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Batman Writer Discusses Scarecrow’s Horror-Themed Redesign

Writer James Tynion IV breaks down Scarecrow’s redesign and bringing the character to the forefront of the latest Batman event in Fear State.

James Tynion IV describes how bringing Scarecrow to the forefront of a Batman event happened and discusses his horrifying redesign by Jorge Jiménez.

“I’ve always found Scarecrow to be one of the biggest untapped resources in the Batman universe,” Tynion said in an interview with CBR. Scarecrow has been lurking in the background of Gotham City since the events of Infinite Frontier #0, the Batman series slowly building to the Fear State event that launched towards the beginning of Sept. 2021 and sees the city plunged into a plight of chaos and terror. Tynion detailed his fascination with Scarecrow and how ambitious the creative team was to bring him front and center in the title.

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“It’s always bothered me that there hasn’t been a big, epic Batman story with Scarecrow as the central villain,” Tynion said, bringing up the character’s past appearances in comics and other media. “Even in movies like Batman Begins Ra’s al Ghul is the big bad guy, not Scarecrow. I wanted to create an environment that really let him thrive in the books, and I also wanted to work with Jorge to make the Scarecrow design really scary in a modern way.”

Dr. Jonathan Crane, the Scarecrow, has been depicted differently between the various forms of Batman media, including Batman Begins. In the film, Scarecrow can be seen in a business suit and burlap sack mask, while in the Batman: Arkham games, he has fear toxin tubes running along his attire, along with a gas mask-style face covering. Tynion wanted to combine elements from all of Scarecrow’s past iterations for his story.

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“I wanted to take the best from all those different interpretations and create something that felt modern and scary and strange,” the writer said. “The idea of a scarecrow is that it’s meant to be scary. If you’re in a room with one, you don’t know if there’s a real human in the suit or if it’s just a dummy standing there.”

“That’s the scary element that I wanted to tap into for the character and this story,” Tynion continued, “And Jorge’s design absolutely blew me away. I think we have a really iconic look and feel for Scarecrow here.”

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Tynion has some experience in bringing horror to DC Comics. In addition to writing Batman (though his tenure on the book will eventually come to an end), the writer also pens The Nice House on the Lake, a limited series published by the company’s horror imprint. The series follows a group of survivors among the apocalypse that were chosen to be spared from the end of the world by one of their friends, who isn’t who they all thought he was. Tynion will also co-write DC vs. Vampires with Matthew Rosenberg, set to release around Halloween.

Tynion has instilled this horror energy into Scarecrow, who he believes is a fitting villain to the caped crusader who feels that “villains are a superstitious and cowardly lot.” According to Tynion, “I have always thought that being able to tap into a character who is so fixated on the concept of fear and the ways fear can change a person is fodder for a really good story.”

Batman #113 is the next issue from the series to release on Sept. 21, 2021. Tynion serves as co-writer on the issue with Brandon Thomas and interior and cover art by Jiménez. The first four issues of The Nice House on the Lake are also on sale from DC Comics, with DC vs. Vampires set to release on Oct. 26, 2021.

KEEP READING: Batman: Fear State Pits Clownhunter Against a Classic Gotham Villain

Source: Comic Book Resources


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