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On the heels of the wind up of the “Death of the Family” story arc in Issue #17 of the monthly Batman comic book series a few days ago, it’s ironic that Grant Morrison is making news today with his own Batman series creation Batman, Incorporated.  The Batman “Death of the Family” story had some readers thinking one of the key Batman related characters was going to meet his end–probably not Batman, Catwoman, Batgirl, or Dick Grayson/Nightwing, but maybe Alfred or Batman’s son Damian Wayne (the current Robin) or even the original Robin killed off in the comics, Jason Todd, since resurrected into the Red Hood.  Some readers were disappointed in the finale issue of the “Death of the Family” story even after re-reading the story title which never actual implied a death “in” the family.  No one died but the family was left in turmoil.  And that was that.

Today a major shift occurs in the DC Universe with the release of Batman, Incorporated Issue #8.  Below is a five-page preview followed by spoilers, including the telling cover, after the break.  Don’t read on if you haven’t already seen the content in other press but make sure you grab today’s issue.  It’s a sure bet Batman, Incorporated Issue #8 will be sold out everywhere early today as this will be one of those issues that makes the mainstream press, causing the masses to flock to stores to buy up extra collecting copies.

Batman Inc Issue 8 preview page 1

Batman Inc Issue 8 preview pages 2 and 3

Batman Inc Issue 8 preview pages 4

Batman Inc Issue 8 preview page 5

Read on for more, including spoilers.

So the big news is right there on the cover:

Batman Inc Issue 8 cover

You can’t get more blatant than that!  That’s right, in Batman, Incorporated Issue #8, Bruce Wayne’s son with Talia Al Ghul, Damian Wayne, the current feisty Robin and possibly the coolest Robin so far, gets killed off by writer, and Damian Wayne creator, Grant Morrison.

Death of Jason Todd as Robin

Deja vu–Batman finds Robin–Jason Todd–murdered by the Joker in 1989.

So if you read the Batman “Death of the Family” series you might ask “Why not kill off Robin in that finale?”

Or you might see the deja vu of DC Comics killing off yet another Robin.

Or you might ask: Wasn’t it Grant Morrison who killed off Bruce Wayne/Batman?

Or you might think they finally got a Robin done right, so why kill off this one?–After all, the kid is only a 10-year-old and didn’t get much life in the DCU.

Death of Batman

Morrison killed off Batman a few years ago–and he came back.

It doesn’t seem like this death was planned very far in advance since the marketing really didn’t come until the last minute, unlike the death of Batman in 2008, the death of Captain America in 2005 and the death of Superman in 1992, or that a big media push was behind this as with the unmasking of Peter Parker in the Civil War mini-series in 2008.  If you were reading Batman in 1988, you probably remember the publicity stunt where DC Comics let readers call in votes to kill or save the then Robin, Jason Todd.  The public killed him in a four issue story arc, not “Death of the Family” but “A Death in the Family,” still a popular book in print.  Keep in mind there were rushes on stores for the first printing of these issues and only the “A Death in the Family” original issues have somewhat held their value at multiples over cover price.  Once you could get all four issues for $100 or more and you can get the set for less today.  Likewise the death of Captain America in Ed Brubaker’s Issue 25 once in the aftermarket sold for $25-50 and you can get it for under $10 today.  My point?  Get this one to read, not as an investment.

C.J. Bunce
Editor
borg.com

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