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In Reply To
Grey Gargoyle

Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Subj: Re: The best answer
Posted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 at 01:14:44 pm EST (Viewed 308 times)
Reply Subj: The best answer
Posted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 at 05:09:44 am EST (Viewed 331 times)

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> I read it, but I can't figure it out. Sheesh! Can anyone help!?
> Thanks!

There is no definitive answer and it was done on purpose by Grant Morrison.

When I tried to guess the answer, I thought that all clues did lead to Hugo Strange but I was totally wrong.

Nevertheless, now, what is the best answer left in my opinion ?

Congratulations to all the readers that correctly guessed that Doctor Hurt is an avatar of the Devil.

That's the best answer.
If you read anew all the Batman stories by Grant Morrison, everything leads to it.

Simon Hurt himself provides the answer :
"If not Dad, then have you dared to consider the only alternative?"

Bruce Wayne answered Mangrove Pierce.
Then, Simon Hurt said :
"No, I skinned Mangrove Pierce alive and wore him to Mayhew's party."
So, at the beginning of the Club of Heroes storyline, we actually see Simon Hurt with the face of Mangrove Pierce.

So, have you dared to consider the only alternative ?
The Devil himself is the best answer.

Clues :

- "dare"/devil

- Simon Hurt : "I am the hole in things, Bruce, the enemy, the piece that can never fit, there since the beginning"

- Batman : "In my attempts to see clearly in the deepest dark, in my efforts to go to the still eye of the storm of madness, did I open up myself to some pure source of evil? Did I finally read the limits of reason? And find the Devil waiting? And was that fear in his eyes?"

- the Joker : "devil is double is deuce, my dear dr. and joker trumps deuce"

- the Joker : "pleased to meet you" (Sympathy for the Devil by the Rolling Stones)

- The monk works for a "dark master" (and there are pictures of demons on the wall in the background)

- We see again the "third ghost of Batman" who believes that Simon Hurt is the Devil himself

- The Black Glove movie : "The story is the Devil himself put a curse on the whole thing"

- et cetera

(or you can believe what Joker said about apophenia ... )

Thus, here is what I missed and what was really obvious :

Here is the "shocking revelation" that Grant Morrison was talking about : the Devil created Batman.

Thus, Thomas Wayne may be the father of Bruce Wayne, but the Devil is "the father of Batman".

If you read anew Batman RIP from the beginning and all the other Batman stories by Grant Morrison, everything fits.

One other supporting piece in favour of it being the (big 'D') Devil, is back near the beginning I believe Morrison made some statement to the effect that when it was revealed it would be somebody the whole world recognized (i.e. not just comic readers). I seem to recall some discussion over whether Thomas Wayne would really qualify, or indeed whether ANY comic book character, Superman included, would be universally recognized. The Devil (in one form or another) would fit the bill.

On the other hand, he never seemed to show any sort of supernatural ability, so there is really no actual evidence within the story that points to that conclusion -- just a few random statements. So call that a neutral point.

Actively arguing against that idea is the fact that Hurt appeared to be not only surprised but outright frightened by Batman at the end, which doesn't make any sense to me at all. In the first place, I would expect the Devil not to need a helicopter to make his exit (maybe Raven needs to show him how it's done). And a mortal man crashing through the window sending them all into a fiery crash into the water seems like something that would be more of a problem for everyone else on board than for old Toby.

So in the end, no, we do not know definitively who Hurt is, and that to me is one of the main reasons that RIP ultimately failed as a story arc. Without that simple piece of information it's impossible to know Hurt's motivations, which leaves everything that happened unexplained and the story fundamentally unfinished.

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