|“||Ah, but we both know our play isn't over, Bruce. And ultimately I will emerge as the hero of our bitter comedy.||„|
Tommy Elliot, also known as Hush, is a villain from the Batman series. He and Bruce Wayne (Batman) were childhood friends, but they were also each others opposite. Hush became a villain at an early age, and managed to become a surgeon.
Hush first appeared in Batman #609 (January 2003), as part of the 12-issue storyline Batman: Hush where he was created by Jeph Loeb and Jim Lee. Hush resurfaced in Batman: Gotham Knights, and later in Detective Comics and Batman: Streets of Gotham. He has recently reemerged as the architect behind several of the events of Batman Eternal.
Fictional character biography
Origin Dr. Thomas "Tommy" Elliot was a childhood friend of Bruce Wayne, and was also born into a wealthy family. The two boys often played a stratego-like game together, and Tommy taught Bruce to think like his opponents and to use their abilities against them in order to win, which proved useful years later when the latter became Batman. Tommy despised both his abusive father and his frail, submissive mother, who came from poverty and willingly endured every abuse dealt to her and her son to keep her lavish lifestyle. For all their failings, however, Tommy's parents made sure he was well-educated, in particular teaching him about the philosophy of Aristotle, which he often quotes. Driven by his desire for independence and wealth, Tommy severed the brake line of his parents' car, causing a crash that killed his father and injured his mother; his mother, however, was saved in an emergency operation by Dr. Thomas Wayne, which enraged young Elliot. While at a summer camp with Bruce, Tommy attacked a boy and ended up in a psychiatric ward; he blamed Bruce and his mother for his outburst. He is soon released by an intern named Jonathan Crane. During the next few years, Tommy tended to his mother. When Bruce's parents were murdered, Tommy resented him for inheriting the Wayne family fortune, just as he had hoped to do with his parents' money. Shortly before Bruce returned to Gotham City, Tommy befriended a young woman named Peyton Riley (who would later become the second Ventriloquist) – a relationship of which his mother never approved. When Tommy's mother recovered from cancer, she disowned him, subsequently cutting him off from the Elliot family fortune in retaliation for his continuing relationship with Peyton. As a result, Tommy killed her by smothering her with a pillow, while Peyton killed their lawyer and destroyed Mrs. Elliot's new will. As far as the rest of the world was concerned, his mother had died of a household accident. Finally the sole recipient of his family's fortune, Tommy abandoned Peyton and began traveling the world, as Bruce had. Although he went on to Harvard University and became a successful surgeon, Tommy continued to harbor an irrational grudge towards his childhood friend. At some point in his career, Edward Nygma (also known as the Riddler) was diagnosed with terminal cancer and eventually hijacked one of Ra's al Ghul's Lazarus Pits to regain his health. During this mystical treatment, which renders the participant temporarily insane, he experienced an unexpected epiphany: he realized that Bruce Wayne was Batman. Soon afterwards, the Riddler attempted to sell Tommy the secrets of his newfound revelation in exchange for a large cash sum. Tommy, by this time having discovered Nygma's criminal background, instead offered to pay him to kill Bruce. Realizing that they shared a common hatred for Wayne, Tommy and the Riddler decided to pool resources to bring him down. To this end, Elliot created for himself the persona of "Hush". Riddler said that the name started out as a joking reference to the need to keep Tommy's identity secret, but became a more permanent alias when Scarecrow started to sing the lullaby "Hush, Little Baby"
Hush character arc
In their attempt to destroy Batman, Hush and the Riddler manipulated several other villains into unwittingly helping them. These included the Joker, Harley Quinn, Two-Face, Poison Ivy, Scarecrow, Killer Croc and Clayface. They even manipulated some of Batman's closest allies (Superman, Huntress, and Catwoman) against the Dark Knight, utilizing such methods as Poison Ivy using her pheromones to control the Man of Steel and Catwoman and Hush's seemingly benevolent funding of Huntress's vigilante activities. Part of their plot included fooling Bruce into believing the Joker had murdered Tommy; Clayface shapeshifted into Tommy's corpse in order to create this illusion. With these villains as their pawns, Hush and the Riddler set up an elaborate plot against Batman. Jason Todd, who was believed to be dead for years, entered the pact with the villains and gave them insights on how Batman thought. Using the shapeshifting abilities of Clayface, they created a decoy of the former Robin; Hush collaborates with Riddler, Todd, and Clayface to use the Dark Knight's guilt over his ward's apparent death against him at Todd's gravesite. Around this time, Hush cured the disfigured Harold Allnut, a longtime associate of Batman. In return, Harold 'bugged' the Batcave with several devices that altered Batman's mind, but nevertheless remained loyal to the Caped Crusader; he was certain that Batman would triumph over whatever followed. Hush then killed Harold in front of Batman, and immediately engaged the Dark Knight in battle. Batman was at first disoriented by Hush's quoting of Aristotle, prompting him to briefly wonder if Hush is Maxie Zeus. He noticed that Hush used Deadshot's two-gun fighting style, and theorized that he was either the assassin himself or one of his protégés. When Tommy finally revealed himself to a worn-out Batman, the Dark Knight was saved only by the intervention of Harvey Dent, whose Two-Face persona had been unwittingly wiped out by Tommy when he repaired Dent's disfigured face. Once again on the side of the law, Dent shot Hush twice, throwing him off a bridge. Although Batman was sure that Hush was his childhood friend Thomas Elliot, he wasn't able to unmask him
Still out to destroy Batman and determined not to let the rest of the villains get in his way, Hush quickly carved out a niche for himself, beating his former accomplice the Riddler to within an inch of his life. Hush even drives the Joker out of the city, and thus proving to the Clown Prince that he can be a threat to him. He also temporarily killed Poison Ivy during a failed attempt to recruit her. Following a short-lived alliance with JLA nemesis Prometheus, Hush began to torment Bruce Wayne with help from Clayface. Exploiting the latter's shapeshifting abilities, Hush was briefly able to shed doubt on his true identity and had Alfred Pennyworth framed for murder. Alfred's name was later cleared, albeit through trickery. (The aforementioned events occur in issue #50–55 and #61–72.)
The Joker eventually returned to Gotham City with an army of trained pigeons and retaliates (in Batman: Gotham Knights #73–74). He captured Hush and kept him sedated for three weeks, during which time he implanted a peacemaker into his body, effectively gaining control of his heart. At the Joker's mercy and unable to remove the device himself, Hush turned to the one man he felt he could trust (or rather, predict): Bruce Wayne. Bruce consented to help Hush on the condition that he allow himself to be treated in, and confined to, Arkham Asylum. Hush agreed, and then immediately escaped after being told that the surgery had been a success. He was intercepted by Batman before he could confront the Joker and demanded that Batman allow him to kill the Joker. Batman seemed to agree and began to leave, but then revealed that he had tricked Hush – the peacemaker was still in his body, and he had been allowed to escape from Arkham. At that moment, the Joker arrived, and Hush begged Batman not to leave him. The issue (and the Batman: Gotham Knights series) ended unresolved. Hush returned in the later Man-Bat miniseries, and is later shown remembering how painful it was to remove the peacemaker alone, and how the time between Gotham Knights and Heart of Hush was mostly spent recovering from the damage suffered, confirming that Batman did desert Hush at the conclusion of "Payback".
"Heart of Hush"
Hush returned in Detective Comics #846-#850, in the story "The Heart of Hush", which tied together with "Batman R.I.P.". In this arc, set a few nights before the events depicted in "R.I.P.", Hush was portrayed in a slightly different thematic fashion than in his prior appearances. His past as a surgeon was made into a major aspect of his modus operandi. In the first issue, Hush revealed that his return was hastened when he began to hear whispers of the Black Glove's upcoming attack on Batman. Believing that it was his right and his right alone to kill Batman, Hush sought to beat the Black Glove to the punch. In the second part, Hush teamed up with the Scarecrow. He performed routine plastic surgery on his own face, only later revealing the result was face nigh identical to Bruce Wayne's. Hush then ambushed and subdued Catwoman after she scratched off a portion of his facial bandages, recoiling in horror at what she saw. He then cut out her heart, putting her on life support supplied by Mr. Freeze, and delivered her to Gotham General Hospital. To himself, Hush thought about how he had begun formulating his plan after Batman had abandoned him. While Catwoman was left in Doctor Mid-Nite's care, Batman squeezed the location of Hush's headquarters from Scarecrow. Hush ambushed Batman by showing him the room containing Catwoman's heart, alive and pumping, at which time he pumped Batman with a paralyzing gas. He then confessed to Batman his plan: using his newfound resemblance to Bruce, he would kill and disfigure him to steal his identity, eliminating those who knew him best and would regularly interact with Bruce, and then he would retire with the Wayne fortune, reasoning that the other heroes would accept that Batman had earned the right to end his career. However, Batman was able to stave off the effects of the paralysis gas, recover Catwoman's heart, and warn Alfred of Hush's deception. Although Alfred disarmed Elliot, Hush manages to get into the Batcave where he nearly killed Batman, but Alfred's continuing interference and the arrival of Nightwing and Robin turned the tide. Hush retreated on the Whirly-Bat (a one-man helicopter), but his bandages became tangled in the rotor and it exploded. Batman, Nightwing, and Robin could find no trace of Hush, save some bloody bandages, and concluded he that he was dead. Catwoman, not taking chances and seeking some form of closure for her predicament and current condition (Doctor Mid-Nite made it clear that it was unlikely that she would ever regain her physical prowess), had Oracle, Holly Robinson, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn and Slam Bradley track down Hush's secret bank accounts and stashes of cash and cut them off. Hush, wounded but alive, limped off to plot his next move. Later, posing as Bruce Wayne, Hush traveled to Australia and Vietnam looting the cash accounts of Wayne Enterprises' subsidiaries. He was captured by Catwoman, who knew perfectly well he was not the real Bruce Wayne. She brought him to Nightwing and Robin, who kept him contained in a secret safe house. Hush, still wearing Bruce's appearance, decided to fake his surrender, waiting for the right moment to escape.
In Streets of Gotham, Batman's biological son Damian Wayne visited Hush in his cell as the new Robin, and they played chess. When Damian left to deal with a new crisis, Hush surmised that Firefly was behind the attack. He noted how Gotham City had fallen apart in Batman's absence, and pondered how to use the current situation to his advantage. Hush faked experiencing spontaneous combustion, and when Alfred arrived at his cell to assist, he overpowered him and escaped. He then re-emerged as Bruce Wayne, claiming that he would donate a billion dollars a month to Gotham City until the financial crisis was over. Dick and Damian, along with the Outsiders and assorted other superheroes, explained to Hush that they would always watch and control him- with the other heroes acting as a 'board of directors' intended to 'supervise' his financial dealings- and that someone will always be ready to take him down if he steps out of line. With no other option available to him, Hush reluctantly agreed to play Dick Grayson's puppet, posing as Bruce Wayne, and thus keeping the public from realizing that Bruce was dead. Though this ruined his original plan to sap the Wayne fortune, Hush did not allow it to halt his scheming altogether. Hush had appeared, notably as a member of the Gotham Shield Committee, around Gotham quite frequently, often attempting to make connections. When Ra's al Ghul arrived in Gotham, promising to ruin the Wayne family in retaliation against Red Robin, he immediately sought out Hush. Faced with the prospect of Hush using Ra's al Ghul's support to turn on the Bat-family again, Tim Drake activated a contingency plan set in place by Wayne himself to transfer controlling interest in Wayne Enterprises to Drake "if something should happen". This left Hush with no official standing in the company.
"House of Hush"
Hush reappeared in Streets of Gotham for the story arc "House of Hush" beginning in #14. He attempted to push the boundaries of his new role as Bruce Wayne, such as recommending that convicted criminals be allowed back on the streets. However, this plan backfired when the criminal Jane Doe—a woman who lost her face in an accident and had resorted to cutting off the faces of others—became obsessed with 'Bruce Wayne' after he had her released. She infiltrated his life by taking the face of his new assistant, and subsequently cut off Elliot's new face with the intention of becoming Bruce Wayne herself. Batman caught her and Hush, and they were both sent to Arkham. During the events of Batman: Gates of Gotham, Hush was freed from Arkham by a new villain named the Architect. As this happened, Red Robin, Nightwing, and Blackbat realized that the Elliot family was connected to a series of bombings that destroyed three historical Gotham bridges. Nightwing found Hush, who had been betrayed by the Architect and strapped to a bomb, but was forced to sacrifice Wayne Tower to save his life.
The New 52 – "Batman Eternal"
After DC Comics line-wide reboot The New 52, Hush first appeared in issue twenty-one of Batman Eternal as the mastermind behind Commissioner Gordon's downfall and Carmine Falcone's return. After injecting Alfred with fear toxin, Hush was seen communicating with Jason Bard about taking control of Gotham. In issue twenty-six, a slightly revised origin for Hush was revealed; he was still Tommy Elliott, a childhood friend of Bruce Wayne, but in this version, his parricide is explicitly described as a way for him to get closer to Bruce (who had started distancing himself from Tommy after the death of his own parents) rather than as a way for him to receive his inheritance. In issue 32, Hush turned public opinion against Wayne Enterprises by blowing up one of Batman's hidden weapon caches (known to be connected to Wayne Enterprises after the events of Batman Incorporated) below Gotham, killing an unknown number of civilians, policemen and military personnel. He was able to enter the cache with DNA taken from Alfred Pennyworth. After having blown up another weapon cache and having been shot through the shoulder with a grappling hook by Julia Pennyworth, Hush gave up his location to Batman to face him in a final showdown. They met and fought in a weapon cache below the Martha Wayne Foundation hospital, which Hush had rigged to explode as a backup plan. Batman defeated Hush, but was then informed that the government had seized control of Wayne Enterprises and its holdings due to its involvement in the catastrophic explosions around Gotham. He also found out that perhaps Hush was not the mastermind behind the events of Batman Eternal; instead he would have been invited beforehand to take advantage of the imminent downfall of Commissioner Gordon. Hush then taunted Batman, stating, "Maybe you're right Bruce, maybe I'm not you. But right now, who would want to be?". Hush was then kept as prisoner in the Batcave, but broke out with the help of the then unknown mastermind behind the events of Batman Eternal. Hush then proceeded to sabotage the equipment of several members of the Batman Family via the Batcomputer as they fought various villains, including crashing the Batwing with Batman still in it. He was then returned to captivity after having been ambushed by Alfred Pennyworth, Alfred harshly informing Tommy that he was hardly going to be locked up in his own home.
The 2010 Batman Beyond limited series revealed that Bruce Wayne's last fight with Hush occurred on a rainy night and consisted primarily of a rooftop chase. As a last-minute means of escape, Elliot dove into an open window, only to be shot by the homeowner who mistook him for an invader. With Batman severely injured and not on good terms with the police, he left Hush's body without examining it himself. Bruce seemed initially satisfied with the official police identification of the body as Elliot's. However, he later admits suspecting that Hush's skill for strategy and plastic surgery could have fabricated the entire scenario. Some time after the events of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Terry McGinnis discovers the former Signalman murdered in a manner reminiscent of Two-Face's M.O. He subsequently tracks the murderer to a hospital where an aged Jervis Tetch is being held and finds a bandaged man standing over a badly injured nurse. The man flees as Terry rushes over to the nurse, who says the man uttered a single word, "Hush". Returning to the cave, Terry learns what happened in Bruce's last fight with Hush. Terry soon discovers that the reformed villain, Armory, has been killed with sharpened umbrellas (the Penguin's weapon of choice). Attempting to stay ahead of their foe, Terry and Bruce search out the Calendar Man, Julian Day. Upon confronting Day, Terry is suddenly ambushed by Hush, who broke in beforehand. During Terry's fight with the new Hush, it is revealed that this Hush is not only capable of matching the current Batman in a fight, but is also aware of Bruce Wayne's identity as Batman. He regards Terry as an impostor with no understanding of what it means to be Batman. He also regards his murders of Batman's rogue's gallery as orphaning Batman all over again by killing his enemies as the only loving family he has had. Hush escapes by throwing the Calendar Man out the window with a bomb attached to Day's chest. Terry chooses to try and save Day but fails. Confirming that Tim Drake was under constant physical and psychological observation since his time as the Joker, Terry eliminates Drake as a suspect and proceeds to confront Dick Grayson. Meanwhile, Hush is revealed to have hired the new Catwoman to plant a tracking device on Batman, before proceeding to strangle her as part of his vendetta. A brief scene with Amanda Waller and a woman identified as Doctor Reid suggests a connection between Project Cadmus and Hush. However, Waller insists that they keep their knowledge of this Hush quiet. Using the new Bat-Wraith (a robot designed to replace Terry as Batman), Bruce intervenes in Hush's attempt to kill Catwoman. Hush demonstrates a knowledge of Bruce's old methods—including his equipment trials with Alfred and his habit of making the logo on his chest heavily armoured—and manages to shut down the robot. Hush then proceeds to attempt to hack the Bat-Wraith, which forces Bruce to use the self-destruct. Terry subsequently attempts to trap Hush by posing as current Bat-foe Mad Stan, only to be defeated and exposed by Hush's use of Shriek's Technology. Hush unmasks himself, appearing to be a bitter and enraged Dick Grayson, He spares Bruce and Terry so that they can witness him in action saving Gotham. Bruce then directs the new Catwoman on how to treat Terry's injuries. The new Hush is subsequently revealed as a clone of Grayson. Waller, determined to provide the world with a Batman, cloned Grayson based on DNA and memory readings taken after Grayson's last fight as Nightwing. Waller believed that Grayson was more stable than Bruce and would therefore be easier to control. Doctor Reid also reveals herself to be the granddaughter of the original Hush (Nora Elliot before her marriage), seeking to atone for her grandfather's sins. Hush sends a transmission to the Batcave, revealing that he has taken control of the Bat-Wraiths. He threatens to destroy Gotham in order to save it by setting off bombs along a fault line and triggering a new earthquake. The wounded Terry is aided by Dick Grayson despite Bruce and Terry's concerns about his old injuries. They are joined by Catwoman who is seeking revenge for Hush's attack on her. The three track down Hush, but are unable to convince him that he is merely a clone. The group is only able to defeat him when Bruce temporarily overrides Hush's control of the Bat-Wraiths. Hush is then accidentally impaled and killed on a Bat-Wraith when Terry throws him off of the real Grayson, the clone being impaled by a Wraith coming out of a pit that it had previously fallen into before both fall back into the pit. Terry grimly notes that the lack of a body means they can only think the clone is dead rather than being sure of it. Waller later had Reid taking the blames for Hush's actions in order to continue on her work.
In an alternate timeline where Batman saved his parents while travelling back in time, Bruce Wayne and Tommy Elliott were still friends as adults.
In the alternate timeline of the Flashpoint event, Hush is subsequently killed by Batman.
Batman: Arkham Knight
Hush appears in Batman: Arkham Knight comic. As it turns out, Hush's new face was part of a plan that had taken the Arkham Knight years to put into action. Thinking that he was truly Bruce Wayne, Ratcatcher tried to kill him but was disappointed when Hush's bandages came off and his scars were revealed. Two Gotham cops tried to help Hush also believing that he was Wayne, but were overwhelmed by Ratcatcher's rats. Arkham Knight, who'd been following Hush, saved him from Ratcatcher and both of them escaped before Batman showed up. In a safehouse, Hush was patched up and given a sample of Clayface mud that would heal his surgery scars on the proviso that he wouldn't reveal his new face again until the plan was ready.
- Real Name: Thomas "Tommy" Elliot
- Occupation: Surgeon
- Base of Operations: Gotham City
- Eyes: Brown
- Hair: Reddish-brown
- Height: 6 ft 3 in
- Weight: 225 lb
- First Appearance: Batman #609 (January, 2003)
- Great physical strength, augmented by a hatred of Bruce Wayne
- World-class surgeon, capable of extraordinary medical breakthroughs
- Master of disguise
- Determined to destroy Bruce Wayne
DC Universe Online
Hush appears in DC Universe Online, voiced by J. Shannon Weaver.
Hush is a playable character in Lego Batman: The Videogame'. He can be unlocked after rescuing all the civilian hostages throughout the game. He uses two handguns as weapons, and can build objects and shoot faster than other characters. When left idle, he raises his hand to his mouth and makes a "hush" expression. He is also unlockable through the "Villain Hunt" minigame in the Nintendo DS version.
Hush appears in Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, voiced by Nolan North. He appears as a boss fight and an unlockable playable character.
Nolan North reprises his role as Hush in Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham.
Batman: Arkham series
- See: Hush (Arkhamverse)
Hush made an appearance in the videogame Batman: Arkham City during a side mission; he was another serial killer who has been killing people inside Arkham City by cutting off their faces in order to graft a replica of Bruce Wayne's face onto his own. He returns in a side activity in the 2015 sequel Batman: Arkham Knight
Hush was originally going to be featured in a planned DTV set on the animated series The Batman, along with that universe's versions of Riddler, Catwoman, Joker, Clayface, Mr. Freeze and Penguin. The project was later scrapped by DC and WB. There is some sketch art of Hush in Legions of Gotham. Hush was also going to be introduced in the episode "Rumors", written by Joseph Kuhr. DC didn't like the idea, and the villain Rumor (voiced by Ron Perlman) was created in his place.
A young Tommy Elliot appears in the Fox television show Gotham, which acts as an origin series to characters appearing in the Batman franchise. He appears in the eighth episode of season 1 titled "The Mask" as a classmate and enemy of Bruce Wayne.
When Bruce Wayne returns to his private school on the urging of his butler and guardian Alfred, he is approached by Tommy Elliot and a friend of Tommy's. Although Tommy acts well meaning at first, he takes a sick facination in the recent murders of Bruce Wayne's parents Thomas and Martha Wayne and begins to ask details, which causes Bruce to leave in disgust, much to Tommy's amusement. Later on in the day Tommy mocks Bruce's mother, causing the pair of them to get into a fight although Tommy gains the upper hand as he uses his friends to back him up. When Alfred learns of the attack and Tommy disrespecting Martha's memory, he decides to teach Bruce to stand up for himself. He takes Bruce to Tommy's residence, where he gives Bruce his father's watch. Bruce wraps the watch round his knuckles and punches Tommy repeatedly in the face, managing to bring him down. Bruce and Alfred then leave together to have pizza, leaving Tommy on the doorstep bleeding and sore.
This depiction differs from how Hush is normally portrayed in the comics and other media. Although still disturbed, he does act like Bruce Wayne's friend and they were childhood friends, whereas in the series he is outright hostile towards Bruce and appears to have a dislike for him.
Hush appears in Batman Unlimited: Mech vs. Mutants, voiced by Dave B. Mitchell. He appears as an inmate at Arkham Asylum who claims he doesn't belong there and needs to be released to an uncaring Penguin, who just walks by him.
Both Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill has teased about doing a Hush animated movie.