Milverton turns Whiteley into Harvey Dent from The Dark Knight
Milverton aims to destroy the reputation of London’s “White Knight” in Moriarty the Patriot, drawing a clear line of comparison with Nolan’s Harvey Dent.
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WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Episode 20 of Moriarty the Patriot, “The White Knight of London, Act 2”, now streaming on Funimation.
After performing his first significant piece in the previous episode, episode 20 of Moriarty the patriot sees Charles Augustus Milverton, the evil “blackmail king,” set out to do exactly what he has promised – to tarnish the reputation of the champion of electoral reform, MP Whiteley.
The arc’s title, “The White Knight of London,” and Whiteley himself, were already slightly suggestive of Christopher Nolan’s characterization of Harvey Dent / Two-Face in The black Knight. This latest installment makes the comparison even more relevant, as Milverton, like Heath Ledger’s Joker, pushes poor Whiteley past the point of no return. Luckily, Moriarty is here to fill the missing role in the winning trifecta – Christian Bale’s eponymous Dark Knight.
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Milverton keeps his promise to target Whiteley’s family, but there’s a twist. Rather than let his duo of minions do the work, Milverton sends the henchmen to distract William’s gang, while blackmailing the cop guarding Whiteley, Sturridge, into slaughtering the politician’s entire house while Milverton keep the latter busy. When Whiteley returns home in the bloody mess, Sturridge tells the broken man to take revenge – handing him the very knife he just used to take everything he holds dear. Whiteley is stubborn at first, but his moral center quickly disintegrates and he effectively kills Sturridge, just like Milverton intended.
In The black Knight, the Joker similarly tortures Harvey Dent – Gotham’s “white knight” to Bruce Wayne’s dark crusader – by preventing him from saving his girlfriend, Rachel Dawes. His death and disfigurement from the causal explosion are the catalyst for Dent to take on his villainous comic book character, Two-Face, and set off on a merry rampage across Gotham, as Joker suggests. To make the comparison even closer, Moriarty the patriot even shows Whiteley’s blood-covered half after his murderous act, announcing the birth of a “new villain.”
But unlike Dent, Whiteley doesn’t totally lose his sanity. Instead, he confesses his crime to Albert and laments that his destroyed reputation means he will not be able to carry out the ambitious social reform that his enemies in the House of Lords have tried to prevent. This is when William makes his most daring move so far in Moriarty the patriot: after revealing himself as the true crime lord to a shocked Whiteley, he makes the same man deal he does with all of his “clients” as a criminal consultant. Whiteley pledges to give his life to William to atone for his sin and, in turn, William pledges to continue the life’s work of the fallen “white knight”.
Just as Bale’s Batman takes the fall for Two-Face to ensure that the hope inspired by Harvey Dent as the Gotham District Attorney is not destroyed, William murders Whiteley on the steps of Parliament and publicly announces that he is the crime lord (at a safe distance on the roof), turning Whiteley into a martyr and kicking off the cycle of vengeance started by Milverton. In addition, William specifies for the first time that he is aware of his new enemy. The upcoming episodes will no doubt raise the bar between the two, with William determined to increase his grip on London as a necessary extremist, and Milverton determined to bring about his downfall as he did for Whiteley.
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