Maxie Zeus is one of the most respected gang leaders in Gotham City, combining a brilliant organizational mind with the unique monomania that he is actually the incarnation of the Greek god Zeus. Maxie was originally a history teacher of Greek Mythology and a married man. Through unrevealed circumstances he loses his wife and his sanity. He becomes a crime lord, and uses his cunning and intelligence to rise to power. His fixation causes him to plan all his crimes around mythological motifs, as well as maintain an affected speech pattern, which he drops only when in the presence of his daughter Medea.
Maxie Zeus was created by Denny O'Neil
Silver Age: Earth-One
Zeus concerned himself only with organized crime until the 1984 Olympics, when he assembled a group of super-villains modeled after mythological gods, calling them the New Olympians, in an attempt to coerce a Greek athlete to adopt Medea. Battling against Batman and the Outsiders Maxie Zeus pitted his New Olympians in hazardous events. However the Outsiders and Batman beat Maxie-Zeus and his cohort,s sending him to Arkham Asylum. He attempts to kidnap Olympic athlete Lacinia Nitocris and force her to marry him and become a mother figure for his daughter Medea.
Modern Age: New Earth
After the Crisis on Infinite Earths, not much of Maxie Zeus history was not change. In (Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth), Batman finds Maxie connected to the electroshock therapy room at Arkham Asylum, perpetually receiving electrical currents. Here, Maxie's insanity more resembles a messianic complex and says he's going to fertilize the dry lands of Africa with his excrement so the people there can worship him anew. Maxie is one of the villains that escape Arkham when Bane brings down the walls of Arkham Asylum.
Major Story Arcs
Modern Age: New Earth
Some time later, however, he is drawn into a plot engineered by the children of Ares: Deimos, Phobos, and Eris to merge Gotham City with Ares' throne capital, the Aeropagus. The intent is re-establish Ares' rule on earth. Maxie is killed as a result of that plot and his sacrifice brought about Ares' return. However, their scheme is foiled by Wonder Woman, Batman and their allies, and Ares himself banished his children back to Tartarus. The heroes were so exhausted from the fight that they didn't notice a small glowing sprout spring up from the soil. It turns out the siphoned energy from Strife's golden apple has resurrected Maxie but he has little knowledge of what had recently transpired.
Later on, the vigilante Violet is trying to track down an illegal casino named "Maxie's", with chips bearing a Zeus-like profile. Presumably, Maxie somehow survived his encounter with the Children of Ares. After Violet is discovered by Zeus's guards, both Robin and Violet manage to escape unharmed, as detectives that Robin was working with on the case raid the casino and arrest Zeus, who surrenders without a fight after an officer physically threatens him.
Maxie Zeus is free from Arkham and has a legitimate business front. But in the underworld scene, he creates a new drug called Chuckles, ecstasy laced with the Joker's laugh poison. The Joker, angry that his creation was being used for recreation, swears revenge against Maxie. After witnessing the death of his nephew and a dozen other children when the Joker blows up a school, Maxie suffers a psychotic breakdown and he lapses back to running around in his toga again before Batman knocks some sense back into him. After being rescued from an attack by the Joker at a nightclub by Batman, the Dark Knight visits Maxie again at his penthouse. After temporarily restoring Maxie's sanity with a massive dose of antipsychotics, Batman convinces him to confess to being behind the distribution of Chuckles and turn himself in to the police. This move is later revealed to be part of Batman's plan to lure the Joker and Onomatopoeia (the latter of whom has been hunting Batman intent on killing him and taking his mask as a trophy) out of hiding.
Bruce shows Terry a secured location where he has kept some of his most disturbed rogues in captivity. Maxie Zeus and Mad Hatter were among the catatonic inhabitants. Its possible that Maxie has suffered a great deal from electro shock which could have been brought on by the crude methods at Arkham Asylum or by his delusions of godhood which forced him to wield a lightning discharging staff.
Powers and Abilities
Maxie doesn't have any powers.
The Batman Adventures
Maxie appears as a one shot villain in Batman:TAS, though appears in the comic series based on the show.
The Batman Strikes!
In "The Batman" Maximillian is again a one shot villain, but unlike his usual portrayal in comics he's very threatening.
Batman: The Animated Series
In Batman: The Animated Series, Maximillian Zeus is voiced by the late Steve Susskind and is a shipping tycoon with underworld connections. He carries a metal rod appropriately in the shape of a thunderbolt, which he uses to electrocute his victims. In his debut episode, "Fire From Olympus", after recovering from a serious financial crisis after turning to smuggling following a run of bad business, Maxie goes insane, develops a god complex, and starts to believe that he is the Greek god Zeus and his lawyer-girlfriend is the muse Clio. When Batman arrives at the top of his building, Maxie believes he is Hades, as "no mortal can reach 'Mount Olympus" without his permission, and even calls the caped crusader his "brother". Maxie steals a giant lightning gun which he uses on "pitiful mortals" who dare to oppose him, although on a couple of occasions he seems to revert to normal. When Clio tries to stop him, he has her gagged and bound to the barrel of the lightning gun by his henchmen, though she is saved by Batman before she can be killed. Maxie is eventually subdued by Batman with help from Clio. While being dragged through Arkham Asylum, he looks at the prisoners watching him and believes that he sees a Greek deity in their place: the Joker is Hermes the trickster god, Two-Face is the "double-faced" Janus (actually a Roman god), and Poison Ivy is the goddess Demeter. His last line is "Now at last, Mighty Zeus is home", indicating humorously that he is now where he belongs, in Arkham Asylum.
Maxie Zeus first appeared in The Batman episode "Thunder" voiced by Phil LaMarr. In this interpretation, he wears high-tech armor with gloves that generate electricity and is sane for most of the part. The gladiator armor suit he wears is more similar to Roman mythology than Greek. It is also notable that this version of Maxie Zeus despises being called "Maxie" as it is shown that when Batgirl calls him that and he gives her a paralyzing electric shock replying "And the name is Maximillian!". Maxie here is an eccentric/deluded multimillionaire and owner of Zeus Industries, who is obsessed with Greek mythology. He runs for mayor against Marion Grange. Maxie Zeus rode in his airship New Olympus in order to make Gotham City his kingdom after losing his election against Grange. Batman and Batgirl defeated him. When recovering and wondering what happened to New Olympus, Batman stated that it "became the New Atlantis." In "Rumors", Maxie Zeus later reappeared as one of the many villains captured by Rumor.
He appears as an enemy in Batman NES
Batman: Arkham Asylum
While Maxie Zeus does not appear in Batman: Arkham Asylum, his cell, decorated with symbols from ancient Greece (as well as an Egyptian Eye of Ra, for some reason), can be located behind a hidden wall in the Patient Pacification Chamber. If people looked closely at Scarecrow's hidden lair or Riddler's secret maps, The name "Maxie Zeus" is pointed to the circle with an "M" inside at a room, and at the bottom left corner, it was labeled Arkham Mansion.
Batman: Arkham City
Although Maxie Zeus doesn't appear in Batman: Arkham City. His nightclub called "Gotham City Olympus" does. When scanning the nightclub it answers the riddle "Would an invitation to party like the gods be a bolt out of the blue?" It is revealed that Maxie disappeared at the asylum after one too many rounds of electroshock therapy, most likely from Quincy Sharp. However, the continued operation of his nightclub suggests that Maxie is still around.
DC Universe Online
He is set to appear in DC Universe Online