Gotham City

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Gotham City in Grayson v1 #12.

Gotham City is a place that features in DC Comics.

Contents

History

Origin

Crime Alley in Batman v1 #404.

A thousand years ago, the lands that became Gotham were inhabited by a Native American tribe known as the Miagani. During their time, a figure by the name of Shaman Blackfire emerged who was accused of being evil by the tribe. After he killed their Chief, the Miagani wounded and captured him where they entombed Blackfire within a cave to ensure his evil did not escape with a totem erected to warn others of him. In time, their crops and harvests began to die along with any animals for food forcing them to abandon the area in search for a new home. During their travel, it was held that the Miagani encountered another tribe who slaughtered them. Thus, the land in the area remained abandoned until the Dutch landed in 1609. They established a colony by the shore whilst another was being sought deeper in-land where they came upon the former Miagani territory with them being surprised to find new inhabitants. Thus, they decided to make the site their new home and in time discovered the cave that contained Blackfire where they ended up releasing him unaware of the warnings left behind thus freeing him into the world once more after he dealt with the Dutch. (Batman: The Cult v1 #1)

During the Civil War era, a central figure in the city was Judge Solomon E. Wayne who came from Boston with him being a strict man in applying both the law and Biblical law on the people. During these years, he encountered a young brilliant architect named Cyrus Pinkney with him looking at his designs as being visionary whilst examining his portfolio. Wayne sold many of his assets to sponsor Pinkney's career in the creation of the new structures in his design that were largely successful with them shaping Gotham City in the future despite universal vilification from the architectural community. (Batman: Legend of the Dark Knight v1 #27)

In 1929, members of the Jade Compass Society had secretly brought the Mask of the Beholder to Gotham. (Batman v1 #706)

The Gotham Shield Committee formed that held Commissioner Gordon, D.A. Spencer, Mayor Hady and Bruce Wayne that arranged a gala in order to discuss new ideas for the future stability of the city. (Batman v1 #693)

Post-Flashpoint

Following the Flashpoint, a new version of history was created with a different series of events.

In 1780, the city was struck by a plague that killed a third of the population with the founding families fearing that the heart of Gotham would be infected by disease and thus instituted measures to ensure that nothing like this would occur again. (The Batman Who Laughs v2 #2) It was still a developing city during the 1880's during the time of Mayor Cobblepot. (All-Star Western v3 #1) For nearly three centuries, Powers International corporation was one of the most prominent corporate citizens of the city and the nation. (Divergence v1 #1)

Overview

Tim Drake in Gotham in Red Robin v1 #9.

It was said that there were 8.5 million people living in Gotham with this figure not counting the commuters, tourists or other kinds of visitors. (Batman Annual v3 #1)

Locations at Gotham City included:

  • Ace Chemicals :
  • Arkham Asylum :
  • Champion Square : a location deemed a neutral site among the various gangs of the city. (Batman Annual v3 #1)
  • Crime Alley :
  • Gotham Harbour :
  • Narrows :
  • Wayne Manor :
  • Wayne Tower :
  • Archie Goodwin International Airport :
  • Gotham Botanical Gardens :
  • House of Batman : gifted to the dynamic duo by wealthy philanthropist Adam Penfield after he passed away where he wanted it to be Batman headquarters in the heart of the city. Batman later gifted it to the city who turned it into the Batman Law-Enforcement Museum. (Batman v1 #102)
  • Sacred Heart Convalescent Home :
  • Gotham General Hospital :
  • Statue of Justice :
  • Robinson Park :
  • Burnside : (Batgirl v4 #35)
  • Devil's Square : (Batman v1 #692)
  • Busker's Club : a place where all performers in Gotham were members that included musicians, magicians, actors, comedians who were all welcome to join with laymen having to buy their way in with the club being closed by the modern day. (Batman: Streets of Gotham v1 #19)
  • Wayne Central Station : commissioned by Thomas Wayne decades ago and built by Gregor Greenside with the hope of bringing people in the city together with Old Wayne Central Station considered an example of patri-monumental modernism that an adult Bruce Wayne wanted to tear down and replace with an updated New Wayne Central Station though there were some construction problems in the rebuilding attempt. (Batman: Death by Design v1 #1)
  • Nolan's Peak : a lighthouse situated in Gotham. (Batman v1 #706)
  • Monster Town : name given to the Quarantine District that contained the remains of the Monster Men. (Detective Comics v1 #948)
  • The Bowery :
    • Crown Point :
  • Namesake Club : a social club where each member dressed as a historical character of their namesake with them rejecting the application of people that used a characters nickname. (Detective Comics v1 #183)
  • Hangman's Club : headquarters of an organization that for 10 years had helped ex-offenders find jobs and helped in them reforming themselves after their sentence had finished with it being formed by four ex-convicts. (Brave and the Bold v1 #177)
  • Gotham City Public Library :
  • Saturn Building : a tall skyscraper with a sphere on top that had a ring around it. (Detective Comics v1 #222)
  • Ice Patch : an area situated by the old boardwalk that was subject to an urban renewal program. (Red Hood and the Outlaws v2 #22)
  • Palace of Glass : a museum made of glass located at the egde of town that had a gem exhibit. (Batman v1 #149)
  • Gotham Village :
  • Tobacconists' Club : (Detective Comics v1 #469)
  • The Hill : (Batman: The Hill v1 #1)
  • Gotham Tombs : situated 10 miles off the Gotham Docks was this long abandoned prison that once housed the world’s greatest criminal minds. (Creeper v2 #4)
  • Lucius Fox Center for Gotham Youth :
  • Mercey Island :
  • Brideshead :
  • Foundry Square : located in the centre of the oldest section of Gotham with it being situated in the Lower East Side which was regarded as the site where the city first started. Long ago, the first Dutch settlers overcame the native Miagani with them British in turn overcoming them. (Batman v2 #38)

Some of the city's earliest skyscrapers were built at night by wealthy owners that wanted to get around union laws and hired non-union workers that formed shadow crews that helped built the structures. (Batman and the Signal v1 #2)

Organizations in Gotham City included:

  • Gotham City Police Department :
  • 50 Fathoms Club : a group of underwater specialists. (Batman v1 #104)
  • Gotham Psychiatric Institute :
  • Mystery Analysts of Gotham City : a unique and exclusive club that consisted of dedicated mystery solvers with a requirement for membership being to solve one baffling mystery. (Batman v1 #164)
  • Jade Compass Society :
  • Mirror House : a secret society and organization that auctioned off illegal material that once belonged to Gotham’s most notorious villains. (Detective Comics v1 #872)
  • Court of Owls :

There were a number of crime families that made up Gotham's Organized Crime with these being:

  • Calabrese family : one of the crime families within the city. (Catwoman v4 #35)
  • Falcone family :
  • Hasigawa family : (Catwoman v4 #35)
  • Maroni family :
  • Sullivan Crime Family :

Other criminal organizations included:

  • East Side Dragons :
  • Lords of the Avenues :
  • Whisper Gang :
  • Devil Pigs :
  • Odessa Mob :
  • Penitente Cartel :
  • Children of the Clay :
  • False Face Society :
  • Court of Owls :

There was a saying in Gotham that was adopted from the Miagani Tribe that once lived in that land with this being, "Happiness is seeing the world through the eyes of children". A Latin version of this was present on subway tokens which read as, "Through new eyes". (The Batman Who Laughs v2 #4)

One celebration held by the people of the city was the Gotham Folk Festival where fans were treated to a memorable sight. This musical event was used as a platform for charity that was donated towards needy children. (Superman v1 #279) Annually, the city had a Woman of the Year competition where prizes were given out to the winner. (Batman v1 #119)

The founding families in the late 18th century instituted the Last Laugh defensive system that was designed to protect Gotham by preventing anything from spreading across the city. It involved destroying the entryways and vaccinating the city with airships whilst reservoirs of food and water were hidden deep below the streets. (The Batman Who Laughs v2 #2)

Inhabitants

  • Solomon E. Wayne : male during the Civil War era who graduated from Harvard University with him becoming a judge who migrated from Boston to Gotham City where he applied strict law along with Biblical law. (Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight v1 #27)
  • Thomas Wayne :
  • Martha Wayne :
  • Ma Gunn :
  • Faye Gunn : silver haired granddaughter of Ma Gunn who was kept away from her grandmothers criminal lifestyle. (Red Hood and the Outlaws v2 #22)
  • Rex Calabrese : male former Gotham Kingpin of Crime also known as the Lion who was later sent to Blackgate prison where he was given the name of Leo Leone. (Batman Eternal v1 #20)
  • Burton Talbot : an elderly grey haired moustached millionaire. (Detective Comics v1 #359)
  • Gagsworth A. Gagsworthy : a black haired male midget who was a refugee from the circus that became the Jokers protégé as Gaggy the Dwarf who had an glass-shattering scream. (Batman v #186)
  • Ned Judson : a blonde haired man who was a wealthy yachtsman with him being a Batman fan whereupon he learnt of the Brotherhood of Batmen who claimed to had been the Caped Crusader but were a racket that attempted to trick him into being a member so that they could siphon away his fortune. (Detective Comics v1 #222)
  • Spotswood Hartley : a male socialite who was a member of The Court Club where Bruce Wayne attended with Spotswood actually being the criminal Kingpin of the Gotham underworld. (World's Finest v1 #57)
  • Felix Dunn : a scholarly male criminal who was obsessed about the Medieval legends of the Black Knight whereupon he went insane and took a costumed identity as the Black Rogue with him men seeking restore his sanity. (World's Finest v1 #62)
  • Payne Cardine : a dark haired male pianist who was snubbed for his performance leading to him becoming a costumed criminal called the Maestro who terrorised the city. (Batman v1 #149)
  • Ambrose Weems : an older male who was the Professor of Musicology and author of An Encyclopaedia of Music who assisted Batman and Robin against the Maestro by wearing a costume to briefly become a masked superhero called the Sparrow whereupon he retired after the Dynamic Duo caught their villain. (Batman v1 #149)
  • Art Saddows : a spectacled male who was a Front Page Award winning investigative reporter and a member of the Mystery Analysts of Gotham City. (Batman v1 #164)
  • Kaye Daye : a female mystery novelist who had a skilled investigative mind and was a member of the Mystery Analysts of Gotham City. (Batman v1 #164)
  • Hugh Rankin :
  • Simple Simon : (Batman v1 #138)
  • Brand : (Batman v1 #137)
  • Frank Foster the 'Big Wheel' (Batman v1 #135)
  • Swami Ymar : (Batman v1 #129)
  • Alec Wyre : a criminal electronics genius who built inventions for various criminals until he went on the run into the Batcave and died after being scared by the startled bats. (Batman v1 #121)
  • Silas Wayne : great uncle to Bruce Wayne and self-appointed historian of the Wayne family. Batman v1 #120)
  • James Lee : a circus acrobat who was accused of killing his ex-performance patner Wyler. (Batman v1 #118)
  • David Dial : owner of a circus who used it as a smuggling ring to hide criminals when he was discovered by Wyler and had him killed whereupon he had James Lee used as an alibi. (Batman v1 #118)
  • Fatman : a circus clown who wore a mock Batman costume. (Batman v1 #113)
  • Alec Judson : a big game hunter who served as the host to the Gotham Safari Club where he secretly used his hunting trips to meet his contacts as he headed an international crime-cartel. (Batman v1 #111)
  • Vera Lovely : beautiful teenaged skater celebrity who Dick Grayson as Robin fell in love with leading to the two dating for a while. (Batman v1 #107)
  • Johnny Witts : a male criminal mastermind who had incredible powers of deduction. (Detective Comics v1 #344)
  • Millicent Mayne : a blue eyed black haired woman who had been a renowned actress until an earthquake caused her to develop the ability to feel the pain of the city and after being burnt by acid on the side of her face she became known to the media as The Face of Gotham. (Detective Comics v1 #851)
  • Paul Bodin : a male key expert whose daughter was captured by criminals that forced him to commit illegal acts for them with him becoming a masked supervillain called the Human Key until stopped by Batman and Robin who saved his daughter. (Detective Comics v1 #132)
  • James Carter : a male real estate agent who took part in a life of crime by becoming the feared underworld villain called Mr. Incognito. (Batman v1 #173)
  • Mr. Mammoth : a male circus strongman. Batman v1 #168).
  • Maxie Zeus : (Detective Comics v1 #483)
  • Margaret Pye : (Man of Steel v1 #3)
  • Jarvis Tetch : (Batman v1 #49)
  • Leslie Tompkins :
  • Jack Houston :
  • Amity Arkham :
  • Olive Silverlock :
  • Joe Chill :
  • Henry Clover, Junior :
  • Caroline Crown : (Batman v1 #323)
  • Byron Merideth : male human who rose to become a doctor with him specialising in psychiatry where he joined Arkham Asylum and developed a reputation for his harsh treatment of patients. He eventually handed in his notice and departed for private practice where he specialised in patients suffering from an obsession with the Joker. Ultimately, Byron faked his death and adopted a masked disguise as the Merrymaker who claimed to be a servant of the Joker and formed the League of Smiles from his former patients. In reality though, he was using his patients to eliminate his enemies until he was exposed by Batman. (Detective Comics v2 #17)
  • Richard Morse : male lawyer whose law firm was investigating Titan labs over their disposal of toxic chemicals and whilst on-site he was kidnapped by the head biochemist who experimented on him as part of his research in creating supersoldiers for the military. Morse seemingly died from the injection of an HGH derivative but merged with garage as he became Garbage Man. (Weird Worlds v2 #2)
  • Doctor Gotham : an ancient male sorcerer who was buried before the founding of the city and awoke in the modern age. (Shadowpact v1 #5)

Notes

  • Gotham City was created by Bill Finger and Bob Kane where it made its first appearance in Batman v1 #4 (Winter, 1940).

Alternate Versions

  • In Batman: White Knight v1 (2018), Gotham City appeared in the alternate reality setting. One of the regions in the city was Backport with Duke Thomas residing in the neighbourhood where he attempted to manage crime in the area.

In other media

Television

  • In the DC Animated Universe, Gotham City made a number of appearances in the shared animated setting.
    • In Batman: The Animated Series, Gotham City made its first animated appearance and was part of the setting.
  • In The Batman, Gotham City served as the primary setting within the animated series.
  • In Young Justice, Gotham City served as one the settings in the animated movie with it being the home of Batman, Nightwing, Robin and Artemis.
  • In Beware the Batman, Gotham City featured as the setting in the animated series.
  • In the Arrowverse, Gotham City was referenced in the shared continuity setting:
    • In Arrow, Gotham City was first referenced in the live-action television series.
    • In The Flash, Gotham City was referenced in the setting of the live-action television series.
    • In Supergirl, Gotham City was referenced in the setting of the live-action television series.
    • In Batwoman, Gotham City featured in the setting of the live-action television series.
  • In Gotham, Gotham City served as the primary setting of the prequel television series where Detective James Gordon transferred to the Gotham City Police Department and a young Bruce Wayne witnessed the murder of his parents at Crime Alley.
  • In Titans, Gotham City was referenced in the setting of the live-action television series.
  • In Harley Quinn, Gotham City featured in the setting of the animated television series.

Films

  • In Batman and Robin, Gotham City featured heavily in the plotline of the live-action film. Batman was shown to possess a special credit card that allowed him to access funds with the card showing that the issuer referred to it as a GothCard.
  • In The Dark Knight Trilogy, Gotham City made a number of appearances in the shared continuity setting.
    • In Batman Begins, Gotham City first appeared in the live-action film.
    • In The Dark Knight, Gotham City once again was shown in the live-action film.
    • In The Dark Knight Rises, Gotham City featured again in the live-action film.
  • In Batman: Year One, Gotham City featured in the animated film that was an animated adaptation of the comic storyline.
  • In Batman: Assault on Arkham, Gotham City featured in the animated film when the Suicide Squad was dispatched by Amanda Waller to infiltrate Arkham Asylum. Joker had stolen a dirty bomb that was hidden in the city that was powerful enough to irradiate Gotham leading to Batman trying to find the explosive.
  • In the DC Extended Universe, Gotham City made a number of appearances in the shared continuity setting.
    • In Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, Gotham City featured as a setting in the live-action movie.
    • In Suicide Squad, Gotham City was shown in flashback sequences in the live-action movie.
  • In Justice League vs. the Fatal Five, Gotham City appeared in the setting of the 2019 animated film. A time-displaced Starboy who had been brought to the present after attempting to stop the Fatal Five landed in Gotham City. During the turbulence, the medication he used to treat his mental condition was damaged and he sought to find more but came to learn none of it existed in this point of the timeline. This caused his powers to lash out and he was treated as a Metahuman criminal leading to his apprehension as well as incarceration in Arkham Asylum by Batman.

Video games

  • In Batman: Vengeance, Gotham City featured in the 2001 video game set in the DC Animated Universe.
  • In the Arkhamverse, Gotham City made a number of appearances in the shared continuity setting.
    • In Batman: Arkham Asylum, Gotham City appeared in the video-game setting.
    • In Batman: Arkham City, Gotham City appeared in the video-game setting.
    • In Batman: Arkham Origins, Gotham City appeared in the video-game setting.
    • In Batman: Arkham Knight, Gotham City appeared in the video-game setting.
  • In DC Universe Online, Gotham City featured in the MMORPG and served as one of the starting cities for players.
  • In Infinite Crisis, Gotham Heights served as one of the playable settings in the free MOBA game. As part of the setting, it was a number of cities that had been sent into the Muliversal Bleed for various Protectors to battle.
  • In Batman: The Telltale Series, Gotham City featured as the setting in the 2016 video game. One location was Cobblepot Park that was built by the Cobblepot family until their ruin whereupon the park fell to ruin with numerous thugs located there. Another site was the Skyhigh Club situated at the top of a skyscraper and was a hangout for Carmine Falcone. Another location mentioned was Arkham Island that was accessible via a bridge. It was divided into numerous districts that included the Financial District, Fashion District, Diamond District, Chinatown, Old Gotham, Gotham Docks, The Bowery, The Cauldron, East End, Gotham Heights, and Gotham Village. According to the Codex, it had a population of 10 million people.

Appearances

  • Batman v1:
  • Detective Comics v1:
  • JLA v1:
  • Superman/Batman v1:
  • Batman and Robin v1:
  • Batman v2:
  • Detective Comics v2:
  • Batman/Superman v1:
  • Detective Comics v1:
  • Batman and Robin v2:
  • Batwing v1:
  • Talon v1:
  • Batman Eternal v1:
  • Batman and Robin Eternal v1:
  • Batman:
  • Batman Who Laughs v1:

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