Arkham Asylum EP9: Jazz Hands Again

By Shamus Posted Friday Jun 26, 2015

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 75 comments

Link (YouTube)

I’m so glad Josh was the one who brought up the subject of what Ivy “eats”. Saved me from having to ask the question.

For the record, I don’t REALLY need an explanation for where Ivy gets her energy. In fact, I think it’s good if they don’t try to explain it. It’s not a problem here because it doesn’t come up. If there was a plot point where the warden took away her food, or if she got the power to escape because someone left her too close to a grow lamp, then we’d be obliged to think about this stuff. The game doesn’t explain it, and it doesn’t matter, because fighting her never comes down to directly controlling the energy intake of her physical body.

But I don’t mind discussing the idea of how she sustains herself. It’s a bit of a fan-wank, like asking “which superhero would win in a fight?”, but it’s harmless and fun and sometimes leads to interesting or unexpected conclusions.

I’m sure other people have done this over the years, but let me have a go at it:

Let’s say Ivy does photosynthesize, but she’s also carnivorous via the plants that eat peopleThere are an awful lot of calories stored up in the average person!. (The Harley Quinn DLC in Arkham Knight explicitly shows Ivy’s plants eating cops.) She taps into these huge networks of building-sized plants and soaks up the solar power and calories while she’s on one of her rampagesUndercut somewhat by the fact that these rampages usually happen at night, but shut up.. That gives her lots of power to be ambulatory, grow more plants, produce spores, and whatever else she’s trying to do. Then Batman comes along, foils her plans, and they stick her in a tank with no access to plants. From there she’s living off whatever she’s got stored in her body.



[1] There are an awful lot of calories stored up in the average person!

[2] Undercut somewhat by the fact that these rampages usually happen at night, but shut up.

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75 thoughts on “Arkham Asylum EP9: Jazz Hands Again

  1. Benjamin Hilton says:

    An open request to my fellow Twenty….siders…sidees? Sidiots!
    An open request to my fellow Twenty Sidiots:

    I know this is a show about spoiling, but as this week has progressed it has been increasingly difficult to participate in the comments without running into Arkham Knight spoilers.
    I know everyone wants to talk about it, and this lets play is just begging for comparisons, but I think I speak for allot of people when I ask with super-huggy-much sugar on top that we try to avoid that.


    Random Internet Person to whom you have no obligations.

    1. AileTheAlien says:

      But, we have spoiler(“strike”) tags. We can spoil all the things with safety! :D

      1. MichaelGC says:

        You can read text through the spoiler tags on iPhone – well, I assume it’s the iPhone that does it; possibly I just have a really banal & context-specific mutant superpower – so I now know what the deal is with the Arkham Knight. I don’t mind that, though – the thing that’s really spoiled it for me is the PC optimisation clusterfarg! :D

        Oh, and the Battank. It sounds like it moves similarly to vehicle-mode Transformers in Fall of Cybertron, and that was a mechanic I found I could tolerate only in very small doses. Such as approximately thirty-eight seconds per lifetime.

      2. lethal_guitar says:

        The spoiler tags are also see-through on Android browsers. Might be something worth looking into..

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          But they are still marked,so you know what not to read.

          1. RejjeN says:

            I read things before I process it though! D:

    2. lethal_guitar says:

      +1, and some more huggy sugar on top!

      1. Erik says:

        I think that’s on purpose because you can’t highlight it like you can on a non mobile device

        1. venatus says:

          I’m not sure if it would help with the spoiler tag thing, but technically, you can highlight on mobile devices, at least android devices.

          just hold down a word and it will be highlighted with two little tab things you can move around to control exactly what your highlighting.

          1. guy says:

            In my experience, that is really fiddly and not fun to use.

  2. Kerethos says:

    I’ve always pretty much assumed she lives of photosynthesis and by drawing nutrients from her modified plants, as she seems to frequently bond with them. Kind of like a fungus draws nutrients from its host tree.

    So long as the plants find nutrients, be it from the soil or other sources, she’d have the energy than she needs. Even during the night. Would not really be surprised if she’s was also on some “all meat”-diet during incarceration and such.

    Wait, does she have a toilet in her cell? Because if she doesn’t that’s… problematic.

    Edit: I did some quick Google searching and from what I could tell she actually does photosynthesize and is a vegan – favoring fruit and other things you prune of plants to keep them healthy or that will just fall off and rot if it isn’t eaten.

    Damn it Shamus! You and your “but what do they eat?”
    It’s in my head now, I can’t get it out – I need to know!

    1. Joe Informatico says:

      [Insert poorly-considered “night soil” joke here.]

    2. SlothfulCobra says:

      Well, she could just be eating plants and having lots of cognitive dissonance about it.

      Normally she freaks out about people damaging flowers and trees, not eating a salad.

  3. MichaelGC says:

    The mystery prisoner near Clayface was a competition winner (so ‘developer’ wasn’t really that far off!).

    1. Cinebeast says:

      No offense to the contestant, but that mystery prisoner always disturbed me more than any other character in the game, even more than Killer Croc. He’s armless, bug-eyed, he doesn’t say anything, and perhaps most tellingly, he’s the only other prisoner in the room besides Clayface.

      This is the Warden’s office and Clayface is arguably the most dangerous criminal on the island, so it makes some sense to stick him close by. So what makes the armless dude so special?

  4. Rayen says:

    I always figured Poison Ivy was a Reverse Vegetarian. I don’t know if there is a name for people that only eat animal products other than carnivore.

    Also wasn’t there a run in the BAS where Joker took it a little too far with Harley and she like joker gassed him and took off with Poison Ivy? Or just Joker was elsewhere and she and Ivy had a girls night thing? I remember it very vaguley. I have head cannon that when not working for Joker Harley and Ivy are BFFs.

    1. Viktor says:

      That’s canon in the comics, pretty much any time Harley isn’t with Joker she’s hanging with Ivy. Harley’s got her own solo series now where Ivy has been there constantly.

      Also, they’re canonically dating now, so that’s cool.

      1. Nyctef says:

        Well, you know what they say about The Harley and The Ivy ..

          1. Mersadeon says:

            Damn I don’t know why, but I chuckled at every single one of these. They really get me.

          2. Kian says:

            That is awesome.

            Also, that line by Storm is the worst one-liner ever. There is only one acceptable answer to “You know what happens to a toad when it’s struck by lightning?”

            “It croaks”.

            1. Daemian Lucifer says:

              Hey,dont take pun-ishers job!


          3. el_b says:

            videos? on my spoiler warnings?


            seriously had no idea this was a thing now, awesome :)

    2. Ledel says:

      It was only for an episode, but yeah, that did happen in BAS.

      1. Andrew says:

        There’s a second one where they team up with Live Wire and have to be stopped by Supergirl and Batgirl.

        Also, they’re hiding out in a room, by themselves, with one bed, arguing about why they can’t leave and haven’t been able to leave for days (weeks?). Even my 10 year old self figured out the two of them were dating.

    3. Wide And Nerdy says:

      What I want to know is, would a herbivorous dinosaur like a brontosaurus or stegosaurus eat Ivy? Is she plant enough to be eaten by plant eaters? If not, what about the T. rex? Batman has one.

  5. Nyctef says:

    Also, I think Harley and Ivy’s Life is Strange is the first on the official Spoiler Warning list of Games That Would Be Better Than This One.

    I would play the shit out of that game :D

    1. J.M. Alexia says:

      That would be amazing. I wonder if you would play as Harley or Ivy. Probably Harley, she’s the more innocent of the two.

  6. Ledel says:

    *Wipes away tear of joy*CuftBatman is growing up so fast. Here’s the bodycount totals so far:

    K.O.ed: 164

    Maimed: 22

    Killed: 10

    Four of the maims are the 4 guys Josh sends flying into walls/metal bars at high speeds with the explosive gel. The 5th is at 19:29, the guy who goes flying straight up 20 feet and lands on his back onto an electrified floor.

    And the kill…I’ll let you guys figure out who the kill is. It’s a riddle, ‘cuz I’m The Riddler.

    1. James says:

      Slow your roll there Mr Nashton

      1. Ledel says:

        My name is Nygma! Edward Nygma! AAAuuugh! This is why I don’t work with amateurs.

    2. McNutcase says:

      I’m pretty sure I saw and heard at least three neck snaps during the Hot Floor Fight, when Josh figured out how to mash two buttons and stop a guy instantly.

      1. Ledel says:

        I thought so too, but if you look it’s actually arm/leg/hand snaps and not neck snaps. I had to watch that fight several times to make sure.

    3. krellen says:

      Batman doesn’t kill. Gravity does.

      1. MrGuy says:

        Gravity doesn’t kill. The sudden stop does.

  7. Ledel says:

    Is there a part in any of the Arkham games where a mook bugs out and runs away because he doesn’t want to fight Batman? The reason I ask is because they put in a mechanic of detective vision where you can see their heartbeats and tells you if they are calm/scared/terrified.

    In the first 5 minutes of Arkham Knight, Batman drops into a group of 10 or so bad guys and proceeds to beat the crap out of them, and in a video I watched, it was executed perfectly and brutally. Yet when there was only one guy left, all his buddies bleeding on the ground, he charges at Batman without so much as a weapon in hand.

    It just feels like that was a major aspect of Batman that the developers missed. He’s so powerful and scary that all the nameless guys are terrified of him showing up any given night.

    1. Muspel says:

      I don’t think so. This is arguably justified because throughout a lot of the mook encounters, Joker is threatening to do unspeakable things to them if they run, and Joker is a lot crueler than Batman.

      Also, the mooks may be aware that Batman won’t kill them, while Joker certainly would.

    2. Christopher says:

      There’s some scripted stuff at the very beginning of Arkham City, at least. Two-Face has got a hundred thugs stuffed in one room, but once you drop down there, most of them scatter in fright and leaves you with a group that’s not difficult to handle.

      1. Bropocalypse says:

        It fits nicely that Two Face is the least awful of the rogue’s gallery to work with. He’ll only treat you like garbage HALF the time.

        1. MichaelGC says:

          Oh, I dunno: I’ve had nice bosses and nasty bosses, but definitely the worst bosses were those who were sometimes nice and sometimes nasty. At least I knew where I stood with the flat-out nasty ones!

          That said, I can imagine the calculation being slightly different if my line of work involved general criminal lunacy and the significant specific risk of getting Batmaimed.

    3. lethal_guitar says:

      Arkham Origins kinda goes a step in this direction: When you attack a large group, the very last standing mook will start saying “can we talk about this?”, ” can I maybe change your mind” etc. instead of the normal combat taunts

    4. Mikey says:

      The Terrified status comes into play in Predator/stealth sections. If you do well enough (Which I believe is determined by taking down a bunch of dudes in quick succession using a variety of takedown methods), they’ll enter a “Terrified” state where their behavior gets erratic, they’ll turn around more frequently, spook easily and sometimes randomly unload their firearms into nothing.

      1. MichaelGC says:

        Aye, and if you scare ’em just right, sometimes they’ll randomly unload their firearms into each other! :D There’s an achievement for it. Don’t ask me how I know that.

  8. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Josh,why did you get the critical combo upgrade?You suck at combo stuff,you dont need it.

    1. Ledel says:

      Impersonating Josh: “What? What’s this ‘Incinerator’ you keep talking about. I don’t know what that is.”

    2. Lachlan the Mad says:

      People who suck at combos need the critical strike upgrade the most!

  9. The closest thing I ever came to writing Batman fanfiction was a scene I had in my head of Poison Ivy talking to her psychiatrist and having him fall in love with her and that whole spiel, but in the middle of it, he offhandedly points out that the asylum is the only thing protecting her, since it means society still views her as a human and the moment she achieves her dream of being recognized as fauna, is the moment they ship her to a lab instead of Arkham.

      1. Meh. S’all greek to me.

  10. Ron says:

    I actually completely agree with Chris on Harley’s outfit. Something about it just felt off. It didnt feel like an adaptation from the BAS aesthetic, like some of the other character outfit changes. It just felt like it was there for pointless fanservice, and it did absolutely nothing for me.

    In a game where most of the fanservice seemed to be the developers nerding out over Batman lore, this kind of fanservice just felt odd.

    1. Bropocalypse says:

      I can see why they made some kind of change, the harlequin jumpsuit is pretty silly outside of Bruce Timm’s simplistic style.

      1. Mintskittle says:

        The only way I see Harley appearing in an Arkham game wearing the jumpsuit is maybe that’s what she wears to bed, and Batman just happens to knock over a Joker hideout while she’s trying to catch some shuteye, so at that moment, that’s all she’s got.

      2. Dreadjaws says:

        Are you somehow implying that the slutty nurse costume is less silly?

    2. Christopher says:

      I would’ve loved to see Harley’s one good, iconic costume in just ONE of the Arkham games instead of all of these different normal people clothes with variations on her color scheme. Same for Poison Ivy, wearing a red jacket and no pants is Scrooge McDucks style. Is it because they used to wear the sort of skintight, traditional supervillain/-hero costumes? Seems like the only one able to get away with something approaching spandex in Arkham Asylum is Batman himself(and it approaches “armor” more every game). The character designer might have just wanted to have Harley and Ivy more in line with everyone else and leave the catsuit for Catwoman.

      Now I’m trying to remember what Robin’s costume looks like in this universe, but all I can think of is his dumb buzzcut. Pretty sure Nightwing had a normal superhero suit though. Maybe that’s hero fashion only, in Gotham.

    3. SlothfulCobra says:

      Well, it’s pretty hard to compare the outfits in this game with the ones in Batman The Animated Series, because everyone on the show was basically dressed up as classy as possible, wearing suits everywhere.

      The show is also practically based in the 1930s, back when gangsters were running wild with tommy guns and men still wore hats, while the Arkham games for better or worse, go with a more gritty and gothic aesthetic. Harley and Scarecrow are the only real characters in this game whose costumes got changed to fit the aesthetic. It gets worse in the next game, between biker Talia and villains that look like they’ve been rummaging in the dumpster behind a Dickens novel.

      1. Christopher says:

        To Rocksteady’s credit, there are a ton of costumes in City that accurately portray different versions of Catwoman and Batman that I remember, like TAS Batman and Long Halloween’s Catwoman. None of them fit in with the normal thugs at all. Even if they adapted some costumes more faithfully, stuff would have to be changed.

      2. Andrew says:

        Picking nits, but in 1930s fashion styles, suits aren’t “as classy as possible” they’re as casual as a grown (upperclass) man could get while going outside (there are exceptions for physical labor, the beach, or a picnic, but none of those apply to BTAS).

    4. Thomas says:

      I’m okay with it, because the Arkham series is the darkest and grittiest visually of non-comic Batman stuff and Harley’s normal outfit probably looks too fun and happy for what they’re going for. Art design wise Arkham is really only one step lighter than Hitman Absolution

  11. SlothfulCobra says:

    There are some really neat conversations with Joker that Josh has been missing. Basically every time Josh goes back outside, he passes up an opportunity to talk with Joker at the visitor center.

    1. MrGuy says:


      It was my favorite semi-easter-egg. And the final bit where you actually have the party thrown for you is awesome.

  12. Tmacnt08 says:

    Yes! Time for my daily dose of Reginald Batburt!

    1. lucky7 says:

      Reginald Cuftbat?

      1. MichaelGC says:

        Waynginald Cuftbruce.

          1. MrGuy says:

            Reginald Wayne is secretly Cuftbat Man.

            1. Ledel says:

              Reginald Batbert: The World’s Greatest Defective…

  13. Mersadeon says:

    I was always okay with the weird zombie-esque lunatics. I figured they’re a side-effect of every villain trying to screw up the population with chemicals. I can absolutely believe that Joker-Gas has a 1% chance of going feral-lunatic-nuts.

  14. lucky7 says:

    The guy you were commenting on in the cell with Clayface is one Luke Oliver, the winner of a 2008 contest that put his face in Arkham Asylum. He’s also on Joker’s party list (shown in the capturing Harley cutscene).

    1. Mersadeon says:

      Jeez, gotta say I imagine some people would not be happy to get *that* role in a game. I mean I think it’s cool, but I can see some people *not* wanting to be portrayed as a lunatic in a high-security asylum.

  15. Phantos says:

    I think fictional characters can wear whatever they want, as long as I have the right to make fun of how stupid they look sometimes.

    And whether or not it’s because a dude made the character wear it because they’re gross, and apparently can’t think of any other way to see boobies in this day and age.

  16. Dt3r says:

    The most amazing thing in this game so far: @3:00 you can actually walk through the police tape barrier!

  17. Alex says:

    “I’m calibrating the scanner to only show prints that have traces of chlorophyll.”

    Batman follows the trail to Poison Ivy and his detective vision helpfully draws his attention to Harley Quinn’s handprints. Awkwardness ensues.

    1. Lachlan the Mad says:


  18. Late to the party here, but I can explain part of HQ’s outfit. I have an old back injury (and internal scarring from gallbladder removal & endometrosis) and when it hurts a well-fitted corset is better than a brace (and serves much the same function and is more comfy). All my costumes now involve corsets for that reason (and also because I look damn good in ’em which is a nice bonus). It means I can run around a con longer with less pain (and is orthopedic surgeon approved).
    That said, the visible bra, insanely short skirt, ect, still looks stupid, and I can’t help but wonder if she’d really be able to tumble about. The corset looks like one I have that goes from just below the bust to an inch or so below the waist, and that’s the least restrictive one I own and I certainly wouldn’t try acrobatics in it.

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