The Psychology Of Supervillains Club - December 2020 - Mr. Freeze

The Psychology Of Supervillains Club…December 2020 - Mr. Freeze

Welcome to The Psychology Of Supervillians Club. This month we will delve and dissect Mr. Freeze . Step into his mind and determine what makes him tick

This club will be discussing darker aspects and elements within the DC Universe. These aspects and elements could be viewed as overtly violent, malevolent and possibly offensive to some.

  • We acknowledge that we are not mental health professionals, and are not able to provide any diagnosis or guidance in this regard.
  • This thread does not suggest or support any mental health diagnosis or any guidance of or for people in the real world. We are dealing with purely fictional characters within fictional worlds.
  • Supervillains are potentially driven by deep seated and often dark or disturbing concepts of what they feel is the right thing to do and why the villain is the hero of their own story.
  • We will explore if the supervillain is actually correct in their views and actions, are they justified in what they do and potentially would their fictional worlds be better off if they actually did win and defeat the hero.

The club gives this warning because some may find such discussions disturbing, distasteful, and/or possibly immoral and we want the community to be well aware of what the contents of these discussions can involve.

The Ground Rules: ( Yes…even villainy has to follow a few rules . Don’t take my word for it…Go ask The Legion Of Doom or The Crime Syndicate, they have rules too.)

  • Posts must follow DC Universe Community Guidelines
  • This is a “ safe space ” to explore a sometimes taboo topic…villainy. Why it’s necessary and possibly why villains are often more interesting than the heroes that oppose them.
  • Be respectful of the opinions of others. Did I mention thatPosts must follow DC Universe Community Guidelines
  • There is no such thing as a “right” or “wrong” opinion here.
  • The views expressed are the opinions of the poster and deserve to be acknowledged as a valid opinion, even if you might disagree and debate items. What does that mean? Posts must follow DC Universe Community Guidelines
  • We are dealing with the intricacies of the mind. The one thing we do know is that we can never be ultimately sure what is actually going on in the mind of a supervillian.
  • However, we can conjecture based on what we do know about them and form our own points of view on what makes them tick and have blast while doing it.
  • In case you missed it the 3 times earlier…Posts must follow DC Universe Community Guidelines

Don’t be afraid to be bold, to challenge the status quo, to think in unique ways and be outspoken. Their is no “right” or “wrong” point of view here. There is what we each find in delving beneath the surface and into the mind of our Supervillian Of The Month.

Most importantly, have fun. Enjoy your process. Revel in it. Don’t be afraid to let some of your “evil” out. We’ve all got a bit of it in us somewhere. If we didn’t, we wouldn’t find villains interesting, now would we. :smiling_imp:

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Reminder: Posts must follow DC Universe Community Guidelines

Our December 2020 Supervillian of the month - Mr. Freeze
It’s December, that’s means one thing, it’s cold outside. So with that in mind, we shall step instead the frosty mind of Dr. Victor Fries, better know as Mr. Freeze

A few iterations of Mr. Freeze have existed in DC history. The 1960’s, 1970’s & 1980’s as more of a gimmick villain (Batman’s Captain Cold, if you will.) He was reimagined with a new and “tragic” origin in the seminal “Heart of Ice” episode from Batman: The Animated Series (BTAS). He was reimagined again in 2012 for The New 52.

So what motivates him? Does each reimagining create a different psychology or is he ultimately the same at a deep psychological level?

One thing we do know, no matter where you live…from the frozen tundra to sunny beaches of SoCal…if Mr. Freeze is in the area, he’s of opinion “Let it snow. Let it snow Let it snow.”


Below are some comic book and video resources for Mr. Freeze available on DCU.

This is by no means a definitive list.

Reading the entirety of the resources below is not expected.

Comic Resources:
Detective Comics - 1015 (2016-)

Batman: The Dark Knight featuring Mr. Freeze - 23.2 (2013-)

Batman Annual - 1 (2012)

Detective Comics - 373 (2016-)

Batman - 308 (1940-)

Batman - 375 (1940-)

Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight - 190 (1989-)

Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight - 191 (1989-)

Batman: Gotham Adventures - 5 (1998-)

Birds of Prey - 18 (2011)

Birds of Prey - 19 (2011)

Birds of Prey - 20 (2011)

Video Resources
NOTE: Videos below go away Dec 18th

BTAS: Heart of Ice - s1e14

BTAS: Deep Freeze - s2e19

Batman Beyond: Meltdown - s1e5


What resources you use or don’t use is up to you. The only limit is your imagination and deduction.

Use whatever materials you like in building up your case for the psychology. Although noting what you’re basing it on could be helpful as resources for the club and our members.

I know with the current pandemic circumstances, some folks may have more or less time on their hands than normal.

A few topics you might want to consider.

Is he a “tragic” villain? Maybe a victim of circumstance? Perhaps even an anti-hero?

What is his most psychologically power asset and/or liability?

From a psychological standpoint, has he been portrayed better and more deeply on comics or animation?


Without further ado, we delve into the chilling mind of Mr. Freeze.
Let the adventure begin!!!

I feel that the change introduced in “Heart of Ice” was not quite as substantial as it’s reputed to be. Mr. Zero was always a tragic victim of an accident. The only thing that Paul Dini did was externalize his tragedy by (literally) fridging a woman in his life. Instead of feeling sorry for him because of the horrible fate that befell him, we’re instead expected to feel sorry for him because of his horrible manpain over his wife. Oh, please.

That said, Scott Snyder only made it worse with his revision of the Nora story.

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I will be honest, I don’t especially like the BTAS Fries backstory. Although, what they did with that character in Batman Beyond was fun, and stripped away the veneer that BTAS gave the character.

Frankly, my personal favorite Mr Freeze is from The Batman animated series. He’s a petty jewel thief that screws his own life up, creates his own mistake in becoming a mutation and even with all that new power, he’s still just a petty jewel thief beneath all his icy bluster.

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The Gotham rendition was pretty good.

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Some quick thoughts on Batman 308 & 375 and Detective Comics 373

This Mr. Freeze, formerly Mr, Zero, suffered the freezing accident, but was more because of a mishap of his chosen gimmick, the cold gun.

Batman 308 has Mr Freeze’s motivations around a woman who would rather double cross him. Her fate might be predictable.

'Tec 373 is his first appearance as Freeze and the comic book logic fails despite being the cause for conflict. The Aunt Harriet in danger as the underlying motive for Batman and Robin works fine, but they have to get Freeze’s cold gun to save her because the cryosurgery device failed along with Freeze’s gun on a heist at the same time. Both cold units are closed systems and operate independently of the other. but the failure put Aunt Harriet in danger and Freeze’s antics become an opportunity. Also, good thing Freeze has a spare gun.

Batman 375 has Jason as the boy wonder. I am assuming Vicki is Vicki Vale. And an early appearance of Julia, daughter of Alfred. who apparently is straight in this instance (which is also okay). I like the more disco style suit of Freeze here, with the red glasses and fishbowl helmet. Here, it was more about vengeance on Batman, and targeting Gotham City is really the best way to get under Batman’s skin. It was good to see Freeze’s gang crumble as Freeze’s obsession of Bat vengeance seemed to get more obsess-y. to be fair, i wouldn’t leave a giant ice cannon behind either, but i think i’d put it on wheels. work smart, not hard.

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The watchalong thread has been made. Sorry for the mega delay.

:pray: @AntLeon

I’m looking forward to it.

Since there is a watchalong frenzy going on on-site, should we look into either the BTAS movie (Sub-Zero?) and/or any Batman '66 episodes? Am leaning more towards the latter

I forgot i had read Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight - 190 & 191 - more of the tragic love story. The arc itself is narrated by Bruce to Alfred. i am tempted to read the next arc in this run, “Snow”, which is a (re?)telling of Freeze’s origin.

I liked Gotham’s version because it opened with Fries experimenting on people. I also liked how Bullock insisted on his pronunciation and when he asked Mrs. Fries for confirmation, it was pronounced his way. His exit out of the scene is priceless even though his back is to the camera.


Having done the Mr Freeze BTAS/Batman Beyond WAL last night (thank you @AntLeon ).

I have come to the conclusion that iteration of Victor shows that he’s not some “tragic villain”. He is just a psycho on a revenge quest. While Boyle is an :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:. Freeze is the one culpable for what happened to him. This is really brought home in Batman Beyond “Meltdown”. As soon as he gets a “normal” body, he’s all “sweetness and light and contrite”. Yet, we never even see him ask “what happened to my wife?” He is self obsessed and cares about his own tombstone. Then when something goes wrong, he starts to lose it. In the final battle not caring about the damage he causes. He puts Blight is a lake knowing full well the radiation danger he possesses.

He is selfish to the core and plays the victim when his actions are on him. He is just hell bent on his revenge of the day.

Victor Fries is not a tragic villain, he’s just a self-centered piece of garbage, playing the victim and not taking responsibility for his own selfish actions.

I’ve never bought into the BTAS Mr. Freeze. So far the worst and most “plastic” version of the character. He’s just a pathetic human being.

I know some folks look at this iteration as a classic, but I’m not convinced.

I think the BTAS version is kind of about the 'ship. I realize they are Mr. and Mrs, but the sell is what Vic is doing before the accident. Then the accident takes away that which is precious and you know the rest. There’s also the humanizing the villain component; more in its early stages at the time of production. I’d play devil’s advocate more, but I’d rather save it for another villain.

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Humanizing of the villain, an interesting topic. Any particular villain pop to mind you think would fit that?

I’m sure the recent Joker film did it all artsy. It might be what I break in the HBO Max on my Roku.

Harley and Ivy of HQ:TAS might have some gas.

You got any ideas? it might be best to let it come up on its own. the 190-191 arc might interest you if you haven’t read it yet.

Finally caught the Necessary Evil doc. Very good. somewhat of writer/creator lean or angle. not necessarily a bias, but you can hear it when the interviewees talk about story telling and character development/motivations.

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Yeah, but the psychologist and sociologist aspects are also intriguing.

I know for some folks it might require a rental.
But doing a WAL for that in the new year is something I’d like to do.

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I would be interested in such a watch. There might be other comic book docs that might prove worthy. I watched it online from a link previously posted.

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It is interesting, there’s plenty of docos about comics history and any number of characters or teams. But, I’ve only ever found one dedicated to villains that looked at them In really any depth and that was Necessary Evil.

If you’ve found others, please do let me know. I’d love to have more datapoints.

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i was thinking comic books in general. even if they are more hero oriented.

And I’ve stalled on my reading. yet, is there a plan for January? Calendar Man? Or something more interesting to battle the post holiday doldrums. although if you’re holidaying in place, the burnout might not be so bad.

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The January plan is Calendar Man, with the Long Halloween optional, since others did it back in October.

Although, if folks have requests, I’m more than happy to undertake them.

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