21 May 2009

And You’ll Know at a Glance

Newsarama’s regular interviews with DC Comics Editor-in-Chief Dan DiDio usually end up being scrabbles over tiny breadcrumbs of information about upcoming issues--as if the whole pleasure of serialized fiction isn't the mystery of what's going to happen next.

But this exchange over clues about the eventual resurrection of Batman hit a new, subatomic level of clue-seeking:

NRAMA: Batman’s death--there’s no question about it, no mystery about it from the point of view of the DCU. Is that playing along the lines of the “Batman as an urban legend” idea, that people weren’t 100% sure he even existed in the first place, or is it something different?

DD: The Batman story as it’s established--we have two different perspectives here: the story perspective and the fan perspective. From the story perspective, the DC Universe believes Batman to be dead--the heroes know he is dead, but they have kept that secret away from the world, because of what they feel might happen. The events of Battle for the Cowl shows when heroes and villains start to realize that Batman may be dead--Gotham City falls into, or tumbles towards anarchy. That’s the story there.

From the fan perspective, we all know that there’s something going on with Bruce Wayne. So therefore, we’re going to see reflections of the Bruce Wayne story, the Batman story as it plays out in the DC Universe in all of the Batman books and reflections of it in Blackest Night. The fan knows--or the fans might guess--that was not Batman’s body that was recovered as a skeleton in Final Crisis #6, but nobody else knows that. Part of the year we have coming ahead of us is the exploration of what that means to the DC Universe--what that body represents, and more importantly, what actually happened to Bruce Wayne, and the mystery surrounding him.

NRAMA: Wait--that wasn’t Bruce Wayne’s skeleton?

DD: Did I say that?

NRAMA: You said that.

DD: Did I?


DD: Dammit. Then who was the guy in the cave if that wasn’t Bruce Wayne’s skeleton?

NRAMA: That’s a very good question, but so is: Did Superman find a body, take that dead body’s clothes off, and put a Batman costume on a dead body, just to carry it outside? That puts Superman into a creepy new light...

DD: See, I know I didn’t say that. Now you’re starting to suppose something else. I’m saying that there was a skeleton. It did have a Batman costume on it, but whose skeleton that is, where it came from, who is the man in the cave, where is the man in the cave--those are all stories we’ll be exploring in the course of the coming year.

NRAMA: But both the man in the cave and the skeleton had pants on...

DD: Now that, I completely agree with and can support. [laughs] Both of them did have pants on.

NRAMA: So it’s the two sets of pants, isn’t it--the two sets of Bat-pants. That’s the key, that’s the Rosebud of this whole thing, isn’t it?

DD: [laughs] It’s just like the old days--when you bought a suit, it always came with two pairs of pants.

NRAMA: It did?

DD: Yeah--it did.

NRAMA: How old are you?
I haven't read any of the stories in question, even the ones that have already been published, so I have only the slightest clue as to what this is all about. But I do know that tailored suits used to come with two pairs of pants.

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