[sticky entry] Sticky: How's My Driving

Jan. 7th, 2013 05:21 pm
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[ Contact Barsad's brain here. ]
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□ Name: Barsad
□ Journal: barsad.dreamwidth.org
□ Series: DC Nolanverse/The Dark Knight Rises
□ Canon point: mid-movie, during the occupation of Gotham
□ History: http://batman.wikia.com/wiki/Barsad

No explicit background is given in either the movie or the novelization besides that Barsad is Bane's most trusted lieutenant and has been with him for a number of years - longer than any of his others.

This leads to one or two reasonable conclusions: First, that Barsad was a member of the League of Shadows before Bane was excommunicated, and went with Bane. (Supporting this conclusion is that Bane trusted Barsad to hold a gun on Miranda Tate, later revealed to be Talia al Ghul; it is doubtful that Bane would have allowed anyone to do so that didn't know of Talia's importance.) Second, given the decade-long gap of time between Batman Begins/The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, Barsad would almost certainly have been very young when he was in the League.

Next, Barsad's kind of a smarmy bastard, and extremely skilled with weapons such as high-caliber sniper rifles - not exactly League standard equipment. (There were even rumors that Barsad was Nolan's version of the Comics character 'Deadshot', but these rumors were never confirmed, and I won't be using any of Deadshot's backstory here.) From this, I figured it was a reasonable conclusion to draw that he was a violent man before ever being recruited by the League or being one of Bane's.

Off of these conclusions, I came up with a headcanon backstory; everything else is not necessarily supported by canon information. Were any canon to come out contradicting it, I would revise.

-

Barsad was born to a peaceful family in a violent country. Not that he remembers them with any kind of clarity. By the age of seven he was recruited, forcibly, into one of the several Liberation Armies that took the stage, attempting to unseat a despotic monarch. Like most such armies, when met with an utter lack of success, support and resources slowly bled away, along with the acclaim of the people they were supposedly defending. They began to sell their skills to the highest bidder - all in the interest of pursuing their cause, of course.

Barsad grew up in this environment - of casual violence, power by the gun, and rigid and often brutal discipline. He knew nothing else. There was no thought of rebellion or escape for him because this was his world, and his mind was fixed, narrowly, on what was in front of him. He was a naturally gifted soldier, obedient and ruthless.

This couldn't last forever. Especially when there were organizations like the quiet, mysterious and determined to stay unknown League of Shadows, ninja-trained warriors in a secret brotherhood, sworn to pursue the cause of justice wherever it may go. The League found the militia, and in payment for crimes against their country and their people, the League killed every single one of them.

Well, not every single one.

Barsad didn't panic with the rest. He didn't shoot back, or follow the screamed orders of the generals and captains. He slipped into the shadows, and when he fought back, he did so with timing and with skill. He managed to kill one of the League before he was cornered. By Bane.

Bane's fondness for children, and his assessment of Barsad's potential, stayed his hand. He brought Barsad back to the league, where the still-young soldier was put through absolute hell. He was trained by the league, burned and drowned and frozen and pushed to the brink of death and, once or twice, past it. Eventually, he stopped fighting Bane's hand, and Bane was able to mold him into a warrior, and fill him with the fire of purpose.

Barsad considers this relentless abuse the best thing that has ever happened to him, and, really, the best thing that could ever happen to him. He owes Bane everything, and because of that, there could never be anyone more unshakably loyal.

Ra's al Ghul, the leader of the League of Shadows, could not accept Bane as he was. He saw only a monster. And, as such, Bane was excommunicated. He became a mercenary, for his own purposes, carrying on the cause of justice his own way, and Barsad followed. For years, he acted as Bane's second in command, until he owed his life to Bane a dozen times over, and vice versa. After Ra's al Ghul is killed by Batman (in Batman Begins), Talia al Ghul, Ra's's daughter, takes control of the League of Shadows and puts into a motion a very long-term plan for destroying Gotham City.

Bane takes control of Gotham using the threat of a nuclear reactor modified to become a neutron bomb. Barsad is at his side. Thus follows three months of occupation in Gotham, enforced by the military surrounding the city. More details of Barsad's involvement in the movies can be found in the wiki; I won't overwhelm you guys with the details. Barsad enters after a couple of months in the city.

□ Personality:

As with history, a great deal of personality is filling in the gaps given by canon.

First and most important: in almost every scene with Bane, involving the occupation, involving his operations, anywhere he has something to accomplish, Barsad is by his side. The novelization states that Barsad is Bane's lieutenant, who has "fought beside him in so many conflicts over the years, all around the world" and who "owed Bane his life a dozen times over". He also displays personal concern over Bane. When Bane fights Batman for the first time, even though Bane roundly defeated him and broke his spine, Barsad was still above, on the catwalk, and he visibly worried for Bane.

Next, Barsad often anticipates Bane's needs without being told. When one of Bane's people brings Commissioner Gordon down into the sewers, and then Gordon escapes down the sewer flow, Bane tells the unlucky idiot to 'follow him', so as to find where Gordon ended up. Bane has only to reach out his hand, and Barsad is there, handing him a GPS and a gun in order to shoot the man, put the GPS on him and toss him down the outflow after Gordon. He knows exactly what Bane is going to do before he does it.

Barsad also is the man that Bane depends on to play several key roles. As a sniper, defending escapees into the sewer (note that he does not necessarily play roles in the most central part of Bane's operations, but rather stays wherever he is most needed, even if it is in the background); as a mercenary, to sell a CIA agent on allowing several of Bane's people onto their plane; and as the guy who steps out on the bridge to Gotham and tells the National Guard exactly how they're going to meet Bane's demands. As mentioned before, he also is the one who holds a gun on Miranda Tate, which isn't something Bane would trust to just anyone.

For Barsad, what this means is that he is a fanatic. He is loyal long past the point of sanity to Bane, personally, and not any ideal behind Bane. Whatever personal purpose he may ever have had has been completely subsumed by Bane's plans, Bane's orders, Bane's wellbeing. He may be an autonomous entity, but everything he does is geared towards Bane one way or another.

In behavior, Barsad is quiet, willing to stick to the shadows or stay at range, as necessary. He has no need to call attention to himself; he knows his purpose, and his place. He is confident in his place, too, which means he can be a little smarmy, a little sarcastic.

He takes a certain joy in carrying out that duty, a deep satisfaction. More than that, he takes satisfaction in power. Much of his life, he has been relatively powerless; he understands the dynamic of power at the point of a gun intimately, from both sides, from when he was a child. With Bane, he has that power that he always lacked, and he also has the loyalty that he's been told his whole life that he should value. And he has the pseudo-parental figure of authority that he always needed, given the loss of his family at a young age.

He knows Bane intimately. Not in a sexual sense, though I believe that his sort of worship could easily have translated into that, should Bane have willed it. No, he understands Bane's philosophy, his goals, his views on the world. In order to do so, he has to be intelligent; maybe he was never educated as a child, but since then, he has become learned in history and philosophy and warfare. He can keep up with Bane, intellectually, and that means a great deal.

Barsad is also an extremely violent person. He sees the abuse he suffered at the hands of the League, and at Bane's hands, as expressions of love, as purifications. In pursuit of justice, or in the service of Bane, he has absolutely no qualms about killing those incidentally involved, trimming lives in order to keep the plan safe. He does it not from rage or revenge but from a sense of duty, and from a sense of satisfaction. To him, killing is an appropriate response to failure, to crime. He sees himself on some level as a kind of angel of death, bringing it to the scum, the useless, the chaff who deserve it by being not good enough as a human being.

This isn't to say that he lacks empathy. In fact, it might be from an excess of empathy that he has learned the hard lesson to take the long view, to see the world as a whole instead of the individuals in it. His disregard for the lives of human beings is out of a belief that the whole must be preserved. He is reluctant, too, to take the lives of innocents, and shares Bane's regard for children as the unspoiled of the world.

□ Age: early 30s
□ Gender: Male
□ Appearance: Dark-haired and wiry, unshaven, somewhat diminutive next to Bane's bulk. He wears pseudo-military gear which would weigh 70+ pounds, and he doesn't ever appear tired or weighed down, so he's clearly strong, trained, and very competent.

□ Abilities/Powers: Barsad was made from the same mold as Batman. He's not Batman, of course, but he's got the same training. He has almost inhuman endurance, training in combat, survival, and stealth, skills with languages, weapons, deception and tactics. He is learned, in philosophy and history, and has a good head for certain types of chemical combinations, including explosives, poisons and drugs. Basically: ninja badass sniper jack-of-all-trades lieutenant guy. He learned whatever he had to in order to do the duties that Bane required of him.

□ Personal Items:
1 - his weapon - heavy submachine gun w/ a couple spare clips.
2 - Armor vest.
3 - The rest of his outfit - militia-style fatigues, red scarf.
4 - Hand-radio.

□ First Person Sample:

Additional 1st person - http://dear-mun.dreamwidth.org/6001572.html - at dear_mun.

□ Third Person Sample:

http://bakerstreet.dreamwidth.org/652094.html?thread=426391870#cmt426391870
http://bakerstreet.dreamwidth.org/651521.html?thread=426119169#cmt426119169

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