The Psychology Of Supervillains Club..June 2020 - Ra's Al Ghul

Haw were 48 & 49?

Still have to get to them. they do mention the lack of Batman as they are “working”, but from what i can tell HQ’s Queen of Fables definitely feels more badass.

1 Like

To be fair. HQ’s version of Queen of Fables is a total bad ass. Not just as Queen of Fables but as a DC villain in general.

finisehd the QoF arc, more for its own sake. if it comes up in World of Wonder, I am ahead of the game.

Started that 2003 trinity. I know Ra’s is the mastermind, but i forget his plan.

1 Like

Just finished the BTAS The Demons Quest WAL.

David Warner just crushes it as the voice of Ra’s there was always a certain formality to his speech in the books. But, the vocal quality And rhythm of the speech just make him sound so elegant but menacing.
(And Helen “OG Supergirl” Slater voices Talia.)

Also, we get to see Ra’s as someone who wants a better planet. The fact that he’s willing to kill 2 billion people to get it, makes me think that Ra’s and Vandal aren’t all that different. They have both lived a long time (Vandal much longer of course) but while they may have different perspectives on what’s good for the planet. They aren’t, on the surface, all that different. They both know they know what’s best.

Ra’s relationship with Talia is so very condensing, especially in comparison to the father/daughter dynamic we saw when we did Vandal Savage.

1 Like

I liked how Ra’s would call Batman Detective. this voice has become my first for Ra’s because Oded Fehr in YJ totally kills it. (going by memory for the role and the spelling)

I believe there is a scene where Batman gestures for Ra’s and Ubu to go first, similar to a panel in 232.

One would think Vandal and Ra’s would have crossed paths earlier in Ra’s’ career. Isn’t there a Batman cartoon that also involves an older Jonah Hex and The Demon’s Head? I believe regardless of medium, they have both said that the wholesale slaughter of the human race is to make it easier to take and maintain control of the survivors. Vandal isn’t as much of an environmentalist per se, but i suspect he has a healthy respect for natural resources and for keeping them …less polluted than they are.

I couldn’t even troll the watchalong because i was either going to work or just getting there. And once i’m on the clock, it can be quite consuming. there is also the no texting policy, but mainly it was being consumed.


Having done the WAL for The Demon’s Quest a couple of days ago. I found this article which is a behind the scenes and comparison of the episodes to the original comics, especially Batman 232.

1 Like

He called somebody else detective too. :wink:

Anyone we know?

1 Like

Tim Drake


I thought it was an pretty good chance, if anybody, that it would be Tim.

1 Like

He might be a better detective than Batman. or at least become a better detective.

Finished that '03 trinity. i should make a link, but this device is a little temperamental.

I liked getting lost in the heroes in this mini-series even though that’s not why i revisited it. Ra’s Al Ghul forms a dark trinity with Bizarro and Artemis, an Amazon of the Bana-Mighdall.

More later. device.


so the '03 Trinity

Ra’s recruits Bizarro (one of the better Bizarro iterations i have seen thus far) for the brute strength. Ra’s controls him by befriending him. He also recruits Artemis (the Amazon, not the daughter of Sportsmaster, nor the greek goddess of the same name) for tactics and marshaling the troops.

I am not sure how incongruous this Ra’s is, since he is willing to use nukes to achieve his goals. At first, the plan is to knock out a large chunk of the world’s communication satellites in one shot due to a weird confluence of their orbits. There is another nuke under Gotham City just to torment Batman.

When that fails, his next stop is to poison the world’s oil wells, presumably with his remaining nukes (Bizarro took the whole submarine in his infinite wisdom) and needs to hunker down, so he decides to invade Themiscyra. That also fails not just because the Trinity is working together, but also Artemis has a change of heart and cannot bear arms against her people. it is implied that she is likely from the Bana Mighdall, but Amazons are Amazons.

Ra’s character seems a little suspect. While Artemis reminds him of his daughter and says as much and seems to be respectful of her, he expresses his willingness to rape Wonder Woman when she is beaten and captured. Presumably because she is more adversary. there is a lot of the rabid allegiance of his followers and we learn a little more about Ubu.

because this is a trinity story, a lot of the art is focused around the three. Similar poses. e.g. if there are capes flapping in the wind, Diana’s hair is doing the same. She is also wearing bicycle shorts vs her usual which i find complements the man trunks of Superman and Batman.

Other than Wonder Woman, I like what i get from Superman. And this Batman falls a little short for my head canon. Otherwise, certainly a fun read.


I forgot to include Ra’s commenting that the surviving Amazons after he takes the island would be good breeding stock which presumes his plan(s) come to fruition. While this seems more in character, I am on the fence regarding the threat of assault on Diana. It could be because most of my Ra’s has been for general audiences, whereas this and the Tower of Babel arc is more dark/gritty on purpose.

With my other clubs are light on reading, i should be able to get to at least Son of the Demon, but i want to find more silver/bronze age if it’s on the service.


Ra’s Al Ghul shares many psychological similarities with Vandal Savage.

The sense of ego.

The idea that it is his observational history about humanity that motivates him. That he simply “knows better”.

They certainly have differing characteristics as well.

Ra’s is certainly more in the mold of a true eco-terrorist, where Vandal is more about the military control of the planet.

Perhaps this can be best be summed up by two of the arcs. Tower of Babel (ToB) and Batman issue 244. In Batman issue 244, Ra’s makes an interesting self explanation about himself. “I have been called criminal and genius…I am neither! I am an an artist.”

In ToB, Ra’s solution is more cunning. Using a flaw in humans, of both the written and vocal communication required by humanity to function. Both at a local and geographic level. Essentially setting up that disconnect and letting humanity cull itself. Unfortunately, the one thing we don’t really get in ToB is exactly how he acquires Batman’s contingency plans. (Which we do get in JL:Doom.)

I think the fact that in Batman issue 244, we gain more insight into Ra’s in that he truly sees himself as an artist. His plans have an elegance about them. It is not the brute force of Savage’s.

Certainly Ra’s had megalomania and delusions of granger. However, his sense of creating tyranny is more subtle.

Ra’s relationship with Talia is pretty messed up and highly sexist. However, even for as messed up as it is, it does create a daughter that is a strong, powerful, independent woman. Even so much as she plays an active and equal part in foiling his plans. Although, even in those cases, Ra’s expects a certain degree of betrayal from Talia. He certainly understands his daughter’s betrayal, and while not happy about it, it hardly comes as a surprise. A disappointment perhaps, but not a surprise.

In the end, I do see Ra’s more as an artist. Perhaps more of a surrealist, than the Renaissance man he wants to be. Is that artistic delusion and his sexist nature that are ultimately his downfall? I think the answer to that is yes.

1 Like

Talia seems to be torn between loyalty to her father and her opinion of being the true heir to the Demon’s Head. At least, depending on the telling.

1 Like

Talia is her own complex of villainy/anti-hero. She switches allegiances like people switch socks. While she is a sting, independent, powerful (and depending on instance, butt kicking combatant) woman. But, let’s face it…the girl’s got issues. However, given the way Ra’s has treated her it’s understandable she has a steamer trunk full of issues.

1 Like

Almost done with Son of the Demon. The Batman/Talia ship potential is very …overt. Ra’s thus far is more a supporting character. Talia does do an interesting dance of balancing her loyalty to her father and her devotion to the Beloved Detective.

The art, particularly Batman’s lighter blue and gray, has been awesome.


Now that Son of the Demon is done, That Batman annual and/or 750 should be next.

1 Like