Arkham Asylum is an infamous name in the comic book community, and now that comic characters are making their way to the big screen, even the average person will have heard of the place. For those of you who have absolutely no idea what Arkham Asylum is anyway, it's one of the quintessential locations in Batman's universe. He is so closely associated with the asylum that mention of it in any graphic novel set in DC's Gotham is practically expected.
Arkham itself is known for housing the criminally insane, the kind of insane that only Gotham can produce. And even though the place is notorious, there are still a few secrets about it that not even the most ardent fan of Batman will know off the top of their head. Read on if you want to know more facts and details about Arkham than you wanted to.
20 It's Been Rebuilt Within Wayne Manor
Most know of Wayne Manor as the permanent home of billionaire Bruce Wayne aka Batman. However, after Arkham Asylum collapsed into ruin, Wayne allowed the facility to be rebuilt using his family's ancestral home. It was called Arkham Manor, and any access to Batman's Batcave was sealed up before the place was constructed.
19 They Can Legally Detain Anyone For Indefinite Periods Of Time
The asylum has to put up with a lot. Arkham is meant to hold criminals like the Joker for crying out loud. Still, certain rules regarding the facility allow them to legally detain patients for indefinite periods of time. It all depends on what the doctors think of the person's condition.
18 Its Full Name
The average person knows about Arkham Asylum. However, not many know about the asylum's full name. Its full name is the Elizabeth Arkham Asylum for the Criminally Insane. It is named after the asylum's original creator's mother. Old Amadeus Arkham sure knew how to commemorate his mom.
17 Its History With Exorcisms
Arkham hasn't had a spotless record when it comes to both inmates and past residents. A man who used to live in Arkham named Jason Blood was known for performing exorcisms on the premises. That information can't be good for some of the more superstitious patients.
16 Batman Stores Batcaves In Arkham
Batcaves are a dime a dozen these days. Batman builds them everywhere in case of an emergency. He likes having access to his Bat-gadgets close by. The original Arkham Asylum had a nifty little Batcave located underneath the facilities. It's almost as if Batman knew that trouble would always go down at Arkham.
15 The Most Trustworthy Staff Member There
Unfortunately, not many members of Arkham's staff are trustworthy people. A lot of them are corrupt or crazy, which makes for interesting plots in the comics. Batman's most trusted ally at the asylum is a security guard named Aaron Cash. This guy has the toughest job in the world, and he still manages to be a sane pillar of support for Batman at Arkham.
14 Arkham's Creator
The man who originally created Arkham Asylum was called Amadeus Arkham. Aside from his rather cumbersome name, this feat is what Amadeus was most known for. In the video game Batman: Arkham Asylum, the player can find voice recordings from Amadeus telling them of the man's past.
13 Arkham's Eventual Madness
What, did you think the guy who created Arkham Asylum would have a happy ending? Nope! The man eventually went crazy and was committed to his own asylum. He killed a patient he had been treating, a lunatic who had murdered Amadeus' wife and daughter. After that, you can't really keep running an asylum for the criminally insane.
12 Arkham's Descendant Destroyed It
Just as Wayne Manor passed on to Bruce, Arkham Asylum passed on to Amadeus' descendant, Jeremiah. Jeremiah Arkham ended up destroying the edifice in order to rebuild it with more modern designs in mind. He took security at Arkham just a tad more seriously than previous directors.
11 Plastic Man Spent Some Time On The Inside
Even heroes can go a bit crazy! The hero known as Plastic Man has spent some time in Arkham Asylum. This happened in the non-canonical miniseries by Frank Miller, The Dark Knight Strikes Again. The zany super hero found himself committed to Arkham, but he seemed to enjoy his time there.
10 Its H.P. Lovecraft Inspiration
Batman writer Dennis O'Neil must have had a love for H.P. Lovecraft's work. Arkham Asylum takes its name from Lovecraft's fictional town of Arkham. It is a fitting source of inspiration, given all the crazy, grotesque, and horrific things that have gone on within Arkham Asylum's walls.
9 Another Director Gone Crazy
Arkham Asylum just attracts the crazy it holds. At one point, a man named Achilles Milo took control of the asylum with the intent of turning Batman insane with some chemical he had concocted for that express purpose. The other patients turned against Milo, injected him with his own chemicals, and Milo went mad and was committed...to Arkham.
8 Bane Destroyed It Too
Not only has Bane destroyed Batman's spine, the massive DC villain has also demolished Arkham Asylum. Along with a group of other, anti-Batman conspirators, Bane succeeds in exploding Arkham from the inside out, eradicating the building from the surface of Gotham.
7 Some Villains Can Keep Their Costumes On
Certain DC villains get special allowances during their time inside Arkham Asylum. Some, though not all, are allowed to wear their costumes while they are patients. Instead of a straitjacket, these fellows get to cavort around in their favored villainous outfits. The asylum believes it helps them study the patients' true mental condition.
6 It Used To Be A Mansion
Arkham Asylum was built on some pretty swanky foundations. The asylum used to be known as Arkham Mansion, and it was the ancestral home of Amadeus Arkham and his family. Once he converted it to an asylum, Amadeus gave inmates the chance to experience life inside a mansion.
5 Batman's Villains Have Customized Rooms
Many of Batman's villains have powerful gimmicks that prevent them from being imprisoned in a regular jail. Arkham Asylum has had to modify its holding cells in order to properly contain these villains. You can't exactly confine Clayface to a room if there's any sort of drain in there because he'll just slither his way down it.
4 It Was Rebuilt On Mercey Island
After Arkham Asylum was destroyed (and it has been destroyed several times), one of the places it was relocated to was Mercey Island. Mercey Island is north of Gotham City, and it is the home of the Mercey Mansion. Jeremiah Arkham, the then director of the asylum, decided to swap out Arkham Mansion for Mercey Mansion after the Asylum got destroyed.
3 It First Appeared In Comics In 1974
Arkham Asylum has been in Batman comics for quite a while. It first appeared in comic books in 1974. Batman #258 showcased the asylum for the first time ever in the form of the Arkham Hospital. That one appearance kick-started a string of Arkham cameos, until it eventually became a staple location in Batman's stories.
2 Most Of Its Budget Goes To Security
Funnily/Sadly enough, the majority of Arkham Asylum's budget does not go into health care for patients. Instead, most of the budget is diverted to the asylum's security. While this is a terrible state of affairs for any suffering patient, you can't exactly blame Arkham's administration. They have to treat people like the Joker.
1 Its Metaphoric Revolving Door
Only the truest of true comic book fans will understand Arkham's metaphoric revolving door. Police commissioner Jim Gordon has said it himself multiple times. Despite having an army of security guards, no other criminal institution has such prevalent cases of escapees than Arkham. It is as if the facility has a revolving door patients can slip in and out of whenever they want.