Real Name: Arnold Wesker
First Appearance: Detective Comics #583
Powers/Abilities: Master ventriloquist, skilled criminal strategist (Scarface persona).
Who Is He: The story of the Ventriloquist is an odd, but sad one. Born into a powerful Mafia family, Wesker developed Dissociative Identity Disorder as a coping mechanism, after witnessing his mother’s assassination by a rival family. As “The Ventriloquist,” the timid and submissive Arnold is a powerful crime lord in his own right, giving all orders (and executions) through his secondary personality, which is personified by a wooden dummy named Scarface.
Why We Want Him: Okay, at first glance an old guy holding a puppet appears more Jim Henson than John Gotti, but the character’s story is pretty strong. Part of his danger is his almost humorous appearance – Scarface may look like a refugee from The Island of Misfit Toys, until he gives you the ultimate bullet massage.
It sounds too simple, right? Remove puppet from man, man gets better. Not so. The deep-rooted psychosis of the Ventriloquist means he will always find a way to recreate his alter-ego – no matter how many times you toss Scarface into the wood-chipper.
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