- "Ivy. My name was Ivy..."
- —Ivy Pepper's first words after being reborn.[src]
Ivy "Pamela" Pepper is the daughter of the late Mario and Alice Pepper. She became an orphan when her father was shot by Harvey Bullock in defense of James Gordon's life, causing her mother to commit suicide. After saving Oswald Cobblepot's life and nursing him back to health, she became his right hand woman in the criminal underworld filling the void left after the betrayal of Edward Nygma. However, after feeling like she wasn't being taken seriously, Ivy took some potions that altered her appearance and gifted her with poisonous powers. She has used her new abilities and knowledge of plant-life to become an extremely dangerous eco-terrorist.
Becoming an orphan
We first see Ivy when she answers the door to detectives Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock. Jim and Harvey are investigating Mario in relation to his possible involvement in the killings of Thomas and Martha Wayne. Ivy is visibly scared when she answered the door, and tells Gordon that her father is mean. Mario comes to the door and allows the detectives in. Ivy strokes her plants while Mario is questioned. When the two detectives state they wish to search the apartment for evidence, Mario makes a run for it by escaping out the window. He is subsequently shot dead by Bullock after attempting to kill Gordon with a knife. What appeared to be Martha Wayne's necklace is recovered, which leads to Mario being framed for the murders, closing the Wayne murder case. Despite his abusiveness, Ivy and her mother resent the police for Mario's death. Afterward, Gordon begins to suspect Mario isn't the killer, and returns to the Pepper apartment where Ivy angrily refers to the police as "bastards". During this visit Gordon is informed by Alice that despite Mario being a violent person, he never killed anyone.
Ivy becomes orphaned when her mother commits suicide following the death of her father. She is taken into care and fostered in which her new parents rename her Pamela. She eventually runs away from them, choosing to live on the streets.
Life on the streets
- "Some give you visions. Some give you energy. Some help you to sleep. I've cultivated over a dozen kinds."
- —Ivy Pepper to Bruce Wayne[src]
Ivy falls sick and is found sleeping in a box in the rain by Selina. Selina takes her to Barbara Kean's penthouse as Barbara is gone and Gordon has moved out. Ivy answers the phone when Barbara calls, and when she asks about Gordon Ivy lies saying that she is a friend of him. Believing that the girl on the other end is a lover of Gordon's, Barbara angrily hangs up the phone, much to the amusement of Ivy.
Ivy encounters Bruce and his guardian Alfred Pennyworth as they search the streets for Selina. Bruce requests Ivy to send a message to Selina for her, which she agrees to for a payment, which Bruce orders Alfred to do.
Ivy and Selina are later discovered by Barbara, and after overcoming her own surprise, Barbara eventually sits with the two in the living room. Ivy and Selina later have outfits modeled by Barbara, while they judge them.
While waiting for Selina at the pigeon coop where Bridgit Pike feeds them, Bruce thought Selina was returning only to encounter Ivy who was surprised that Bruce is living at Wayne Manor again. This causes Bruce to suspect that Selina Kyle hasn't returned from Arkham Asylum yet.
Six months later, Ivy questioned Selina about the type of people she was being involved with. Selina told her that they were scary people and won't let her come along for her own good. Selina orders Ivy to look after the pigeon coop while she is gone, and departs leaving Ivy on her own. Just thereafter. Ivy is approached by what appears to be Bruce Wayne. However, he acts weird and questions Ivy about Selina. Believing this boy is Bruce, she asks him what has happened to him (due to his unkempt appearance and long hair). When the confused boy asks that if she knows him, she says she knows Bruce Wayne, leading to the boy to forcefully grab her demanding who he is. Terrified, Ivy shakes him off and makes a run for it. She arrives at a location where Selina is hanging out and discovers she is afflicted with a resurrected Fish Mooney who has gathered the escapees from the research facility Indian Hill to create a new incarnation of her gang. Nancy brings Ivy to Fish who wants to know who else Ivy has told about them. Selina tries to defuse the situation by saying Ivy is with her and doesn't know anything or has told anyone, but Ivy causes more harm than good by threatening to tell on Fish. Fish orders Marv to use his ability of aging people to death to kill Ivy. Ivy manages to get away from Nancy and runs off where she is pursued. She comes across a hole in the ground leading to a water drain. Selina tries to help her, but is held back. Marv sneaks up on Ivy and briefly grabs her before she falls down the hole and is swept away by the water's current, much to the distress of Selina.
An unspecified amount of time later, Ivy emerges from the Gotham River. Upon making her way to a truck, Ivy sees her reflection in the mirror realizing that she is now a fully grown woman and has outgrown her clothes. When a construction worker named Nick comes across the barefoot girl, he invites Ivy home to help her out. At Nick's house, Ivy drinks some water and then give the rest on a dying plant. While stating her history and how she "grew", Ivy was displeased that Nick threw out one of his plants. Later that night, Ivy changes into the clothes of Nick's ex-wife and had knocked Nick out using the plant he threw in the trash.
Selina mentioned to Bruce and Gordon about what happened to Ivy and states that she is still "missing".
Some time later, she attended The Sirens Club party to celebrate Oswald Cobblepot winning the election for mayor. She grabbed Selina by the hand when she caught her stealing and laughed at the fact that Selina did not recognize her. As Ivy Pepper didn't want to reveal her identity yet, she told Selina to continue taking wallets. Selina did get suspicious about her. Ivy later witnessed the fight at the club between Butch and Cobblepot and began smiling when things became violent.
Ivy later seduces a rich man named Anton where she uses a special perfume to control him into opening the vault. Upon knocking out Anton with a vase, Ivy enter the vault where she steals a green necklace. Anton recovers and tries to choke Ivy only for her to break free and get away as he asked if she is with "them". Ivy later reveals herself to Selina at her squat while she was feeding her cats. Bruce was later called in as Selina told him that she should've suspected that Marv did that to her. Ivy apologizes for not telling Selina that she is alive. Selina is told by Ivy that she has a way to get people to give her what she want. Ivy then comes clean stating that she had stolen from a rich man. Bruce breaks up the conversation stating that he hears something. The three of them start making a run from their attackers led by Luka Volk. Selina, Bruce, and Ivy go on the run as Ivy claims that claimed it. Bruce offers to buy the necklace from Ivy for a reward. Ivy accompanies Bruce and Selina to Anton's house and finds him dead. The three of them find a hidden key in the necklace. Bruce suggests to Selina and Ivy that they retreat to his house. At Wayne Manor, Bruce tells Ivy and Selina that he will have Alfred make up beds for both of them. When Ivy states that she doesn't want to come between Selina and her boyfriend, Selina states that she is not his girlfriend.
Ivy uses her perfume to manipulate Alfred into giving her the security code to Wayne Manor. She is later captured by Luka, Jacob, and Dmitry of the Whisper Gang to use as leverage to get the key back from Bruce and Selina. She is released when Bruce gives them the key and learns that it is used to unlock a weapon Luka believes can help destroy the Court of Owls. Bruce then agrees to help them secure the second key they require.
Allying with Oswald Cobblepot
- "You know, plants make better friends than most people and some of them help save your life."
- —Ivy Pepper to Oswald Cobblepot[src]
After Mayor Oswald Cobblepot was shot and thrown off a pier into the harbour by his former friend Edward Nygma, Ivy retrieved him and brought him back to her plant filled home, unknown to the citizens of Gotham, the police and even Nygma himself who believed he had truly killed his old ally. After Cobblepot awoke from his sleep Ivy informed him that he had been out for hours. Cobblepot informs her that he has someone to kill.
She later shows Oswald around her newfound home, an abandoned mansion estate outside of Gotham, throughout which she has cultivated a lush indoor garden in the dead of winter. She agrees to contact Gabe on Oswald’s request and they meet him together in her solarium. She expresses an instant mistrust and warns Oswald that she ought to use her pheromone perfume to ascertain Gabe’s loyalty. Oswald ignores her advice and mocks her assumption of friendship, calling her a ‘freak’, after which she storms out and leaves them alone. Her suspicion is proven correct when Gabe takes advantage of the opportunity to knock Oswald unconscious. She remains hidden on the grounds of the estate, however, to spy on Gabe’s arriving henchmen. She is eventually caught and tied up alongside Oswald where she dismisses his suggestion that she’s in any actual danger. After being asked to explain her confidence, she angrily declares that she could save them both if only Oswald would agree to show her some kindness. He agrees to these terms and she coyly invites a henchman’s attention. She entices him to lean in close enough to catch the scent of her perfume. With him under her control, she gleefully orders him to kill the remaining henchmen and spare Gabe for Oswald. She later holds Gabe at gunpoint while Oswald questions him. She makes good on her promise to force Gabe to admit his true loyalties, who admits he’s never respected Oswald and thinks of him also as a ‘freak’. Oswald murders Gabe with one of Ivy’s garden forks. They bury Gabe and the rest of the henchmen in her flower bed, where vines are seen twining preternaturally in and around Gabe’s open wounds. When Oswald apologizes for his behavior, she admits that people’s opinion of her can upset her deeply and they bond over this similarity. In an effort to console him she offers to share what she knows of the Indian Hill monsters, and suggests they band together to amass a whole ‘army of freaks’.
Ivy helps Oswald track down Victor Fries, who is still angry at Oswald for running him out of Gotham. Oswald offers to help Victor reverse his condition, so Victor agrees to help Oswald. They then look for Bridget, who is working in a welding factory. After Ivy hear how Bridget's boss talks to her, she convinces her to embrace what she has become, and Bridget goes with them. They hole up in Oswald's mansion, and Ivy breaks up a fight between Victor and Bridget, saying they are on the same team and calling them a family. Ivy sees Nygma on the news, and Oswald tells the group to rest up as tomorrow is going to be a busy day.
Ivy goes to see Tabitha Galavan, looking for Selina. Tabitha tells Ivy to try Gotham General, saying she heard Selina fell out of a window. Ivy finds Selina in the ICU, and a doctor tells her she can't be in there. Ivy used her perfume to make the doctor tell her about Selina's condition. The doctor believes Selina won't come out of her coma, and a furious Ivy tells her to leave. Ivy tells Selina that the doctor's don't know her like Ivy knows her and vows to help her. Ivy filled the room with various plants, and Selina eventually woke up. Ivy hugged her, but Selina started to get up and told Ivy she had to go to Wayne Manor to kill someone.
The frozen Riddler was later brought to the Van Dahl Manor, where he was stored in a special tank that prevented the ice from melting. Cobblepot then showed Ivy plans and sketches with potential logos for his new nightclub, "The Iceberg Lounge", with him explaining that the name of the club was not only meant to be an allusion to his nickname "Penguin", but also the planned centerpiece that he wanted to display there as a trophy, the frozen Riddler. They would then look at Nygma in his icy prison, Oswald not able to hide a smile at the satisfying sight.
Betraying the Penguin
- "Enjoy your party, Penguin. You little twerp."
- —Ivy Pepper before turning off the Iceberg Lounge's energy sluppy[src]
While being interviewed by reporters at the Iceberg Lounge months later, Oswald ordered Ivy to reveal the iced Riddler to the group, remarking that their readers will find it interesting. When a journalist recognized the frozen man as Edward Nygma, Penguin came up with the excuse that Nygma had a very rare brain disease and had to be frozen until a cure is found. He moved on claiming that Ed begged him in his final lucid moments to not hide him away, but to rather put him out with the people. However, Jim Gordon then showed up at the press conference to lead Merton and his gang to Oswald and sarcastically asked if Edward knew he was being frozen as he suspected that Oswald probably froze him out of malice. Penguin responded by offering Gordon to view the medical record from Nygma's doctor, but Jim rejected, knowing they most likely were fake or forced. When Oswald was ready for the opening night of the Iceberg Lounge, he used the remaining time to talk to the frozen Riddler, ignoring that he would neither hear nor respond to it. Cobblepot asked Ed if he remembered when he accused Penguin of being a slave of his emotions, then telling him that they no longer will, since he banished those feelings, allowing him to rise to the top of Gotham's underworld once again. However, Oswald began to question the coast of this action, asking his greatest opponent who of both was really frozen. Ivy Pepper, who sneaked from behind Cobblepot then said that Riddler definitely was the frozen one, but Penguin ordered her to go somewhere else as soon as he noticed her.
The next day, Ivy entered an asian shop selling strange potions and spices. As soon as the owner noticed her, he angrily ordered her to leave again, since she never paid for the last stuff he gave her. He then recalled Ivy's perfume which she made him smell once before and called it a cheap trick. However, Ivy told the man that she was done with perfumes and is here for the good stuff, but he denied the existence of such things in his shop and said that he is closing up. Ivy disregarded his orders and asked where he stores his ancient, mystical potions made by shamans all over the world. Shocked by her knowledge, he asked her who told her about that, though she continued her monologue, shouting that she is done playing nice and needs a change, a big one. Furthermore, she explained that she needs strength and power, before grabbing the shop owner and forcing him to smell her perfume. Under the influence of the drug, he revealed that he stores the potions in his safe under the regrister. Since the safe was already opened, Ivy did not need a combination and quickly took two potions out before asking the man which ones make her stronger. The owner responded by warning her that it is dangerous stuff and too powerful for her, since it can get in her blood and her DNA. Thereupon, she pushed him towards an electrical box, causing it to strike sparks and commented on the effects the potions could have as 'good'. Ivy then moved on and began drinking all the mystical potions, ignoring the warnings of the shop owner who escaped from the room. Immediately after, Ivy began to sigh in pain and her face started morphing.
Months later, Ivy was discovered by a few junkies who entered the now abandoned Asian potions shop. Once the leader explained his companions that the shop was an old Chinese man's place filled with rare drugs and similar stuff, but the place is empty now since the owner split town, they found her in a cocoon-like state laying on the ground in the middle of ivy plants, where after one of the junkies wanted to touch it, Ivy broke out of her organic prison, slipped off the remains of the cocoon and immediately stood up. However, the mutations she went through the last months left obvious traces behind, with Ivy now having an altered face and possessing new powers, allowing her to use plants as a weapon. As soon as she faced the junkies, the gang's leader began flirting with her and asked for her name. She responded by slowly telling him that her name was Ivy. The junkie then moved on to talk to her asking her what a nice girl like her is doing in such a place and tried to touch her hair. However, she quickly grabbed the man's arm causing him to scream in pain before pressing her hand on his mouth leading to him falling on the ground. Due to her new abilities, plants quickly began to grow in the dead man's face. Impressed by her own forces, Ivy stared at her hand, calling her powers 'a hell of a thing' before turning to the other two junkies who instantly escaped the abandoned shop in fear. Ivy then walked over the corpse to reach a nearby mirror hanging on a wall, allowing her to take a first look at her new appearance. As she couldn't believe what she looked like, she just commented on it as 'extraordinary'.
She later appeared at the Narrows after a failed attempt to kill Lee Thompkins in an apartment where she walked out of the building smiling as she continued to walk down the streets of Gotham. During her walk she noticed a few plants dying and saw a couple going into a taxi cab and hide from their sight as the taxi drove away. Later she broke down the door of their home and decided to make it her temporary home while they are away such as wearing the wife's sequin dress, taking and eating a tub of ice cream from the refrigerator, placing her dirty feet on their coffee table and watching some bad news on Gotham, then change the channel to a commercial ad for the Sirens club, where she sees Barbara, Tabitha and even Selina advertise for free drinks for women and decides to go there. After she arrives at the club, the Sirens question who she is, while the men are immediately drawn to her, which results in a fight. Tabitha breaks it up, but requests that Ivy left, to which she remarks that Tabitha is being rude, but has always been. She leaves and waves to Selina, who then realizes who she is.
Selina follows Ivy to the apartment she broke into and Ivy reveals herself. She demonstrates her new powers by scratching Selina’s hand and infecting her with her poison. Ivy then gives Selina the antidote to the poison her body creates and Selina drinks it before the poison kills her. Scared by this new careless version of Ivy she proclaims “you’ve gone crazy”. Insulted, Ivy declairs that she has been reborn and will never be underestimated or ignored again. She takes Selina’s hand again and Invites her to “make Gotham our bitch”.
Ivy and Selina later go to a house belonging to a man named Roland Charles and his family. When Ivy rings the doorbell Roland’s wife answers and Ivy places her under her control with a new version of her hypnotic perfume. Mrs. Charles leads them into the dining room where Roland is having dinner with their two children, Ivy uses her perfume to place them all under her control. She explains to Selina that until the perfume wears off they are her devoted servants, she then makes them freeze in position. Selina (under the impression they are just there to rob the place) leaves the room. Alone, Ivy reveals to Roland that she knows what he does for a living, “torturing” plants in the name of science for Wayne enterprises. In retribution for his crimes against nature, Ivy scratches him, infecting him with her Toxin and causing vines to sprout out of his mouth. Selina enters and is horrified to see what Ivy has done. Ivy grabs Roland’s briefcase and leaves the room, Selina follows her, leaving Roland’s family helpless to do anything as they watch him die.
According to Selina, Ivy is creepy, as nobody would even talk to her, as her only friend is Selina Kyle, when she meets Bruce Wayne, she does not blame his parents death for causing the death of her father, and takes interest in the former, notes that Bruce is cute.
Ivy has a sense of humor; she answers the phone when Barbara calls, and when she asks about Jim Gordon, Ivy lies saying that she is a friend of his, this causes Barbara to (incorrectly) believing that the girl on the other end is a lover of Jim's, Barbara angrily hangs up the phone, Ivy obviously meant no harm.
Ivy is loyal and cares about friends, as she questioned Selina about the type of people she was being involved with. However, this changes when Ivy is aged into adulthood by Marv, as she takes pleasure in Selina not recognizing her as Ivy during an encounter at The Sirens nightclub, and even mockingly tells Selina to run along and "keep stealing wallets".
Despite her growth spurt into adulthood, Ivy still showed signs of a child-like nature and immaturity, mainly due to not having a natural progression growing up. When she teams up with Oswald Cobblepot to create themselves a gang of "freaks", she sees the union as a big happy family. Despite this, she dislikes being talked down to and disrespected, as she aspires to be taken seriously in the criminal underworld.
On a more comical note, Ivy was shown to be very gluttonous, since she ate all of Selina's food and then asked for more food. Even before that, she complained a lot to Selina about "starving".
Ivy's personality has taken a darker turn after her mutation. Selina appears to be the only human she still has some kind of affection for as her love of plants made her put their "lives" above human beings. She is willing to kill anyone who she views as dangerous to plants and believes in giving painful deaths to the people who murder her "little green friends".
After her mutation, Ivy seems to jump to conclusions easily and judge people very fast when it involves plants. When she learned of Project M that Wayne Enterprises was conducting with plants, she immdiately assumed it was an experiement to develop new poison; she went straight for Bruce, as he was the owner of the company.
Ivy is initially a little girl with long, knitted ginger hair and green eyes. Her normal attire is generally an oversized stripped shirt and ratty skirt. As the series progresses she grows slightly taller.
After being aged into adulthood Ivy’s appearance changes drastically. She is tall with a slender, curveous figure and long ginger hair that is slightly curled. Her attire generally consists of fashionable women’s attire.
When Ivy emerges from her cacoon her appearance is sharper. Her facial features are more angled and her nails turn green as a result of the poison she generates. Ivy’s posture loses most of its childish habits and she now moves with more elegance and grace.
Powers and abilities
- Mutated Physiology: Upon consuming extremely potent mutagenic alchemical compounds, Ivy has gained superhuman powers.
- Poisonous biology: Ivy now possesses the ability to poison others at will by simply scratching them, causing the poison to enter the victim's bloodstream. She claims that it is her “essence”.
- Plant generation: Once the poison has entered a person's bloodstream, it creates plants that will consume the victim from the inside.
- Hallucination inducement: Those infected by Ivy's poison will experience hallucinations before being killed.
- Poisonous biology: Ivy now possesses the ability to poison others at will by simply scratching them, causing the poison to enter the victim's bloodstream. She claims that it is her “essence”.
- Botanist: Ivy possesses an advanced knowledge of plant life, identifying and growing different breeds.
- Toxicologist: By extracting materials from her plants, she is able to create drugs or perfumes that serve as powerful hallucinogenics and hypnotic agents. Soon after coming out of the "cocoon" once her mutation was complete, she managed to create an antidote to the poison from her body.
- Hypnotism: When people smell a perfume she has crafted, they fall under her hypnotic control.
- Hypnotic perfume: Ivy uses a special perfume that she wears that allows her to control anyone that smells it.
- Lazarus Water: Ivy is currently in the possession of water from the Lazarus Pit which she stole from with the help of a mind-controlled Lucius Fox.
- Mutant flowers: When combining the Lazarus water with her mutated blood, it creates flowers in a matter of seconds. When people are exposed to the spores from these flowers, it kills them and causes the same kinds of flowers grow out of their bodies.
- Ivy is a vegan as seen when she told Selina not to use butter; a reference to her DC comic counterpart, Poison Ivy.
- In A Dark Knight: They Who Hide Behind Masks, Ivy is seen asking to join Selina and Tabitha, whom have formed their version of the Gotham City Sirens alongside Barbara, which is a reference to the DC Comics group, the Gotham City Sirens, of which Selina as her alter ego Catwoman was a part of, alongside Ivy in her Poision Ivy ego, and Harley Quinn, whose own elements had been added towards Barbara.
- Ivy is the first character on the show to be potrayed by three different actresses.
- Even though the character was initially renamed for the show, she is based on the villainess Pamela Isley a.k.a. Poison Ivy. The character was created by artist Sheldon Moldoff and writer Robert Kanigher and she was introduced in Batman #181 (June 1966). Creator Robert Kanigher modeled Poison Ivy after Bettie Page, giving her the same haircut and Southern drawl as Page. Poison Ivy is depicted as an eco-terrorist and one of Batman's more powerful foes, as she is one of the few to display anything close to superpowers. Poison Ivy was promoted after the rise of feminism pointed out the need for a greater number of more independent female villains in the series.