|Full Name||Michael Lane|
|Occupation||Police Officer (formerly)
|Base of Operations||Gotham City|
|Affiliations||Gotham City Police Department (formerly); Aaron Cash;
The Order of St. Dumas; Batman
|Height||6' 2" (1.88 m)|
|Weight||210 lbs (95 kg)|
|Voice Actor||Khary Payton|
|First Appearance||Batman: Sword of Azrael (October, 1992)|
Years ago, Michael Lane was part of a program to create the ultimate crime fighter. Instead, it turned him into an insane criminal. Thwarted by Batman, Michael confessed his sins to a priest of the religious sect, The Order of St. Dumas. They recruited Michael to fight evil as their Azrael, who wore the mystical Suit of Sorrows and wielded the Sword of Sin. Azrael appeared in the Side Mission: Watcher in the Wings in Arkham City, and the Most Wanted Mission: Heir to the Cowl in Arkham Knight.
Before Arkham Asylum Incident
Michael Lane came from a normal Gotham family, having played football in his high school days.
In later years, Michael joined the GCPD as one of their officers. Feeling the need to do better at helping others and uphold the law, Michael entered a secret program, which aimed to craft the ultimate crime fighter. Unfortunately, the testing caused a major imbalance in his mind, driving Michael insane and causing him to become a criminal instead.
Stopped by Batman, Michael went to a church to cleanse his soul by confessing to all the sins he has committed. Unbeknownst to him, the priest belonged to the secret religious sect known as the Order of St. Dumas. Michael was then recruited to be their champion of justice - Azrael. Given the Suit of Sorrows to enhance his strength, Michael was then used by the Order to keep an eye on Batman, another savior to Gotham; they believed that not killing criminals was yet another sin. He was given the mission of watching the Dark Knight for years, with the order to learn all his methods and be ready to earn his trust in order to kill him, thus allowing the Order to kill all criminals in Gotham without any interference.
The following information is currently considered non-canon and is not part of the main Batman: Arkham series timeline.
Aaron Cash, as a member of Lieutenant James Gordon's inner circle, was aware of the existence of the Order of Saint Dumas and their use of Azrael, an assassin who wore mystical armor. Batman once wore this armor, but he abandoned it before its dark influence changed him.
Cash's partner in the GCPD was Michael Lane and shortly after Cash had first heard of the Order, he and Lane started to investigate a case in which several young children had been kidnapped. An anonymous tip led the pair to where the kids were being held, but with them was Azrael. Lane, possibly under some mystical influence, opened fire on Azrael, and apparently killed him. After Cash had secured the children, he returned to see Lane standing over the burning body of Azrael. Other officers investigated the incident, but neither Azrael's body nor Lane's spent bullets were found, only the corpse of a man who had died from a stab wound (evidence later proved that this man was the kidnapper). After Lane was questioned over Cash's report, in which Cash assumed that Lane had destroyed the evidence, Lane was forced to take leave from the force. Cash met Lane to talk about what had happened, and Lane appeared not to care. Lane just asked Cash to not talk about it any more in return for his resignation. Cash seemed not to notice the emblem of the Order of Saint Dumas emblazoned on Lane's breast.
After several years, Cash was working at Arkham Asylum when he received a letter in Lane's handwriting. It read: "The body is a vessel. It must be burned to purge its evil. Only then will it be pure."
(Non-canon information ends here.)
Watcher In The Wings
When Bruce Wayne was thrown into Arkham City, Azrael watched him outside the gate and disappeared from a building. Batman encountered Azrael many times throughout his "incarceration" in Arkham City, where he gave cryptic statements before he disappeared and left ambiguous signs. Once all the symbols were collected, they formed a map which lead Batman to the Church and Medical Center. At the church, Azrael revealed that he had been sent to observe Batman, and believed that he was a warrior that was foretold by an ancient prophecy. Azrael revealed that he was sent by the Order of St. Dumas to deliver a prophecy to Batman. He told how the city would burn, and that Batman was the "warrior" who would save Gotham City, but would fall in the process. Batman remained skeptical of Azrael's prophecy and claimed that he did not believe in fairy tales. But Azrael held firm in his belief, and told Batman that they would meet again as he departed Arkham City.
Several civilians were taking refuge in the Church Medical Center in Arkham City when the henchmen of several super-villains, who believed the site to contain Titan, tried to force their way in. Bane broke down the door, but Azrael was waiting and managed to incapacitate him, which saved the civilians inside. Azrael and Aaron Cash, who was also trying to protect the civilians, fought together and Azrael referred to Cash as 'rookie', which lead to Cash suspecting Azrael's true identity. Afterward, Batman and Azrael were seen perched on the Church's steeple together.
Before Arkham Knight Incident
Azrael helped get some of the victims of Calendar Man's poisoning plot to hospitals. He said that "the Order of Saint Dumas has Gotham under its protection."
Heir To The Cowl
Azrael realized it was time to become the next protector of Gotham. He signaled Batman by creating a burning bat symbol in Kingston. Azrael then told Batman that he deserved to be his rightful successor, if ever Batman should perish, and informed him that he would follow Batman's code not to kill, and handed his sword to him in the process. Not knowing what the future held for him, Batman decided to test Azrael by letting him fight several simulations of enemies. Batman secretly used these to study Azrael, whose fighting style had been eerily similar to that of Batman's, by letting Alfred study the simulations.Azrael eventually proved himself worthy to Batman. However, the latter opted to wait until he said so, which prompted Azrael to tell him that Gotham needed him now. As Azrael departed, Alfred informed Batman that he had discovered Azrael's identity as Michael Lane, as well as an irregularity in his physiology. At the Batcomputer in Gotham's Clock Tower, Batman found a microprocessor surgically implanted in Azrael's brain, that was attached to the temporal lobe. Upon viewing Azrael's memories, Batman recognized the Order's symbols from Arkham City and suspected that his memories were tampered with, and were used to modify his behavior unconsciously. Using the Batcomputer to find all the symbols embedded in the memories, Batman discovered a subliminal message that revealed that Azrael's true mission was to gain Batman's trust and kill him, for Batman had kept him from being the rightful protector of Gotham, which the Order believed needed to be willing and relentless.
If Azrael decided to kill Batman, he would be knocked out and imprisoned in the GCPD Lockup by Batman.
If Azrael came to his senses, he either broke his sword or left it on its display and made amends with Batman before he vowed that the Order would pay for what they had done to him and he left the Clock Tower.
Azrael, by definition, is a very complex character. Most of this stem from his personal feelings of hatred towards criminals and desire to make the world a better place but this is often convoluted due to his feelings of guilt and regret. The methods of training to achieve such goals, however, have left Azrael rather unstable as Cash states during his time as a police officer he went too far and often became too violent, seriously injuring or killing suspects until he became a criminal (perhaps viewing it as a more effective method of justice). When confronted by Batman, he attempts to attone for his crimes by addressing religion and is preyed on by the Order of Saint Dumas who remoulded Michael Lane, shedding his former life and dedicating life, body and soul to the Order.
Unbeknownst to Azrael, the Order was in actuality influencing his way of thinking with their religion and the Suit of Souls. They have manipulated him into believing that he is a "tool of God" whereas he was simply being controlled to carry out their so-called "divine justice" as a powerhead for the Order. He obviously cares about the wellbeing of innocents as he rescued hostages from Bane in Arkham City but his sense of justice and right and wrong have become warped under the Order's influence as he views people who spare criminals deserve an equal level of righteous wrath. He truly believes it as his destiny to take the name of Batman and defend Gotham after his death and becomes impatient and angry if he feels this is being denied to him. Azrael presents himself as a mysterious messenger, having a strong belief in metaphysical prospects such as prophecies or the Gates of Hell and relaying such messages cryptically, earning them a chance to prove their worth to him and his cause. He does not overestimate his importance and understands that he is merely a soldier and the Order is something of greater importance.
The rest of Azrael's personality is rather determinant to what option the player picks in the Clock Tower. If he chooses to strike down Batman, embracing the Order completely. He continues to arrogantly claim that the chaos happening in Gotham was because of his unwillingness to kill criminals and that he was more deserving to defend the city than he ever was. He obviously hates most of his fellow inmates, threatening to kill every single one of them but has more of a rivalry rather than outright loathing for Deacon Blackfire, presumably respecting a fellow "man of God". However, if he choose to break the sword and spare Batman, he would defect from the Order completely and return to his true identity before vowing to make those who controlled him pay.
Despite accepting Azrael completely and claiming that "Michael Lane is dead", he still shows traits of the man he used to be. Such as referring to Aaron Cash as "rookie" in Arkham City (due to Cash and Lane being partners beforehand and the same thing he nicknamed himself).
Batman's Database Profile
Real Name: Michael Lane
- Near-Superhuman Condition: Through rigorous training & dieting regimes, Michael Lane's bodily functions at the maximum limit of human condition; meaning that his natural capabilities are near-superhuman.
- Near-Superhuman Strength: He is stronger than average humans even though his capabilities are not classified as 'superhuman'. He is strong enough to lift roughly 750 lbs. He can easily overpower most thugs & engage batman in hand-to-hand combat for a brief amount of time. His strength is similar to members of the Batman Family, but he was seemingly not strong enough to overpower or counter Batman's strength in the event of trying to kill him with a sword.
- Near-Superhuman Speed: He is faster than average humans; even though this ability is not classified as 'superhuman'. He was able to keep up with Batman's quick attacks with relative ease, though Batman's reflexes were much more advanced.
- Near-Superhuman Agility: He possess agility that is equal to the Batman family members.
- Near-Superhuman Durability: He has the power to have denser and tougher bones/muscles than normal humans; even though this power is not classified as 'superhuman'. He is able to take hits from Batman's seemingly superhuman strength with relative ease.
- Near-Superhuman Senses: He has honed his senses to their upmost limits.
- Peak Human Stamina: His highly developed musculature generate less fatigue toxins than the musculature of most other humans, enabling him to gain greater endurance.
- Accelerated Metabolism: His naturally-accelerated metabolism heals injuries/wounds much more rapidly & much more completely than normal members of the human race. He ages slower than normal members of The human race, though not to a superhuman degree. He can live up to 130-150 years.
- The Suit of Sorrows Mystically-Powered Exoskeleton
- Superhuman Strength: With this mystical suit, he is able to have strength to engage in hand-to-hand combat with the likes of Killer Croc, Deathstroke, Batman or Nightwing. However, despite the suit, Batman was able to overpower and subdue him rather quickly in the event of the latter attempting to kill him with his sword.
- Superhuman Speed: With this mystical suit, he surpasses the Dark Knight's movement speed & reflexes itself. Despite the suit, Batman was able to stop his sword strike when he tried to kill him.
- Superhuman Durability: With this mystical suit, he is able to withstand hits from the likes of Militia Brutes, Combat Experts & other superhumans. He is also impervious to ballistic attacks.
- Superhuman Healing Factor: With this mystical suit, he is able to heal and recover faster than normally possible.
- The Sword of Sin burns with the souls which are not pure.
- Prone to fits of insanity & increased aggression.
- Rigorous Military and police training making him a strong combatant.
In Batman: Arkham Knight, Azrael was briefly playable in Story Mode during the Most Wanted Mission: "Heir to the Cowl". After the October/November update, Azrael was also playable in the Challenge maps.
In both Combat and Predator Mode, Azrael played almost exactly like Batman. That was explained in-game as a by-product of his years of watching the Dark Knight. However, when Azrael uses the explosive gel, it will be in a form of a cross symbol instead of a bat symbol.
Despite not having a cape, Azrael could still glide. His main difference when compared to Batman was that he has less gadgets. He also had separate challenges in Predator Mode, which often were slightly more challenging than Batman's as they often focused on confronting the enemies directly over Batman's stealth.
- "Are you the one the prophecies spoke of?"
- "I have been watching you, Batman. To see if you are ready."
- "We have been watching you for a long time, Batman."
- "The moment is close. The truth will soon be shown."
- "I knew you would find me."
- "We have been given many names but you will come to know me as Azrael, loyal servant to the Order of St. Dumas."
- "I bring a message. Dark days are coming, Batman. The prophecy is coming true. You are the warrior who will close the gates of hell. You are the one who will save this day and in doing so events will occur that you cannot stop. From the ashes of Arkham, the fires will rage and Gotham will burn. And you, you will burn too."
- "Believe what you will. The message has been delivered. We will meet again."
- "I trust you have not forgotten me, Batman."
- "Dark days are here, Batman. The prophecy has come true. From the ashes of Arkham City, the fires are raging and Gotham is burning."
- "I can see that same fire in your eyes. Before this night is through, that fire will consume you. Gotham will need a new savior, a new guardian, a new Batman."
- "You cannot carry this burden forever. I have studied you for a long time."
- "You have a code, you will not kill."
- "Then neither shall I."
- "The Order has foreseen it. The time has come to pass the mantle to another warrior... to me."
- "As you wish."
- "I am ready for another challenge."
- "No matter how difficult the test, I will prevail."
- "Challenge me again, Batman. I am ready."
- "Be prepared for my victory when I return."
- "I am ready to face your final challenge."
- "There is no decision to make, Batman. I am ready now!"
- "Every moment you waste Gotham falls deeper in the abyss. Make your decision fast, or she will be lost forever."
- "He won't!"
- "Lane is dead. I am Azrael, knight to the Order of St. Dumas!"
- "Liar! You stand in the way of true justice!"
- "No...NO! I know who I am. I know what I am doing."
- "I thought myself the instrument of God, not the tool of Man!" (Break the Sword)
- "I do no one's bidding but God's. The Order must answer for what they have done to me." (Leave the Clock Tower)
- "The Order have existed for centuries, they have more right to this city than you ever will."
- "They know what is required to defeat the forces of evil."
- "And where has your code gotten you? You fail this city with every breath you take. If you want this to end, you will have to kill me."
- "Then our fight continues, Batman. Until one of us dies."
- "Make the most of this victory."
- "Your time is over, Batman. Gotham's evil has flourished under your reign. The wicked have prospered and the innocent condemned. A higher power is called for. Divine justice will be wrought upon us all!"
- "Your pride blinds you to the truth, Batman. That I am Gotham's new protector!"
- "Your fate is sealed. I will escape these bars and fulfill my mission to end you."
- "I am the instrument of God's vengeance. He hath bent me as a bow and unsheathed his sword. No one can escape his wrath."
- "Unlike you I am prepared to do what is necessary, to kill the forces of evil that seek to destroy this city."
- "Your weakness had allowed the wicked to prosper. I am what is needed to enact divine justice and cleanse Gotham."
- "Your intellect is no match for the mind of the Lord. You are nothing but a worm burning in the sun." (Riddler)
- "I am God's representative here, Deacon. Not you!" (Deacon Blackfire)
- "Defiler of flesh, you shall be punished!" (Professor Pyg)
- "Gotham's streets will be washed clean with the blood of the evil-doer!" (Penguin)
- "The Lord is a consuming fire and you will perish in his power!" (Firefly)
- "There is no justice but God's justice, no law but God's law!" (Two-Face)
- "You kill for money, old man. I kill for God!" (Deathstroke)
Batman: Arkham City
Batman: Arkham Knight
- At the beginning of Arkham City, while playing as Bruce Wayne, Azrael could be seen on a rooftop nearby, watching Bruce as he was incarcerated into Arkham City. That could imply that Azrael was aware that Bruce Wayne was Batman, which could explain why he never got involved.
- Azrael did not seem surprised in Arkham Knight when Batman's identity was revealed. This may be because Azrael can be seen watching Bruce Wayne at the beginning of Arkham City meaning that Azrael is aware of Batman's identity.
- If arrested, Azrael will be missing the ribbons on his shoulders; there is no explanation.
- The reason Azrael doesn't have an Evidence case is because the Sword of Sin was kept by Batman. He lacked the engraver from Arkham City.
- Azrael is the only super hero that is not a playable character in Arkham City.
- Azrael's Suit of Sorrows granted him the strength and reflexes of everyone who wore it before him. This numbered in hundreds and included the likes of Batman, at least in the comics. Despite his suit's capabilities, Batman defeated him with relative ease, even when the former had his back turned to Azrael, which could mean that the suit is not truly mystical in the game's continuity.
- In Arkham City, Azrael will catch Batarangs thrown to him, which would give you the Catch! achievement in Arkham City.
- Inside the Church Medical Center, there was an image of a white Azrael on a window.
- If you looked closely at his symbol outside the Church, some of the words would say ("Well thank you ...ie to tell you the truth it's a sacrifice. I was close to give up many times and nearly broke up with Amanda over it as well. I ...ate that in each. I would take ... as holiday when our production and activity levels would be high.")
- If you looked closely at the church wall right next to the symbol, one could make out the outlining of Scarecrow. This subtly implies who will be responsible for the prophecy to occur 1 year later.
- Close inspection of the other side of the church the final symbol was on, would reveal a stained glass window that showed what appears to be a white version of Azrael.
- Azrael's prophecy referred to the events of Arkham City and foreshadowed the events of Arkham Knight. The "gates of Hell" referred to Arkham City, "this day" referred to Ra's al Ghul's plan, "events will occur" referred to Scarecrow's return, "the Ashes of Arkham" referred to the Arkham Knight, "fires will rage" referred to the Fear Gas that Scarecrow has, "Gotham will burn" referred to Gotham being completely abandoned because of the threat of the Fear Gas, and "you will burn too" referred to either Batman's supposed death, or the revelation of his identity to the world, leading to the Knightfall Protocol.
- Azrael's side mission is the only side mission included on the main game that has multiple outcomes.
- In the comics, the original Azrael, Jean-Paul Valley, was in fact trained by Batman to be his replacement in case of an emergency and donned the cowl for a time while Bruce Wayne was recovering after he had his spine broken by Bane during the events of the Knightfall Storyline. Azrael's appearance and side mission also foreshadowed the Knightfall Protocol if completed before the end of the main story.
- The name Azrael is taken from the Angel of Death.
- Azrael had several gadgets that Batman used, but it was unknown how he aquired them. The Freeze Blast was an example.
- Azrael and Batgirl are the only characters in Arkham Knight to never have extra costumes.
- In Knight, the chainmail he wears allows players to see through his character model.
- If Azrael spares Batman, he will state he is a soldier of God, not the Order's tool.