Batman annual 19: Scarecrow - Masters of Fear

Format: special issue
Binding: standard comic
Date: 1995
Writer(s): Doug Moench
Artists(s): Bret Blevins, Mike Manley
Storyline: Captain Gordon used his new signal to call Batman. He showed him photographs of five Gotham University employees who appeared to have been literally scared to death. Batman investigated records at GU and found they'd had another death about a year previous. This professor was replaced by Dr. Jonathan Crane, who'd recently been fired by the five dead men for his unorthodox methods. Batman went to his last known address. There, everything was packed and gone. He set off a booby trap - a scarecrow sprang up and gassed him. Batman's innermost fears came to life for him. After the gas came a bomb. Batman was thrown from the third-story apartment.
Crane had a troubled upbringing, lanky and uncoordinated, most of his peers made fun of him. By the time he was a senior in high school, Crane began to fight back. He attacked two fellow classmates (a girl who jilted him and her jock boyfriend) after the prom. The boy was paralyzed and the girl was killed. Crane was overjoyed that he caused others to fear. After college, Crane used a chemical gas he created to cause his professor to commit suicide. Crane received the dead man's job, but was fired shortly thereafter for firing a gun during class as a demonstration.
Gordon informed Batman of Crane's next murder - the owner of a chemical plant in Gotham City. Batman hid in the home of one of the latest victim's rivals, and Scarecrow was soon to arrive. Batman was immune to the fear gas - he'd prepared a filter for his mask. He chased Crane to the outskirts of town - a corn farm. Scarecrow was defeated and placed in Arkham's care.


notes

  • Gordon is Captain and has a Bat Signal.
  • This is collected in the tpb Batman: Four of a Kind.
  • Return to continuity section 1.