Some call her a villain. Some call her an eco-terrorist. Others call her beautiful. Poison Ivy will stop at nothing to make the world green, even if it means sacrificing humanity. If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about Gotham’s greenest villain (sorry Killer Croc), our comics library is here to help! Are you a '90s kid who grew up watching Ivy on Batman: The Animated Series? Perhaps you stanned Uma Thurman in 1997’s Batman and Robin? Or maybe you’re one of the many fans enjoying Lake Bell’s sarcastic take on Ivy in DC Universe’s Harley Quinn. In any case, we have the right comic for you! If you’ve ever wanted to dive deeper into the literature that inspired your favorite version of Poison Ivy, here’s where to start...
THE STORY: Batman encounters Ivy for the first time, in this flashback tale set early in the Dark Knight’s career. A new criminal named Poison Ivy is making a splash in Gotham, infecting the city’s elite with a poison that causes deadly mushrooms to grow on their bodies. When Bruce Wayne is infected, he must find a way to stop Ivy and save Gotham, before he succumbs to her deadly poison. Alan Grant and Brian Apthorp present a side of Ivy who embraces crime, the finer things in life, and her sexuality.
FOR FANS OF: Sultry and seductive women, body horror, and detective stories.
WHAT’S NEXT: Check out famed writer Neil Gaiman’s interpretation of Ivy’s origin in Secret Origins #36.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Batman: Shadow of the Bat Annual #3
BONUS: Watch the animated version of Poison Ivy battle Batman for the first time in the Batman: The Animated Series episode “Pretty Poison.”
THE STORY: Tired of life in Gotham, Ivy retires to a Caribbean island, which she remakes into her own tropical paradise. When an American company tests their latest weapons on the island, Ivy lashes out and hunts the men down for revenge. Writer John F. Moore and artist Brian Apthorp explore Ivy’s psyche, giving readers an intimate look at what makes Gotham’s greenest villain tick.
FOR FANS OF: International adventures, revenge stories, and unrequited love.
WHAT’S NEXT: Ivy returns to Gotham and battles Catwoman in 1998’s Catwoman #57.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Batman: Poison Ivy #1
BONUS: Poison Ivy attempts to live a normal suburban life in the Batman: The Animated Series episode “House & Garden” -- but not everything is as it seems.
THE STORY: Years ago, Pamela Isley pleaded with a logging company to stop cutting down trees, but her cries were ignored. Pamela was haunted by the screams she felt from the dying trees, and now that she has the power to get revenge, she's out for blood. Writer J.T. Krul and artist Guillem March show off Ivy’s deadly side, in this one-shot adventure that feels more like a slasher flick than a superhero comic.
FOR FANS OF: Horror stories, grisly murders, and tales of insanity.
WHAT’S NEXT: Ivy moves in with Catwoman and Harley Quinn, setting the stage for bad girl adventures in the Gotham City Sirens comic series.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Joker’s Asylum: Poison Ivy #1
THE STORY: The Justice League has fallen, and Ivy decides to make Gotham her own personal playground. As Ivy wanders through the city, she unleashes her powers on citizens who disrespect the environment, and those who try to dominate women. Ivy recalls her childhood, and how she ultimately got revenge on her abusive father. Derek Fridolfs and Javier Pina update Poison Ivy’s origin for DC's New 52 era, adding tragedy and pathos to one of Gotham’s greatest villains.
FOR FANS OF: Post-apocalyptic stories, villains in charge, and flashback stories.
WHAT’S NEXT: During DC’s New 52, Ivy joined the Birds of Prey. To find out how she fit in amongst the other heroes, check out 2011’s Birds of Prey #1-12.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Detective Comics #23.1
BONUS: Poison Ivy teams up with the Floronic Man to turn the planet green in the 2017 animated film Batman and Harley Quinn.
THE STORY: Pamela Isley begins a new research position at Gotham Botanical Gardens. Ivy’s research creates human-plant hybrids, giving Pamela a taste of motherhood. Things take a turn when one of Ivy’s colleagues is murdered, and she learns that her research is being exploited for evil purposes. Amy Chu and Clay Mann put Ivy in a more heroic role, as Gotham’s villainous vixen returns to her science roots and uncovers a criminal conspiracy.
FOR FANS OF: Mad science stories, motherhood, and Swamp Thing.
WHAT’S NEXT: Poison Ivy takes on the Penguin in 2012’s Detective Comics #14-15.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Poison Ivy: The Cycle of Life and Death #1-6
THE STORY: Poison Ivy unleashes her full power, taking mental control of everyone in the world except for Batman and Catwoman. With the entire world’s population at her feet, including the Justice League, it’s up to Catwoman to find a way to reach her friend’s heart, and convince Ivy to set everyone free. Writer Tom King and artist Mikel Janin present a story that will change the way you view Ivy forever, with a heartwarming ending that Harley/Ivy shippers will love.
FOR FANS OF: Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy shippers, Bat-Cat shippers, and world domination stories.
WHAT’S NEXT: Tom King continues to develop Harley and Ivy’s relationship in the 2018 limited series Heroes in Crisis.
WHERE TO FIND IT: 2018’s Batman #41-43
THE STORY: Travel back to the Silver Age and witness the beginning of Poison Ivy’s criminal career in her very first appearance. Ivy is out to prove that she’s the most dangerous criminal in town, and she quickly finds a way to wrap Batman around her finger. Can the Caped Crusader overcome his overwhelmed Bat-hormones to bring this villainous vixen to justice, or will Gotham become infected with Poison Ivy?
FOR FANS OF: Old school comics, campy superhero fun, and villainous vixens.
WHAT’S NEXT: Poison Ivy returns, and wraps Batman around her finger in Batman #183.
WHERE TO FIND IT: Batman #181
BONUS: If you ever wondered what it would have been like to see Poison Ivy on the Adam West Batman TV show, check out Batman ’66 #64-65.