Aug 14, 2016

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 536: Batman Incorporated #13, September 2013

http://www.comics.org/issue/1132428/

Apologies again. Read this, will blog tomorrow - and I'll do yesterday's comic. A busy couple of days getting back into the Calgary swing of things.

That cover really says it all, doesn't it? The constant repetition, refraction, eternity of the Bat myth, not just in the context of the shared fictional universe, but in our own fictional universe. Bruce and Talia battle as the remaining members of Batman Incorporated defuse a series of bombs designed to destabilize completely the world, leaving the League of Assassins in control. Though the banner at the top of the cover reads "The Epic Conclusion!", in the best tradition of comics, Morrison leaves openings for those who will inevitably follow him. The revelation of Kathy Kane's role in Spyral is interesting, and hints at a larger universe unfolding, one that could have been very cool if DC hadn't cleaved to Geoff Johns', and only Geoff Johns', version of the New 52. Putting a single person in charge of that sort of things seems to me to be a terrible idea. The universe is chronicled jointly. Surely the direction of the meta-narrative should be done in just such a way as well.

I'm happy to leave the story here. Bruce returns to his roots, so to speak, doling out justice to the evil-doers of Gotham. This entire run has been about him dealing with a mistake made years ago, in the arms of Talia al Ghul.  Damian is, of course, not dead for very long. And this is as it should be. Morrison's addition of Damian Wayne to the Bat-Family is one of the great additions (along with Rucka's Batwoman) of the last few decades. Though Batman continues, and, likely, always will, these fresh infusions into the mythos allow new vantage points and new story possibilities, which in turn leads to new interpretive possibilities.

We will, briefly, return to the world of Batman Incorporated at a later date. Chris Burnham takes over writing duties on issue #11 of volume 2, telling a lovely little story of the Batman of Japan. And there's an anthology-style one-shot featuring members of the extended team that, having now finished this run, I'm curious to have a look at. But, tomorrow, we'll move on to, in the immortal words of John Cleese, "something completely different." Thanks for tagging along on my Bat-read. Onward!

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