Poison Ivy (comics)

Poison Ivy (comics)
Poison Ivy
Promotional art for Batman: Gotham Knights #15 cover.
Brian Bolland, artist.
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance Batman #181 (June 1966)
Created by Robert Kanigher
Sheldon Moldoff
In-story information
Alter ego Pamela Lillian Isley
Team affiliations Birds of Prey
Gotham City Sirens
Injustice League
Injustice Gang
Secret Society of Super Villains
Suicide Squad
S.T.A.R. Labs
Super Foes
Notable aliases Paula Irving
  • Expertise in botany and toxicology
  • Uncanny ability to control plant life
  • Can secrete various floral toxins to injure or intoxicate
  • Immunity to all toxins, bacteria, and viruses
  • Semi-mystical connection to the plant world through a force called the Green

Poison Ivy (Pamela Lillian Isley) is a fictional character, a DC Comics supervillainess who is primarily an enemy of Batman. Created by Robert Kanigher and Sheldon Moldoff, she first appeared in Batman #181 (June 1966).

Poison Ivy is depicted as one of the world's most prominent eco-terrorists. She is obsessed with plants, botany, and environmentalism. She uses toxins from plants and mind controlling pheromones for her criminal activities, which are usually aimed at protecting the natural environment. Fellow villain Harley Quinn is her recurring partner-in-crime and possibly her only human friend. She is best known as a villain of Batman and plays an important role in his rogues gallery and has proven to be one of his more powerful foes, being one of the few Batman villains to display anything close to superpowers. Pamela Isley a.k.a. Poison Ivy has been portrayed as a love interest for Batman in some comics. In one comic, Ivy was robbing a charity gala Bruce Wayne was attending. Ivy's first kiss was poison, the second its antidote. When they first meet, Ivy's toxic lips planted a seed of toxic rapture in Bruce. But when she later kissed a dying Dark Knight, Ivy unknowingly cured her intended victim and established a budding romantic tension between them.

Creator Robert Kanigher modeled Poison Ivy after Bettie Page, giving her the same haircut and Southern drawl as Page. In her first appearances in 1966, no origin was developed; she was merely a temptress. At her first appearance, her costume was a one-piece, strapless green bathing suit, covered with leaves. Leaves also formed her bracelets, necklace and crown. She also wore green high heels and yellow-green nylon stockings with leaves painted on them. These particulars changed somewhat when she re-appeared. Later on in the 1986 series of the Batman comics, she wore only a few vines to cover up a small amount of her breasts.

Poison Ivy was promoted after the rise of feminism brought the need for a greater number of more independent female villains in the series. She was also used to replace the increasingly sympathetic Catwoman as a clearly antagonistic female supervillain foil for Batman, and then made further appearances in the Batman comic book series and in Suicide Squad. An origin story was later concocted for her. She has since appeared in starring roles in Gotham City Sirens and Birds of Prey.

In the 1997 film, Batman & Robin, she was portrayed by Uma Thurman. Poison Ivy has been featured in the television series, Batman: The Animated Series and The Batman, by voice actresses Diane Pershing and Piera Coppola respectively.

IGN's list of the Top 100 Comic Book Villains of All Time ranked Poison Ivy as #64.[1]


Publication history

The first appearance of Poison Ivy, in Batman#181

Following the character's initial appearance, Poison Ivy continued to appear in the various Batman comic book series and had a major role in Suicide Squad and the Black Orchid miniseries. An origin story was later retconned for her.

The character was partly inspired by the short story Rappaccini's Daughter,[2] written by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Robert Kanigher has stated that she was originally modeled after Bettie Page.[3] Artists such as Jim Lee draw her in a green form-fitting one-piece bathing suit.[4][5][6]

Fictional character biography


Dr. Pamela Lillian Isley, a promising botanist from Seattle, is seduced by Marc LeGrande into assisting him with the theft of an Egyptian artifact containing ancient herbs. Fearing she would implicate him in the theft, he attempts to poison her with the herbs, which are deadly and untraceable. She survives this murder attempt and discovers she has acquired an immunity to all natural toxins and diseases.[7]

Post-Crisis: Life in Seattle and Gotham

Her origins were revised in Shadow of the Bat Annual #3. Pamela Isley grows up wealthy with emotionally distant parents. She later studies advanced botanical biochemistry at a university with Alec Holland under Dr. Jason Woodrue. Isley, a timid, shy girl, is easily seduced by her professor. Woodrue injects Isley with poisons and toxins as an experiment, causing her transformation.[8] She nearly dies twice as a result from these poisonings, driving her insane. Later Woodrue flees from the authorities, leaving Isley in the hospital for six months. Enraged at the betrayal, she suffers from violent mood swings, being sweet one moment and evil the next. When her boyfriend has a car accident after mysteriously suffering from a massive fungal overgrowth, Isley drops out of school and leaves Seattle, eventually settling in Gotham City.[9]

She begins her criminal career by threatening to release her suffocating spores into the air unless the city meets her demands. Batman, who appears in Gotham that very same year, thwarts her scheme, and she is incarcerated in Arkham Asylum.[10] From this point on, she has a kind of obsession with Batman, he being the only person she could not control. Over the years, she develops plant-like superpowers, the most noticeable being a lethal toxin in her lips; she is able to literally kill with a kiss.

In subsequent issues, she states that she only started a life of crime to attain sufficient funds to find a location to be alone with her plants, undisturbed by humanity. A few years later, she attempts to leave Gotham forever, escaping Arkham to settle on a desert island in the Caribbean. She transforms the barren wasteland into a second Eden, and is, for the first time in her life, happy. It is soon firebombed, however, when an American-owned corporation tests their weapons systems out on what they think is an abandoned island. Ivy returns to Gotham with a vengeance, punishing those responsible. After being willingly apprehended by Batman, she resolves that she can never leave Gotham, at least not until the world was safe for plants. From then on, she dedicates herself to the impossible mission of "purifying" Gotham.[11]

At one point, Batman travels to Seattle to ascertain information on Pamela Isley's life before she became Poison Ivy. Here, Batman states that both of Pamela's parents are dead. When and why they died has been left undetermined.[9]

While in Arkham, Poison Ivy receives a message through flowers that someone is to help her escape. That night, two women, Holly and Eva, successfully break Ivy out and bring her back to their employer. She is less than happy to discover that it is the Floronic Man, formerly known as Dr. Jason Woodrue, her former college professor that conducted the experiments on her. The only human portion of him remaining is his head, while the rest of his body is plant-based.

After striking a deal with him in the underground tunnels of Gotham, Ivy receives a trunk full of money in return for samples of her DNA. Woodrue intends to combine their DNA to create a "child", all while flooding the streets of Gotham with high-powered marijuana. The purpose of this is to create a world economy run on hemp and to have their offspring control it. Batman intervenes, but is overcome by Woodrue's henchwomen, Holly and Eva. However, Ivy turns on Floronic Man and lets Batman go to fight the intoxicated maniac. In the end, Batman decapitates the Floronic Man, and Ivy escapes with her money.[12]

At times, Ivy demonstrates positive, even maternal traits. When Gotham City is destroyed in an earthquake, rather than fight over territory like most of Batman's enemies, she holds dominion over Robinson Park and turns it into a tropical paradise. Sixteen children who are orphaned during the quake come to live with her, as she sympathizes with them, having suffered a traumatic childhood herself.[13] She cares for them like sons and daughters, despite her usual misanthropy.

That winter, Clayface (Basil Karlo) pays Ivy a visit, hoping to form a bargain with her. This would entail her growing fruits and vegetables, having the orphans harvest them, and him selling the produce to the highest bidder. She wants nothing to do with the plan, and she attempts to kill him with a kiss. Clayface overpowers her, however, and imprisons Ivy and the orphans for six months in a chamber under the park's lake. He feeds her salt and keeps her from the sun to weaken her. Eventually, Batman comes and discovers the imprisoned orphans and Ivy. The two agree to work together to take Karlo down. Batman battles Clayface and instructs Robin to blow up the lake bed above, allowing the rushing water to break apart the mud, effectively freeing Ivy. She fights Karlo, ensnaring him in the branches of a tree and fatally kissing him. She then proceeds to sink him down into the ground, where he becomes fertilizer for Ivy's plants. Batman, originally intending to take the orphans away from Ivy, recognizes that staying with her is what is best for them, and they remain in her care until the city is restored. Also, as part of a bargain to keep her freedom, Batman arranges it so that Ivy provides fresh produce to the starving hordes of earthquake survivors.[4][14] Soon after, Ivy finds Harley Quinn, who had almost been murdered by the Joker, among the debris of the earthquake and nurses her back to health. The two have been best friends and partners-in-crime ever since.[15]

After Gotham City is reopened to the public, the city council wants to evict her from the park and send her back to Arkham Asylum, as they are uncomfortable with the thought of a "psychotic eco-terrorist controlling the equivalent of 30-odd square blocks." They also mistakenly believe that the orphans in Ivy's care are hostages. The Gotham City Police Department threaten to spray the park with R.C. Sixty, a powerful herbicide that most certainly would have killed every living plant in the park, including Ivy, and more than likely do harm to the children. Ivy refuses to leave the park to the city and let them destroy the paradise she had created, so she chooses martyrdom. It is only after Rose, one of the orphans, is accidentally poisoned by Ivy that the hardened eco-terrorist surrenders herself to the authorities in order to save the girl's life. Batman says that, as much as she would hate to admit it, Ivy is still more human than plant.[16]

Later on, she and other Gotham characters are manipulated by the Riddler and Hush. Her task is to hypnotize both Superman and Catwoman, using Catwoman to steal ransom money from Killer Croc after the original plan is interrupted by Batman while Superman serves as a 'bodyguard' when she hides in Metropolis; however, she abandons Catwoman to be killed by Killer Croc, and Batman is able to keep Superman busy in a fight- aided by the kryptonite ring he was given long ago- long enough for the Man of Steel to break out of the spell. Soon afterwards, the Riddler, who is being chased and attacked by Hush, approaches Ivy and seeks her protection. Ivy, who is angered by the manipulation, battles the Riddler physically and psychologically. She comes to physically dominate her opponent, humiliating Riddler and temporarily breaking his spirit.[17]

Poison Ivy comes to believe that her powers are killing the children she had looked after, so she seeks Bruce Wayne's help to reverse her powers and make her a normal human being once more. Soon after, she is convinced by Hush to take another serum to restore her powers and apparently dies in the process. However, when her grave is visited shortly thereafter, it is covered with ivy, creating the impression her death would be short-lived.[18][19][20][21][22][23]

Shortly after, Poison Ivy appears briefly in Robinson Park, killing two corrupt cops who killed one of her orphans (although whether this takes place before or after the aforementioned storyline is unknown).[24]

"One Year Later", Ivy is alive and active. Her control over flora has increased, referred to as being on a par with Swamp Thing or Floronic Man. She also appears to have resumed her crusade against the corporate enemies of the environment with a new fanaticism, regarding Batman no longer as a main opponent, but as a "hindrance."[25]

After arriving back from a year-long absence, Batman discovers that Ivy has been feeding people including "tiresome lovers", "incompetent henchmen", and those who "returned her smile" to a giant plant which would digest the victims slowly and painfully. She refers to these murders as a "guilty pleasure". In an unprecedented event, her victims' souls merge with the plant, creating a botanical monster called Harvest, who seeks revenge upon Ivy. With the intervention of Batman, however, she is saved. Ivy is left in critical condition, and the whereabouts of Harvest are unknown.[25]

In Countdown #37, the Piper and the Trickster are hiding out in a greenhouse, picking fruits and vegetables from the plants. They run into Ivy, who is talking to her plants (presumably being told that Piper and Trickster hurt them), to which she reacts by tying them up in vines with the intention of killing them. She is then shown to have joined the Injustice League Unlimited and is one of the villains featured in Salvation Run.[26]

In the "Battle For The Cowl" storyline, she is coerced by a new Black Mask into joining his group of villains that aims to take over Gotham. She and Killer Croc unsuccessfully attempt to murder Damian Wayne.

Shortly after, she escapes from Black Mask's control and forms an alliance with Catwoman and Harley Quinn, leading into the ongoing series Gotham City Sirens.

Gotham City Sirens

During Hush's ploy to hurt Batman through hurting his loved ones, Hush kidnaps Catwoman and surgically removes her heart. After being saved by Batman, she is operated on by some of the most gifted surgeons in the world, including Doctor Mid-Nite and Mr. Terrific. Zatanna also gives her a magic antidote to help heal her wounds. In order to get even with Hush, Selina enlists the help of Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Oracle, Holly Robinson, and Slam Bradley to track down all of Hush's accounts, pilfer them, and leave him penniless. Selina pays Holly, Harley, and Ivy over $30 million each, hoping that they would use the funds to leave Gotham to start fresh somewhere else.[27] However, Harley uses her money to go on a shopping spree, while Ivy gives her money away to organizations in Madagascar and Costa Rica for reforestation.

After rescuing Catwoman from Boneblaster, a new villain trying to make a name for himself, Poison Ivy takes Catwoman back to Edward Nigma's townhouse. When there, Catwoman sees that Ivy has been keeping the Riddler under mind control so that she and Harley could use his townhouse as a hideout. Here, Catwoman decides that with Gotham City more dangerous than ever with all the gang wars and a new Batman, a partnership with the other two women would be advantageous. However, Ivy fears that Catwoman has lost her edge and prowess, and consults with Zatanna on the nature of Catwoman's injuries. Zatanna responds that Catwoman has psychological wounds that would need healing. Ivy resolves that she and Harley would provide Catwoman with "positive female reinforcement". The three then agree to become a team. However, Harley and Ivy have one condition: they demand that Catwoman reveal to them the true identity of Batman.

Eventually, Ivy and the other Sirens ambush the Riddler at his office (with Ivy using her plants to truss and gag his secretary), telling him that they've been framed for the murder of a young nurse. He agrees to help clear their names, and during the discussion Ivy reveals that she has recently taken up a job at the Gotham division of S.T.A.R. Labs under an assumed name (Dr. Paula Irving).[28] She is eventually kidnapped and placed in a specialized containment unit by a researcher named Alisa Adams, but escapes and turns the table on her captor by binding her with vines. Ivy initially informs Adams that she plans to kill her, but instead decides to let her live after seeing a photograph of Alisa's young daughter. Ivy then threatens Alisa into keeping her mouth shut about her true identity, telling her that she will change her mind and kill her if she reveals her secret to anyone.[29]

When Harley Quinn betrays her friends and breaks into Arkham Asylum with the goal of killing the Joker, she ultimately chooses instead release Joker from his cell instead, and together the two orchestrate a violent takeover of the facility.[30] Poison Ivy arrives and tries to convince Harley Quinn that the Joker is evil, but Harley Quinn refuses to believe her and knocks Poison Ivy unconscious. After they are defeated by Catwoman and Batman, Catwoman then tells Poison Ivy that they are no longer friends, after Ivy had drugged Catwoman in an attempt to discover Batman's identity. Poison Ivy is taken in Arkham Asylum.[31] Ivy soon escapes and ambushes Harley in her cell, binding and gagging her former friend before she can defend herself. Ivy struggles with the decision to execute Harley for her betrayal, but ultimately releases her after realizing that she is still her friend. Together, the two set off to find Catwoman and make her pay for leaving them behind.[32] The two of them found Catwoman and fought her on the streets. While they were fighting, Catwoman confessed that she saw good in the both of them and only wanted to help them. When she told them that she only kept tabs on you because Batman wanted to keep them under control, Ivy lashed out onto the city by using giant vines to destroy buildings, cursing at Batman for manipulating her. Batman was about to arrest them, but Catwoman helped the two of them escape.[33]

The New 52

Following the events of Flashpoint, Poison Ivy is recruited into the covert-ops group known as the Birds of Prey. Though she is specifically hand-picked by the team's leader, Black Canary, the other members of the group protest Ivy's inclusion, citing her violent past and connections to various murders.[34]

Teams and alliances

  • Poison Ivy joins Two-Face's gang for a short period of time during Batman: Dark Victory, when she murders crime boss Lucia Viti on Two-Face's command; however, she is disliked by Two-Face, who is immune to her charms. She is notably the only member of the gang to be shocked and upset by Two-Face's casual killing of fellow gang member Solomon Grundy, a plant-based entity. The gang is broken up after Two-Face's apparent death at the hands of the Joker.
  • Her best friend is the Joker's sidekick Harley Quinn. Unlike most villain team-ups, their partnership seems to be genuinely rooted in friendship, and Ivy sincerely wants to save Harley from her abusive relationship with the Joker. Ivy doesn't exactly care for people as much as she does for plants but she couldn't help but feel sympathy for Harley, as Harley is mistreated by the man she deeply loves, just as Ivy was by Jason Woodrue. She has expressed a small dislike against The Joker and is sometimes even annoyed with Harley when she out of control obsesses over him. It is said that this is because The Joker perhaps reminds her of Jason Woodrue, therefore making her dislike him intensely. In the final storyline of the Gotham City Sirens series, Harley suggests that Ivy may be in love with her, an accusation that stuns her.[39] The following issue has Poison Ivy acknowledge that she may indeed love Harley, though it is not made clear if her intentions are romantic, or if she merely views Harley as sister.[40]
  • The partnership between Harley and Ivy has also at times included Catwoman, such as in episodes and issues of the Gotham Girls webtoon and comic book series. In the mainstream DC Universe, the three formed an alliance in the pages of Gotham City Sirens.[27]
  • Due to having different motivations than the rest of Batman's rogues gallery, aside from having Harley as her ally, Ivy usually works alone and is a "solo villain". With or without Harley, Poison Ivy is adept at committing crimes and is one of The Batman's most lethal enemies thanks to a combination of her intelligence, beauty and power over plants and pheromones.[6][41][42][43]
  • Poison Ivy would later be invited to join the Birds of Prey by Black Canary. Katana and Starling rejected the idea and even attacked Ivy, but after a brief scuffle, the women began working together as a team.

Powers and abilities

The dangerous experiments placed a deliberate overdose of plant and animal based toxins into her blood stream that make her touch deadly and allowed her to boost her immunity to all poisons, viruses, bacteria, and fungi. This immunity also includes Joker venom.[44] Some comics have even gone so far as to depict her as more plant than human, breathing CO2 and requiring sunlight to survive. Despite retaining in her earlier appearances her Caucasian, red-haired appearance, in time the amount of vegetable toxins and chlorophyll in her tissue tinted her skin permanently green. After years of practice she regained the ability to consciously control her appearance, restoring herself to an almost fully human facade, with only her lips and eyes tinted a bright shade of green.

Ivy's body produces pheromones that make people susceptible to mind control around her, although strong-minded people like Batman are usually capable of resisting. She was even once able to control Superman with the use of kryptonite.[6][37]

She specializes in hybrids and can create the most potently powerful floral toxins in Gotham City. Often these toxins are secreted from her lips and administered in her preferred way, a poisonous kiss, usually after professing false love or affection for her victim. They come in a number of varieties, from mind-controlling drugs to instantly fatal toxins.

In some adaptations, she can control plants with her mind. For example, while in Arkham, she is able to manipulate and animate plants, using roots to form supports for a tunnel she and another inmate named Magpie are digging to escape, and also spawning glowing fungi to entertain Magpie.[45]

Poison Ivy is identified by the Swamp Thing as a being with an elemental mystical component, whom he calls the "May Queen".[46] Writers have not referred to her in this way in quite some time. Ivy also shows capabilities of using the Green to communicate over great distances, as she manifests in a vase of roses in Zatanna's dressing room to talk to the magician.[47]

Poison Ivy carries, on her current costume, a certain amount of live vines: coupled with her natural ability to commune with plant life, they act as weaponry, or defensive/grabbing appendages. Their supply is, however, limited.[48]

Ivy's capabilities were greatly reduced in Batman: The Animated Series; her only physical power is an immunity to poison. Her deadly kiss was only possible with a special lipstick poisoned with toxins extracted from a plant.[49] She admits to having a "hyperactive immune system" which prevents her from having children.[50] In The Batman, she can even exhale mind-controlling spores in the form of a blown kiss.

Other versions

  • In JLA: Created Equal, Ivy and Swamp Thing team up to mentally travel through the Green, to try and discover what exactly caused the event which wiped out almost every male on the planet. But the trip is too much for her and it shatters her mind.
  • In Batman: Crimson Mist, Ivy is one of the many villains whom the now vampiric Batman kills for blood, the vampire Batman's presence causing her plants to wither around him as he gives Ivy the kiss she always wanted, commenting that he could only want her while in the darkness and decay of corruption. Her head is apparently left at GCPD headquarters after her demise.
  • In Batman & Demon: A Tragedy, Ivy is characterized as an almost-elfen healer in the Celtic fantasy Elseworlds tale. She gives Bruce Wayne a cure for his night terrors, only to be slaughtered by the Demon.
  • In JLA/Avengers #3, Poison Ivy appears as a servant of Krona and attacks Aquaman and the Vision as a part of a group of villains. Poison Ivy strangles Aquaman in vines but is blasted by Iron Man and defeated.
  • In Justice League International Annual #5, published under the Elseworlds banner, Ivy is one of ten superhumans who has made herself known to the public. In this story, Ivy has the power to seduce and control men, as well as the ability to secrete poison from her touch, willingly.
  • In the alternate timeline of the Flashpoint event, Poison Ivy is subsequently killed by Batman.[51]

In other media


Poison Ivy as she appears in Batman: The Animated Series.
  • Poison Ivy appears in Batman: The Animated Series voiced by Diane Pershing. She first appears in "Pretty Poison" where she is involved an assassination attempt on Harvey Dent, as retribution for construction over the last habitat of a rare flower.[49] In the earlier days of the animated series, her metahuman characteristics, such as her immunity to toxins, were stated on many occasions, portraying her as a human with an extreme affinity for plants. She mentions in "House and Garden", in which she ostensibly reforms, that her hyper-immune system has left her unable to bear children.[50]
  • In The New Batman Adventures, she was aesthetically revamped to look more plant-like, her skin turning grayish-white.[52] Ivy also became more humorous and seductive in personality, coinciding with her genuinely friendly relationship with Harley Quinn. Her fanatical mindset regarding the despoiling of plants and the ecosphere was also greatly reduced. She supposedly dies in a shipwreck in the episode "Chemistry".[53]
  • She apparently survives the shipwreck and returns in the Static Shock episode "Hard As Nails" with Diane Pershing reprising her role. She and Harley open a "support and cure" website that would lure female metahumans to Gotham claiming that it's a clinic to cure metahumans. When Static pursues a fellow classmate that calls herself Nails to Gotham, he ended up running into Batman and ended up ambushed by Harley and Ivy. When it came to a heist upon a ship carrying gold, she and Harley doublecross her only for Static and Batman to save her. During the conflict, Static's powers couldn't work on Ivy's plants but weren't immune to Nails' claws. Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn were defeated in the end.
  • Poison Ivy had a co-starring role in the Gotham Girls web-toon.
  • In the episode "A Better World", on the Justice League series, Poison Ivy (again voiced by Diane Pershing) appears only once in a lobotomized form in an alternate universe. She is a prisoner at Arkham Asylum, and she is also allowed to work as the prison's gardener. Bruce Timm stated that he had turned down pitches for Poison Ivy episodes on Justice League so they could focus on new characters and storylines, only bringing back a minimal number of villains from previous shows.[54]
Poison Ivy in The Batman.
  • Piera Coppola voiced Poison Ivy in the animated TV show, The Batman, complete with a new origin and rose-like hairstyle and dress, and with stronger ties to Barbara Gordon. In this incarnation, Poison Ivy is a high school student and environmental activist, but she was also Barbara Gordon's best friend. Prior to her first appearance, she was sentenced to a youth detention center repeatedly for delinquent acts during her protests. She convinces Barbara to help her with her "protests," which were actually scouting missions on polluting companies for her hired mercenary, the corporate saboteur Temblor. She uses a voice scrambler in order to recruit Temblor to carry out her missions of ecoterrorism. During one such mission, a plant mutagen (referred to as "chlorogene") falls on her during a battle between Temblor and the Batman. She awakes in an ambulance afterward and manifests powers similar to her other incarnations, most notably psionic plant control, and an ability to exhale mind-controlling spores when she blows a kiss at her desired target. She swiftly turns her powers to furthering her ecoterrorist career, and takes the name Poison Ivy, before being stopped by Batman and Barbara in her debut as Batgirl. In the fifth season premiere, she is forced into helping Lex Luthor take control of Superman by using her mind-controlling spores and lacing them with kryptonite dust.
  • Poison Ivy appears in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Chill of the Night!", voiced by Jennifer Hale, and later by Vanessa Marshall. Ivy appears among other villains in an auction for a supersonic weapon held by arms dealer Joe Chill. When a terrified Chill asks the villains for protection against an enraged Batman, and somewhat admits his role in creating him, Ivy and the others attempt to murder Chill. The villains were foiled by Batman. Poison Ivy later appears in the teaser of "The Mask of Matches Malone!". She and her army of henchwomen (whom she dubs her "Flower Children") kidnap Batman, and Ivy tries to seduce him into becoming her king. After Batman refuses, Ivy orders her guards to kill him by feeding him to a giant Venus Flytrap. Before the creature can consume Batman, Black Orchid, disguised as one of Ivy's henchwomen, comes to his rescue. Orchid frees Batman, and they both work together to ultimately defeat Ivy.
  • Poison Ivy appears in the Young Justice episode "Revelations", voiced by Alyssa Milano. She is seen as a member of the Injustice League.[55] Ivy works with her teammates to create a massive plant creature that attacks various cities across the globe, with the intention of extorting a hefty ransom from the United Nations. Robin and Miss Martian successfully destroy the creature, and the Injustice League members are soon apprehended by the Justice League.


Uma Thurman as Poison Ivy in Batman & Robin.

Uma Thurman played Poison Ivy in the film Batman & Robin. Dr. Pamela Isley is a botanist, working for Wayne Enterprises' arboreal preservation project in South America. She is conducting animal-plant cross-breeding experiments, and is confident that once she finds the correct dose of Venom, her beloved plants will be able to "fight back like animals" and thereby have "a chance against the thoughtless ravages of man". However, her superior, Dr. Jason Woodrue, steals some of her Venom samples in order to transform a common criminal into the terrible Bane. Dr. Woodrue, who is smitten by Dr. Isely, hopes that Pamela will help him create an entire army of Banes, to be auctioned off, but the young botanist is outraged that her research has been corrupted and vows that Woodrue "won't be able to get a job teaching high school chemistry" once she gets through with him. Upon hearing this, an increasingly unstable Woodrue sends Dr. Isely crashing into shelves lined with beakers containing Venom, and other plant-based toxins and chemicals. He throws more of the same upon her, hoping that she will die upon being infused with so many plant toxins and chemicals; instead, Pamela is unwittingly transformed into a stunningly beautiful woman who is part human, part plant, and totally poisonous. She kills Dr. Woodrue with a kiss planted by her venom-filled lips, finds a companion and ally in Bane, and heads off to Gotham City together with the Venom-pumped henchman, now convinced that she is "Mother Nature" incarnate and determined to use whatever resources she can to protect the earth and achieve botanical supremacy over all other beings.

Using dual identities in Gotham City, as Dr. Pamela Isely and the mysterious "Poison Ivy", the botanist-turned-supervillainess causes a stir wherever she goes. Barging into a conference held by her former employer Bruce Wayne, "Dr. Isley" heatedly points out the different ways in which Wayne Enterprises despoils the earth and insists that Bruce take drastic measures to detoxify the environment, even if it means that millions of people will die "of cold and hunger alone" in the process (with neither "diesel fuel for heat" nor "coolants to preserve food" as per Pamela's proposal). Needless to say, Bruce doesn't agree that such deaths are "acceptable losses in a battle to save the planet"; however, he invites her to a gala ball that evening where a precious diamond will be auctioned off to raise funds for the Gotham Botanical Gardens. This is Pamela's first public appearance as "Poison Ivy", and she unleashes her very own "pheromone dust" upon the crowd, making everyone fancy her, including Batman and Robin (who are there on duty in case Mr. Freeze shows up to steal the aforementioned diamond). Knowing that Batman and Robin are the only people who can thwart her planned eco-terrorism, Poison Ivy exploits the power of her pheromones to pit them against one another, each costumed hero inflamed with the desire to have Ivy for himself. The focus is taken off her when Mr. Freeze appears, and although the Dynamic Duo capture him and send him to Arkham Asylum, Poison Ivy finds herself drawn to Freeze and is determined to use his "ruthless charm" to her advantage (despite the fact that the cold-blooded criminal proves insusceptible to her pheromone dust). After creating a floral paradise for herself, as her hide-out, Ivy breaks Mr. Freeze out of Arkham Asylum with the assistance of Bane, only to discover that Freeze is more interested in saving his wife Nora Fries's life than being her partner-in-crime. Believing that she is the dominant woman, regarding Mr. Freeze as the alpha male and wanting him all to herself, Poison Ivy unplugs Nora Fries' life support system and claims that Batman did it. Mr. Freeze vows to destroy Batman and Robin to avenge his wife, and Poison Ivy makes use of his rage to point out that he should also destroy "the society that created them". The two villains plan to "blanket" not only Gotham City but indeed the entire world "in endless winter", with a giant freezing cannon; this excites Poison Ivy in particular because she can allow her "mutant plants" to "overrun the globe" once all of mankind has been frozen forever. She and Mr. Freeze look forward to their reign as "Adam and Evil, the only two people left in the world".

Robin proves to be much more susceptible to Poison Ivy's pheromones than Batman, and Ivy urges him not to live in the Dark Knight's shadow, but to allow her to groom him into his own man. The friction between the Dynamic Duo keeps escalating as Batman tries to warn the Boy Wonder that Ivy is dangerous and out to destroy them, while Robin maintains vociferously that the Dark Knight "has some serious issues with women" and is jealous. Knowing that the way to a boy's heart is through his ego, Poison Ivy creates Robin's very own signal in the sky, in the fashion of the Bat-Signal (after tempting Police Commissioner Gordon with her pheromone dust and coercing him to hand over the keys to Police Headquarters). Robin cannot resist his new "Bird Call" and goes to meet Poison Ivy in her floral haven, but her poison kiss fails to kill him, seeing as how Batman had finally persuaded his young partner to take precautions by coating his lips with rubber. Furious, Ivy pushes Robin into a lily pond where he is entangled in mutant weeds, while Batman is seized by Poison Ivy's vicious vines when he arrives to capture her. As she is about to go join Mr. Freeze, victoriously, Batgirl unexpectedly arrives on the spot in her very first foray into crime-fighting. Poison Ivy tries to put up a fight, but her combative skills prove to be minimal and Batgirl throws Ivy into the super-villainess's own giant Venus Flytrap. Batman and Robin manage to free themselves at exactly the same time, and go stop Mr. Freeze with their new partner Batgirl, knowing that Poison Ivy is trapped and incapacitated.

Mr. Freeze is shown video-footage of who really pulled the plug on his wife's life-support machine, before being sent to Arkham Asylum, where he finds Poison Ivy both weak and demented, obsessing over whether or not Freeze has grown to love her. As her vengeful new cell-mate, the cold criminal warns Ivy to "prepare for a bitter harvest" because "winter has come at last".

Video games

Poison Ivy has appeared in most of the Batman video games over the years. In most of these games, Ivy does not fight Batman directly and usually watches in the background while Batman fights one of her plant monsters. She appeared as a boss in:

  • Batman: The Animated Series
  • The Adventures of Batman & Robin for the Super NES
  • The Adventures of Batman & Robin for the Sega CD
  • Batman: Chaos in Gotham
  • Batman & Robin, the video game adaptation of the movie
  • Batman Vengeance
  • Batman: Dark Tomorrow[56][57]
  • She also has a cameo appearance in Batman: Rise of Sin Tzu, where she was a hallucination in the Scarecrow boss-fight and appeared in a cutscene, also there was an unlockable 3D Model in the Trophy Room.
  • In Batman: Gotham City Racer, Poison Ivy's vehicle was playable.
  • In late June 2008 it was revealed in a Batman comic that she was a playable character in Lego Batman: The Videogame.[58] Her sound effects are done by Vanessa Marshall. She is able to jump higher than any other character (an ability given to all female villains), increase the growth rate of particular plants, blow long-range poison kisses, and give up-close poison kisses to foes which, in turn, fall apart.
  • Poison Ivy appears in Batman: Arkham Asylum voiced by Tasia Valenza, acting as an antagonist as well as the penultimate boss. Her appearance was revamped to the naked-goddess persona, wearing only an orange prison-issued shirt and foliage panties. A 3D model of the character can also be unlocked.
  • Poison Ivy appears in DC Universe Online voiced by Cyndi Williams. Sketches of her are viewable on the official website.
  • Poison appears in Batman: Arkham City with Tasia Valenza reprising the role.[59] Catwoman infiltrates Poison Ivy's lair where Poison Ivy was angry at Catwoman for her killing Poison Ivy's flowers. When Catwoman tells Poison Ivy that she will buy her some new flowers, Poison Ivy drops Catwoman into a chamber where she ends up fighting thugs that were affected by Poison Ivy's mind-control spores. After defeating the mind-controlled thugs and evading the deadly spores, Poison Ivy traps Catwoman in one of her vines.The pair then proceeded to form an uneasy truce in order to recover the villains possessions from the vault in Arkham City, aided by Poison Ivy's plants (In the promise that Catwoman would return a near extinct plant to Ivy). However, Catwoman decides to crush the plant as revenge from Ivy trapping her in the plants. If you return to Ivy after the events of Protocol 10, she will ask what happened to her plant and Catwoman will say it was Strange's fault and Ivy tells her to go enjoy what little time she has left, plotting revenge against Strange and humanity.


The New Batman Adventures version of Poison Ivy. Cover to Gotham Girls #2. Art by Shane Glines.
  • In issue #16 of Batman Adventures (vol. 2), a shocking revelation is made in a short story "The Flower Girl". After too many years of exposing herself to toxins, and modifying her own DNA to the point of losing most of her humanity, a dying Poison Ivy makes her way to Dr. Holland, who is practicing science in a remote rural cottage. Barely alive, she pleads to Holland to save her life, but he explains to her that there is nothing he can do. Shortly after, she dies in his arms, and collapses into a pile of dead plants. Holland's grieving is interrupted by another Pamela Isley, whose character design matches her appearance in Batman: The Animated Series, rather than her later redesign. She states that this Ivy was a vegetable creature from a few years back, that she had created as a distraction for Batman, in order to escape from her old supervillain life in Gotham. She also says that Harley would miss her, and would be lonely if she was not around. This leads readers to believe[citation needed] that the revamped Poison Ivy that appeared in The New Batman Adventures, as well as the subsequent stories that followed, was a copy all along, and that the real Pamela Isley had left her life of crime to run away during the two year gap between both series. The comic ends with the original Pamela Isley saying "I hope it didn't cause too much trouble”.
  • The character also co-starred in the three-issue comic book miniseries Harley and Ivy, and was given her swan song in the critically acclaimed[citation needed] The Batman Adventures comic book series, which contains stories about Batman's adventures in Gotham City after a break from the Justice League.
  • The Coasters' song Poison Ivy was used for the Batman and Robin movie's Original Soundtrack in 1997, as a cover by Me'Shell NdegéOcello. Despite the song's name, Poison Ivy wasn't the inspéiration for this song but, due to the lyrics describing a girl with a very similar attitude to Ivy, it was quickly associated to the character.

See also


  1. ^ "Poison Ivy is Number 64". Comics.ign.com. http://comics.ign.com/top-100-villains/64.html. Retrieved 2010-12-29. 
  2. ^ Batman: The Complete History
  3. ^ "UGO's World of Batman - Gotham Girls: Poison Ivy". Batman.ugo.com. http://batman.ugo.com/gothamgirls/poisonivy/default.asp. Retrieved 2010-12-29. 
  4. ^ a b Batman: Shadow of the Bat #88, Detective Comics #735
  5. ^ Horrocks, Dylan (w), Leonardi, Rick (p), Delperdang, Jesse (i). "The City is a Jungle" Batgirl #52 52: 22 (July 2004), DC Comics
  6. ^ a b c Lemon, Craig (2003-05-03). "Batman: Hush Review". Comics Bulletin. http://www.comicsbulletin.com/reviews/105195814721947.htm. Retrieved 2008-05-06. 
  7. ^ World's Finest Comics #252
  8. ^ Swamp Thing Chronology, Mykey3000.com
  9. ^ a b Legends of the Dark Knight #43
  10. ^ Shadow of the Bat Annual #3
  11. ^ Batman: Poison Ivy
  12. ^ Batman: Shadow of the Bat #56-58
  13. ^ Secret Files 1998
  14. ^ Rucka, Greg (w), Jurgens, Dan Sienkiewicz, Bill (a). "Batman #568" ' 568 (1999), DC Comics
  15. ^ Batman: Harley Quinn
  16. ^ Detective Comics #751-752
  17. ^ Detective Comics #797-799
  18. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Pina, Jav (p), Portela, Francis (i). "The Games People Play" Batman: Gotham Knights #60 60: 22 (February 2005), DC Comics
  19. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Barrionuevo, Al (p), Bit (i). "Human Nature, Book One" Batman: Gotham Knights #61 61: 22 (March 2005), DC Comics
  20. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Barrionuevo, Al (p), Bit (i). "Human Nature, Book Two" Batman: Gotham Knights #62 62: 22 (April 2005), DC Comics
  21. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Barrionuevo, Al (p), Bit (i). "Human Nature, Book Three" Batman: Gotham Knights #63 63: 22 (May 2005), DC Comics
  22. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Barrionuevo, Al (p), Bit (i). "Human Nature, Book Four" Batman: Gotham Knights #64 64: 22 (June 2005), DC Comics
  23. ^ Lieberman, A. J. (w), Barrionuevo, Al (p), Bit (i). "Human Nature, Book Five" Batman: Gotham Knights #65 65: 22 (July 2005), DC Comics
  24. ^ Gotham Central #32
  25. ^ a b Tate, Ray (2006-09-09). "Detective Comics #823". Comics Bulletin. http://www.comicsbulletin.com/reviews/11578374516654.htm. Retrieved 2008-05-06. 
  26. ^ Dini, Paul Beechen, Adam (w), Giffen, Keith, Lopez, David, Norton, Mike (p), Hillsmen, Don Ramos, Rodney (i). "Forbidden Fruit" Countdown #37 37 (August 2007), DC Comics
  27. ^ a b Paul Dini (w), Dustin Nguyen (p), Derek Fridolfs (i). "Heart of Hush, Part V of V: The Demon in the Mirror" Detective Comics #850 850 (January 2009), DC Comics
  28. ^ Gotham City Sirens #9 (February 2010)
  29. ^ Gotham City Sirens #12 (May 2010)
  30. ^ Gotham City Sirens #20-23
  31. ^ Gotham City Sirens #24 (June 2011)
  32. ^ Gotham City Sirens #25 (July 2011)
  33. ^ Gotham City Sirens #26 (August 2011)
  34. ^ Birds of Prey (vol. 3) #3 (November 2011)
  35. ^ Justice League of America #111, #143, #158
  36. ^ Secret Society of Super-Villains #10; Special
  37. ^ a b Superman/Batman #19
  38. ^ Suicide Squad (vol. 1) #33-37, #39, #41, #43, #46-47, #58-59, #64-66
  39. ^ Gotham City Sirens #24 (June 2011)
  40. ^ Gotham City Sirens #25 (July 2011)
  41. ^ Loeb, Jeph (w), Sale, Tim (a). "Batman: The Long Halloween" Batman: The Long Halloween: 369 (November 1999), DC Comics, 9781563894695
  42. ^ Batman: Dark Victory
  43. ^ Batman: The Last Arkham
  44. ^ Harley Quinn #13
  45. ^ Arkham Asylum: Living Hell
  46. ^ Black Orchid (vol. 2), 1988
  47. ^ Paul Dini (w), Guillem March (p), Guillem March (i). "Union" Gotham City Sirens #1 1 (August 2009), DC Comics
  48. ^ Dini, Paul (w), Guillem March (p), Guillem March (i). "Union" Gotham City Sirens #6 6 (January 2010), DC Comics
  49. ^ a b "Pretty Poison". Toon Zone. http://www.toonzone.net/anbat/btas/pp.html. Retrieved 2008-05-06. 
  50. ^ a b "House and Garden". Paul Dini, Boyd Kirkland, Dong Yang. Batman: The Animated Series. Fox. 1994-05-02. No. 70, season 2.
  51. ^ Flashpoint: Batman - Knight of Vengeance #1 (June 2011)
  52. ^ Batman: The Animated Series Volume Four (DVD). Warner Brother Home Video. 2005. 
  53. ^ "Chemistry". Stan Berkowitz, Butch Lukic, Koko Yang, Dong Yang. The New Batman Adventures. The WB. 1998-10-24. No. 22, season 2.
  54. ^ The Villains of the Justice League[dead link]
  55. ^ http://www.tvguide.com/News/Young-Justice-Recruits-1038736.aspx
  56. ^ "Game Stop - Batman Vengeance". Game Stop. http://www.gamestop.com/Catalog/ProductDetails.aspx?product_id=15788. Retrieved 2008-05-08. 
  57. ^ "Game Stop - Batman: Dark Tomorrow". Game Stop. http://www.gamestop.com/Catalog/ProductDetails.aspx?product_id=21120. Retrieved 2008-05-08. 
  58. ^ Game Informer features a two-page gallery of the many heroes and villains who appear in the game with a picture for each character and a descriptive paragraph. See "LEGO Batman: Character Gallery," Game Informer 186 (October 2008): 93.
  59. ^ http://918thefan.com/2011/kanas-korner-interview-with-tasia-valenza/

External links

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