Warning: This article contains SPOILERS For Batman: Hush.
The animated film adaptation of Batman: Hush has made a number of changes from the comic book. This is to be expected, however, as few movies within the shared setting of the DC Animated Movie Universe have been translated panel for panel from the graphic novels and comic books that inspired them.
Originally released in 2002, Batman: Hush detailed Batman's battle with a mysterious new enemy, who had seemingly organized some of his greatest enemies against him, devising new gimmicks which made them more dangerous than ever. The year-long event featured a script by writer Jeph Loeb (Batman: The Long Halloween) and artwork by the legendary Jim Lee. Batman: Hush is also notable for being the story where Batman first revealed his secret identity of Bruce Wayne to Catwoman and for introducing the idea of a resurrected Jason Todd, which, while a fake-out in Hush, eventually led to Todd's true resurrection and his becoming Red Hood.
For the most part, the changes made in adapting Batman: Hush are small things which better place the film within the reality of the DC Animated Movie Universe. Yet other changes drastically alter the plot of the original story, leading to a wholly different twist ending. Here is a rundown of every change from the comics, minor and major, in the Batman: Hush animated film.
23. Bane In Place Of Killer Croc
The comic book version of Batman: Hush opened with Batman rescuing a young boy, who had been kidnapped and ransomed by supervillain Killer Croc. The movie opens with a similar mission, but this time the kidnapper is Bane. This change is likely due to Killer Croc having previously appeared in the DC film Son of Batman, which established that Killer Croc had augmented the disease that gave him scaly skin with a mutagen that was truly making him more reptilian. Since this conflicted with the comic's idea that Killer Croc was trying to get money to cure his condition, the movie has Bane stealing money to feed his drug habit, having become addicted to a new Venom formula that has made him stronger than ever but also less intelligent.
22. Lady Shiva In Place Of Ra's Al Ghul
Once Batman has defeated Bane, he is greeted by the assassin Lady Shiva, who informs him of a war within the League of Assassins and how, while various factions battled, an outsider made use of one of the Lazarus Pits - a series of chemical pools that can heal any wound or disease. Lady Shiva asks if Batman has knowledge of who this unknown individual might be. He doesn't, but sensing that they have a mutual enemy, Batman agrees to investigate the matter on Lady Shiva's behalf. In the original comics, it was Ra's Al Ghul who recruited Batman to find the Lazarus Pit thief, but that was not possible in the animated universe as Ra's Al Ghul was killed in Son of Batman and has yet to be resurrected.
21. Batgirl In Place Of Huntress
In both the comics and the movie, Catwoman steals the ransom money, leading to a breakneck chase over the rooftops of Gotham, where the line of Batman's grappling hook is cut and Batman falls several stories before being discovered by a random gang of thugs. In the comics, Batman is saved by the timely arrival of the Huntress. In the movie, Catwoman comes to Batman's rescue, but is driven off by Batgirl, who was introduced into the animated universe in Batman: Bad Blood.
20. A Larger Role For Nightwing
While Nightwing had a prominent position in the original Batman: Hush, his role in the film version is even larger. He gets his own action sequence early on in the film, taking down a heroin lab while Batman is occupied making an appearance at a party as Bruce Wayne. Later in the movie, he recreates a classic scene from the comics trying to talk to Batman about his newfound romance with Selina Kyle. He also replaces the Tim Drake Robin (who doesn't exist in the universe) in a scene where Catwoman gets her first look at the Batcave and later goes on patrol with her.
19. Bane Truly Escapes From Prison
In the original Hush storyline, Killer Croc seemingly escaped from custody but the truth was that Batman persuaded Amanda Waller (at that time head of the Office of Metahuman Affairs) to let him go so that Batman could follow Croc's trail back to whoever hired him to act as the middle-man of the kidnapping plot. In the movie, Bane does escape from the custody of Amanda Waller and her Suicide Squad, thanks to his new Venom formula also making him immune to the sedatives they employ. Both stories lead to Batman arriving just in time to save Catwoman, who was mind-controlled by Poison Ivy into stealing the ransom money the other villain wanted back.
18. Why Bruce Stops By The Daily Planet
With Poison Ivy's trail leading to Metropolis, Batman needs to contrive a reason for Bruce Wayne to visit the town for a few days. In the movie, Bruce arranges an exclusive interview with Lois Lane, which gives him the excuse he needs and a chance to inform Superman that he'll be working in his town and would rather he not get in the way of his investigation. In the comics, Bruce Wayne was the owner of The Daily Planet at the time Hush was set and didn't need a specific reason to justify coming in to check on his investment. The movie pays homage to this, however, with Bruce idly wondering out-loud about the possibility of buying a newspaper.
17. Who Batman Meets At LexCorp
Since Poison Ivy requires a special chemical made by LexCorp to keep her plant collection alive as it is being transported between cities, Batman goes to the very top to learn who in Metropolis has just ordered a large quantity of said chemical. In the comics, Batman consulted with Talia Al Ghul, who was the acting CEO of LexCorp following Lex Luthor's election to the American Presidency. In the movie, Batman consults with Luthor himself, who became a probationary Justice League member following the events of the film Reign of the Supermen.
16. Batman's "Jewelry"
Both the comic and the film versions of Hush see Batman taking precautions in case he finds himself having to fight Superman. In the comic, this means carrying a ring made of Kryptonite in a special lead-lined compartment of his utility belt. This ring once belonged to Lex Luthor, but was given to Batman by Superman, who trusted the Dark Knight to make sure that it would be put to use if circumstances required that Superman die. This ring doesn't exist in the reality of the animated universe, but reference to it is made when Batman instructs his butler, Alfred Pennyworth, to "pack the jewelry" - a code phrase referring to a pair of customized brass knuckles with Kryptonite spikes.
15. Catwoman Pushes Lois Off The Daily Planet's Roof
As good as Batman is, even he can only plan so far when it comes to surviving a battle with a mind-controlled Superman. This is why, in both the comic and the movie, he sends Catwoman to kidnap Lois Lane, in the hopes that the sight of the woman he loves imperiled will cause Superman to snap out of it. In the comic, Lois is far from a compliant hostage, struggling against Catwoman before losing her balance and falling off the roof of The Daily Planet. In the movie, Catwoman realizes that the plan isn't working and ups the ante by actively pushing Lois Lane off the roof. This leads to Batman giving her a lecture upon his code, which highlights the differences between them and foreshadows the end of the film.
14. No Krypto Cameo
In the comic, Poison Ivy is quick to find a new hideout after sending a mind-controlled Superman after Batman and Catwoman. This leads to Batman later sniffing Ivy out with the assistance of Krypto The Superdog. Sadly, the Hush movie doesn't take this opportunity to introduce Krypto into the reality of the animated universe. Then again, the fight between Batman and Superman is so brief that Ivy doesn't have time to find a new hideout and indeed is still at her new greenhouse base in Metropolis awaiting Superman's return when she is captured in the movie.
13. Batman Learns Hush's Name Much Earlier
In the comics, Batman never learned the name of his mysterious enemy until the very end of the story. In the movie, Poison Ivy gives his name to Batman, Catwoman, and Superman when they question her. She explains that it was a man named Hush, whom she had never met before, that hired her to mind-control Catwoman into stealing Bane's ransom money. It was also Hush who gave her a lipstick made of synthetic Kryptonite and told her to go to Metropolis and take control of Superman.
12. Damian Wayne's Cameo
Damian Wayne, the son Batman had with Talia Al Ghul, was not introduced into the comics until 2006. As such, he didn't appear in the comic book version of Batman: Hush, which was completed in 2003. The film version gives Damian a hilarious cameo, where he calls his father as he is on his way to a night at the opera with Selena Kyle, and warns him against getting romantically involved with a criminal. He also lectures Bruce on his "past poor choices in women, including but not limited to my mother" and advises Bruce to use protection and make sure to keep his drink covered at all times.
11. Why Harley Quinn Attacks The Opera
Both the film and the comic book versions of Batman: Hush see Bruce and Selina's night at the opera ruined by Harley Quinn stopping the show and robbing the audience. The reasons why Harley robs the opera, however, are completely different. In the comics, it is revealed at the end that Harley joined in Hush's scheme because it gave her a chance to work with The Joker, whom she was trying to win back at the time. In the movie, Hush kidnaps The Joker and blackmails Harley into working for him, threatening to murder her Puddin' if she doesn't do what he says.
10. The Batman/Joker Fight
A fight between Batman and The Joker is usually the high point of any Batman story, and Hush is no exception in this regard. The famous fight scene from the comic, in which Batman nearly goes over the edge after discovering Joker standing over the dead body of his childhood friend Tommy Elliot, is recreated perfectly in the film. The only real difference is that the focus in the film remains on the two archenemies, with none of the interference from Catwoman or Harley Quinn that the fight in the comics contained. It is also worth noting that The Joker was a willing participant in Hush's scheme in the comics, whereas in the movie he is freshly escaped from a nearby basement and just as confused by Tommy Elliot's death as Batman is enraged by it.
9. More Time For Romance
One point on which the film version of Hush improves upon the comic is in establishing the new relationship between Batman and Catwoman and just how long the two are involved. While the comic tells us that Bruce and Selina have begun dating and that Batwoman and Catwoman are now crime-fighting partners, the span of time involved is not well-conveyed. The film solves this with a montage detailing Bruce and Selina's romance and their battles with some of Gotham City's costumed criminals.
8. No Redemption For Two-Face
One of the villains in the film's montage of Batman and Catwoman defending Gotham City is Two-Face. This is notable, as a major subplot of the Batman: Hush comic book storyline centered upon a reformed Harvey Dent, who had been given a clean bill of mental health and had surgery to repair the damage that left half of his body hideously scarred. The comic hinted that Hush might be a new disassociative identity that Harvey Dent developed in the wake of the death of his Two-Face persona, but this theory was largely dependent on the fact that Jim Lee had modeled Hush's costume on the outfit worn by a future version of Harvey Dent in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns.
7. The Fight With Scarecrow
Both versions of Hush feature a battle between Batman's allies and Scarecrow in a cemetery. In the comic book storyline, Catwoman follows a fear-gas influenced Huntress into an ambush that sets up Hush's next psychological attack on Batman. In the film, Nightwing and Catwoman fight Scarecrow together while investigating a police radio report regarding a break-in at the cemetery and Scarecrow reveals that he was hired by Hush to kill them.
6. No Jason Todd Appearance
Perhaps the most stunning moment of the original Hush storyline involved Hush apparently unmasking and revealing himself to be a resurrected Jason Todd. This was later proven to be a fake-out, and "Jason Todd' was exposed as a shape-shifted Clayface. Nothing like this scene appears in the film version of Hush, due to Jason Todd never existing in the reality of the animated universe.
5. How Clayface Is Involved
While not impersonating Jason Todd, Clayface does have a role in the film version of Batman: Hush. When Batman goes to Arkham Asylum to confront a recently recaptured Riddler on his role in Hush's scheme, "Edward Nygma" is revealed to be Clayface, mind-controlled by some strange technology into impersonating Riddler. This leads to Batman having to fight Clayface, who is thrilled to be free of Nygma's control and anxious to vent his long-repressed anger on quite a few people, starting with Batman.
4. No Cameo By Harold Allnut
A mute hunchback whose horrific appearance turned the world against him, Harold Allnut was an unlikely recruit for Batman's war on crime. Despite being abused for most of his life, Harold had a good heart that was matched only by his gift for working with electronics and Bruce Wayne offered Harold a home and a new purpose after years of being exploited by The Penguin. Disappearing sometime during the No Man's Land event, Harold reemerged near the end of Batman: Hush, revealing that the villain had cured his physical deformities and given him a voice in exchange for rigging the Batcomputer to subconsciously influence Batman. While this scene from the comics gave closure to the story of an important character from the 1990s Batman comics, there was no point in introducing Harold Allnut into the animated universe only to have Hush kill him off.
3. Hush Isn't Tommy Elliot
The biggest twist of the Hush animated movie is that Hush is a new identity assumed by Riddler. In the original comics, Hush was Dr. Tommy Elliot - a childhood friend of Bruce Wayne, who developed a murderous obsession with his "lucky" friend after his efforts to kill his parents and inherit their fortune as a child were thwarted by Dr. Thomas Wayne, shortly before he and his wife were murdered. Elliot's code name was inspired by the lullaby "Hush, Little Baby," which is about a crying child who can't be satisfied - an apt assessment of Elliot's character, according to Riddler. In the movie, Tommy Elliot truly is killed by Riddler as part of a scheme to try and push Bruce to kill Joker, who was framed for the crime.
2. Riddler's Motivation
In the original Hush, The Riddler entered into a partnership with Dr. Tommy Elliot after approaching his former brain surgeon with the secret of the Lazarus Pit, thinking Elliot would want to know the secret of Nygma's miraculous recovery from an inoperable brain tumor. Instead, Elliot tried to hire Nygma to kill Bruce Wayne, leading to Nygma suggesting how they could use Elliot's fortune and his genius to devise the ultimate revenge scheme. In the comics, while Nygma wants revenge, he's also in it for the money. In the movie, Nygma is entirely devoted towards getting revenge on Batman and everyone who mocked him as not being a worthy enemy for Batman. In the movie, the Hush name is a reference to Riddler keeping his true identity "hush hush," as the villains he manipulates would never give Edward Nygma the time of day if he approached them as The Riddler.
1. How Bruce and Selina Break-Up
Both versions of Batman: Hush end with Batman and Catwoman ending their relationship, but the circumstances are entirely different. In the original comic book storyline, Selina dumped Bruce for being unable to trust her fully as he was left questioning everything he knew about all his loved ones in the wake of Tommy Elliot's being unmasked as Hush. In the movie, Catwoman cuts the grappling hook that is the only thing keeping Hush from falling into the fire of a burning factory after Batman refuses to let the villain that almost killed them both go. The movie ends with Selina declaring that as much as she loves Bruce and his nobility, she can't stay and watch him get killed by his code or ask him to change for her like she tried to change for him.