Warning: The following contains SPOILERS for Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2 and the Long Halloween graphic novel.
What are the major differences between the original comics and the story of Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2? The second half of the long-awaited adaptation goes beyond cosmetic changes that quicken the pace of the story. The script changes the story’s resolution somewhat, but in a way that many will argue makes more sense than the ending of the original books.
Published as a 13-issue miniseries in 1996, The Long Halloween was created as an unofficial follow-up to Batman: Year One. The story explored how the underworld of Gotham City came to be dominated by costumed supervillains, as the organized crime families who had run things for decades lost ground to this new wave of criminals. The story also depicted the downfall of District Attorney Harvey Dent and how he became the crime-boss Two-Face.
The animated film adaptation of The Long Halloween has largely followed the same story as the original comics, with most of the changes made in Part 1 involving pacing issues and eliminating supporting characters who didn’t have much to do with the overall story. The same cannot be said of Part 2, which makes several substantial changes that completely change some of the character dynamics and the ending of the story. Something similar happened with the animated adaptation of Batman: Hush and fans of the comics were aggravated by the change. It remains to be seen how fans will respond to the changes made in Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2.
Poison Ivy Controls Bruce Wayne For Three Months In The Movie
Poison Ivy was hired by Carmine Falcone to take control of Bruce Wayne’s mind and make him agreeable to doing business with the Falcone family in both the film and the book of The Long Halloween, but the film version of Ivy managed to keep the scheme going much longer than her comic book counterpart. In the graphic novel, Ivy poisoned Bruce with a specially prepared rose on Valentine’s Day while posing as a flower-seller, approaching him while he was on a date with Selina Kyle. She maintained her hold on Bruce for just over a month until Catwoman attacked her on March 17th, Saint Patrick’s Day. The same sequence of events plays out in The Long Halloween movies, but with Ivy approaching Bruce Wayne at Alberto Falcone’s funeral in early January, in the post-credits scene of Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 1. Catwoman doesn’t free Bruce from Ivy’s control until April Fool’s Day in The Long Halloween, Part 2, meaning Bruce was under Ivy’s spell for just under three months.
Alfred Was Also Under Ivy’s Control
One minor plot hole in the original Long Halloween is that nothing is said of what happened to Alfred Pennyworth, Batman’s loyal butler, during the time Bruce Wayne was being brainwashed by Poison Ivy. Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2 makes it completely clear that Alfred was also under Ivy’s control all this time, which also serves to perfectly explain why the seasoned butler did nothing about his foster son’s odd behavior during those three months.
No Role For The Riddler
The Riddler played a minor role in the Long Halloween graphic novel, being hired by Carmine Falcone to try and puzzle out the identity of the Holiday Killer. This set up a hilarious sequence in which The Riddler was confronted by Holiday on April Fool’s Day, only to not be killed so as to set up the practical joke symbolic of that holiday. Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2 does not contain a similar sequence and The Riddler does not appear in the movie at all.
The GCPD Don’t Investigate Bruce Wayne As Long in The Movie
The Long Halloween graphic novel featured an extended subplot within its pages where the GCPD and Harvey Dent began investigating Bruce Wayne because of his sudden involvement with Carmine Falcone’s businesses. This led to Bruce being arrested in May and placed on trial in June, though he was found innocent, thanks in part to Alfred’s testimony sarcastically refuting Harvey Dent’s assertion of a long connection between the Waynes and the Falcones. The case against Wayne was dropped after a single interview in the film, though Alfred still had a chance to deliver a blistering comment about the corruption of law enforcement officials in Gotham City as Captain Gordon and Harvey Dent left Wayne Manor.
The Film Has An Extensive Scarecrow Hallucination Scene
In the original Long Halloween graphic novel, Scarecrow escaped from Arkham Asylum on Mother’s Day and managed to evade a confrontation with Batman by gassing the Dark Knight with his trademark fear gas when his guard was down. The comic showed Bruce Wayne’s resulting anxiety attack in a realistic fashion, as the GCPD tried to arrest him while he was visiting the site of his parents’ murder. The film gets more creative as the gas takes effect, showing the audience the world from Batman’s perspective, with the forest around him catching on fire, the trees sprouting tentacles reaching for him, and the Scarecrow and his horse appearing more monstrous.
Catwoman Comes To Batman’s Rescue In Crime Alley
In the original graphic novel, Bruce Wayne was pursued by the GCPD from Crime Alley to his parents’ graves on Mother’s Day while suffering from the effects of Scarecrow’s fear gas. In Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2, Bruce Wayne still makes his way to Crime Alley after his fight with Scarecrow, but he arrives in his Batman costume and terrifies a young couple and their son, who just happened to be walking down the same street. The confused crusader was found by Catwoman, who took him home to Wayne Manor safely to recover from his ordeal involving Scarecrow’s fear gas.
Bruce Wayne And Carmine Falcone’s First Meeting
A flashback in The Long Halloween graphic novel detailed how Dr. Thomas Wayne once treated a young Carmine Falcone for multiple bullet wounds, after his father, Vincent Falcone, showed up at Wayne Manor with his wounded son and pleaded for Thomas Wayne to save his life without reporting the shooting to the police. The very same flashback occurs in Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2, but with an additional scene where Bruce (who spied on the surgery in secret) talked with the recovering Carmine Falcone. In a nod to the original Batman comics, where Bruce Wayne was inspired to dress like a bat because criminals were “a superstitious, cowardly lot,” Falcone tells Bruce about how criminals are superstitious when he asks about the lucky charm that fell on the floor.
Another New Origin For Two-Face’s Coin
The lucky charm in question is a two-headed coin, which Carmine Falcone carried because of his belief that “sometimes all it takes to get out of a bad situation is a good flip of the coin” and that “two heads are better than one.” He told Bruce that he could keep the coin since it clearly wasn’t doing him any good after the night he had. This was revealed to be the same two-headed coin which Batman gave Harvey Dent in Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 1.
The Independence Day Holiday Victim Is Different
In the Long Halloween graphic novel, the Holiday Killer’s victim on Independence Day was Jasper Dolan; a coroner with no apparent connection to the Falcone family or the other victims of the Holiday killings. This broke Holiday’s established pattern of targeting Gotham City’s organized crime families and their associates. The Independence Day victim in Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2 is a hitman in Carmine Falcone’s employ, who tried to kill Harvey Dent during a fireworks show at Gotham City’s boardwalk.
The Circumstances Of Carla Viti’s Death
Carla Viti, the sister of Carmine Falcone and head of the Falcone family’s operations in Chicago, was one of the prime suspects of the Holiday killings in the original Long Halloween comics until she was killed by Holiday on her brother’s birthday. In the film, Viti was murdered at the scene of Falcone’s birthday party, her body being found in an elevator sent up to the penthouse suite where the party was unfolding. This is different from the original book, where Viti was killed in Gotham City’s Coroner’s Office while going through the records in search of something.
The Death Of Sal Maroni
In Batman: The Long Halloween, crime boss Sal Maroni was killed by Holiday in the middle of a prison transfer on Labor Day. The same thing occurs in the film, but in a much more exciting fashion. In the book, Holiday struck at Maroni while he was being escorted through access tunnels out of the jail he had been held in. In the movie, Maroni makes it onto the road in a convoy of police vehicles, which were attacked by Solomon Grundy and Two-Face, with Holiday taking his shot once Maroni was out in the open.
The Film Features A Supervillain-Filled Rampage in Downtown Gotham
The final chapter of The Long Halloween graphic novel saw Two-Face free multiple supervillains from Arkham Asylum, leading them in a coordinated attack on Carmine Falcone’s home. This attack was surprisingly orderly, given it involved the likes of the Joker and the Mad Hatter. Things are a little more chaotic in the film, with Poison Ivy, Mad Hatter, and the Scarecrow creating a distraction in the streets, as Two-Face, Joker, the Penguin, and Solomon Grundy went after Falcone.
Selina Reveals Everything About Herself To Batman
Dark Victory, the sequel to The Long Halloween, revealed why Catwoman was so interested in the Falcone family; Selina Kyle believed that she was Carmine Falcone’s illegitimate daughter. While she didn’t reveal this information to anyone in the books, Selina revealed her suspicions to Batman in The Long Halloween, Part 2, along with her secret identity. This leads to the two starting a romantic relationship together at the end of the film.
Two-Face Isn’t Of Two Minds In The Film
Two-Face’s portrayal in various media has varied, with there being some debate as to how much influence Harvey Dent has on his other half, if any at all. The book version of Two-Face seemed to be trying to maintain a balance between Harvey Dent and his repressed anger, using the two-headed coin to make decisions. The film version of Two-Face, much like the Harvey Dent of The Dark Knight, has come to believe in chaos being the ultimate equalizer, since “all men are guilty and innocent, which makes justice nothing more than the flip of a coin.” It was also said repeatedly that Harvey Dent is dead and only Two-Face remains.
Sofia Gigante’s Fall
Carmine Falcone’s daughter, Sofia Gigante, had a reduced role in the film version of The Long Halloween relative to the original graphic novel, where she took an active role in trying to determine Holiday’s identity. In the film, Sofia was more concerned about protecting her father and was quick to try and avenge him following Two-Face’s rampage. As in the book, Sofia wound up falling several stories, though the circumstances in the film were quite different. In the book, Sofia struggled with Catwoman and the two fell through a window, with Catwoman managing to free herself before she got dragged down with Sofia. In the film, Sofia slipped and fell through a hole blown in the side of her father’s office and Catwoman tried to save her, though Sofia ultimately let go of Catwoman’s hand when it became apparent she wasn’t strong enough to pull her up and was about to lose her grip.
The Identity of Holiday and Gilda Dent’s Secret
The big twist of the original Long Halloween comic books was that the Holiday Killer was Carmine Falcone’s son Alberto, who had faked his own death on New Year’s Eve and gone on to kill everyone who could confirm he was still alive, such as coroner Jasper Dolan, and his Aunt Carla, who had found evidence that his autopsy was faked. It was revealed in the final pages of Long Halloween, however, that there was a second Holiday killer; Harvey Dent’s wife Gilda, who talked to herself about committing the first three Holiday murders in the hopes of starting a gang war that would reduce her husband’s workload and bring him back to focusing on starting a family with her. Some fans criticized this ending, saying it wasn’t a fair mystery since there were no clues hinting at Alberto’s faking his death and nothing to indicate Gilda’s involvement in the crimes. (Additionally, Gilda was in the hospital for most of November and December, making it hard for her to have committed the Holiday killing on Thanksgiving.)
Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 2, changes this all considerably, with a new revelation tying into Alberto Falcone’s claim in Batman: The Long Halloween, Part 1 that his father had taken away the only woman he had ever loved and that he hated him for it. The film revealed that Gilda Dent was Alberto Falcone’s lost love and that the two had met while attending Oxford. Falcone did not approve of the relationship and had their marriage annulled and forced Gilda to have an abortion when he learned that she was pregnant. This led Gilda to come to Gotham City and marry Harvey Dent, manipulating him into striking at the Falcone family legally while she plotted her own more violent revenge. Instead of talking to herself like in the book, Gilda confesses everything to Batman, who had already deduced Gilda’s involvement in the Holiday killings, unlike the Batman of the original Long Halloween graphic novel.
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