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The Arkham Sessions: The Psychology of Stalking In ‘Batman: Mad As A Hatter’

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How far would you go to earn the affection of someone you love? Send them a roomful of gifts? Surprise them at their doorstep? Advance the science of neurotechnology to a whole new level by developing mind-controlling head accessories?

Through the practice of animal experimentation (of course), scientist Jervis Tetch has found a way to manipulate neuronal connections of brains in order to "control another creature's mind." But rather than use this new power to increase his wealth or destroy the Batman like most of Gotham's Rogues would do, Jervis decides to use mind control to manipulate his office assistant, Alice, into falling in love with him. As he heads further and further down the experimental rabbit hole, however, Jervis realizes more drastic measures are required to win Alice’s love.

Home invasion, kidnapping, and mind control take this episode of Batman: The Animated Series to a new level of creepy; writer Paul Dini ingeniously entertains the imagination of young viewers with Alice in Wonderland themes while also suggesting levels of subversion -- possessiveness, coercion, stalking -- that adult viewers find unshakably disturbing.

In this episode of The Arkham Sessions, we explore the delusions and dangers of obsessive, unrequited love as only personified by the Mad Hatter.

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“Batman” Arrested For Stalking Law & Order Actress

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Batman is certainly a very determined man, with a fixation on crimefighting that could fairly be described as full-on crazypants obsession, but I've never really seen him as a stalker -- unless of course he were stalking justice. But as the illustri

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