[personal profile] lego_joker posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Love it or hate it (I sadly lean toward the latter of the two), Gail Simone's impact on post-2000s DC is immeasurable. It was she who made the Birds of Prey soar out from under the shadow of the Bat; she who finally gave Bane some manner of dignity and characterization to lift him out of his post-Knightfall slump; and she who took several villains that no one remembered anymore, assembled them all under the name of an equally forgotten team, and made both awesome beyond imagination.

All told, there are probably a hundred other accomplishments to her name, but there is one that remains of particular interest to me: what is arguably the most badass Mad Hatter appearance in the history of DC.

(Okay, so there's not really much competition, but still.)

It's a moment that's been talked about quite a few times on S_D, but I find it sadly unposted (perhaps a victim of the Great Purge?). So I present it here, in all its creepy glory.

Context: I'm afraid that I never really got into Secret Six, so I might not remember it too clearly (someone who's a bigger fan of the Six/Simone than I am, please feel free to fill in!). I think that at this point in the story, the Six are on the run, and B-list superhero team - the Doom Patrol - has been sent after them. Since most of the Six don't have superpowers, they get their asses handed to them at first.

But suddenly... a savior appears!

Oh, my unquantifiable cosmic overseer.

Rita has a snack.

Hatter crosses the line.

The breaking point.

I dunno about you guys, but to me, this fellow feels more like Dr. Psycho than Jervis Tetch. It's not just the fact that what he does here is a touch more depraved than his usual fare - to my knowledge, this is the first time that Hatter's ever been portrayed as not needing to put microchips on/in his victims to control their minds (something that the characters themselves remark on). On the one hand, I suppose that it does make him creepier and a bigger threat in combat, but I also feel that it makes him into more of a generic mind-scrambling villain.

Also, funny story: when I posted this moment to my tumblr, it got all of six reblogs before Ms. Simone herself decided to reblog it. Now it's standing at more than a hundred reblogs.

So I think it only fitting to conclude this post with the note that Ms. Simone made when she reblogged it:

My favorite two bat-villains, aside from Bane, are not the Joker and Two-face.

I love the Penguin and the Mad Hatter. I love writing them so that they are genuinely scary underneath the bluster.

I would write those two forever.

- Gail Simone, December 2013
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