Blackbeard is a pirate-themed villain and foe of Batman. A gangster in disguise, he takes a yacht hostage until defeated by the Dark Knight.
A small-time crook and costumed gangleader known only as "Thatch" was named for his pirate theme as the infamous pirate "Blackbeard". This modern-day version of the infamous pirate recruited and led a gang of buccaneers to commit crimes in the waters of the Gotham Bay. Thatch and his men soon attacked and captured the Gotham Yacht Club's vessel, crashing the club's annual meeting of members and kidnapping the crew and holding them prisoner on his galleon. Blackbeard's plot was thwarted when Batman and Robin arrived to stop them. The Dynamic Duo rounded up the villain and his gang, and Blackbeard was taken into custody by the police.
Blackbeard has not appeared since, although another, similar, pirate-themed villain named Captain Stingaree would plague Batman for years afterward.
In the New 52's All-Star Batman series, Blackbeard was rebooted as a smuggler, arms-dealer, and modern-day pirate who operated out of Miami. Due to Batman, Thatch refused to do business with criminals from Gotham City (namely Hush) as he didn't want to risk the Batman getting involved in his operations.
He was later murdered by a (non-Batman) individual called "The Dark Knight", an evil clone of Alfred Pennyworth.
In other media
- Blackbeard was written into a premise for an episode of Batman: The Animated Series but was never animated. He appears only in the Screen Writer's Bible as follows.
- Ocean vessels are falling prey to robberies by "BLACKBEARD" and his band of modern day pirates. But when an entire ocean liner disappears, Bruce Wayne discreetly charters a crujise following the missing liner's course and finds himself in the Sargasso Sea's legendary graveyard of lost ships. Discovering that Blackbeard and his band have converted the liner into a hidden, half-submerged base, intending to increase their piracy, it's up to Batman to stop them.
- Blackbeard's name being Thatch is a reference to the real life Blackbeard, Captain Edward Thatch (also often spelled as 'Teach').
- In post-crisis, mainstream DC continuity it would be revealed that the historic Blackbeard was an alias of the immortal Vandal Savage.