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Batman has the greatest set of villains of any superhero, but not every character can be a Joker or a Two-Face. Or even a Penguin. It turns out that the only thing one needs to qualify as a member of Batman's rogue gallery is being insane and knowing how to sew a costume.

We all know that sooner or later, the Batman movies are going to run out of interesting villains to feature and will be forced to start scraping closer to the bottom of the barrel. Whoever they end up choosing, we hope it's not someone like ...

The King of Cats

Batman #69 (1952)
His entire body is made of breasts. Just like a cat.

The King of Cats is possibly the creepiest Batman villain ever created, and not just because he looks like a date rapist stalking a furry convention. His real name is Karl Kyle -- as in Catwoman's deadbeat brother, who tries to get into her line of work after being fired from the local car wash (probably).

Oh, and he has a thing for his sister.

Batman #69 (1952)
Of the 20 things wrong with this picture, the most pressing is why that panther has the torso of a man.

In his one and only stellar appearance, the King of Cats is trying to get his then-reformed sister to go back to her villainous ways so that they can become partners in crime. Which is a major dick move, when you think about it -- that's like getting drunk in front of a recovering alcoholic and proposing running a bar together. Cementing his position as the biggest douchebag in comics is this:

Batman #69 (1952)
Is he oblivious to the fact that he's sitting right inside the cat's butt, or was he counting on that?

Throughout most of the issue, Batman and Robin are unaware that the King of Cats and the former Catwoman are brother and sister, leading them to believe -- rather disturbingly -- that he's actually trying to court her.

Batman #69 (1952)
"I say our kittens are probably going to have hideous genetic defects."

Meanwhile, Catwoman is reluctant to turn him in because they're related and all, which makes Batman think that the attraction is mutual. The whole comic reads like an awkward attempt to introduce kids to the concept of incest.

Batman #69 (1952)
Batman, in Detectiving Is So Hard, You Guys.

In the end, Catwoman manages to convince her brother to cut the crap, and he even promises to "take his medicine," and Batman and Robin are relieved to find out their true relationship. And by "relieved" we mean "disgusted and appalled."

Batman #69 (1952)
This is followed by five pages of vomiting.

The Calculator

Detective Comics #463 (1976)
This picture pretty much sums him up.

The Calculator is a guy with an actual calculator strapped to his chest and an LED visor on his forehead. He is also what happens when a comic book writer is asked to come up with five new Batman villains before lunch and starts looking around the office for inspiration (he came from the same brainstorming session as "The Photocopier" and "The Discarded Sandwich Container").

His real talent? As the inventor of the world's first titty keyboard, the Calculator is exceptionally good at touch typing:

Detective Comics #463 (1976)
"Even though these are all, uh, letters."

The Calculator's powers were kind of ambiguous, possibly because pocket calculators were fairly recent inventions in the '70s and a lot of people didn't really know what they could and couldn't do. And by "a lot of people" we mean "the writer of this comic, apparently." For example, we're not sure why a guy with calculator-based powers can materialize a crane from his forehead display.

Detective Comics #468 (1977)
Oh, so that's what the key is for.

In his first appearance, the Calculator is presented as a guy who has come up with a system that will make him impervious to the powers of any superhero. The only downside is that his system involves first getting his ass kicked by each of those superheroes in order to "calculate" ways to defeat them in the future. So in order to avoid getting caught ... he has to get caught. Several times.

Detective Comics #463 (1976)
"But first, five to 10 years of continuous prison rape."

After intentionally losing to five different members of the Justice League, the Calculator has become virtually unstoppable. The ridiculous plan might have actually worked -- if he hadn't made the mistake of trying the same trick with Batman, who causes his circuits to overload out of sheer badassery.

Detective Comics #468 (1977)
"Guess I'll add you to jail ... no wait. That's you subtracted from -- goddamn. Your SINs are ... fuck you. Just ... fuck you."

The Calculator later ditched his stupid gimmick and became an information broker for supervillains; this latest incarnation of the character might actually work in the movies, as long as no one asks him why he called himself "Calculator" in the first place.

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Crazy Quilt

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)

Crazy Quilt is the Liberace of supervillain fashion -- flamboyant to the point of being unsettling. He was a renowned painter/gang leader until he was blinded by a rival gangster and his goons forced a doctor to operate on him. However, the doctor could only restore a bizarrely specific part of his vision:

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)
Turns out holding the doctor at gunpoint throughout the operation doesn't bring the best results.

Inspired by his disability, he adopts the name Crazy Quilt and starts committing color-themed crimes with the help of his incredibly supportive goons, who "paint the places [he's] marked for plunder with brilliant colors so [he] can spot them." As for why he chose to use that colorful garb -- turns out his entire motivation was being able to see himself in the mirror.

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)
"Chief, we ... we love you."

However, his triumphant return doesn't go as well as expected -- Crazy Quilt is ignored by the citizens he hoped to terrorize and lashes out against some helpless signs.

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)

But the depression doesn't last long, and Crazy Quilt soon comes back with a new plan -- he will steal all the color in Gotham City.

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)

Unfortunately, while testing the patience of his henchmen by attempting to steal the color from a TV transmission, Crazy Quilt happens to run into Robin, resulting in an epic clash of extravagant costumes. Eventually Robin figures out the (insane) reason behind Crazy Quilt's pointless crimes and confronts him:

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)
"Or I could just shoot you, but that would make too much sense."

Star Spangled Comics #123 (1951)
Even Jackson Pollock thought this guy was too wild.

The saddest part of the entire story? Batman doesn't even show up in it. Robin's like "No, it's OK, I've got this" and catches Crazy Quilt on his own. Adding to the humiliation is the fact that Robin is the only hero Crazy Quilt had an actual shot at defeating ... not just because he's like 12, but also because Robin's the only one he can actually see.


Batman #133 (1960)
He leaves tangled strings on people's doorsteps and revels in their tortured screams.

The most ridiculous thing about Kite-Man isn't his name, or the notion of a supervillain whose only weapons are kites -- it's the fact that he actually gave Batman a good run for his money.

Batman #133 (1960)
Note how Batman's head is traveling in the opposite direction from the blow.

In this issue, Kite-Man uses his special kites to steal a priceless ruby right in front of Batman and Robin -- and instead of escaping, he swoops over to them and punches Batman in the face. The only thing we don't understand is how he's able to lift off with balls that massive. Also, note that his kites aren't powered by wind but by air jets, because he's not an idiot.

Batman #133 (1960)
This guy is like the Hitler of kite-related crimes.

Later on, Batman manages to catch up to Kite-Man while he's breaking some criminals out of prison with his giant kite ship, but the Dark Knight is no match for this guy:

Batman #133 (1960)
Later, Batman went to the park and punched a little girl for throwing a Frisbee at him.

Wait, why would Kite-Man attack Batman with a cheap piece of polyester when there's a gun right there? The answer is: because he can. Such is his mastery over kites. The writer of this comic couldn't have been making any other point.

After being captured by Kite-Man -- who seriously wants to tie him to a large kite "so everybody can take pot shots at him" -- Batman realizes his only choice is to fight fire with fire. Casting aside his vow never to brandish a deadly weapon, Batman fashions himself a kite out of the torn-off wallpaper of his cell and a sock.

Batman #133 (1960)
"To conquer kite, you must become a kite."

Batman uses his kite as an improvised Bat-signal and calls for Robin's help. Eventually they are able to end Kite-Man's reign of terror -- but only by turning his own kites against him. In the end, Kite-Man turned out to be one of the most formidable villains Batman ever faced. The only reason they'll never use him in a movie is that he'd make the main character look bad.

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The Penny Plunderer

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
Obviously Marvel had already copyrighted "Penny Pincher."

The Penny Plunderer is just a guy who really, really likes pennies. Look, we get that Gotham City criminals must feel a lot of pressure when it comes to picking a crazy theme for themselves (all the good ones are taken), but specializing in the thing of absolute least value in the world is stupid even by those standards. The only way this guy could have chosen more poorly is if he'd called himself "The Pocket Linter."

Still, we have to admire the guy's devotion to his theme: He not only steals pennies, but also uses them as weapons.

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
Which ... sort of defeats the purpose of stealing them in the first place, we think.

According to his origin story, Joe Coyne was fired from his job when he was caught stealing pennies to gamble in penny-pitching games. Disgraced, he turned to a life of crime, only to discover that his first target, a cash register, was filled entirely with pennies. This tragedy fractured his poor psyche.

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
"I'm so angry I could just arrange my socks by size instead of color!"

Dubbing himself the Penny Plunderer, Coyne begins terrorizing Gotham City with his penny-related crimes. Soon, news of his exploits reaches Batman and Robin:

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
"A slow death by copper poisoning. That's brilliant, Robin."

Using his famed detective skills, Batman is able to deduce that the Penny Plunderer will next strike at the exhibition of a priceless one-cent stamp (it was a big week for currency collectors, apparently). And then, because this is two well-equipped vigilantes against some untrained jackass, Batman and Robin catch Coyne right away.

Just kidding, they are defeated by pennies.

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
Being rich, neither of them was familiar or prepared to deal with such mundane objects.

However, the Plunderer ends up being betrayed by the same pennies he coveted when he finds himself unable to make a vital call because he doesn't have enough change:

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
But really, his fate was set the second he was born a Coyne.

Finally, he's captured and sentenced to death by the same justice system that keeps sending a serial killer clown to a minimum security mental asylum every six months.

World's Finest Comics #30 (1947)
This is the very definition of ironicality.

The Rainbow Creature

Batman #134 (1960)
A surprisingly hard-hitting story about the depiction of homosexuality in the media.

As you may have noticed by now, there was a time when Batman's job consisted exclusively of fighting the most ridiculous characters ever created -- contemporary writers have actually tried to reconcile this period as "the time when Batman did a lot of drugs." We're not sure what the hell he was snorting when he fought the Rainbow Creature, but it must have been some heavy shit.

Batman #134 (1960)
"Tonight, 57 children dead after Batman derails a train."

The story begins when Batman and Robin arrive at an unnamed South American republic as special guests of the president. Everything is going well until they learn that a violent and wholly inexplicable multicolored beast is approaching the city from the desert. Also, it can kill things with its rainbow light.

Batman #134 (1960)
"Well, that's South America for ya."

Turns out that the creature can absorb colors from nature and turn them into increasingly bizarre superpowers: blue freezes things, red melts them, yellow makes stuff intangible and green ... well ...

Batman #134 (1960)
This is a common reaction to the flag of Mexico.

So wait, where the hell did this thing come from? A gang of bandit-looking rebels led by a Spanish conquistador claim they created it and demand that the president step down immediately, but Batman calls them on their bullshit when he realizes that they appear to be as scared of the creature as everyone else. To prove his point, Batman stops at what must be the only Toys R Us located in a war-torn South American village, buys a toy prism and uses it to trick the rebels into thinking the creature had returned.

Batman #134 (1960)

Based on no information whatsoever, Batman deduces that the monster must have been spawned by a nearby volcano, somehow, and that the only way to stop it is by forcing it to use up all its colors and trying to impale it with a large stake. This works, of course, because it's Batman's acid trip and he can do whatever he damn pleases.

Being the drug-addled figment of Batman's imagination is the best any of us can hope for.

For more bad guys that would've been better served on the cutting room floor, check out The 8 Least-Threatening Comic Book Villains and 5 Batman Villains Too Lame To Survive a Single Issue.

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