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Quote1.png You love the cold, Victor. Even if you did bring her back, you'd end up destroying her. Because you love an idea, Victor. An obsession. And that I do understand. Quote2.png
Batman src

Victor Fries, also known as Mister Freeze, is a Gotham City criminal obsessed with reviving his cryogenically frozen wife Nora. Using a freeze ray to commit crimes and further his goal, he acted as a prominent member of Batman's rogues gallery.

Early Life

Victor Fries spent his early childhood in Gotham City.

When he was ten-years-old, Victor's father gave him a book of poems that he had given Victor's mother on their first date. Though his father had put a star next to the poems that were his favorite, Victor had picked one as his favorite that didn't have a star next it - a short poem about fire and ice. Victor's father didn't understand the choice, but Victor said he liked it because it was easy to remember. [4]

During a cold winter, his father abandoned him and his mother; Victor watched from the window as the man refused to wish him goodbye. [3]

In order to start a new life, Victor and his mother Lorraine went to live with Victor's grandmother in Lowell, Nebraska. There, the two would enter the city's annual snowman contest at the first snow. On one such occasion, a year after moving there,[3] they were crossing a frozen lake when his mother fell through the ice.

Victor kills his mother

Though she survived the experience, she was left physically and mentally handicapped from her time under the ice.

For a year, young Victor took care of his mother, now confined to a wheelchair. When the snowman contest came that next year, she had become such a burden on him that he led her across the same frozen lake and allowed her to break through the ice again and drown.[5] Her body was never recovered from the bottom of the lake, even thirty years later. [3]

Origin

Years later, as an adult, Victor developed an interest in cryogenics and wrote his doctoral thesis on the first case of cryogenic stasis; that of Nora Fields. He became so obsessed with her that he believed he was in love with her and concocted a narrative that they were married, despite the two never having even met because Nora had been frozen decades prior. In fact, she was old enough to be Victor's grandmother.

As part of his research to cure Fields, Fries experimented with the potent steroid Venom but had little success. [6]

After graduating, Fries continued his research of his "wife" Nora wherever her body was kept and started a career in the Wayne Enterprises cryogenics division. Fries was renowned for his work ,and, after Bruce Wayne's return to Gotham and the coincidental first appearance of the Batman, the two men had the opportunity to discuss Fries' findings.

Fries' accident at Wayne Enterprises

However, upon investigating, Wayne discovered that Fries was actually abusing the company's resources to solely focus on reviving Nora. Wayne called Fries out on his unethical research and his obsession over his supposed "wife", threatening to fire him.

Fries, furious at the thought of losing access to Nora, threw a chair at Wayne, which ruptured a pipe in his lab that covered him in cryo-fluid. Disfigured and mutated from the chemicals, Dr. Fries survived but could no longer live outside of sub-thermal temperatures. Therefore, he built himself a protective suit to survive at regular room temperatures.[5]

The man went mad and, determined to get Nora back and cure her, constructed a freeze ray to terrorize Gotham while he did so. Originally, Fries took the criminal alias Mister Zero before switching to a homophone of his last name Mister Freeze.

Due to fluctuations of the timeline, Mr. Freeze's origin was revised so that Nora was his legal wife all along and that the two in fact knew each other before she was put into stasis.

Early Crimes

During Batman's second year as a vigilante, Mr. Freeze joined in on the "War of Jokes and Riddles" between the Joker and the Riddler for the right to kill Batman. Freeze was recruited into the Joker's army and helped fight against the Riddler's forces for weeks. Eventually, Batman himself was forced to focus his efforts on one side to minimize casualties and was forced to ally himself with the Riddler. Mr. Freeze was taken out by the Bat and sent to Arkham Asylum. [7]

Night of the Owls

A cold night

Before Batman began investigating the mysterious Court of Owls, Fries was contracted by the secret criminal organization to design a variant of his cryo-suit's coolants to help them keep their Talons in a state of stasis until they were needed and could be resurrected again. He was told the invention was for their shared desire of the downfall of Batman and Fries obliged.

At 8:18 PM on the Night of the Owls, Mr. Freeze was among the many targeted by one of the Court's Talon, having discovered the Court double-crossed him. Mid-battle between Fries and the assassin, the Red Hood intervened, hoping to end the conflict. However, because of Freeze's arrogance and hesitance to work with one of Batman's allies, the Talon escaped. With Red Hood going after the Talon, Starfire and Arsenal were left to fight the icy villain. Fries was defeated and delivered to the GCPD by Red Hood.[8]

Quickly brought to Arkham Asylum, Fries did not remain in captivity very long. A few minutes past midnight, Freeze wasted no time in escaping and used only a frozen crayon to escape his cell and return to Gotham. Retrieving a spare Cold Gun from the Penguin, Mr. Freeze attempted to leave the city forever with his beloved, cryogenically frozen Nora. The villain's attempt was foiled by the heroic team of Nightwing, Robin and Batman, disabling the villain and once again returning him to Arkham for the second time that night.[5]

Birds of Prey and Batwoman

Fries escaped from Arkham Asylum again and continued his vendetta against the Court of Owls. He captured one of their escaped Talons and tortured the undead assassin for information. When the Talon proved useless, Fries sought another Talon - one that had escaped the Court and recently joined the Birds of Prey named Strix. Freeze ambushed the heroes and kidnapped their member Starling as a ransom for Strix. [9] Once Strix lead Freeze to the Court of Owls' secret resurrection facility, he revealed that Starling was never in any danger; she was working as a double-agent for him for the past few weeks. [10] While Starling handled the Birds of Prey, Freeze interrogated the Court's scientists. Though he was furious that his work to cyrogenically freeze the Talons had been stolen, what he really wanted to know was the alloy that revived them. When the scientists admitted that it was Electrum, he killed them both and escaped, having completed his mission. [11]

Sometime shortly after the death of Robin, Fries battled Batwoman and Hawkfire, who were trying to recover one of his cryoweapons. After being frozen in a block of ice, Hawkfire exploded the block with her flamethrowers, sending a spike of ice through Fries's calf and crippling him, ensuring his capture.[12]

Arkham War

After his several successful escape attempts, security around Fries' cell increased exponentially. He was assigned a new psychologist - Doctor Felton, who talked with Fries despite, as Fries himself knew, the asylum had labelled him as incurable. At some point, someone secretly gave Fries a newspaper clipping confirming that his father, who had abandoned him as a child, was alive in Gotham with a new family. Fries waited patiently, sending the man letters from his cell.

When the Crime Syndicate invaded Earth and seemingly killed the Justice League, multiple prisons around the world were ripped open, allowing the criminals inside to run rampant. Fries, free again, confronted his psychologist Dr. Felton and discovered that the man had been stifling his outgoing letters to his father. Fries broke into the doctor's office and killed him by stuffing the letters down his throat and freezing him.

Fries located where his father was living and murdered the man, chopping him into pieces and keeping him in garbage bags in the basement. He then froze his step-mother and half-siblings solid while they were eating dinner, killing them and declaring them his new family. [3]

With his personal issues out of the way, Mr. Freeze joined the other criminals from Arkham Asylum to divide Gotham between themselves, each super villain getting a district of the city. However, Bane was not a fan of this arrangement, instead wanting Gotham all to himself, and recruited the prisoners of Blackgate Penitentiary to follow him into battle against the Arkhamites in what would later be called the "Arkham War".

Arkham goes to war

Mr. Freeze, siding with his Arkham brothers, was given the task by Scarecrow to work on reviving the army of Talon assassins that they had just stolen from underneath Blackgate. Partnering up with Mad Hatter to both revive and mind control the killer zombies into working for the Arkham side, the two criminals stayed at the base while the two sides brawled in the streets.[13]

Fries took a break from his science experiments to go on patrol with Clayface when the Rogues arrived in the war-torn Gotham. The icy villain tried to convince Weather Wizard to create a blizzard in Gotham with his powers, giving Mr. Freeze an edge in the war and practically a guaranteed win for the Arkhamites. However, the Rogues wanted no part in what they thought was a futile war and, therefore, were met with resistance from the two maniacs. While the Rogues escaped Gotham, Freeze and Clayface were left in the war zone, fighting off Black Mask and his False Face Society.[14]

Finally reviving the Talons, the Arkhamites sent the assassins to lay siege on Bane's forces but, between him and his own Talon, the Blackgate side withstood the attack. In a final effort to beat Bane, Scarecrow drugged his Arkham Army by lacing their celebratory wine with Venom, turning Freeze and the other Arkhamites into hulking super strength giants.[15] Even with their new found strength, though, the lunatics were defeated by Bane, a much more experienced Venom user, who victoriously stood over his enemies, declaring himself the winner of the Arkham War.[16]

Eternal

At some point, Mister Freeze was returned to his cell in Arkham Asylum. However, as part of a mysterious yearlong conspiracy against Batman, Arkham Asylum was accidentally destroyed by the Spectre, with its inhabitants clinging to their lives in the wreckage. Mr. Freeze escaped the explosion and began to terrorize the emergency responders until he was subdued by Batman. [17]

Despite having been handcuffed, Mister Freeze never made it into custody and escaped with a handful of Batman's rogues. Remaining together in a hidden location, they begrudgingly agreed to team up with one another to defeat Batman, instead of fighting each other for control like when he was gone. [18] However, despite Freeze masking their heat signatures, Batman still found their hideout and swiftly beat the band of criminals once again. [19]

While being transported to Blackgate Penitentiary, the armored trucks hauling all the villains was hijacked by the mysterious malefactor. He brought Freeze and all the other captured villains to a secret hideout filled with stolen Bat-tech. As part of the grand conspiracy, the mystery person let the criminals free once again and invited them to "go to town" with their gifts. [20] Freeze loaded up on bags of stolen cash and left. [21]

Freeze ended up in a suburban neighborhood where he froze a family solid with his freeze ray. He then pretended to have a barbecue with their lifeless bodies while Batman was distracted with the growing conspiracy. [22] Bluebird was assigned to apprehend Freeze, but she was distracted by her communications being hacked by Hush, giving Freeze the upper hand. Alfred eventually regained control of the Batcomputer in time for Batman to arrive and save Bluebird. Batman took a handful of loose electrical wires and fried Fries' cryo-suit, finally incapacitating him. [23]

In the aftermath, with Arkham Asylum having been destroyed, Fries was taken to the newly donated and renovated Wayne Manor, which now served as "Arkham Manor".

Endgame

When the Joker returned to Gotham with an endgame for Batman in mind, the city was put into a state of chaos. The clown infected the population of Gotham with a special variation of his Joker Venom, essentially making every citizen of Gotham a mindless laughing zombie.

Fries, incarcerated in Arkham Manor, was freed during Joker's takeover by Dr. Jeremiah Arkham, impersonating the clown and taking Joker's plan a step farther by infecting his asylum with the toxin as well. Mr. Freeze and a few other villains, because of the high concentration of chemicals in their blood already, seemed to have a natural resistance to the toxin and worked together to escape the asylum past the hordes of Jokerized inmates and employees.[24] The group of escapees, knowing that Joker had gone too far this time, agreed to help Batman and his allies as crowd control when the Bat went to finally confront the Joker in center city.[25] Joker, anticipating the attack, tried to release an even more potent version of the virus on Freeze and the other traitors, but Batman managed to administer a cure through their gas masks before his and the Joker's apparent death in the caves below Gotham.[26]

Rebirth

Due to fluctuations in the timeline, history had been partially rewritten across the multiverse. Victor Fries' past had been partially altered.

Sometime between Batman's death and return, Mister Freeze had left Gotham and created a research facility in Alaska. There, he began to find cryogenic facilities across the world and affect them with the same process that had created him. Reborn from cryo-sleep and requiring the same cryo-suits as him, the people nonetheless felt indebted to Fries and helped him perform robberies to fund his research to revive his wife.

However, Fries had realized from his army of "dreamers" that he had woken them too early; the world was irredeemably broken as he saw it and sought to unleash an ancient, deadly virus frozen in ice to restart life on Earth. However, Batman successfully infiltrated his compound and, infecting himself with his own heat-virus, successfully saved Mister Freeze from being obliterated by the incoming missile launch that planned to destroy the virus before he could release it. [4]

Freeze was returned to his cell in Arkham Asylum around the time that Bane began his new crusade against the Bat. At one point when Batman was critically injured and hidden away in Arkham Asylum, the hero released all his former foes from their cells and invited them to subdue Bane in exchange for lighter prison sentences. Freeze, taking the offer, successfully encased Bane in ice, but even that wasn't enough to stop the brute, who broke free from the restraints and knocked Freeze unconscious. [6]

Invasion of the Dark Multiverse

 Main article: Dark Nights: Metal

Freeze, empowered by the Batman Who Laughs' magic Joker card

After Batman accidentally unleashed an ancient evil from the Dark Multiverse, one of the cross-dimensional Dark Knights called the Batman Who Laughs came to Gotham and offered some of its villains metal Joker cards that could give them powers to bend reality. Mr. Freeze was freed from his cell in Arkham Asylum and personally delivered a card that gave him the super power to generate and manipulate ice at will. Each villain was assigned to a section around Challengers Mountain to protect the base from any heroes that opposed them. [27]

As expected, heroes formed a resistance group that tried to reverse the damage done by the Dark Multiverse. The Teen Titans, the Suicide Squad, Nightwing, Green Arrow, and Black Canary entered Freeze's domain, the second ring around the mountain, but were ambushed by the villain and his sentient frost monsters. The heroes were pushed back into a Court of Owls armory, where they geared up and fought back against Freeze's army. [28]

Freeze was ultimately subdued by Robin and, after the rest of Earth's heroes successfully repelled the Dark Multiverse back to their own dimensions, Freeze was returned to normal.

Cold Days

Batman receives a false confession

Having recently been left at the altar by Catwoman, Batman was furious and took his rage out on the criminals that unfortunately found themselves in his path.

After three women were found dead in their homes, Batman investigated and found evidence to suggest that Mister Freeze had murdered them. Victor Fries, however, was on house-arrest, having not used his cryo-equipment until a mysterious informant tipped him off that Batman was after him. Batman caught Fries and beat the man senseless, hanging him off a building while the man bled and begged for his life. Fries was forced to admit false guilt to the crimes in order to get Batman to stop hurting him.

Fries was turned into police custody and, when put on trial for the murders, was suggested to get the death penalty. Bruce Wayne, having realized his mistake too late, bribed his way to be assigned as a jury member for the case. Though the rest of the jury was ready to convict Fries for the crimes, Wayne was the lone juror to vote he wasn't guilty. For days, Wayne attempted to convince the other jury members that Batman was fallible, that he did make a mistake, and eventually succeeded; the jury agreed to vote "not guilty". [29]

Reviving Nora

When Lex Luthor was gifted impressive Martian powers by the interdimensional goddess Perpetua, he prepped the world for her incoming invasion by gifting some of the world's villains what they desired most. Luthor visited Mister Freeze in his workshop in Gotham and made him an impressive offer: Luthor offered him a cure for Nora's condition. Fries, of course, accepted.

Luthor gave Fries a special serum, constructed from the experiments on the first Bizarro years earlier, which was promised to revive Nora. But Fries, being the scientist he was, tested the serum on animals and kidnapped women first. Though the serum was impressive, it wasn't without side-effects that Fries was determined to fix before using on his wife. [30]

Simultaneously, thanks to nanotechnology he had created, Fries had overcome his weakness to above freezing temperatures; he no longer needed to be confined to his cryo-suit.

Batman eventually became aware of Mister Freeze's kidnappings when they were reported to the GCPD. [31] The Bat discovered Freeze's hideout in the Pine Barrens, and Fries, desperate to preserve his mission, activated an army of frozen, reanimated corpses to hold Batman off while he escaped with his wife's container. Fries successfully eluded the hero for the time being and, having lost all his previous test subjects, decided to finally use Luthor's serum on his wife - Nora was revived. [32]

Mr. and Mrs. Freeze

Reunited with Nora, but at what cost?

Though Nora was horrified at having been brought back to life, Victor acclimated her to the present and her current condition. To finalize the process, both Fries' broke into Wayne Enterprises and stole a purposefully misnamed file that Victor had left behind years ago. Upon taking it, Nora's skin turned blue, making her look just like her husband, but her cancer was cured. [33]

Mr. and Mrs. Freeze operated as a criminal duo for a time, robbing locations in Gotham, but Mr. Freeze began to doubt his wife's mental condition due to the serum gifted to him by Luthor. Victor made plans for he and his wife to move to Alaska and escape their criminal life, but Nora, her mental condition worsening, resented her husband for wanting to control her life. She didn't ask to be cryogenically frozen, and she didn't want to share a life with him either. Though Victor swore he loved her more than life itself, Nora betrayed Victor, freezing him with his own technology, to escape on her own.

With no other options, Mr. Freeze turned to Batman, who was still focused on trying to un-freeze the kidnapped women Fries had left in the Pine Barren's in their last encounter. Mr. Freeze made a deal with the hero - he would give Batman the information needed to save the kidnapped women if he would help him stop Nora. Batman agreed, and the two men went to the cemetery where Nora's parents were buried to confront her.[34] There, Nora had constructed a mausoleum out of ice dedicated to her husband. Even if he wasn't physically dead, he was dead to her.

Batman and Mr. Freeze were forced to chase Nora to the Gotham Museum of Art, where the three engaged in a battle of ice and fire amongst the exhibits. When Batman finally had the opportunity to stop Nora, Victor betrayed him, saying that incarceration wasn't going to cure her like he could. However, Nora once again betrayed him, stabbing Victor with a syringe that heated his body up and negated the nanites that allowed him to live outside his cryo-suit.

While Mrs. Freeze escaped the museum, taking up refuge in Canada weeks later, Batman had Victor cryogenically frozen, just as he had done for Nora years before. However, unfortunately for Victor, as mentioned by Batman, Mr. Freeze did not have someone to love him like Nora did. [35]

Powers

  • Unique Physiology: After being bathed in cryo-chemicals, Fries' biology was radically altered, causing each of his skin cells to capture and store the cold around him. This causes his body temperature to run at 23 degrees Fahrenheit.[5]
    • Thermokinesis: Because of Fries' extremely low body temperature, anything his skin comes into contact with will freeze. He can easily freeze a persons entire body by simply grabbing them.[36]
      • Cryokinesis: Fries can coat his fists in ice to enhance his strikes, as well as cause ice to rapidly form along structures through contact.[5]
    • Decelerated Aging: The cryo-chemicals that he was bathed in were meant for cryo-stasis, thereby implying that he might not be aging or is aging at an extremely slowed rate.
    • Toxic Immunity: Because of the cryo-chemicals, Fries displayed some immunity to Joker Venom.[37]

Abilities

Weaknesses

  • Obsession: Fries was described by a psychologist as having "obsessive love disorder". Not only did he crave the love of Nora Fields but of his family as well. As Fries himself pointed out, the disease itself isn't real, only a theory. [3]
  • Technological Reliability: After Fries' accident, he required a cryo-suit to survive in anything besides below-freezing temperatures.

Equipment

  • Cryo-Suit: Wears a suit that keeps his body temperature below freezing. (Formerly)

Weapons


Related

Footnotes


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