Aug 4, 2016
The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 526: Batman Incorporated #0, November 2012
The cynic in me would say that 1 year later, DC decided to do these zero issues to try to fix some of the clusterfuck of continuity errors and questions that came out of the New 52, or that they'd planned only a year in advance, and had no idea what to do next.
But let's put the cynic away for today. Batman Incorporated #0 is really cool. The characters who have been introduced in this global undertaking over the last few years are great characters. I'd read an El Gaucho comic all day. And I've already waxed lyrical about Knight and Squire (and Beryl's hologramatic appearance in this issue is great). I'm desperately curious about France's Nightrunner, enough so that I'm going to have to track down the Batman Incorporated special that I avoided at the time because it wasn't Morrison-penned, and because it was part of the New 52.
Last night I was fortunate enough to find a copy of the Chris Burnham-penned BI #11, and I really enjoyed the story about the Batman of Japan. Burnham plots today's comic, with dialogue by Morrison, and art by Frazer Irving, so it's a really great example of the collaborative nature of comics. We get a wonderful look at how Bruce went about recruiting, who was willing right off the bat and who took some convincing. We also get our first (and only?) look, at least in this title, at the Batman of Russia who, predictably, looks like a cross between a robot, a bat, and a bear. Let's see some more of him in the future please. Although this issue was published during the second volume of the series, it fits nicely just before Batman: The Return, and Bruce's public unveiling of the brand. Maybe next time through, that's where I'll put it.
(Next time through? Let's wait a decade or so, shall we?)
Anyway, a nice break, a nice reminder of the optimism that accompanies the founding of Batman Incorporated, before Talia's plans come to light, before the darkness that we're about to witness. These are four year old comics. You know what's coming, right?
Oh. You don't. Uh-oh.