- You may also be looking for the villain Lock-Up.
"Lock-Up" is the ninth episode of the third season of Batman: The Animated Series. It originally aired on November 19, 1994.
Batman and Robin, having captured the Scarecrow, return him to the gates of Arkham Asylum. Scarecrow is shaking with terror, and begs them to let him go, saying he only escaped to get away from... "him". Lyle Bolton, Arkham's imposing new chief of security, appears at the entrance and takes hold of Scarecrow, telling him that he'll be the only escapee from Arkham on his watch. Bolton apologizes to the heroes for Scarecrow's escape and makes an ominous vow that he won't let them, or the people of Gotham down again. Robin is impressed by Bolton's dedication, but Batman detects something sinister beneath Bolton's professional demeanor.
Bruce Wayne makes inquiries, and Dr. Bartholomew convenes a review hearing, attended by Bruce, Commissioner Gordon, and Mayor Hill. It was the Wayne Foundation that endowed the new post at Arkham and suggested Bolton as "the perfect man for the job", but Bruce now says he has some misgivings.
During the hearing, Bolton is all civility and earnestness stating "If anyone's got a problem with my methods please tell me." but as Dr. Bartholomew questions Scarecrow, Harley Quinn and Ventriloquist, it becomes clear that Bolton has intimidated them into remaining silent about what they really have to say about him. When Bruce recommends that Bolton's contract be extended for another eighteen months, the inmates panic and finally begin screaming that Bolton has been verbally assaulting them and physically abusing them behind the walls of the asylum.
Bolton loses control and bellows that the inmates are scum who should be beaten to death. It takes several large orderlies and a timely kicked-over chair from Bruce to restrain Bolton while the villains tremble in fear. Shocked, Dr. Bartholomew immediately fires Bolton, who says that he's been wrong: The real problem isn't the inmates, but the "soft-hearted" police, "pandering" doctors, and "gutless" bureaucrats who refuse to recognize them for the scum they are. Swearing revenge, Bolton is dragged out.
Later, in his home, Bolton watches an unflattering news report on him by Summer Gleeson, and includes the "liberal" media in his list of targets.
Six months later, just after Bruce and Gleeson have had an interview over dinner, Gleeson is abducted by getting locked inside her own car and placed inside an armored police car, manned by Bolton, now wearing a costume and calling himself "Lock-Up". Bruce confronts Lock-Up as Batman. Lock-Up declares that, together, he and Batman will make Gotham safe: Batman will catch the crooks, Lock-Up will make sure they never see the light of day again. Batman refuses to accept Lock-Up's brand of "justice", and the two fight, but Lock-Up makes a getaway.
One by one, other city officials go missing. Detective Bullock uses the Bat-Signal to contact Batman and inform him that both Gordon and Bartholomew are missing. Anticipating that Mayor Hill will be next, Batman has Bullock set up security at Hill's mansion, but even with this and Batman and Robin's presence, Lock-Up throws a smoke bomb into the mansion, takes Hill, and incapacitates the Batmobile. However, Lock-Up leaves a cargo locker behind with a serial number on it. Batman deduces that it is the registration number of a decommissioned naval vessel moored out at sea, that was used as a temporary prison while Stonegate Penitentiary was being built. Bolton was its chief of security.
Batman and Robin make their way out to the ship, where Lock-Up has imprisoned Gleeson, Gordon, Bartholomew and Hill, and booby-trapped with automated deathtraps. Robin makes his way to the holding cells where the hostages are kept, while Batman fights Lock-Up. Their fight accidentally triggers the ship's propulsion system, driving the ship onto a reef and causing it to upend. As the ship takes on water, Robin frees the hostages and gets them to safety.
Batman and Lock-Up fight each over directly above the ship's upturned propellers, but after they both plunge into the water, Batman manages to gain the upper hand and subdue Lock-Up.
To catcalls and jeers from the other inmates, Bolton is ushered into his own cell at Arkham. Bolton, however, is satisfied, since he now believes that he will truly be able to keep an eye on all the other inmates, taking his revenge for costing him his old job.
Home video releases
- Batman: The Animated Series, Volume Three (DVD)
- Batman: The Complete Animated Series (DVD)
- Batman: The Complete Animated Series (Blu-ray)
- When Lock-Up is first seen kidnapping Summer Gleason, his mask completely covers his mouth. However, for the rest of the episode, his mouth is visible.
- After putting Mayor Hill in his cell, Lock-Up rattles the bars with his nightstick, but the sound effect is missing.
- When Mayor Hill is first put in the cell with Commissioner Gordon, he has handcuffs on. After Gordon falls to the ground after the bars were electrocuted, Hill helps him up and is free of the handcuffs.
- First appearance of Bruce Weitz in the DCAU; he later went on to voice gangster Bruno Mannheim on Superman: The Animated Series.
- Along with Harley Quinn and Renee Montoya, Lock-Up was one of a few original characters created for the DCAU who were incorporated into the mainstream comics continuity. In fact, Lock-Up's incorporation actually preceded that of Harley, the most prominent example of such characters.
- When Bolton goes berserk during the hearing scene, there is a humorous moment when Bruce Wayne, still in his guise of the indolent playboy, rather than the world's finest unarmed combatant, subdues Bolton by "accidentally" tripping him.
- This is one of two episodes of Batman: The Animated Series that begins with Batman and Robin escorting the apprehended Scarecrow back to Arkham Asylum. The other one is "Harley's Holiday".
- The Joker can be heard laughing as Bolton is being led to his cell.
- The naval vessel USS Halsey was presumably named for famed US Navy Admiral Frederick Halsey of WWII. Real vessels were given the name Halsey, however this ships prefix F-84 indicates the vessel was a frigate which the real vessels never were.
Bolton: Before I came here, Arkham was a revolving door for every maniac in Gotham. I kept them in. Me! Now I realize I was wrong to punish those pathetic miscreants! They're only SYMPTOMS! You're the cause: The gutless police, mindless bureaucrats, and coddling doctors! YOU SHOULD ALL BE LOCKED UP IN A CAGE WITHOUT A KEY!!!
Lock-Up: We could have rid Gotham of the fools in City Hall and the the police department! We could have made our own order!