Riddler's real name was Lyle Heckendorf and his rival company was called HeckTech. A scene in the early drafts that didn't make it into the final film featured Lyle stalking Bruce at the circus and stealing the clothes of a performing circus leprechaun. The leprechaun suit then formed the basis for the Riddler outfit. Once the script was written, Schumacher courted Robin Williams for the role, but Williams again turned it down. [1]

Jim Carrey portrayed the Riddler with Frank Gorshin as his stated primary influence. He also said that he was attracted to the "stalker" angle added to the character in the script. Nygma is shown to be obsessed with his idol Bruce Wayne, his turn to crime a result of Wayne's rejection of his mind-manipulation invention. Throughout the film, Nygma obsesses over Wayne, copying Wayne's appearance down to a facial mole, and he prevents Two-Face from killing Wayne. This version of the Riddler employs a device called "The Box", disguised as a 3D imagery device for TVs, that extracts victims' thoughts and transmits them into the Riddler's head, making him smarter and contributing to his mental breakdown. In the end, Batman damages the Box with a Batarang, and Riddler's intelligence (as well as his sanity) is lost.

Throughout the film, he plants a series of riddles for Batman/Wayne to find, which lead to the disclosure of his identity. At the end of the film, he is captured in Gotham's Arkham mental hospital and begins screaming that he's learned Batman's identity - himself. This incarnation influenced the one in New Batman Adventures, the continuation of Batman: The Animated Series: the producers decided to redesign the character to look more like Carrey. The storyline of the Riddler becoming supremely psychotic even served as the springboard for the character's actions in the 2003 LEGO fan film, Batman: Revenge (The Batman LEGO Film), although the film was not a sequel to Batman Forever. Though Two-Face had a crew of ninjas throughout Batman Forever, The Riddler only had a group of Scuba Divers in a scene near the end, who were captured by Batman in a net.

Jim Carrey as Edward Nygma / The Riddler: An employee at Wayne Enterprises nursing an obsession with Bruce Wayne and a high opinion of his own genius, though it is an accidental side effect of his experimentation with 3-D TV that causes him to be fired by his boss as the invention is too dangerous – it directly taps into the human brain. Traumatised by this and Wayne's rejection of his business proposal, he kills his boss and adopts a secret identity as a stalker of Wayne. In response to Wayne's saying that the mind-control aspect "raises too many questions", the compulsive Nygma becomes the villainous Riddler, leaving riddles and puzzles at scenes of crime while modelling himself on his idol in his public role as head of a successful new business empire (NygmaTech) to rival Wayne Enterprises. It was in October 1993 when Robin Williams stated he was in talks for the role, and commented on his enthusiasm. Williams had previously expressed interest for the role of The Joker in Batman, although he lost out to Jack Nicholson and expressed interest in the role a second time in The Dark Knight, but lost out a second time to Heath Ledger was cast. Ultimately in June 1994, Carrey was cast after Williams turned down the role. Schumacher had known Carrey since the mid-1980s, roughly ten years before he became commercially famous. After his role in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Warner Brothers and Schumacher felt for him to be perfect for the part. Michael Jackson had previously opted hard to land the role but was ignored. Matthew Broderick also expressed interest in the role. Jim Carrey went through over 50 different spandex outfits and over 100 different props for his cane.

Schumacher commented on working with Val Kilmer, Tommy Lee Jones, and Jim Carrey, "I was told that Val was difficult and wasn't [right] for me. (...) Jim Carrey was a gentleman, and Tommy Lee was threatened by him. I'm tired of defending overpaid, over privileged actors. I pray I don't work with them again." Bob Kane remained on the set almost every single day during filming.

There is a scene in Batman Forever in which the Riddler punches someone in the face and hurts his hand from it. This could possibly be a reference to the fight scene at the end of Batman: The Movie, where the Riddler tries to punch Batman, but misses and hits one of the masts of the submarine instead.

ReceptionEdit

The filmmakers claimed they were indeed aware of reports that Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones had "stolen the show." Jones quoted, "I don't want to be too fussy about language, but the idea of stealing scenes or stealing movies is nothing that I am comfortable with at all. I don't think that way. I look at the job at hand and try to do as well as I can with that job." Carrey stated, "I just hope I am doing it right; is it coming together? You can't think about that stuff because that would be, like, capsize time." He was nominated for the MTV "Best Villain" Award. (Both Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones).

GalleryEdit

See alsoEdit

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