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Quote1 Mute, hunched over, more monster than man in the eyes of our so-called civilization-- who could have guessed that beneath your appaling appearance you have a savant brilliance when it comes to... machines. Einstein's mind in a Quasimodo's body. Even I was dumbfounded when I accidentally discovered that you are able to invent what others could never hope to imagine. Quote2
-- Penguin src

"Harold" was the leading designer and engineer of many of Batman's arsenal of gadgets and vehicles. His diminished speech capabilities and physical condition were balanced by his excellent skills in mechanics and engineering, which provided Batman with technological wonders.

Origin

Harold Allnut was born with a severe kyphosis, which gave him the appearance of a hunchback and he was also a mute. These conditions, plus his ugly appearance caused Harold troubles at his own home, where he was met with contempt and disgust from his own mother. Harold's only safe retreat were mechanics and engineering and over the years, he became proeficient in fixing and creating technological devices, beyond any expert's capabilities.[1]

After years of being mistreated by his own family, Harold decided to run away from home, much to his mother's relief. Concealing his hideous features with a green cloak, Harold wandered on his own and always tried to provide a helping hand to those in need. Certain occasion, he came across the mysterious vigilante known as Question, but Harold continued his path as a loner.[1]

Certain night, while walking the lonely roads, Harold was assaulted by a group of thugs. After he was beaten, Harold was rescued by Penguin, who nursed him back to health and took him to his hideout. For months, Penguin manipulated Harold into creating a bird controlling device, which Penguin then used to create chaos in Gotham.[2] Harold eventually realized Penguin's true intentions and he turned against the criminal, allowing Batman to capture Penguin for good. Although Penguin's scheme was stopped, Harold decided to remain hidden in Penguin's hideout.[3]

Later, Batman saved Harold and let him live in the Batcave where he formed a friendship with Ace the Bat-Hound and Bruce's butler Alfred Pennyworth.

When Jean-Paul Valley assumed the role of Batman, Harold and Ace were the first to see that he was out of control and they avoided him, hiding deep within the cave.[4] After months of hiding, Harold came out to greet Robin and Nightwing when they infiltrated the Batcave to place surveillance devices in order to monitor Jean-Paul's activities. Harold assisted them in their task and later returned to his hiding place.[5] When Nightwing and Robin returned, Harold assisted them in preparing the cave for Bruce's return.[6]

Much later, Harold assisted in the reconstruction of Gotham City during the "No Man's Land" affair.

Some time later, the villain known as Hush bribed Harold into manipulating the Bat-Computer in exchange for a surgical procedure that corrected Harold's stature and enabled him to speak. Batman soon discovered that Harold had betrayed him, and during the confrontation, Hush shot Harold in the head, killing him.[7]

Following his death Batman forgave Harold as he understood his desire to be normal and have what he has always wanted. He later buried him on a hill overlooking Wayne Manor.


Abilities

  • Genius Level Intellect: Harold's increased intelligence allowed him to come up with mechanical wonders that even experts could even fathom.
  • Mechanical Aptitude: Harold was a veritable genius in the field of auto mechanics, and proved vital when Batman required repairs on the Batmobile or other technological devices located inside the Batcave.

Weaknesses

  • Mute
  • Kyphosis: Kyphosis, which is spinal curvature either forward or back, is distinct from scoliosis -- curvature to the side. Hundreds of millions of people have either or both kinds of spinal curvature. However, good health care in developed countries today means that most people in these countries have much less severe spinal curvature than Harold. Harold's condition is suggestive of genetic bone weakness, or very bad nutrition since infancy, or many years of harsh labor and lifting heavy objects without medical aid, or all three. Historians recognize that very bad spinal curvature was common among those who did heavy labor in medieval times.
  • Harold's surname, Allnut, was revealed for the first time in Batman #619, when it was seen on his grave marker.
  • Harold is the creator of an animation program that was analogous to the real TV series Batman: The Animated Series.[8]

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.