This page is about the original comic book character. For other uses, see Mr. Freeze (Disambiguation)
Mr Freeze first appeared in Batman #121 (February, 1959) and was created by Bob Kane, David Wood and Sheldon Moldoff as "Mr Zero" and was considered a gimmick character. He was later renamed and popularized by the 1960s Batman television series, in which he was played by several actors.
Nearly 30 years later, a television adaptation of Batman revitalized him once again. Batman: The Animated Series retold Mr. Freeze's origin in "Heart of Ice", an episode by writer Paul Dini. The episode introduced his terminally ill, cryogenically frozen wife Nora, which explained his obsession with ice and need to build a criminal empire to raise research funds. This more complex, tragic character was enthusiastically accepted by fans, and has become the standard portrayal for the character in most forms of media, including the comic book series itself, which previously had the character casually killed off by the Joker. Freeze was resurrected in the comic after the episode aired.
The episode was seen as groundbreaking for a Saturday morning cartoon and helped set the tone for the rest of the series. This back story was also made canon in the comics and has been the character's official origin in almost every incarnation of Batman until New 52. Elements of this origin story were incorporated into the 1997 film Batman & Robin, in which he was portrayed by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Dr. Victor Fries (Pronounced "freeze") was an accomplished cryogenicist whose beloved wife Nora was stricken with a fatal degenerative disease. Fries placed her in suspended animation while searching for a way to cure her. But GothCorp's CEO Ferris Boyle stopped funding the research—and Nora's life—and pulled the plug, triggering an accident that transformed Fries' body into a cold-blooded form that must always be kept at subzero temperatures; at normal room temperature he will die.
Wielding a number of freezing weapons, he wears a protective cryogenic suit in his quest to somehow restore his wife to full health and avenge her fate—which he partly holds Batman responsible for.
When Victor Fries was a child he made a hobby of freezing animals in order to preserve them so they can continue to exist in the future. Worried by this behavior, his parents sent him to a strict boarding school where Victor felt outcast and became depressed. However, when he met and befriended a young woman named Nora, the two fell in love and later married. But their happiness was short-lived: Nora was diagnosed with a fatal disease, and Fries, sickened with sorrow, attempted to save her using cryogenic technology. However, the experiment went terribly wrong and Fries' equipment malfunctioned, consuming him and his lab in an explosion of ice.
Victor somehow survived, but now his body could only survive at sub-zero temperatures, and Nora's condition was now even more serious. In an effort to continue his wife's treatment, he constructed a suit which would now protect him in his altered state. Calling himself Mr. Zero, he began to rob several banks to get money. He was eventually thwarted by Batman and Robin, but struggled on. As Mr. Zero, he uses cryonic technology to create a gun, which fires a beam that freezes any target within its range.
After faking his death, Gotham City believed he was dead. During this time, Fries rearranged his costume and returned, calling himself Mr. Freeze. To this day he continues to fight Batman and Robin.
In Villains United #1, Freeze has frozen everyone inside a courtroom. While using a frozen man as a chair, he talks with the Calculator, who convinces him to join the Secret Society of Super Villains. During his time with the group, he fashions for Nyssa al Ghul a sub-zero machine in exchange for the use of her own Lazarus Pit. He attempts to restore Nora to life without waiting for the adjusting needed in the pool chemicals. However, she returns to life as the twisted Lazara, and escapes. She blames her husband for her plight, and estranges herself from him.
Although technically not insane, he is usually imprisoned in Arkham Asylum when apprehended by the Batman, as it is the only facility in Gotham that can accommodate his medical requirements for a refrigerated cell.
He appears in the Robin section of the No Man's Land crossover, as one of the villains competing for control of Gotham City's sewers. During this time he flash freezes the duo Tommy Mangles and Gearhead.
Mr. Freeze has joined with the Injustice League but was arrested after the villains attacked Green Arrow and Black Canary's wedding. Amanda Waller has the remaining members of the Injustice League taken away to a distant planet, Freeze included.
He appears in Justice League Adventures #12 along with several other cold based villains like Captain Cold, and Snowman. They attempted to take over an African nation, and were defeated by the Justice League.
Heart of Hush
Thomas Elliot once again returns to Gotham planning another attack against the Dark Knight, killing any criminals who threaten Bruce, but it was just a distraction. Hush invades Selina Kyle's house and removes her heart, then abandons her at the Sacred Heart Convalescent Home, trapped on life support. Batman is on his heels and is eventually captured, Elliot says that the equipment that keeps Selina alive, was created by Victor in exchange for money.
Freeze was the main villain in "The Battle for the Cowl" One Shot Commissioner Gordon.
Mr. Freeze created a compound used by the Court of Owls to revive their Talons. It was also revealed that Nora was not, in fact, his wife; Fries had never even met her but obsessed about curing her ever since she came into his division of Wayne Enterprises cryogenically frozen.
Powers and Abilities
Subzero Physiology: The accident caused Freeze to become genetically altered with a bizarre condition that has irreversibly frozen him to the bone, transforming him into a cold-blooded mutate that must always be kept below zero.
- Cold Adaptation: His altered biology caused his skin cells to become storage units for the cold to help his body chemistry to be comfortably chilled, allowing him to become both entirely immune and adapted to sub-freezing temperatures.
- Decelerated Aging: Extraordinary, his age progression has slowed drastically in a suspended animated state; some interpretations also suggest that the chemical he was soaked in was glycerol, a cryo-protectant he intended to use for cryopreservation.
- Thermokinesis: Because of Fries' extremely low body temperature, anything his skin comes into contact with will freeze.
- Toxic Immunity: His unique physiology makes him immune to most toxins, bacteria, and viruses.
Genius-Level Intellect: Victor has one weapon that is more powerful than his gun, suit and other cryotechnology: it’s his mind. A brilliant scientific genius with an incredible mind for invention, he is skilled in physics, engineering, genetics, computer science, chemistry, and medical science. His science and technology are even as advanced as Apokilips or Lex Luthor’s.
- Cryogenics: His childhood obsession with cryogenics has led him to become one of the most gifted cryogenicists in Gotham. Victor was also able to build a cryonic life support machine for Catwoman, whose heart was surgically removed by Hush, and was capable of inventing a wide variety of cryotechnology from Nora’s CC2000 cryochamber to his extensive array of cryogenic weapons and armor.
- Medical Science: Freeze is a remarkable medical scientist in his research on the pathology and neuroscience of Nora’s neurological illness. His specialization in cryonics has successfully proven his thesis on immortality through suspended animation; preserving his wife in a frozen state to delay her illness until a cure could be found is the best supporting example of his research.
- Multilingualism: He's able to speak English, German, Greek and Latin.
- Cryo-Suit: Superhuman Strength And Durability: Combined with his suit, his strength and durability are augmented to superhuman levels. Freeze’s suit protected him from a bomb attack by the Ventriloquist’s henchmen but the helmet of the armor was damaged by a sniper, causing the gases to leak outside due to the pressure. Freeze’s strength and durability increased further after receiving a more advanced cryogenic armor, which was less heavy then the previous one, and was capable of withstanding gunshots and explosives.
- Freeze Gun: A weapon able to create gusts of cold that approach absolute zero. The gun is also capable of creating a "cold field" and imprison their opponents in a cocoon of ice.
In Other Media
Batman and Robin
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger)
The Lego Batman Movie
Mr. Freeze makes a bunch of cameo appearances in the film alongside other Batman villains voiced by David Burrows. He rides a giant mech suit armed with an ice gun in the film and his appearance is modeled after the Arnold Schwarzenegger version of the character. He usually shouts "pew!" when he shoots his ice gun, which all the characters usually do in the film.
In the live-action series the character's name was Art Schivel, and his supervillian identity was changed from Mr. Zero to Mr. Freeze for the first time. The character was played by a different actor in three appearances, George Sanders, Otto Preminger and Eli Wallach.
The New Adventures of Batman
Mr. Freeze appears in The New Adventures of Batman episode "The Deep Freeze" voiced by Lennie Weinrib. This version is depicted as an alien that would die if exposed to any temperature hotter than -50 degrees Fahrenheit and that firearms from his planet are used as "freeze guns". Mr. Freeze also makes extensive use of technology such as making certain parts of his hideout "warm corridors" to accommodate his human underling Professor Frost.
DC Animated Universe
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (DC Animated Universe)
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (The Batman)
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
Mr. Freeze, in his Mr. Zero appearance, appears in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Legends of the Dark Mite." He, along with The Joker, Catwoman, The Riddler, Killer Moth, Mad Hatter, Kite Man, Two-Face, Penguin, Catman, Poison Ivy, and several other villains are shown briefly in Bat-Mite's imagination. Mr. Freeze himself later appears in "Chill of the Night!", with a design resembling the George Sanders depiction.
In the episode "Bold Beginnings" he captures Green Arrow, Aquaman, and Plastic Man who tried to stop his plot to freeze the world. Batman however frees them and together they take down his henchmen and knock out his freeze gun and he is arrested. In the episode "Crisis 23,000 miles Above Earth" he along with his fellow Batman rouges attend a roast for Batman. In this show he is voiced by John Dimaggio.
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (Young Justice)
- Main article: Victor Fries (Nathan Darrow)
Mr. Freeze appears in Batman: Vengeance as a boss due to targeting a scientist named "Isaac Evers, whom he blames for sending him a video-promoting Prometheon gas in order to spite him, unaware that the real culprit was the Joker, who planned to use Mr. Freeze's invasion of the lab as a distraction for him to steal large quantities of the gas. Michael Ansara reprises his role as Mr. Freeze.
LEGO Batman: The Videogame
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (Lego Batman: The Videogame)
Batman: Arkham series
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (Arkhamverse)
DC Universe Online
Mr. Freeze is voiced by Robert Kraft in DC Universe Online. In his base in the Gotham Mercy Hospital he plans to use stolen diamonds to power a machine that would freeze Gotham so he and his wife Nora could live together.
Batman: The Enemy Within
- Main article: Mr. Freeze (Telltale)
- Mister Terrific says that the technology created by Victor is at the same level as Apokolips or Lex Luthor's technology.
- In his first appearance, his name was Mr. Zero.
- For more than thirty years after his creation Mr. Freeze had little to no true back story, and was little more than a minor, gimmick super villain. When the character was introduced into the DC Animated Universe, he was given a new, sympathetic back story, introducing his wife, Nora Fries, and great moral complexity with the character's cold, stoic demeanor coupled with a barely restrained vindictive fury, much like Batman himself. Freeze was very popular with fans and the comics soon changed to include the new rendition with a swiftly resurrected Freeze, who was killed by the Joker at the time.
- ↑ Detective Comics #850