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"Riddler's Reform"

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Batman: The Animated Series episode
Riddlers Reform-Title Card
"Riddler's Reform"
Airdate: September 24, 1994
Production Number: 79
Airdate Order: 73
Animation Services by: Dong Yang Animation Co., LTD.
Teleplay by: Randy Rogel
Story by: Alan Burnett, Paul Dini & Randy Rogel
Directed by: Dan Riba
Episode images (9)

"Riddler's Reform" is the third episode of the third season of Batman: The Animated Series. It originally aired on September 24, 1994.

Plot

Riddler's Reform Explain

The Riddler reveals his new line of toys.

The Riddler has been released from Arkham Asylum on parole and it seems he's already up to his old tricks as he has a couple of thugs bring out a box marked with a question marks from a van. Batman and Robin are instantly upon him and demand to know what's in the box. However, Charles Baxter, president of Wacko Toys arrives and demands to know what's going on. Riddler explains to Batman that he's Baxter's new business partner and reveals a new line of toys inside the box. Batman tries to warn Baxter of the Riddler, but he feels Riddler's recognition factor is too great an asset to pass up, and threatens to sue them if they bother Riddler any further. Riddler gives Robin one of his puzzles and leaves with his new partner.

Later, Dick examines the puzzle to find it to be completely harmless. Just then, a newscast explains that there was a robbery at Newman's Import/Export Company. The items stolen are all old artifacts that are irreplaceable. Bruce thinks back on one of Riddler's comments and realizes that he is behind the robbery. Dick isn't convinced but Bruce is sure that Riddler is far too obsessed to stop with his riddle crimes. Just then a commercial comes on and Riddler uses riddle number "31753701" and flips it over to show a map. Bruce uses the number as a map coordinate and finds Riddler's target is the First National Bank.

Riddler's Reform Thugs escaped

The Riddler's thugs Manny and Zowie try to escape.

Batman and Robin wait at the bank but nothing happens there. Robin starts to think they were wrong, but Batman remembers that Riddler flipped the number over. By doing the same thing, he gets the address "10 Leslie", just where Riddler's thugs happen to be robbing a jewelry store. They tell Riddler about Batman's absence, but he is unconcerned as he joins a high-class party. Just then, Batman and Robin make it to the jewelry store and take on Riddler's thugs. During the fight, a display case falls on Robin and while Batman helps him the thugs make their getaway. Batman tries to follow them but they manage to escape.

At the party, Riddler makes his presence known and finds himself the center of attention of two beautiful women. Before he can enjoy it, however, he is informed of a phone call in the next room. He goes to answer the call but finds that Batman is in the room waiting for him, informing Riddler that he's onto him. Unfazed, Riddler and turns on a device that allows all members of the party to hear the conversation. Riddler starts telling Batman that he could be giving riddles or that maybe he is just paranoid. He then opens the wall revealing Batman to the party guests who laugh at his expense. Batman doesn't care and warns Riddler that he'll get him eventually and leaves.

Riddler is upset over Batman's threat, thinking that he's right. He claims that he's fooled everyone including the doctors, the parole board and the police, but only Batman has successfully challenged him. Deciding that he can't let himself go mad and end up back inside Arkham, he must kill Batman.

Following another one of Riddler's commercials, Batman deduces the target is the Gotham Convention Center where a toy fair is being held. He goes to the convention center and is led to a giant riddle box. He opens it and finds a giant TV. He turns it on, and Riddler appears, bidding Batman farewell and reveals that there's a bomb set in the center. All of the escape routes are cut off and the bomb goes off.

Believing Batman is dead, Riddler burns his costume, vowing to go straight for good, but Batman appears. Riddler's thugs try to stop him but are no match for him. Riddler is shocked, sure that Batman couldn't have escaped from the explosion. He decides to make him a deal: he'll tell where he hid all the stolen goods and how he committed those crimes if Batman will tell him how he escaped. Batman refuses the offer and shows Riddler his own two-way radio device. The other side of the device is kept by Commissioner Gordon who enters and arrests Riddler for parole violations. While being dragged away, Riddler angrily demands that Batman tell him how he escaped, but Batman just leaves.

Riddler's Reform Nygma stress

"HOW DID HE DO IT!?!?"

Back at Wayne Manor, Bruce tells Dick and Alfred that Riddler's henchmen have told the police where the stolen goods are and agreed to testify against Riddler in exchange for going free. Dick asks how Bruce escaped, and he admits that there was indeed no way out, but he noticed a nearby safe and concealed himself inside it seconds before the explosion. An impressed Dick says that he would never have thought of that, and Bruce believes the Riddler wouldn't have either.

Sure enough in Arkham, the Riddler is driving himself crazy trying to figure out how Batman survived his death trap, much to the dismay of the other inmates, who he's driving insane with his nonstop bellyaching.

Continuity

  • The Riddler returns after the events of "What Is Reality?". However, no explanation is given as to how he recovered from the virtual reality, although Robin does mention that the box the Riddler has is similar to the one he used to trap Commissioner Gordon.

Background information

Home video releases

Trivia

  • This episode contains one of DCAU's several overt sexual references, when a comical "BOING!" sound is heard when Riddler catches sight of an attractive woman.
  • When Batman asks Riddler what he has in the box, he says "None of your business", and Batman says "I'm making it my business". This is exactly what was said by Earl Cooper and the Penguin in "The Mechanic".

Cast

Actor Role
Kevin Conroy Bruce Wayne / Batman
Loren Lester Dick Grayson / Robin
Bob Hastings Commissioner Gordon
Mari Devon Summer Gleeson
Patricia Alice Albrecht Brenda
John Glover Edward Nygma / The Riddler
William Katt Zowie
Robert Pastorelli Manny
Peter Mark Richman Charles Baxter

Uncredited appearances

Quotes

Baxter: Blast this thing! How do you solve this contraption, Nygma?
Riddler: (takes it) Easy. You just have to be... (hands it back, solved) a genius.
(laughter)


Brenda: Where'd you find him, C.B.? He's so adorable!
Riddler: Who? M-me?
Brenda: (laughs) Of course you, silly, and you're so smart! I just love a man with brains.
Riddler: Gee, I bet you say that to all the geniuses.


Batman: You can play all you like. You and I both know that I'm going to put you away, because you can't help yourself, you can't stop. And I'll be waiting.


Riddler: It's impossible, I tell you, impossible! My trap was perfect! HOW DID HE DO IT? I have to know! Somebody tell me! It's not fair! There was no way, I tell you! No way he could have gotten out! Somebody tell me! DO YOU HEAR ME? SOMEBODY TELL ME HOW HE DID IT! I HAVE TO KNOW! I HAVE TO KNO-O-O-O-OW!


External links


Previously produced episode:
"Showdown"
Episodes of
Batman: The Animated Series
Next produced episode:
"Second Chance"
Previously aired episode:
"Second Chance"
Next aired episode:
"Baby-Doll"

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