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"Night of Siege": The Black Spider, an ex-junkie costumed vigilante out to murder all pushers in Gotham City, tries to kill big-time dope dealer Hannibal Hardwicke. Batman intervenes to save Hardwicke for his trial. After the Spider ma



Appearing in "Night of Siege"

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  • Black Spider (Flashback and main story)
  • Hannibal Hardwicke (Single appearance)
  • Bert (Single appearance)

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Synopsis for "Night of Siege"

The Black Spider, an ex-junkie costumed vigilante out to murder all pushers in Gotham City, tries to kill big-time dope dealer Hannibal Hardwicke. Batman intervenes to save Hardwicke for his trial. After the Spider makes two tries and is beaten back, Batman takes Hardwicke to Bruce Wayne's penthouse apartment at the Wayne Foundation for safekeeping and settles down as the Black Spider lays siege.

The Black Spider battles past Batman into the apartment, but Batman blocks him again, and learns that the Spider survived the explosion during their last encounter by staggering to a free clinic run by an old friend. The Spider is eventually felled by the sleep-gas with which Batman has flooded the apartment, having protected himself with nose-filters. Alfred reports that Hardwicke has admitted to being the Black Spider's financier, hoping to eliminate competition through the vigilante, who turned upon his "creator" in the end.

Appearing in The Mystery Murderer Of "Mrs. Batman"!

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  • Jeff Ritcher (Final appearance; Dies)

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Synopsis for The Mystery Murderer Of "Mrs. Batman"!

Jeff Richter admits that the rest of his evidence revealing that Bruce Wayne is Batman is "buried" elsewhere to stop Batman interfering with his operations. Bruce switches to his Batman uniform to try to stop his antagonist, but a freezing gas in Richter's suit immobilizes Batman and Alfred, and Richter escapes.

Batman later checks out Richter's fingerprints, only to learn that each finger bears the print of a different wanted criminal. But Richter's speaking voice betrays him as a professional actor, and a search of Gotham media pinpoints him and reveals his identity. Batman shadows Richter and learns that he assumes a different disguise every night to visit various slum areas.

Much later, he realizes that Richter is killing slum dwellers with a plague he spreads from a sprayer in his cane, hoping to start a panic and extort money from the city. Batman confronts Richter and accidentally damages his cane, so that Richter looses the plague on himself and dies. Afterward, Batman tells Alfred that Richter's evidence of his double identity was buried in the grave of "Jane Doe." But her true identity will remain unknown.

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