In 1928, Bruce Wayne returns to the city of Gotham twenty years after a mad man killed his parents out in the streets. He had investigated a failed expedition into the Arctic and finds everyone had gone insane, one of the members having been transformed into something unnatural. As Batman, he grows to find that whatever horrors there were lurking exist in Gotham. He must find the cause of this outbreak of horrors before the world comes to an end.
Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham is an Elseworld comic that reimagines Batman as the protagonist of a Cosmic Horror Story and is overall an Homage to the collective works of H. P. Lovecraft. It is written by Mike Mignola and Richard Pace, and illustrated by Troy Nixey and Dennis Janke.
This comic provides examples of:
- Adaptation Personality Change: Oliver Queen's mainstream counterpart — Green Arrow — is a wisecracking Jerk with a Heart of Gold based off of Robin Hood. Here he's a religious hero dressed like a 12th-century crusader who believes it is his destiny to kill Ra's al Ghul and end his devilry. He's also known for being a total joke compared to other heroes in the DC Universe, and this remains the case considering he's assassinated by Poison Ivy before he could even try to stop Ghul's Evil Plan.
- Adaptational Abomination: Being a Lovecraft-homage in Batman form, a lot of Batman's more outlandish rogue's gallery are reinterpreted as Eldritch Abominations or made into one through dark forces.
- Mister Freeze is portrayed as a man who was driven mad and transformed into an undead-being that freezes everything around him, obsessed with unleashing his dark master.
- While Pamela Isley was an eco-terrorist that gave herself Green Thumb powers in the mainstream DC-universe, here Poison Ivy was a potted plant turned into a Botanical Abomination by Ra's al Ghul.
- Ludvig Prinn was originally a necromancer who supposedly lived to be 500 years old, having authored his own evil spellbook. Here, he was a cultist who, after being imprisoned in the catacombs beneath Gotham, became a reptilian monster.
- His father having been cursed with immortality from the Testament of Ghul, Batman is revealed to be one. He's The Chosen One destined to thwart Ra's al Ghul's plan of summoning Iou-Sotha and permanently transforms into Man-Bat to accomplish this.
- Adaptational Villainy: Ra's al Ghul was a lot of things — cult-leader, killer, egomaniac — but his aspirations boiled down to a desire bring about a just world for humanity. This version is an Evil Sorcerer who's desire is to please his god, this thing capable of driving all of humanity to madness and destroying the world.
- Ascended Extra: The mainstream version of Ludvig Prinn was a minor character that only appeared in a single issue of Journey into Mystery. Here he was a hedge-wizard who found the Testament of Ghul and cursed the founders of Gotham with immortality, one of which was Thomas Wayne.
- The Chosen Wannabe: Oliver Queen believes he is the one destined to stop Ra's al Ghul, having trained himself and procured the arrows that had slain St. Sebastian to do it. He is then killed by Poison Ivy, Batman taking the arrows and finishing his mission for him.
- Composite Character:
- In the mainstream DC universe, Ludvig Prinn was D-list character, alchemist and necromancer who authored The Mysteries of the Worm. Here, he was a wizard who, in his attempts to have the founders of Gotham City join his cult, was imprisoned beneath the city. He subsisted on the fungus that grew in the catacombs and eventually transformed into a monstrous creature the serves Ra's al Ghul. The monster is described as being reptilian and has an appearance that evokes both Batman villain Killer Croc and Swamp Thing.
- This version of Man-Bat is an alternate form of Batman.
- Decomposite Character: Dr. Langstrom did not turn into Man-Bat in this version. That honor instead goes to Batman himself, who transforms into a bat creature when he fights Ra's al Ghul.
- Driven to Madness: Everyone who didn't die horribly from The Cobblepot Expedition ship wound up devolving into madness. Professor Cobblepot himself is seen walking around naked in the sub-zero temperatures, having become a part of a waddle of penguins, while Mister Freeze is transformed into a crazed undead, desperately trying to free the Monster in the Ice that did this to him.
- Eldritch Transformation:
- Mister Freeze was once an ordinary human on the Cobblepot Expedition. When they find Yib-Nogeroth frozen in an iceberg, it turns Freeze into an undead monster that gives off an aura that freezes everything around him. His ice-suit is used to keep the cold in, whereas his canon-counterpart had the opposite problem.
- Ra's al Ghul creates Poison Ivy to curse Harvey Dent. First it manifests as an ugly rash that spreads to the entire left-side of his body, only for it to grow more and more grotesque. By the time Batman finds him, his flesh had turned into a Meat Moss that makes up a portal to an Eldritch Location, what remains of Dent begging to be put out of his misery.
- Fusion Fic: While this is fundamentally a Batman story, some of the characters were deliberately made to be references to Lovecraft characters.
- Ra's al Ghul has a lot in common with the Mad Arab Abdul Alhazred. Both were Middle-Eastern sorcerers who wrote a Tome of Eldritch Lore after visiting an ancient city in the desert and were seen torn to pieces by an invisible monster in a marketplace.
- Noble Demon: This version of Etrigan was created for the express purpose of killing Iou-Sotha should it try to escape its imprisonment.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Oliver Queen plays the part of the Idle Rich man who wastes his money of frivolous vacations and spends his time hunting exotic animals. In reality, he spends all of his "vacation time" training his body and has been working to prevent The End of the World as We Know It.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Yib-Nogeroth turned Freeze into a monster so that it could provide a fragment of its essence so that Ra's al Ghul could unleash Iou-Sotha into the world. When Ra's al Ghul takes the essence, Freeze melts into a puddle.