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Quote1 My whole life, I had been afraid of doing what I knew needed to be done. Afraid to give all of myself to the battle. The helmet showed me that my codes and rules were naive. That all that truly mattered was victory. And now I would finally take it for myself. Quote2
-- Batman: The Merciless src

Bruce Wayne is the Merciless, the Batman of Earth -12. He gained the powers of Ares after donning the war god's helm, which gave him an insatiable drive to fight. He eventually joined the Dark Knights, a team of evil Batmen from alternate realities. He is primarily an enemy to Wonder Woman.

Origin

When Ares created a helmet that amplified his powers a hundredfold, war broke out in the effort to stop him. For two years, Batman and Wonder Woman fought side-by-side just to get close enough to attempt to stop Ares. The two were able to get the helmet off the war god, but at the cost of Diana's life. Batman, driven by grief, put the helmet on in order to take down Ares. Despite his belief that he could keep himself under control, Batman was corrupted by the power and killed Ares. Afterwards, he learned that Diana had only been stunned by Ares. Afraid of what Ares power would do to Bruce, she tried to remove the helmet. However, Bruce was so addicted to the power, he chose to kill the woman he loved rather than risk losing the helmet. With virtually unlimited power and no sense of morality, Bruce went on to wage war on the entire world. Starting with killing only villains, he quickly escalated to killing his fellow heroes when they tried to pull him out of the darkness. Soon no one was left to stop his rampage.[1]

Dark Nights

When Bruce's war reached Olympus, his Earth reached the edge of its existence. Minutes before the end, he was approached by a Batman whose very voice, a match for his, was enough to rattle him. This Batman offered him a chance to put his talents to use in the greatest war any universe has ever seen: a war for their survival. Unable to pass up a chance to prove to all creation that his way is the right one, The Merciless joined the Dark Knights. When Prime Earth's Batman was turned into a portal for Barbatos, The Merciless arrived along with his new allies. However, he was unable to look at an unconscious Wonder Woman as he prepared to bring havoc to Earth-0. To avoid seeing the face of his dead love, he wandered the Tomb of Hath-Set, and stumbled upon a temple hidden under the tomb. Upon the walls were carvings of Prime Batman's history, from his early days to the day the Dark Knights arrived. After mulling over the fate of the Court of Owls, He left to begin bringing forth his war.[1]

A few days after helping The Murder Machine take control of the Watchtower from Cyborg,[2] he decided to bring down the group of leaders from government agencies, task forces, and the military organized to seek a way to battle the Dark Knights. Finding their hideout at Langley, The Merciless tore through the soldiers guarding the meeting. Due to his powers affecting everyone's minds, the leaders had been trying to kill each other before he even reached them. In a last ditch effort to end him, Gen. Lane ordered an experimental WMD to be used to bomb their location. However, The Merciless absorbed the blast to strengthen himself. Using his power to influence the survivors, he forced them to pray to him, so they could watch them lose everything they tried to save. Taking off his helmet while he thought of his Wonder Woman, he noticed how Steve Trevor, the only one present who had any sense of mercy, reminded him of who he used to be, thought to himself that his merciful nature would allow Barbatos to rule.[1]

Powers

  • Divine Empowerment: The Merciless has all of the powers of Ares amplified a hundredfold due to his helmet.[1]
    • Energy Absorption: The Merciless was capable of absorbing all of the power of a low-yield nuke without duress.[1]
    • Summoning: Through his power as the god of war as well as being the heart and soul of his worlds Mount Olympus, The Merciless has power over a great many of its items of interest as well as many of its facilities.[1]
      • Weapon Conjuration: Bruce can summon any and all forms of munitions within the divine armory to his beck and call at will. Such as when he summoned his God Killer sword when attacking a war room summit.[1]
    • Pathokinesis: The Merciless can infect others with anger and a desire to fight, as well as with a need to worship him.[1]
    • Superhuman Strength[1]

Abilities

Equipment

  • Ares' Helmet
  • Golden Drachma: An artifact created from all the smelted gold coins of the deceased Amazons of Themyscira. By ringing the giant object of currency, The Merciless could summon an army of restless warrior spirits to do his bidding.[3]

Weapons

Related


Footnotes


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Batman Family member
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This character is or was an incarnation of or an ally of Batman, and a member of the Batman Family. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the "Batman Family members" category.

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Batman Villain(s)
This character, team or organization, is or was primarily an enemy of the Batman, or the Batman Family as a whole. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Batman Villains."

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Wonder Woman Villain(s)
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This character is or was primarily an enemy of Wonder Woman and the Amazons in any of her various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Wonder Woman Villains category."