Batman 3: The Scarred Knight
Villain : Victor Zsasz.
Why? Because stab-happy serial killer Zsasz had a pop-up cameo early on in Begins , and was revealed to be on the loose after escaping Arkham during the promo push for Dark Knight . Makes sense, in other words.
Showdown Scene: Since Zsasz likes to carve his murder tally on his own body, we'd like to see him get his ironic comeuppance for a mass slaughter by essentially being shredded alive by the Joker in a massive final act twist.
One notch per victim, multiplied by several hundred, resulting in Zsasz looking like a plate of pulled pork in the eeire glow of the Bat-Signal. Nice.
Batman 3: Bat-Hunt Begins
Villain : Gotham City Police Department.
Why? Because Dark Knight saw Gordon reluctantly agree to let Batman take the heat for Harvey Dent/Two-Face's killings, in order to minimise the evident impact of The Joker's actions on the soul of Gotham.
Gordon must now mount a city-wide Bat-hunt for appearance's sake, but something tells us it may develop into something real along the way...
Showdown Scene: Gordon finds himself trapped, before a crowd of onlookers, between Batman and a genuine villain. He must make a decision - get saved and expose his anti-Bat campaign as fake, or allow himself to be abducted by the bad guy..
Batman 3: The Dark Fight
Villain : Killer Croc.
Why? Well, it'd be faintly amusing, and there's definitely something to be said for mutated villains in general. Especially ones that used to be wrestlers.
Mind you, it's really hard to imagine such a necessarily CGI-tastic baddie popping in Nolan's grittily real-world Gotham without looking like a rubber chicken thrown onstage during a production of Waiting For Godot .
Showdown Scene: Oh God, we've just realised how Steve Irwin this could all end up looking. Because it would have to involve wrestling, wouldn't it? Which, frankly, just isn't distant enough from this for comfort.
Batman 3: The Black Knight
Villain: The Black Mask.
Why? Because he's a stone-cold awesome vilain (his mask was originally made from a slab of his mum's ebony coffin lid), and his story arc has reached a fascinating point.
We don't actually know the identity of the current Black Mask, but all indications suggest it's about to be revealed as someone close to Batman.
Showdown Scene: This incarnation of Black Mask is increasingly interested in the potential for drugs - recreational or enforced - as a way to exert control over allies and foes alike. Therefore, we imagine something of a meth lab manhunt climax: a plot strand more or less ripped from GTA: San Andreas , then.
Batman 3: The Lazarus Pit
Villain: Talia Al Ghul.
Why? Well, obviously there's the opportunity to shoehorn in some easy eye candy, but we'd never lower the tone enough to point this out. Cough.
She's in a perfect position to emerge seeking vengeance for her father's apparent train-smash demise in Begins , though, and there's some nice conflict potential offered by the number of times the DC universe has seen Batman saving/being saved by/ nearly boning her.
Showdown Scene: We'd like to imagine a scenario involving all three of the above, although that's gonna be tough to script at best. Any ideas? (Note: no '70s Bond buffoonery, ta.)
Batman 3: The Hat Trick
Villain: The Mad Hatter.
Why? Mostly because we've been thinking a lot about Tim Burton's new one, to be honest. Also, he appears in Dark Knight inspiration graphic classic Arkham Asylum.
He's actually a great character for the Nolan world, though: play down his cartoonish side, and you're left with a delusional schizophrenic who may or may not be a paedophile. Gritty enough?
Showdown Scene: Since the DC universe once introduced an imposter Mad Hatter while the real thing was locked up in Arkham, we'd like to see a classic 'which one do I kill?!' climax, with Batman forced to choose between destroying the actual villain or a misguided but ultimately innocent lookalike.
Batman 3: The Dark Deacon
Villain: Deacon Blackfire.
Why? Also a plausible Nolan baddie: an ageing cult leader, plucking an army of brainwashed homeless from the Gotham gutters. Dark, grimy and definitely doable - particularly if the plot was thickened with some creepy Heaven's Gate -type wackiness.
Showdown Scene: How about Blackfire orchestrating a mass suicide among his followers as a lure for Batman and his do-goodery? Should make for an intense, against-the-doomsday-clock finale...
Batman 3: Terror Forever
Why? The overtly socio-political and philosophical aspect of the character makes him a potentially very meaty one for the Nolan world.
Anarky is essentially a misguided maverick who believes that violence is a justifiable means of weakening the state. When a state is as corrupt as Gotham, where does Batman stand?
Showdown Scene: It'd be cool to see the Caped Crusader hamstrung by his own moral convictions here, even initially siding with Anarky, realising only too late that the latter's plans were far more destructive than previously suggested.
Perhaps some kind of United 93 -type climax...?
Batman 3: Strange Days
Villiain: Dr Hugo Strange.
Why? His monstrous creations could work if portrayed as the genuinely wretched results of a gene-splicing God wannabe, rather than as drooling supersized rage machines.
Plus, Strange has known Batman longer than both Catwoman and The Joker, so he's well placed to cause some serious grief.
Showdown Scene: A cat-and-mouse chase amid the arcane machinery and bubbling toxins of Strange's nauseating genetics lab.
The demented doctor's twisted drones initially thwart our hero's progress, but ultimately turn on their creator after seeing themselves by the light of the Bat-Signal.
Batman 3: The Dark Knight 2
Why? We've already seen a fair amount of old multi-mug since the Nolan reboot, and he was perfectly positioned to develop as an A-grade antagonist at the end of Dark Knight .
Well, except for the whole dying thing - we'll need a way out of that conceptual cul-de-sac. Police cover-up, anyone?
Showdown Scene: A scenario that tugs hard on what remains of Harvey Dent's heartstrings - we like the idea of Two-Face finally accepting The Joker's responsibility for Rachel Dawes dying.
Seeking revenge on the incarcerated prankster, he goes after Harley Quinn: Batman must decide which outcome represents the lesser of two evils.
Batman 3: The Curse Of The Man-Bat
Why? It'd be fun to see Batman fighting what is effectively a mutated version of himself, especially if it turned out that reversing the human/animal sides of their personas also meant reversing their respective skills and weaknesses to some extent.
Then again, it'd also be massively unrealistic, and not very Nolan.
Showdown Scene: Sonar would definitely play a role here: Dr Kirk Langstrom became Man-Bat while trying to create human sonar, so some kind of electro-jamming might work well against him in a boss fight.
We invisage his steering systems going haywire, and Man-Bat skewering himself on Gotham's pointiest architectural feature.
Batman 3: The Plastic Menace
Villains: Professor Pyg.
Why? He's one of the creepiest villains Batman has ever faced in the comic books and graphic novels - a pig-masked extreme plastic surgeon, hell-bent on creating his semi-human army of aesthetically immaculate brain-drilled Dollatrons.
Which is essentially something Jeffrey Dahmer tried with a few of his victims, so...y'know, quite scary.
Showdown Scene: Like a less campy version of the Austin Powers 'fembot' scene, Batman finds himself surrounded by a ghoulish gang of carved-up, gender-reassigned humanoids.
Bats has to kick lots and lots of automatarse before carting Prof Pyg back to Arkham. Where he clearly belongs, the whackjob.
Batman 3: Gotham's Riddle
Villain: The Riddler.
Why? Because since Gary Oldman hinted at the likelihood of The Riddler being a key third film villain in some of his PR work for Dark Knight, we haven't been able to shake the idea completely.
It'd have to be a very different Riddler to Jim Carrey's cackling panto villain in Forever , mind.
Showdown Scene: A Saw -style puzzle from which Batman looks unlikely to emerge unscathed - not just some ludicrous Heath Robinson Death-o-Matic™, but an existential paradox in which the keys to his escape are buried under shocking revelations.
The Riddler needn't actually be present any more by this stage; in fact, it'd give things a bittersweet kick if he'd already been defeated or fled Gotham.
Batman 3: The Puppet Master
Villain: The Ventriloquist.
Why? Men with smaller wooden men on their knees are terrifying.
Especially when the smaller wooden man dresses as a 1920s mobster, is called 'Scarface', and commits sickening crimes on behalf of a larger, non-wooden man buried elbow-deep in his rear passage.
Sounds silly, but the Ventriloquist doesn't come from Batman's camp, sixties-era, but the gritty post-Burton '90s incarnation.
Showdown Scene: It would be cool if the ventriloquism theme turned out to be a wider metaphor - Batman discovers his villain is effectively just a puppet himself, being manipulated by a far shadier and more powerful string-puller...
Batman 3: Moth Man Returns
Villain: Killer Moth.
Why? Well, we've already considered the horror of having Killer Croc as a central bad 'un - we might as well go the whole nine yards, and tarry for a moment on the chilling notion of featuring Croc's even shitter zoological chum.
Also, he wore stripey Spandex and a rubbish orange cape, which we'd love to see Nolan attempting to 'reimagine'.
Showdown Scene: Something stupid involving an Icarus-style enfrazzlement on the filaments of a massive lightbulb? Crushed into a weird and inexplicable dust beneath the rolled-up newspaper of Commissioner Gordon's mighty SWAT units?
Oh God, who cares - this was a terrible call.
Batman 3: Penguin's Progress
Villain: The Penguin.
Why? Because it'd be a tricky scripting challenge for the brothers Nolan: can they feature The Penguin without making him look like a cartoonish freak, as he's usually portrayed?
It should be doable - less of the "Waugh! Waugh!" bobbins, more of the oily playboyisms and ricin-tipped umbrella terrorism - but they'd be on thin ice, and we'd be fascinated.
Showdown Scene: Batman chasing the former Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot (take that , Dickens) through a crowded subway station, a toxic brolly taking out innocent pedestrians left right and centre. Does our hero stop to deliver the antidote if it means losing his villainous quarry...?
Batman 3: The Dynamic Duel
Why? Because we don't really want to see The Boy Blunder flapping into this franchise at all, thank you very much. If he does, we'd rather the Nolans ditch the Dynamic Duo mythos and introduce him as an enemy - at least that'd give the future partnership fewer worryingly inappropriate undertones.
Showdown Scene: Some sort of plea bargain might explain things in less douchey terms than we're used to.
We don't see this as a get-out clause offered by Batman himself, though - it'd be better if he was forced to side with our hero as a double agent for a corrupt cop. Cue interview room beatings agogo. Huzzah!
Batman 3: Inglorious Batman
Why? Because superheroes always end up fighting Hitler at some point or other. Usually when the writers run out of ideas; just after cancellation of a faltering spin-off series featuring baffling and wildly unpopular villains like The Carpet Salesman, for example.
Showdown Scene: Nolan is smart enough to make this very much an allegorical Hitler figure; a racist, homophibic reject who believes in an all stick, no carrot approach to righting Gotham's sociological wrongs.
The showdown should happen at this twat's own mini-Nuremberg: a press conference crashed rather bloodily by Batman, whose intentions backfire - Gotham erupts into fascist riots, creating endless rogue factions as antagonists for Batman 4 .