Casinos have long been associated with pop culture and have featured in films such as Ocean’s Eleven and the James Bond series. The casino setting is ideal for confrontations between characters and continues to be used across different mediums. And Marvel and DC are no different, with both companies using storylines that take place in and around casinos. Here are four such examples.
Iron Man #123 – Casino Fatale!
Tony Stark has always been known for his luxury lifestyle and in issue #123 he ends up fighting several villains during a trip to Atlanta to visit a casino. Iron Man faces off against 3 classic villains: Whiplash, the Melter, and Blizzard. The cover of the comic is notable as it has Iron Man and these three villains fighting on a roulette wheel, symbolizing the high stakes Iron Man was facing.
Cool-guy Gambit is a serial car player. He’s a very prominent member of the X-Men, although he’s only made a single appearance in the Marvel films. This was when he went head to head with Wolverine in what fans consider one of the most gripping scenes. He’s introduced to the audience, as well as to Wolverine, through a tense game of poker.
The film highlights Gambit’s prowess at poker by introducing him toying with an ace of diamonds. Pocket aces are the best Texas Hold ‘Em starting hand, as you can see by referencing this poker hands ranking chart, and judging by the number of chips Gambit has, he has been very successful with his cards. Unfortunately for Gambit, he is unable to collect his winnings as the table is soon destroyed in his fight against Wolverine. He shows off his telekinetic powers, launching an attack on Wolverine by weaponizing his cards.
The Iceberg Lounge & Casino is a popular nightclub and casino owned by Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot, better known as the Penguin. The Lounge has been featured and redone in nearly every Batman adaptation. The trendy lounge became the base of Penguin’s criminal operations, all while welcoming Gotham City’s posh social circles.
One of the most well-known incidents involving The Iceberg Lounge & Casino was the Arkham Gang War where Penguin kidnapped Joker’s doctor and took him to the Lounge, as an affront to his then-enemy. Several scenes took place in the Lounge, and even the GCPD stormed in. In this story arc, the Lounge was forced to close down due to the unrest.
This animated episode takes place in a casino and sees the Joker take over the blackjack tables. Naturally, the Joker cheats and is found out by Batman. He knocks Batman out and straps him to a giant roulette wheel. After escaping, the Joker and Batman fight with Batman ultimately winning by throwing the Joker into a slots machine. The show used three different casino games in interesting ways showing why a casino is not only a great thematic location for superhero stories but also a great physical location.