New episode of Batwoman, new character from the comics. Unfortunately, in Arrive Alive, we found out Ryan isn’t exactly good at keeping her secret identity, and now we have two Crows knowing about her: one is Sophie Moore, who will most likely become a precious ally, the other is Russell Tavaroff… who will probably be not as friendly. Portrayed by Jesse Hutch, Tavaroff is introduced as a “shoot first, ask later” kind of cop, and that will probably factor in his attitude towards the Scarlet Knight. In the comics, Tavaroff isn’t indeed such a good guy, and he’s never been on the side of the angels to begin with. Let’s see together.

Born in Gotham City, Russell Tavaroff was born with a rare condition known as synesthesia, that affected his brain and “mixed up” his senses: since he was a child, Russell could smell sounds, see the colors of perfumes, taste words. When he started going to school, this illness only made him weird to the other kids’ eyes, and he ended up being constantly alone… when he was lucky. Kids were cruel, and a scrawny boy who muttered to himself in French and claimed that he could taste his own words when he spoke them, was the perfect target for any bully. Lacking any self-confidence, Russ tried to disappear, avoided eye contact, but only made
himself look weak to other people’s eyes, and bullying worsened as he grew up. His father kept telling him that the other kids bullied him because they were envious of how smart he was, but Russ never fully believed it. As he started attending Sternwood, he finally was able to make one friend: Luke Fox, a kind and popular guy who took him under his protective wing. Luke, however, refused to defend him from bullies: he told Russ that he wouldn’t have always been around to protect him, and that he had to learn to take care of himself. Wanting to help his friend gain confidence, Luke took Russ to MMA class, where Master Torres tried his best to help the kid. That very night, some gang members from the 99%ers tried to rob Luke and Russell at gunpoint, but Luke reacted, beat them, and then fled with his friend… who was terrified, and was starting to realize that he would have never been like Luke, one who reacted before thinking, and who could get away with punching psychopaths in the subway.

The following days only confirmed this: bullies were relentless, Luke wouldn’t defend him, his dad wouldn’t move him to another school, teachers and principal wouldn’t punish the bullies… and when he tried to defend himself, Russ received a harsh beating, and was left all bloody and sour in the corridor. He was alone. Master Torres was right, life wasn’t fair, but apparently it was fair to everybody else but Russell: in that moment, he decided he would have made others feel what he felt, no matter how much time it would have taken. He broke with Luke, who now seemed to him just
another popular, privileged kid who couldn’t possibly understand what his life was like. He spent all his time in his room, or in the science lab: he wanted revenge, and to have it he acquired online a new Mexican drug, called Snakebite, a variant of Venom. He studied it, made some modifications, experimented on it… until he injected himself with it, becoming a gigantic brute with immense strength. First things first, he murdered Calvin Summers, the bully who had beaten him up, with a single punch, then he moved on with the rest of his plan: using the incoming storm as cover, he would have destroyed the entire school, wiping it from the map with bombs… with all the students and teachers inside. He was reached on the river shore by Luke, who tried to stop him: when also the GCPD arrived, Russell made it clear that he wouldn’t have surrendered, as in prison, when the drug wore off, he would have become a victim again. He tried to detonate the bombs, but Luke stole the detonator… and when he tripped, he accidentally set off the bombs Russ was still carrying, apparently killing him. Russ, however, survived, and in the following six years he hid, patching himself back together. When he came back, he was Menace: he took over Gotham underworld, and was ready to exact his revenge on Luke Fox, and on everyone else who had ever scorned him.

Russell Tavaroff is an incredibly smart young man, embittered and hardened by the constant bullying he’s been suffering since he was a child. As Menace, the constant exposure to Snakebite made him a giant with immense physical strength and a durability bordering with invulnerability, but the drug also eroded his mental health, making him violently insane. A madman with the brains of a genius and the brawn of a titan, Menace has been a victim all his life, but now it is payback time: he has a right to revenge, a right to make people feel how miserable and helpless he’s been feeling, and nobody will take that right away from him.

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RelatedA new episode of Batman, a new character from the comics. Unfortunately, we learn in Arrive Alive that Ryan isn’t very good at keeping his identity a secret, and now two funnels know about them: one is Sophie Moore, who will likely be a valuable ally; the other is Russell Tavaroff… who probably won’t be so friendly. Tavaroff, signed by Jesse Hatch, is portrayed as someone who shoots first and asks questions later, which will likely influence his attitude toward Scarlet Knight. In the comics, Tavarov isn’t a very nice guy, and he’s never been on the side of the angels. Let’s look at it together.

Russell Tavarov was born in Gotham City with a rare condition called synesthesia. It affected his brain and stimulated his senses: From childhood, Russell could smell sounds, see the colors of smells, and taste words. When he first started school, this disease just made him weird to the other kids, and he was constantly alone if he was lucky. Children were violent, and the skinny boy who mumbled in French and claimed he could taste his own words as he spoke them was the perfect target for a bully. Because he had no self-confidence, Russ tried to disappear, avoid eye contact but appear weak to others, and the bullying got worse as he got older. His father kept telling him that the other kids bullied him because they were jealous of his intelligence, but Russ never believed him. When he started at Sternwood, he finally made a friend: Luke Fox, the nice, popular boy who took him under his wing. Luke, however, refused to protect him from the bullies: He told the Russians that he would not always be there to protect him and that he needed to learn to take care of himself. To help his friend gain confidence, Luke took Russ to an MMA class where Master Torres did his best to help the little guy. That same night, members of the 99% gang tried to rob Luke and Russell at gunpoint, but Luke reacted, beat them up, and then ran off with his friend, who began to realize with shock that he would never be like Luke, who reacted before thinking, and got away with beating up psychos on the subway.

The next few days only confirmed this: The bullies were relentless, Luke didn’t fight back, his father didn’t transfer him to another school, the teachers and principal didn’t punish the bullies…. and when he tried to fight back, Russ was brutally beaten and left bleeding and pissing in the hallway. He was alone. Master Torres was right, life wasn’t fair, but apparently it was for everyone but Russell: In that moment, he decided that he would let others feel what he felt, no matter how long it took. He separated himself from Luke, who now seemed to him just another popular and privileged child who couldn’t understand what his life was like. He spent all his time in his room or in his science lab: He wanted revenge, and to get it he bought on the internet a new Mexican drug called Snakebite, a variant of poison. He studied it, made some adjustments, experimented with it… until he injected it into himself and became a giant beast of awesome power. He first killed Calvin Summers, the bully who had beaten him up, with a punch and then moved on to the others: He would use the coming storm as cover to destroy the entire school and wipe it off the map with bombs with all the students and teachers in it. On the bank of the river, he was approached by Luke, who tried to stop him: When the SCPD also arrived, Russell made it clear that he would not give up because he would be harassed again in prison if the drugs stopped working. He tried to set off the bombs, but Luke stole the detonator. and when he tripped, he accidentally detonated the bombs Russ was still carrying, apparently killing him. Russ survived, however, and for the next six years he hid and patched things up. When he came back, he was the threat: He had taken control of the underworld of Gotham and was ready to take revenge on Luke Fox and all those who had despised him.

Russell Tavarov is an incredibly intelligent young man, embittered and hardened by the constant bullying he has endured since childhood. As Menace, the continued ingestion of Snakebite has made him a giant with tremendous physical strength and resistance bordering on invulnerability, but the drug has also undermined his mind and driven him to violent madness. A madman with the mind of a genius and the muscles of a titan. Menace has been a victim his whole life, but now it’s time for revenge: He has the right to take revenge, the right to make people miserable and helpless, and no one will take that away from him now.

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