The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:03 pm

Sidious wrote:Nice. Love the breakdown of the shapechangers.

Martians as Skrull Eternals has been floated around for years. I actually think either Kly'bn had something wrong with him or part of his ascension to godhood meant he was locked in one form.

I'm more than curious as to how a map of the universe would work out with all the intergalactic empires out there.
Here's my answer, the actual make-up of the various space empires is a lot more difficult to determine than people would expect. Not only does space not traditionally have the same boundaries that people usually apply to it but large systems of interlocked Celestial constructed wormholes totally mess up the space controlled by other empires. Ergo, the Shi'ar Empire includes some star clusters but many more places spread all across the universe and above it.

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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by RomLoneWolf23 » Mon Feb 01, 2010 5:09 pm

Charles Phipps wrote:Here's my answer, the actual make-up of the various space empires is a lot more difficult to determine than people would expect. Not only does space not traditionally have the same boundaries that people usually apply to it but large systems of interlocked Celestial constructed wormholes totally mess up the space controlled by other empires. Ergo, the Shi'ar Empire includes some star clusters but many more places spread all across the universe and above it.
That's how I look at it myself. Considering the sheer size of Space, trying to build large bordered areas to guard against outsiders is relatively pointless, especially since there are also numerous forms of FTL travel which bypass distances entirely. Guarding star systems, known trade routes and wormhole networks is easier and more efficient. Of course, this leads to colonies occasionally getting "forgotten" by their homeworlds.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by tm80401 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 7:30 am

RomLoneWolf23 wrote:
Charles Phipps wrote:Here's my answer, the actual make-up of the various space empires is a lot more difficult to determine than people would expect. Not only does space not traditionally have the same boundaries that people usually apply to it but large systems of interlocked Celestial constructed wormholes totally mess up the space controlled by other empires. Ergo, the Shi'ar Empire includes some star clusters but many more places spread all across the universe and above it.
That's how I look at it myself. Considering the sheer size of Space, trying to build large bordered areas to guard against outsiders is relatively pointless, especially since there are also numerous forms of FTL travel which bypass distances entirely. Guarding star systems, known trade routes and wormhole networks is easier and more efficient. Of course, this leads to colonies occasionally getting "forgotten" by their homeworlds.
Borders only work if you have to actually 'cross' them, or if your FTL tech has a limited distance it can travel without stopping (like Traveller). FTL with an extremely long range, that can't be detected and intercepted en-route, pretty much does away with the traditional concept of borders as an immigration/customs/travel control point. Borders as 'Everything inside this imaginary line is ours to exploit first.' however does tend to cut down on conflict with your neighbors, if everyone agrees on where the line is. But what fun would a conflict free universe be in a story or game.

And if wormhole routes 'oscilate', exist for a while (years, decades, centuries, etc) then fade, colonies could be completely lost. The home world may never even have known, physically, where the colony was.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:10 am

tm80401 wrote: Borders only work if you have to actually 'cross' them, or if your FTL tech has a limited distance it can travel without stopping (like Traveller). FTL with an extremely long range, that can't be detected and intercepted en-route, pretty much does away with the traditional concept of borders as an immigration/customs/travel control point. Borders as 'Everything inside this imaginary line is ours to exploit first.' however does tend to cut down on conflict with your neighbors, if everyone agrees on where the line is. But what fun would a conflict free universe be in a story or game.

And if wormhole routes 'oscilate', exist for a while (years, decades, centuries, etc) then fade, colonies could be completely lost. The home world may never even have known, physically, where the colony was.
Pretty much. There are SOME areas more under the control of the Shi'ar and other races than others. Basically, whenever possible, races will terraform worlds nearby to other inhabited worlds. FTL isn't instantaneous, it just is faster than light despite time/space being relative. It's due to the oddities of hyperspace. *hand wave*

This leads to plenty of "Clusters" under the control of individual star empires. However, these are rarely limits on their expansion. The Dominators, Kree, Thanagarians, Skrull, and Shi'ar have colonies all across the galaxy in "splotches" so to speak and plenty more in other parts of the universe well.

It should be noted in my conception of this universe, the Milky Way Galaxy is absurdly populated and the majority of the universe is mostly just empty void. This is due to the fact that MWG is the home for the Guardians of the Universe and the first place to evolve inhabitants.

This helps settle why the MWG is the center for everything interesting but the Guardians watch the ENTIRE UNIVERSE realistically.

But yes, more or less, a lot of worlds in the galaxy are "lost" frequently. Many of them were settled by time lost humans or near-human races like the Rannians (who are the same race as the Pink Kree in my game).

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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by RomLoneWolf23 » Tue Feb 02, 2010 2:35 pm

If you take into account species with completely different biochemistries, this leads to the possibility of different star species grudgingly sharing solar systems, by settling those worlds they can survive on, and leaving others to their neighbors. So while the Shi'ar colonies are built on Earth-like worlds of a system, the fifth planet in the system was colonized by a species of Ammonia-based life-forms from another stellar empire, which thrive there and have no desire to expand to those unpleasant warm, oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere planets populated by the Shi'ar.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Libra » Tue Feb 02, 2010 5:01 pm

This all sounds reasonable to me, if a bit over my head. :D
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Mon Mar 08, 2010 4:48 pm

Joker

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There's an old joke that if you got the Red Skull, Norman Osbourne, the Joker, and Bullseye in the same room then the accumulated evil would tear a hole into Hell. The Joker takes offense to this joke, he has much more style than those other guys. Really, The Joker is the world's most prolific serial killer but he eagerly points out that it's not the quantity that matters.

It's the quality.

Kings and Presidents kill MANY more people than he has, but do they do it with panache? The Joker at least puts a smile on his victims!

The Joker's favorite target, of course, is Bruce Wayne a.k.a Batman. However, he's made it a point to go after numerous other targets in his career. Captain America, Superman, Wonder Woman, and even Spiderman. The Joker seems to have an affection for those individuals that seem to genuinely want to help people above all other things.

Usually, these targets don't keep his interest quite the same way as the Dark Knight. One actually managed to get under his skin in a way that Batman has never been able to. Spiderman's heckling is something the Joker could.not.stand and occasionally wakes up shouting about. He's not restricted to villains either as both Norman Osbourne and Lex Luthor have felt his sting.

So what motivates the Joker? What drives his rampage across the world which has left, at last count, some five hundred and sixty individuals dead? Well, the Hell if he knows. No, just kidding. It's because it's FUN kiddos! No other reason!

The punchline just isn't funny unless it's a life or death situation. The Joker doesn't even kill people every one of his heists. While his mass murders are the most famous of his crimes, he's just as likely to cover everyone in superglue as kill them all. As long as THEY aren't sure, then it's just as good in the Joker's mind. After all, you wouldn't want him to become too PREDICTABLE would you?

Given the Joker's murderers, one has to wonder how exactly he's managed to avoid being killed. It's understandable why Batman wouldn't kill him. His sanity hangs by a thread at the best of times. But why not one of the police officers of Gotham City or a prisoner? Surely the Joker can be killed? He's just a man isn't he? Unfortunately, that may be a premature judgment to make.

The Joker has survived improbable deaths before. Some people have even suspected there might be more than one of them taking over after the other one has died. This isn't true, of course, but the Joker's lawyers can be VERY persuasive in muddying the issue of their client's identity. After all, know one knows who the Joker is and that certainly works to the advantage of the Clown Prince of Crime.

Really, the only reason the Joker has survived and escaped so many times is that Gotham truly is that [/b]corrupt. What the Joker can't achieve through bribe money, he usually gets away with using threats to an individual's family. The Joker exceeds Batman in his ability to terrorize individuals into submission. Except, while Batman can reduce even the greatest of criminals to a fetal ball, the Joker has the same effect on the good citizens of Gotham. Only Batman and James Gordon seem immune.

This hasn't prevented individuals from trying to kill the Joker. He's survived countless assassination attempts and even the wrath of the Punisher. Frank Castle was sure he'd killed the Joker after a harrowing six-day mission that took him up against Batman and Nightwing amongst Gotham's other rogues. He still has nightmares from Joker appropriating the Scarecrow's fear gas and making him relieve his families' murderers over and over again.

The Joker's chief advantage thwarting various investigations into him is the fact that he's unpredictable. Poisoning every fish in the East Coast so they resemble him (which nearly bankrupted fishing in America) is just as likely as attempting to kill everyone in the city with Joker gas. There's no rhyme or reason to his many crimes and he does them as they come to him. Usually, in his more cataclysmic attacks, the Joker gives ample forewarning. After all, he doesn't really want Gotham to be totally destroyed unless the Batman goes with it.

There is one saving grace, the Joker is not a physically formidable threat. The chemicals that have soaked through his skin make him sickly and easy to defeat if you can hit him. If. The Joker is one of the dirtiest fighters in the world and his gadgets are positively lethal. He also usually has a dozen escape routes planned for every confrontation. In many ways, he's just as versatile as Batman. The Joker will not hesitate to endanger innocent lives if it means he can buy a few more minutes freedom for himself.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Libra » Tue Mar 09, 2010 9:16 am

Very neatly done Charles: You've captured the Joker's impact on the world perfectly and managed to convey his sheer lunatic lethality (Including the fact that he can do worse than just kill you and probably will if it amuses him to do so).

As to the reason he hasn't been executed yet, I like what you've suggested, but my rationale is simpler - Gotham City doesn't have the Death Penalty.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Tue Mar 09, 2010 11:04 am

It's Batweek now for this thread btw!

Would everyone like to participate?

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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Libra » Tue Mar 09, 2010 11:26 am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lEx9r5enZsk

<Please click on link to set the appropriate tone for any Batman characterisation.>

http://www.worldsfinestonline.com/WF/ba ... ge/wbible/

<A little help for anyone looking to characterise the Dark Knight and company.>
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Tue Mar 09, 2010 1:58 pm

Batman

Bruce Wayne is a testimony to the human spirit. A scientist on par with Bruce Banner, the world's third greatest martial artist, the world's greatest Detective, and the single greatest master of producing fear in the hearts of evil doers. He has been battering criminals around for the better part of two decades now. It has taken its toll on his body. Bruce has had his back broken and more injuries than two veteran Pro-Football players put together. Even access to advanced medical science from alien worlds and the cutting edge of Stark Technologies won't save him from having to retire soon, or so conventional wisdom goes. Batman knows better, he'll retire when he's in the grave.

Doc Samson has occasionally attempted to psycho-analyze Batman's origins. Batman, ever conscious of the line he walks, allows the Doctor to know his true origins for sessions on the condition that his memory will be erased afterwards. Honestly, the Doctor is perplexed. Even for an eight year old child traumatized by his parents murder, it's an unusual reaction to devote the next twenty years to studying various disciplines in order to become a crimefighter. To call Bruce Wayne's personality obsessive is a drastic understatement. The only superhero who pushes himself as hard is Spiderman (ironically; the two eventually came to the realization they were both driven by past guilt during one of their cases together. It has lead to an unusual respect for Peter Parker on Batman's end).

Like Wolverine, Batman has no real vacation time. He spends the absolute bare minimum of his time in his identity as Bruce Wayne to keep up appearances. He used to devote equal time to both of his identities but his "secret identity" has increasingly taken a secondary place in his life. Batman himself has commented that he no longer considers himself to be Bruce Wayne first and foremost. In a very real way, Bruce Wayne died in the same alley that his parents were killed in. Dick Grayson and Tim Drake would say this is rubbish. Batman keeps the Bruce Wayne side of his personality deeply buried but it's still there.

The majority of Batman's time is spent patrolling Gotham City. The crime rate in Gotham varies from "one of the worst in America" to "downtown Bagdad" at the best of times, so Batman is never bored. It's a testament to Bruce Wayne's perserverance that Gotham City has managed to rise out of the Second Depression where other cities like Bludhaven and Hub City did not. Bruce keeps an eye on the rest of the world, though, and somehow finds enough time to join the Justice League on their missions as well. Even as a "part-time" member, Bruce Wayne still manages to accomplish more than most. He even managed to find time to run the Outsiders as a pro-active force against supervillains.

Batman attempts to cultivate a cold and unforgiving aura even to his friends. Captain America, Superman, and Wonder Woman are Batman's only real "friends" outside of the Bat-family. Alfred used to tell stories about Captain America and the Invaders to a young Bruce growing up and Steve Rogers exceeded all of his expectations. While Batman likes certain heroes like Aquaman, Captain Marvel, and Spiderman; only these four have truly managed to become genuinely close to him. Most others can't see beyond the facade he puts up. Batman outright despises some 'heroes' like the Punisher and Wolverine (the later who was briefly an Outsider).

Ironically, despite his harsh demeanor, Bruce Wayne is genuinely one of the warmest and most fatherly individuals you could ever meet. He just refuses to show this to his fellow heroes, out of a fear of being considered weak. He is a strong believer in redemption and this is one of the major reasons why he refuses to give up on individuals like Two Face or even the Joker. While they are quite possibly irredeemable, thousands of Gotham City citizens have been "scared straight" by the Batman before being given a helping hand up by Bruce Wayne. Even if Bruce Wayne is a rich idiot by most people's standards, he's still considered one of the most decent men on the planet because of his many charities.

Given Batman has no superpowers, some wonder how exactly he manages to survive in a world of flying robot Nazis and jet pack wearing apes. The answer is simple, Batman cheats. Batman succeeds through his willingness to do whatever it takes to win. He relies on sneak attacks and stealth whenever possible. Batman never could have lasted as long as he has if he engaged five or six men at once like Captain America is prone to doing. Instead, he prefers to pick off opponents one at a time before engaging anyone directly. Bruce knows he can't win in a slugging match with an opponent like the Hulk, so he doesn't bother.

Tony Stark has occasionally asked why Batman doesn't use a armored suit or some of the more advanced technology he could provide. Batman's reasons are varied. Part of the reason is it would be too easy to identify him otherwise. Another reason is that Batman is afraid that it would continue the escalation that occurs in other cities. It's all well and good for Keystone City to have superpowered rogues. Should Gotham City's rogues start getting superpowers, God help the world. Another reason is Batman really doesn't trust the way other superheroes rely on their tools. In Bruce Wayne's mind, the greatest tool he has is his mind.
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Libra » Tue Mar 09, 2010 2:09 pm

This Article is extremely AWESOME: 'Nuff said.

Here's a question that might irritate or interest you Charles - Where would you say George and Alex Timmons differ from their DC counterpart and where would you say they resemble him most?
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Tue Mar 09, 2010 3:26 pm

Gotham City

Chicago's sister city, Gotham City was once one of the richest cities in America. It was favorably compared to New York City and Metropolis. One enterprising mind made the observation that Metropolis was very much New York during the daytime and Gotham City was very much New York at night. For much of Gotham City's history, that wasn't an insult. They were a city that thrived after sundown with Neo-Gothic architecture, high-class restaurants, and parks that were perfect for moonlit strolls. It had been a long time since the 1930s when Alan Scott had single handedly made Gotham City one of the most crime free cities during Prohibition.

All of that changed with the collapse of the United States steel industry in the 1960s. Like Detroit, the economy of Gotham City tanked seemingly overnight. It had been a city that had thrived on its production of appliances, automobiles, and steelworks. Millions lost their jobs and a Second Great Depression settled over the city. Neighboring cities of Bludhaven and Hub City were equally effected. Gotham City was too large to totally collapse as they did but what replaced the steel businesses was crime. During the 1980s, Gotham City became a vast hub for the entire nation's criminal enterprises. Seemingly all drugs and handguns in America seemed to pass through Gotham as the police force became nothing more than an extention of the mob.

Then the city was saved by three men. Batman, Bruce Wayne, and Comissioner James Gordon.

Most Gothamites are most grateful to Bruce Wayne. Even though Bruce has hot and cold running women, a penchant for ridiculously elaborate vacations, and more money than God; he's still a figure beloved by most in the city. The Princeton drop out owns more than half of Gotham City's downtown and he manages to keep housing affordable for residents even at a loss. The Wayne Foundation also has managed to keep what would normally be an insurmountable problem of homelessness and food shortage under control. Almost 60% of Gothamites are employed by Bruce Wayne or one of his associate businesses. Even though he's considered something of an idiot; it's not wise to insult Bruce Wayne when traveling through Gotham City. He's done alright by the little guy.

James Gordon is a figure that most people in Gotham City would like to see as Mayor. While he's considered a joke in other communities due to the fact he cooperates with a costumed vigilante, James Gordon has cleaned up 50% of the Gotham City police department. If it sounds terrible to you that 50% is still corrupt, you have no idea how bad it was to begin with. Despite being one of the most honest and decent men in Gotham City, he's also willing to do whatever it takes to protect the people of Gotham. He's given many crooked cops a chance to straighten up their acts and has ignored lesser crimes in order to focus on the genuine monsters. He'd like to eventually have a completely clean police force but it'd be nice if it rained doughnuts too. Given he's accomplished all of this despite his many personal tragedies, Gothamites respect "Big Jim."

Then there's Batman. For about fifteen years, no one was really certain there was a Batman. Criminals knew he existed but they're a cowardly and superstitious lot. During a recent Mob War, Batman's existence was proven. Everyone felt Gothamites were rather stupid about the whole thing since there had been a Batman on the Justice League for over a decade. Still, Gothamites had refused to believe they were the same man. Commissioner Atkins, due to the number of deaths caused during the battle, attempted to bring in the costumed vigilante. Instead, all it did was ruin his career as Gothamites made it resoundingly clear that they wanted no part of a man unwilling to work with their secret protector.

Oddly, most of Gotham's normal criminals have come to almost appreciate Batman in some ways. His ability to keep the most psychotic of Gotham's underworld in line is appreciated by individuals like the Penguin. Unfortunately, the number of psychopaths drawn to Gotham BECAUSE of its reputation as a haven for lunatics just seems to keep growing.

Gotham City's chief remaining problem is still crime. The Gotham City earthquake, triggered by a new fault-line created during the Imperiax War, caused much of Batman's work redeeming the city to be undone. Over thirty thousand people were killed despite the best efforts of individuals like Thor and Superman. The government even made the stupid decision to evacuate the city until how structurally sound all of the buildings were. This "No Man's Land" affair resulted in a year of stalemate while tens of thousands of Gothamites refused to abandon their homes. It required Lex Luthor's billions to grease the wheels and eventually get the engines of government moving once again. Even today, there are many abandoned buildings and hidden communities in the echoes of the disaster.

The current crime problem in Gotham is mostly due to the presence of costumed maniacs and the worst elements of the country gravitating to the city. The old mobs have largely been exterminated, replaced by individuals who are colorblind to ethnicity so long as you're willing to kill. Only in Gotham City could a man with a ventriloquist dummy shaped like Al Capone be taken seriously. However, Gotham's criminals have learned to accept eccentricities if it means a steady paycheck. This doesn't even cover the fact that Gotham City has over a hundred times the normal population of serial killers and homicidal maniacs that a normal city does. Some are imported, coming to a city famous for their kind, but others are homegrown. A few blame the chemicals that GothCorp used to put in the water, but others believe the city is somehow cursed.

So why do people still live in Gotham City despite its many troubles? The answer is simple. It's home.

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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Charles Phipps » Wed Mar 10, 2010 2:27 am

Arkham Asylum

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It takes skill to be consistently named the worst mental health facility in the world. Human rights groups up to and including Amnesty International have launched investigations into the practices in Arkham Asylum. Rumors of everything from unsanitary conditions to the torture of inmates have been reported. Almost all of the guards were formerly employed at Blackgate Prison or in similar hardcore penitentiaries. The Doctors are recruited from the ranks of drug addicts and newly graduated Doctors with barely passing scores. Even the extensive cash bonuses offered by the Wayne Foundation have been unable to attract the kind of top talent that Arkham Asylum needs.

Doc Samson, the world's greatest psychologist, said it best during a Congressional hearing. "Arkham Asylum is not a place you send patients to get better. It is a place that's constructed to send people so they can be forgotten. The world's worst monsters and psychopaths are stored here. It's a place that makes England's Bedlam hospital look positively quaint." Later, the feed was interrupted by the Joker who said. "Yep! That's why me and the others call it home, Sammy!" In the end, Congress chose not to have Arkham Asylum receive any additional funding or transfer any of its prisoners elsewhere. Arkham Asylum is a radioactive waste dump for the criminally insane, no one wants its contents in their backyards.

Bruce Wayne would dearly love to try and make Arkham a better place. Unfortunately, he's fighting an uphill battle. Over the past two decades, dozens of Arkham's staff have been murdered during escapes by its inmates. There was even a mass jailbreak when Bruce Wayne finally got the facility rebuilt on an island in the middle of Gotham harbor. All of his attempts at improving the care that the patients receive tend to up in smoke when the place is blown up in varying disasters. It's almost like the facility is cursed. Given its founder, Doctor Arkham was a lunatic himself with delusions of the occult, it may well be.

Against their better judgment, Bruce Wayne and the city fathers of Gotham have focused on making Arkham Asylum more like a prison than a hospital. This may be for the best because many of its most infamous patients are not interested in getting better. The Joker is gleefully insane but he certainly knows the difference between right and wrong; he just doesn't care. Plenty of criminals get themselves transferred to Arkham Asylum so they can pay off its staff to get them declared cured within months. Given many Doctors and nurses feel they'll be killed if they stay too long at Arkham, they usually end up taking the payoffs. The idealists have it worse as some of the inmates could give Hannibal Lector lessons in mind screws.

Almost impossible as it may sound, Arkham Asylum actually makes many of its residents worse the longer they stay there. Take a simple look at its many residents over the years; The Joker, the Vulture, Doctor Octopus, the Scarecrow, Two-Face, Bullseye, the Mad Hatter, Poison Ivy, and Frank Castle. Disturbingly, Frank Castle's stay at Arkham Asylum was a voluntary one before he became the Punisher. Former Arkham Doctor, Karla Sofen (alias Moonstone) gave him a clean bill of health by allowing him to come to terms with his desire for revenge. Is it any wonder that Norman Osbourne got his clean bill of health from Arkham? As Spiderman said. "My villains start by robbing banks, they end up pleading insanity. They get sent to Arkham. Six months later, they're on the street attempting to blow up New York in order to kill Spiderman. I'm starting to wonder about that place."
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Re: The Combined DCU-Marvel Universe thread

Post by Voltron64 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 6:15 am

Lovely piece of Hell on Earth, Charles.

Y'know, I also wonder what would happen if Batman started thinking more reasonably?
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