One of the wackiest Batman villains of all time, Kite Man, is getting his own animated show spinning off from Harley Quinn: The Animated Series. Titled Kite Man: Hell Yeah!, the show's eponymous anti-hero might be just about the weirdest pick for a DC leading man yet.
But Kite Man, whose reputation has grown significantly in the last few years, is hardly the only weird and goofy villain that Batman has faced down in his 80-plus year history.
In fact, here are ten of the weirdest Batman villains of all time - maybe even weirder than Kite Man.
Condiment King's weirdness is pretty self-explanatory: he's a guy whose gimmick is splatting people with highly pressurized ketchup and mustard. So. Yeah.
To be fair, creators Bruce Timm and Paul Dini, who first introduced Condiment King in Batman: The Animated Series, definitely intended Condiment King to be a parody of the classic style of gimmick-based Batman villains. And they succeeded - well enough that he definitely makes this list.
Doctor Double X
First appearing in 1958's Detective Comics #261 by Dave Wood and Sheldon Moldoff, Doctor Simon Ecks is a scientist who develops a device that can turn a person's spiritual "aura" into a physical being that exists alongside them as a duplicate. Turning it on himself, he creates a doppelganger that becomes a super-powered villain with the ability to manipulate energy.
To really sell the pun though, Doctor Ecks' duplicate takes on the name "Doctor Double X" - get it? The concept is perfectly indicative of the way many Silver Age Batman villains are built on a solid sci-fi story that takes a strange twist based on the personality of the villain.
The Ten-Eyed Man
Philip Reardon was a US army soldier who was caught in a fight between Batman and some terrorists, which culminated in an explosion that damaged Reardon's eyes, as told in 1970's Batman #226 by Frank Robbins, Irv Novick, and Dick Giordano. To restore his vision, Reardon undergoes an experimental procedure in which his optic nerves are reattached to his fingertips.
Becoming the so-called Ten-Eyed Man, Reardon trains with monks who teach him to use his bizarre finger-sight as an advantage in martial arts, swearing vengeance on Batman who he blames for his condition. But none of that can save him from being defeated by Batman forcing him to catch a prickly bush with his bare eye-hands.
The Penny Plunderer
There are a lot of Batman villains who are obsessed with one eccentric gimmick or concept, but few have as strange a history as the nominally-determinative rapscallion Joe Coyne, AKA the Penny Plunderer, who had just one canonical appearance in 1947's World's Finest Comics #30 by Batman's own creators Bill Finger and Bob Kane. That story involved him setting a special trap with the giant penny that has since become a staple of Batman's Batcave (and which was later retconned to be connected to Two-Face).
Aside from the weirdness of the penny gimmick, what really sets Penny Plunderer apart from the many other similar hokey Batman villains is that he was sentenced to death in the electric chair and executed. This makes him one of the few Batman villains who paid the ultimate price for his crimes at the hands of the state - all for a few pennies.
Since his initial Silver Age origins, the strange sci-fi villain known as the Outsider has had a few different origins in different eras of the DC Universe. But his strangest story is still the original, told in 1964's Detective Comics #356 by Carmine Infantino and Gardner Fox, in which Batman's faithful butler Alfred Pennyworth dies and is resurrected as the bizarre villain known as the Outsider.
After his death being crushed by a boulder while saving the lives of Batman and Robin, Alfred's body is confiscated by a mad scientist named Brandon Crawford. Crawford succeeds in reviving Alfred, but his body is changed into a strange, mutated form and he develops telekinetic powers. Weirdest of all, Alfred is later restored to his original self, though he remains cursed to occasionally become the Outsider for years afterwards.
Picture a villain named the Zebra-Man. If you're imagining a guy covered head-to-toe in zebra stripes, you're dead on. Now try to imagine his powers. If you're guessing he's got some kind of animal strength and speed, or some kind of camouflage powers, you're dead-ass wrong.
In fact, the Zebra-Man, who debuted in 1960's Detective Comics #275 by Batman co-creator Bill Finger and artist Sheldon Moldoff (whose name pops up a few times on this list), has the power of "diamagentism," which basically means he has Magneto-like control over anything that isn't magnetic. You know, like a zebra.
Many readers will undoubtedly know Polka-Dot Man thanks to actor David Dastmalchian's winning performance as the oddball villain in 2021's The Suicide Squad, which presented a slightly different (though still incredibly weird and goofy) version of the character. The comic book Polka-Dot Man first appeared way back in 1962's Detective Comics #300 by Batman co-creator Bill Finger and Sheldon Moldoff, who co-created several villains on this list.
Unlike the movie version of Polka-Dot Man whose body is infused with strange cosmic polka-dot energy, the original version of Abner Krill (who has also used the villain name "Mister Polka-Dot") had the power to pull the multicolored polka-dots off his suit and turn them into a variety of gadgets.
Aside from having a name taken from a quilting style which includes a term that wouldn't necessarily fly these days, Crazy Quilt's weirdness goes much deeper than what's on the surface. And what's on the surface is already a completely outrageous multicolored patchwork suit, and a helmet with special lights that make people feel bad.
Created by legendary cartoonist Jack Kirby (who wasn't afraid to take big, bizarre swings - Silver Surfer anyone?) in 1946's Boy Commandos #15, Crazy Quilt is the criminal alter ego of patchwork-obsessed artist named Quilt (whose real name was later revealed as Paul Dekker). After deciding to become a villain, he first makes himself an enemy to a bunch of scrappy lil' stinkers known as the Boy Commandos, before embarking on a life of crime in Gotham City that would soon attract the Caped Crusader himself.
Look, we've all heard of Kite Man. He's been included in enough recent Batman stories that he's developed his own cult following. And yes, using kites as your super-power is still super weird, even if Kite Man has gained some satirical popularity, even getting his own upcoming animated series. But have y'all heard of Colonel Blimp? No, not the controversial UK comic strip - the blimp-obsessed Batman villain who first appeared in 1938's Detective Comics #33 as Carl Kruger, a dirigible-building scientist who built a sky-army to conquer the world.
That's actually pretty cool - but Kruger got a surprisingly silly makeover as the mauve-and-mustard clad Colonel Blimp (whose obsession with blimps is shown in his signature blimp emblem which mirrors Batman's iconic bat symbol) in 1982's Batman #352 by Paul Kupperburg and Don Newton. Oddly enough, this makes Carl Kruger/Colonel Blimp one of the rare examples of a Golden Age villain who actually got sillier after being rebooted.
Real heads will know. And by "real heads" we mean people whose heads have been replaced by massive old school film cameras, a la cult classic Batman villain Mister Camera. And by "cult classic," we mean he only appeared in one comic - 1954's Batman #81 by David Vern Reed and Sheldon Moldoff - before disappearing for decades.
Mister Camera's whole gimmick is that his head is a camera that he uses to record footage of Batman and Robin's secret identities, which turns out to be too grainy to use. He wasn't revisited until the animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold, leading to a few sporadic modern appearances as a background character or side villain.
Want to see the other side of Batman's rogue's gallery? Check out the best Batman villains ever.