After several tragedies, Andrea "Andi" Beaumont became the vigilante Phantasm that would come to cross paths with Batman.
Andrea Beaumont was the daughter of Carl Beaumont, a successful businessman who found himself in debt to Gotham crime boss Salvatore Valestra. Unaware of the serious nature of her father's problems, Andrea would stumble into a chance meeting with Bruce Wayne at her mother's gravesite while the young billionaire was visiting the graves of his own parents. The relationship quickly blossomed into something much more serious, and the subsequent emotions created feelings of doubt and guilt in Bruce as he had spent more than a decade on "the plan" which had prepared his body and mind for his imminent declaration of war on Gotham's underworld. But in all of his planning, Bruce had never counted on love and happiness. For the first time since his parents' death, Bruce found himself nearing an inner peace and proposed to Andrea.
Unfortunately for Andrea and Bruce, Carl's mob ties turned from sour to deadly. Fearing for his life, Carl forced Andrea into hiding with him. Knowing only that Andrea was leaving and would not return, Bruce fell into despair and threw himself back into "the plan" by becoming the Dark Knight. Carl and Andrea attempted to disappear into anonymity.
Around that time, Arthur Reeves, who was helping Carl and Andrea to flee Gotham, was campaigning to be an alderman on the Gotham City Council. Reeves realized he didn't have enough funding to ensure his election, so he initially pleaded with Carl for a bailout, which was turned down. In desperation, Reeves turned to the Valestra mob for financial assistance. They agreed to ensure his electoral victory on the condition that Reeves revealed where Carl and Andrea were hiding, to which Reeves complied without question, unaware that the unforgiving Salvatore wanted Carl to pay for his embezzlement and lack of punctuality in blood.
Because of Reeves' betrayal, the Beaumonts were soon found by Valestra's chief hitman. Despite managing to pay Valestra back, Carl was killed with Andrea left alive to mourn him... and to plot her revenge. She covered up her father's death, using his remaining money to establish a life for herself and acquire the weapons and equipment she would need to exact revenge on the men who ordered her father's death.
The Phantasm first appeared during Batman's bust of a gambling operation and caused Chuckie Sol's death. Since she had not actually been sighted publicly and Batman was spotted at the scene of the crime, it was strongly suspected that the Dark Knight had been the killer. Soon afterwards, Andrea returned to Gotham City and contacted Reeves, who was now a member of the Gotham City Council. Returning to her mother's grave, she caught a glimpse of Batman watching her from behind the Waynes' gravestone. Since it was at this very spot that they met, Andrea quickly realized that Bruce Wayne was the man behind the mask.
Next, she killed Buzz Bronski at Sol's gravesite. While Batman suspected that Phantasm was Carl Beaumont, Sal Valestra turned to the Joker for protection from Batman, the prime suspect in the mob killings. After Joker killed Valestra, the Clown Prince of Crime used the grinning corpse as bait for the mysterious vigilante and discovered via video camera that Batman wasn't to blame before blowing up the mobster's home. After escaping the explosion, Phantasm was pursued by Batman but again managed to escape once the police arrived.
After Andrea rescued Batman from the police, the two of them spent the night together at Wayne Manor and seemingly promised to reconcile their relationship. She also told Bruce about why she had to leave but neglected to mention that her father was dead (killed by Joker's former identity) and lied to him by still keeping up the charade that she was Phantasm's true identity. When she eventually left, she promised she would return later that night.
After leaving, she made one last phone call and cancelled a supposed dinner date she was supposed to be having with Reeves that same night. Having deduced her identity, Joker attempted to kill Andrea in her hotel room by blowing it up with a remote controlled airplane strapped with explosives while mocking her with a prank-phone call. Unknown to Joker, however, Batman was the one who had picked up his call as he had been investigating her room at the time and survived his assassination attempt meant for Andrea, and that she was actually on her way to kill him.
After Batman discovered that the Joker was Valestra's former chief hitman and that Reeves had been the one who ratted out Beaumont to Valestra in exchange for financial assistance in his political campaign, Phantasm moved against Joker at his hideout: the abandoned site of the old Gotham World's Fair. After attempting to kill him personally, Andrea almost fell victim to one of Joker's deadly traps before being saved by Batman. She and Batman argued over Joker's fate, but both found themselves fighting for their lives against Joker's booby-traps. After Joker was subdued, Andrea disappeared with him into a cloud of smoke as the fairgrounds exploded all around them.
As a final farewell to Bruce, she left behind a locket with a picture of them in the Batcave. With nothing left, she left Gotham on an ocean liner (possibly traveling under another identity). While a party was going on in the ship's dining room, she stood alone outside on the deck. When Burton Earny tried to talk to her, she addressed him coldly. He asked if she would rather be alone, and she solemnly replied "I am".
Decades later, Andrea Beaumont's career as the Phantasm continued, either as a freelance assassin or covert agent. As part of Project Batman Beyond, Amanda Waller ordered her to assassinate Warren McGinnis and Mary McGinnis in front of their son Terry McGinnis. Waller hoped that the tragic loss at a young age would drive Terry to become an agent of justice. Within seconds of performing the task, however, Phantasm refused to go through with the assignment.
Upon returning to Waller, Andrea angrily berated her for planning the attempt at all, arguing that they almost violated everything that Batman stood for. Even though Waller was narrow minded and ruthless, Andrea was able to convince her to abandon the project to prevent any further attempts on Warren and Mary McGinnis's lives. Since Andrea spared Warren and Mary, they would later have a second son and Terry would later become the new Batman through a different set of circumstances.
Weapons and abilities
Despite being a normal human woman with no metahuman powers, Andrea has undergone extensive self-defense and martial arts training since her teens. This makes her a very capable hand-to-hand combatant whose skills have more often than not, taking even Bruce Wayne by surprise (both in and out of costume). She is an excellent athlete and is still an active mercenary/vigilante even into her later years, making it obvious that she's stayed in fighting shape over the years. It should be noted that Andrea seems to be a skilled tactical thinker as she planned and executed a complex multistage scheme wherein she seems to have methodically researched her targets' activities and patterns of behavior before striking out at them. Coupled with the fact that she expertly manipulated the people and other elements around her; including Batman himself to serve her purposes.
As the Phantasm, Andrea wore a disguise composed of a protective bodysuit that shielded her from most minor impacts. Additionally, she wielded a razor sharp blade on her right hand and a special gauntlet on her left hand that dispenses smoke which can provide cover for her movements. This smoke can be used as an offensive weapon. The razor blade, however, was vulnerable to acidic compounds, and partially melted away when the Joker squirted acid from his boutonniere at it. The Phantasm "death's-head" mask has a built-in voice synthesizer that changes Andrea's voice to sound like her father's. The mask is also equipped with a breathing filter. Presumably, the eye lenses contain some sort of night vision, since she is able to move somewhat freely amongst her own cover smoke.
Andrea Beaumont's first name was supposedly chosen because of Andrea Romano, the person responsible for the casting for Batman: The Animated Series and Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. Kevin Conroy (the voice of Batman) had flirted with Romano, leading to a relationship between Conroy's character and Romano's namesake.
The Phantasm is somewhat based on the DC Comics character The Reaper, who, according to revised comics continuity, was a former vigilante who had been active in Gotham City twenty years prior to the first appearance of Batman. The Reaper was not above killing criminals, but had disappeared from the public eye until the Batman's early adventures brought him out of retirement. The comics story (Batman: Year Two) was more straightforward than the mystery of Mask of the Phantasm and had several major differences; among other things, the Reaper's alter ego actually is the father of Bruce Wayne's love interest, and the secondary villain of the piece is Joe Chill, the killer of Wayne's parents (Thomas and Martha).
A later issue of the comic based on the series explained the circumstances under which both Joker and Phantasm survived the blast; Phantasm, in fact, hesitated for a second when carrying Joker to the core of the explosion, seeing he was no longer her father's cold-hearted killer, but rather a grinning lunatic with no sense of right and wrong. Because of this hesitation, the blast detonated before either was in range. Phantasm, in fact, returned once more to Bruce Wayne, if only to warn him that a major bounty had been set on his head by none other than Arthur Reeves, by then deformed by the effect of Joker's Smilex toxin into a smiling monster himself. Some of his paid goons managed to capture both Wayne and Phantasm, holding them in Reeves's own apartment. Ultimately, Reeves fell through a window when he believed he was about to kill the Phantasm with her own axe. In reality, it was only a set decoy and Reeves fell to his death several stories below. Her mission accomplished, Andrea left Gotham again, using a holographic disguise generator used by Reeves's hired assassin to conceal herself from Batman on patrol, and tearfully repeating her earlier last words to him, "goodbye, my love."
A few months after the film's release, Kenner released a series of toys to tie-in with the film. However, the action figure of the Phantasm was packaged with the mask off, revealing the character's identity to be Andrea Beaumont, and spoiling the film.
The elderly Phantasm reappears in the comics story arc Batman Beyond: Mark of the Phantasm, published in 2015. She has continued working as an assassin, but only targets other killers. She briefly reunites with Bruce, urging him to admit to Terry McGinnis that the new partner he has been working with, Justin Chill a.k.a. Vigilante, is actually the gunman who killed Warren McGinnis on Mr. Fixx's orders (as well as being the grandson of Joe Chill, who murdered Bruce's own parents). It is later revealed that Andrea was hired by Amanda Waller to kill Justin before Terry could do so, to ensure that Batman would never commit a murder.
- "Epilogue" (Cameo in flashback)
- ↑ Melniker, B., Uslan, M. (Producers), & Radomski, E., Timm, B. W. (Directors). (1993). Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. United States: Warner Bros.
- ↑ Timm, Bruce, McDuffie, Dwayne (story) & McDuffie, Dwayne (teleplay) & Riba, Dan (director) (July 23, 2005). "Epilogue". Justice League Unlimited. Season 1. Episode 26 (airdate). Episode 26 (production). Cartoon Network.