A helicopter flies though the Gotham sky and the people on board are packing heat. They are flying towards a place that has had a lot of bad luck as of late, Gotham State University.
A professor of the University Dr Long is being interviewed by Reporter Summer Gleeson. She asks if he knows why the University is having a bad time with robberies and vandalism. He doesn’t know but he believes if anything else happens the students will be too scared to turn up. Bruce Wayne meets them in an elevator. Dr Long went to University with Bruce’s father back in the day. The Doctor proceeds to tell Bruce that his father would be ashamed of how Bruce (the millionaire playboy) has turned out. After Summer and Dr Long leave Bruce notices the helicopter fly by.
In the University bank’s lobby a security guard is startled by an explosion. Three men arrive, two goons and a man dressed as a scarecrow. I wonder what his name is. The security guard tries to stop them but Scarecrow sprays him with a toxin. The guard starts screaming “get these spiders off me”. There are no spiders to be seen but in his mind he is covered in them. With the guard incapacitated Scarecrow and his goons are free to break into the vault. One explosion later they are in. Scarecrow instructs his men to take as much money as they want but they have to burn what they leave behind.
Batman arrives and takes a goon out in seconds. Scarecrow tries to spray Batman with some toxins but as usual he is prepared. Batman is already wearing a gas mask. The second goon jumps Batman, with The Bat distracted Scarecrow fires a tranquilizer dart into his neck. Batman starts to stumble and knocks a lit flare out of Scarecrows hand. This sets the vault on fire. As Batman collapses he rips a part of Scarecrow’s costume off. Before he escapes Scarecrow wonders what terror keeps Batman awake at night. Batman tries to pick himself up and get away from the fire but he is too weak. He sees a vision of his father in the flames. The vision tells Batman that he has failed him and disgraced the family name. At that point the sprinklers kick in and extinguish the flames. Two new security guards arrive and ask Batman what happened. They don’t believe his Scarecrow story until the original guard tells them it’s true. Detective Bullock arrives and gives Batman a hard time. Batman pushes Bullock away and disappears.
Scarecrow explains why he despises the University to his goons. He used to teach there as a professor of psychology who specialized in phobias. But due to his fear inducing experiments on people he was kicked out by Dr Long. It’s a simple story of revenge.
The Batcomputer analyses the rag that Batman had ripped off from Scarecrow’s costume. Batman is still feeling the effects of the tranquilizer dart and can hear his father’s voice. Bruce confides in Alfred and tells him about the visions. Alfred assures Bruce that his father would be proud of him because Alfred is proud of him. Awwwww.
At a fund raising gala for the university Scarecrow attacks. Everyone gets a big old dose of the toxin including Dr Long who fears his own mortality. Scarecrow and his goons take Dr Long and the money from the fundraiser away. Batman arrives but is attacked by everyone at the fundraiser; all they see is a giant bat and try to kill it. Batman manages to escape without hurting anyone. As he reaches the roof he sees a blimp gliding away. (What is it with Gotham City and blimps?) Batman grabs a pipe coming out of the blimp and starts to climb it. Scarecrow celebrates his victory and thinks Batman is dead. He thought wrong. Batman makes it to the top of the blimp and fights a goon. During the fight the goon’s gun goes off and destroys the blimp’s control panel in its cockpit and the blimp collides into a building. Batman tries to climb to safety but sees visions of his father calling him a disgrace. Thanks to Alfred’s pep talk earlier Batman manages to see through the vision and knows that it is not his father. Batman then says the immortal line “I am vengeance. I am the night. I am BATMAN.”
The vision disappears. Batman swings into the blimp’s cockpit but Scarecrow escapes in a glider. Batman picks up Dr Long and jumps out of the blimp before it blows up.
The Batcomputer informs Batman that the rag was manufactured by five corporations in the city. Batman cross references any employees who worked at the University with those corporations. The Batcomputer finds only one, a Johnathan Crane who owns Crane Chemicals. At Crane Chemicals Scarecrow takes off his mask and then notices two of his gas canisters are leaking toxin. He turn them off but it’s too late he is affected by the toxins and he sees a giant bat and is paralyzed with fear. The giant bat(man) delivers Scarecrow to Commissioner Gordon and Bullock.
Bruce leaves flowers at his parent’s grave. He knows they would both be proud of him and you know what so am I.