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Arrow Namedropped A Batman Villain Perfect For Batwoman's TV Show

Blockbuster and Batwoman

The latest episode of Arrow made reference to Blockbuster - a classic Batman villain who might prove an ideal foil for Kate Kane in the upcoming Batwoman series. Little has been said about the cast of criminals Batwoman might face, though the possibilities seem sadly limited given how many characters are currently in use in other series such as Gotham.

The Easter egg came in "Star City Slayer" - Arrow season 7, episode 13 - when Captain Dinah Drake of the Star City PD called Captain Singh of the Central City PD in regards to a series of killings that seemed similar to a case she recalled from her time as an undercover cop in Central City. The two wound up discussing old times and Dinah lamented that her job had become much harder since her secret identity as the Black Canary had been outed. Singh tried to lift her spirits by reminding her of how she infiltrated the gang of a crime boss from Bludhaven nicknamed Blockbuster and helped prevent a major gang war, saying that any cop who could accomplish that bold feat could conquer any challenge.

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There have been several criminals to use the name Blockbuster in the DC Comics universe, but only one of them - the second Blockbuster - was a gang leader. Roland Desmond was originally a career criminal whose brother, a chemist named Mark Desmond (the first Blockbuster), developed a formula that transformed him into a super-strong but largely mindless monster. Roland manipulated his brother into helping him to commit crimes, fighting Batman and Robin, all while hiding his activities and his brother's status from their ailing mother. Years later, while seeking treatment for a severe illness, Roland developed the same powers as his brother when his metagene was activated by an experimental steroid.

Blockbuster Roland Desmond Nightwing

Originally as dimwitted as his brother, Roland made a bargain with the Demon Neron to have his intelligence restored and enhanced beyond what he had possessed before becoming Blockbuster. Armed with a genius level intelligence and a giant's physique, this new Blockbuster reinvented himself as a master criminal and gang leader. Building a small army of highly-trained mercenaries and metahumans, Roland Desmond challenged the crime boss Angel Mann for command of the underworld of the city of Bludhaven and won. He soon became the arch-enemy of Dick "Nightwing" Grayson, who had traveled to Bludhaven to get out of the shadow of his mentor in Gotham City and make a name for himself cleaning up the infamously corrupt city.

While Bat-fans would doubtlessly prefer to see Blockbuster saved for a Nightwing live-action series, that seems unlikely with a live-action Dick Grayson already being utilized in Titans. Given that, Blockbuster's story as presented in Arrow might make him an ideal arch-enemy for Batwoman in her upcoming series on The CW. We know from "Star City Slayer" that Blockbuster was incarcerated in Central City sometime before the STAR Labs particle accelerator explosion empowered thousands of metahumans. It would be a simple matter to say that Roland Desmond was one of these people and that he developed super-strength but maintained his intelligence following the accident.

From what little was seen of Gotham City in the Arrow episode tying into this year's Arrowverse crossover, Elseworlds, Gotham City is incredibly vulnerable, with Batman absent for years and Batwoman still an unknown quantity. This could make it an inviting target to a Bludhaven based crime-boss, newly escaped from prison and looking to make a name for himself. Written with the same grace and power as his comic book counterpart, an Arrowverse adaptation of Roland Desmond could be a worthy big bad for a season or maybe a series-long nemesis to Batwoman akin to Tobias Whale on Black Lightning.

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