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What Exactly Are Drops In The Batman?

The Gotham City that Matt Reeves brings to life in "The Batman" is one that's just as rife with issues as it's always been. Corrupt politicians and law enforcers go hand-in-dirty-hand with the real rulers of the town, who live outside the law and pay enough to keep it that way. From gang wars to money laundering, it's a challenging location to keep in check, and things only get worse when mayoral candidates are being murdered by a creepy serial killer, and the only reliable figure in town is struggling to be taken seriously ... given that, well, he dresses like a bat. Maybe "reliable" isn't the word.

However, as if wasn't bad enough to have a town filled with political conspiracies and wanton murder, "The Batman" shows a Gotham that's also hooked on a serious drug problem. This new drug on the streets, referred to as "Drops," is impacting every rung of the social ladder. But just what are these so-called Drops, and what place do they hold in Matt Reeves take on "The Batman," exactly? 

Thankfully for all Gothamites, we've studied the crime scene and dusted the place for prints. Chief, you're going to want to take a look at this.

The Batman doesn't stop the Drop

Until now, Drops don't appear to turn up anywhere when scanning over the immense decades of lore that comprises Batman's history. This is a new fictional drug devised by Reeves and co-writer Peter Craig, presented within the first few minutes of the new film. 

And during Bruce Wayne's throat lozenge-demanding narration at the start of the movie, we see a number of criminal activities in progress, one of which is the robbery of a convenience store. For any Gotham outsider, the mask which the thief is wearing may seem unique, but it's actually a replica of the monstrous Drops logo that is stamped on every package the drug is sold in. The fact that the Drops logo is being made into masks goes to show just how prominent this narcotic has become in Gotham City.

Applied by the user like a simple eye drop, the drug displays symptoms of hyperactivity and paranoia, as shown by District Attorney Gil Colson (Peter Sarsgaard) when he's speaking to Selina at 44 Below. The substance's impact on the city continues to present itself throughout the film — it's a festering issue bubbling underneath Batman's greater challenge of battling the Riddler and uncovering the corruption that goes higher than the GCPD. From Penguin's thwarted distribution scheme, to Batman and Gordon encountering addicts to the drug (aka 'drop heads') holing up in the abandoned orphanage, Batman's war on Drops in Gotham continues to rage on, even after he's called a hero. 

For now, there aren't any answers about this drug's future. However, a future spin-off series on HBO Max may just provide new answers about its origins and impact.

Could Drops be key to The Penguin's rise to power?

When last we saw him, Oswald Cobblepot, aka The Penguin (Colin Farrell), was looking at a flooded Gotham City, and seeing a new dawn — one which provides a wide-open space for a new crime boss to take over Falcone's empire. It stands to reason, then, that the Penguin spin-off will focus on precisely that, as Cobblepot fights his way to the top of the criminal empire, eventually reaching his inevitable archvillain status.

 Of course, a crime boss has got to make money somehow, and the chances are that Drops will continue to be a crucial part of his operation. Still, a business like this is tough, with the competition even more so. It's a safe bet that Mr. Cobblepot could have a gang war on the horizon if Matt Reeves' recent point of reference is anything to go by.

Speaking to Hero Nation, Reeves revealed that the upcoming show would take inspiration from the likes of machine-gun-toting gangster gem, "Scarface" and British crime classic, "The Long Good Friday." Both films saw their lead character at the top of their organization and were forced to go head-on with competition (spoilers, neither ended great for said boss). Given that the show's template will be inspired by their mob stories, we could have a criminally good watch on our hands. More importantly, the series could see the Penguin make new enemies — the kind that don't have pointy bat ears — and perhaps, a form of competition could arise — or in other words, a new and more dangerous drug from the comics could hit Gotham's streets. 

Could Drops make way for Venom and a new Bane?

Okay, so Drops may have come from the mind of Reeves and Craig, but could "The Penguin" spin-off see inhabitants of Gotham's criminal underbelly discover a greater high than the one we've already seen? Given the mention of gangster classics, and the absolute certainty of opposing gangs trying to knock the Penguin off the ice, might the new spin-off lead to the arrival of Venom ... and, by extension, a new Bane on the block?

Following the release of "The Batman," many fans theorized that the green liquid Batman pumped himself with to save Selina was Venom, the go-to drug used by Bane in the comics to increase his strength. While it hasn't been confirmed whether this was the aforementioned substance or simply a shot of adrenaline, seeing Venom enter the world of "The Batman" could lead to exciting, and perhaps a version of Bane that's closer to the comics than the Tom Hardy incarnation in "The Dark Knight Rises." 

Could the HBO Max spin-off see the Penguin's operation get muscled in by Bane? In the process, could we find out the origins of Drops and their manufacturer? After all, we never did find out what The Joker was in the slammer for... Nevertheless, the arrival of Venom could spell trouble for Cobblepot's now-flooded empire. We're sure he can handle it, though. Penguins are great swimmers, after all.