Batman:The Animated Series Wiki

If You're So Smart, Why Aren't You Rich? is an episode of the first season of Batman: The Animated Series. It is notable for introducing to the series the classic Batman enemy: The Riddler; in a story that contains similar elements from the character's first comic book appearance.

"If You're So Smart, Why Aren't You Rich?" was the 40th produced episode and the 41st episode aired.


After being fired from Competitron; Edward Nygma takes over the identity of The Riddler in order to get vengeance over his former boss Daniel Mockridge. It is up to Batman and Robin to decipher the riddlers that Nygma has been placing for them in order to save Mockridge from Riddler's vengeance.


Edward Nygma arrives at his office at Competitron and finds that it has been removed and that he has been fired by his boss, Daniel Mockridge. Nygma tells him that the company owed him the prestige for developing the game of the Riddle of the Minotaur, but Mockridge tells him that the game was owned solely by Competitron. Furious, Nygma tells him that he is nothing compared to a mastermind like him, to which Mockridge replied, "If you're so smart, why aren't you rich?"

SR 11 - Billboard Riddle

Threatening Riddle

Two years later, Mockridge tries to sell his products to Wayne Enterprises in order to expand his market into Gotham City. Lucius Fox and Bruce Wayne listen to the man but they notice that Mockridge is suddenly distracted by a billboard outside of the window. When they turn, they see a stock update screen addressed to Mockridge, written in a riddle and saying something about a wasteland. Mockridge loses his nerve and leaves the building without any explanation.

Later that night in the Batcave, Bruce still ponders the solution to the riddle while Dick plays the "Riddle of the Minotaur" game. Alfred comes in with their suits and stays a while, trying to understand the game. When Dick says that his character has been trapped in the wasteland, Bruce realizes that Mockridge owns a bar in Gotham called The Wasteland. Bruce tells Dick to dress up because they are going to that bar to prevent Mockridge from walking into a trap.

SR 36 - Riddler

The Riddler

Mockridge arrives at "The Wasteland" and he finds Edward Nygma sitting on his desk. Mockridge warns him to stay away from him, but Nygma tells him that he has an offer to make. Nygma tricks Mockridge and trapps him with some trick rings. At that moment, Batman and Robin arrive at the place and Nygma comes out to meet them. He introduces himself as The Riddler and Batman asks him if it was a pun on his real name. Riddler tells his henchmen to attack Batman and Robin while he escapes with Mockridge. Batman and Robin fight Riddler's henchmen and then Riddler starts a fire in the place. Batman had to decide whether to follow Riddler and save Mockridge or stay and save Robin from being burned. Batman chooses the latter and by the time they escape from the burning building, Riddler and his men were gone.

Batman and Robin drive in the Batmobile when they realize that the city lights are flashing in a strange pattern. Batman deduces that it is morse code and uses the computer on his gloves to decipher the message. Riddler is manipulating the lights from Gotham's Lights Power Plant. The message was a riddle relating something that was "as high as an elephant's eye". Batman solvs the riddle and goes to the place where the Riddler is leading them; The Riddler of the Minotaur amusement park which featured a maze as part of its attractions.

SR 58 - Riddler

Riddler escapes

Batman and Robin are about to enter the maze but Riddler forces them to leave their utility belts outside. Once inside, Batman and Robin have to overcome many traps that resemble the ones in the game. They have only 10 minutes to find the center of the maze and when their time starts to run out, Batman decides to use one of the traps to his advantage. Using "The Hand of Fate" as a vehicle, Batman and Robin arrive at the center of the maze and answer the last riddle. They free Mockridge but Riddler tells them that they must survive the attack from the minotaur and the robot minotaur comes to life. Batman uses the hand of fate and destroys the minotaur. Riddler, while unhappy with the results, is yet relaxed because, at that precise moment, he is far away from their reach.

In the aftermath, Wayne Enterprises acquires Competitron, but Dick is still bitter that Mockridge made millions out of the buyout and got away. Bruce, however, is strangely satisfied, noting that the Riddler is still at large and he wonders how well Mockridge is coping with the unfortunate events.

True to Bruce's assumptions, Mockridge is living in a constant state of fear and paranoia and, because of his guilty conscience, cannot sleep well at night.


Actor Role
Kevin Conroy Batman/Bruce Wayne
Loren Lester Robin
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. Alfred Pennyworth
John Glover Edward Nygma/The Riddler
Gary Frank Daniel Mockridge
Brock Peters Lucius Fox
Hal Rayle Henchman