These were Trogg, the hirsute brawler and electronics expert who once saved the child Bane from the hands of a pedophile; Zombie, the gaunt chemical expert who aided Bane when his captors performed experiments involving the super-steroid called Venom; and Bird, the Gotham City criminal who had a way with birds and told Bane of life beyond the prison walls.
Before he hooked up with any of these hardened criminals, however, the young Bane had another, softer, cuddlier friend, one who was there for him when no one else was, and was present during one of the most important, transformative moments in the archvillain's life.
I'm talking, of course, about Osoito.
Bane was sentenced to prison for the crimes his father committed while he was still in the womb, and in the above image we see him, Osoito and, in the background, his despairing mother, wasting away. Note how pissed Osoito looks. Is that merely the way Barreto placed the lines above the plus bear's button eye suggesting an angry eyebrow, or is Osoito angered by the injustice of his pal's plight?
Just as that inmate lays his hand on Bane's shoulder, Trogg appears to defend the child, and, in the ensuing fight, Bane—and Osoito!—plummet over a railing and fall several stories to the stone floor below, Bane's head resting on a sticky pillow of his own spilled blood.
A physical and mental paragon. The living embodiment of human superiority. The blood of kings runs in you. The blood of your father The world is yours and will be yours one day. Men will be like cattle before you. Like sheep.And so on.
There is only one thing standing between that boy and that destiny, the vision tells him, and that is fear, which, conveniently enough given that this is a Batman comic, is in the form of a giant bat.
The child, he says, has died, and so he apparently put away childish things, like Osoito, and took out a knife, which he uses to repeatedly stab that big, fat guy who may or may not have been a pedophile.
Osoito is MIA for much of the rest of Bane's origin story, which involves him reaching adulthood, killing dudes, fighting rats and crabs and fish, doing a bunch of push-ups, sit-ups and pull-ups, reading, and being a human guinea pig for drug experiments, faking his own death and, ultimately, killing a shark with his bare hands (By prying open its jaws and then sticking his hand down it's throat to punch out its internal organs, just in case you were wondering how a guy might kill a shark with his bare hands).
A totally nude Bane then climbs out of the sea, sneaks into the warden's bed (!), takes him hostage, commandeers a helicopter and rescues his three friends. All while nude.
Once the helicopters is off of the prison island and out over the shark-infested sea, Osoito makes a surprise return to the narrative, as Band hands a box to the warden:
Moreso than any other act that preceded or followed, I think this is the incident which reveals Bane to be a truly evil villain.
But Osoito, like the kid he used to hang around with, turns out to be made of pretty stern stuff, and it takes more than the sharks of Santa Prisca to finish him off. While a cloud of blood in the water announces the fate of the warden, the last image we see of Osoito shows him floating safely to the surface...
Unfortunately, that is, as far as I know, the last Osoito is ever seen. But I like to think he's still out there somewhere, perhaps comforting other prisoners of Pena Duro and starring in their own coma-induced visions as a sort of stuffed animal spirit guide, showing them the way to bigger and better things as Batman archenemies. Or perhaps lying on the beach, biding his time and plotting his revenge against Bane for casting him so callously aside.