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DC Comics' line-wide immersion into the criminal-minded corners of their vast universe, Year of the Villain, rolls on with this week's featured baddie, The Riddler — and SYFY WIRE has an exclusive preview of this nefarious one-shot hitting stands on Sept. 11.
Penned by Eisner Award-nominated writer Mark Russell (The Lone Ranger, Red Sonja, Snagglepuss) and paired with moody art by Scott Godlewski (The Lost Boys, Copperhead) and a main cover from Mikel Janin, the latest addition to the over-arching event series stamps a question mark on one of Batman's greatest foes.
The Riddler: Year of the Villain #1 finds a messianic Lex Luthor delivering dark gifts to super-villains across the entire DC Universe, and the stage is set to enact his complex plan to set the universe on a direct path towards certain doom. But not everyone is getting his special attention. Unfortunately, cosmic resources are extremely limited and some noteworthy villains are sadly being left out of the party.
Edward Nygma, AKA The Riddler, is one such person, and he's not exactly happy about the situation. Was this simply an oversight or a deliberate offense by Lex? The Riddler is highly motivated and determined to discover why he's being neglected and try to rectify the problem pronto.
"What I love about the Riddler is that he's clearly a smart guy who's tragically pigeon-holed himself into a pretty narrow gimmick," Russell tells SYFY WIRE. "I wanted to write a story about him coming to that realization and confronting the fact that he's devoted so much of his life to chasing an identity he created for himself as a child."
"In a way, I think that's what growth means for most of us," he explains. "Waking up one day thirty years later and wondering how much of who we are is just what we decided on as kids and never really got around to questioning. Scott's art wonderfully captures the human dimension of this story, while keeping the epic feeling of a story that revolves around Batman and Lex Luthor."
Now indulge the darker shades of your nature with our expanded look at DC Comics' The Riddler: Year of the Villain #1 in the full gallery below and let us know if you have a soft spot in your heart for the iconic emerald-clad jester.