"Who Riddled the Riddler?": Bruce Wayne is still feeling unwell, but he forces himself into action when he sees the Bat-Signal in the sky. Meanwhile Robin and Jean-Paul Valley (who is still filling in
Synopsis for "Who Riddled the Riddler?"
Bruce Wayne is still feeling unwell, but he forces himself into action when he sees the Bat-Signal in the sky. Meanwhile Robin and Jean-Paul Valley (who is still filling in for the Batman), worry about whether they'll be able to convince Commissioner Gordon that Jean-Paul is the real Batman.
Suddenly, Bruce appears in costume, and sends Jean-Paul home. The Riddler has struck again, and as Batman and the Commissioner discuss the riddle they've been sent, Bane and his goons listen in. Bane decides to use the Riddler as a test against Batman by solving the riddle first, and pumping the Riddler full of Venom, empowering him.
Robin fills Batman in on his experience with Bane, and how the villain seemed to sense that Jean-Paul was not the real Batman, and that he may even have been aware that Bruce himself is not well. Batman becomes indignant at the suggestion that he isn't in good health, and sends Robin home. While Batman broods alone in the Batmobile, he manages to solve the riddle, and heads to the clock tower above One Gotham Plaza.
Meanwhile, Bane has already solved the riddle. Just as the Riddler is activating the explosive device's timer, Bane appears, and shoots a number of Venom-tipped darts into his body. Bane then leaves, warning that the Riddler has only 48 hours to put the effects of the venom poisoning to good use. As the bell in the clocktower begins to strike midnight, the explosive device counts down every time the bell's vibrations indicate a chime.
Batman arrives, and struggles to fight with the powered-up Riddler as the device ticks down with each clock chime. The Riddler becomes increasingly frustrated with Batman's persistence, warning that the explosives will detonate soon. The Riddler manages to push past Batman and escape, leaving the caped crusader to struggle to hold back the bell from ringing it's last chime. Eventually he is forced to simply destroy the detonator with a Batarang. With the danger of the explosives removed, Batman discovers the venomous darts, and realizes that the Riddler was drugged - probably by Bane.
The next night, there is a second riddle from the Riddler, and Bane decides that this time, his henchman should solve the riddle themselves, beat Batman to the punch, and then send him a message. The Riddler has set up a device that will release hyper-toxins into Gotham Bay when the water level reaches high tide. Batman manages to solve the riddle first, and attacks again. Despite the Riddler's new-found resistance to pain, Batman believes that there is a way to stop him. Bane's goons arrive as the water level rises closer to the toxins. The goons riddle the Riddler with bullets, to Batman's horror, and the goons escape as he calls for emergency services after grabbing the toxins away from the water.
Appearing in "Who Riddled the Riddler?"
- This issue is a lead-in to the upcoming "Knightfall" storyline.
- This issue is reprinted in Batman: Knightfall Omnibus Vol. 1 and Batman: Prelude to Knightfall.