Sunday, April 12, 2009


The last days of Bruce Wayne were fateful and momentous: betrayed by his lover Jetsabel Jet to the Black Glove, an evil organization of wealthy socialite criminals whose raison d'ĂȘtre is to corrupt and destroy noble souls, Bruce was attacked with a post-hypnotic suggestion that had been implanted during his time in an isolation chamber (he was trying to simulate madness in an attempt to better understand the Joker), and, just for kicks, they also shoot him up with heroin and crystal meth before dumping him in the ghetto. If Batman has a super-power, though, it is his uncanny level of preparedness against any possible assault, and to protect himself in the event of an attack on his mind, Bruce used the memory of one of his isolation hallucinations as the basis for a safe mode for the operating system of his brain: the Batman of Zur-En-Arrh!

Above: Batman has lost his mind.

The Batman of Zur-En-Arrh prowls the streets, beating the agents of the Black Glove half to death with a baseball bat and ultimately confronting their leader in his stronghold at Arkham Asylum. There, Black Glove kingpin Dr. Jonathan Hurt feebly tries to convince Bruce first that he is actually his father, Thomas Wayne, and when that doesn't work he claims to be Satan (I guess) and offers to let Bruce live on the condition that he become his manservant. Somewhat predictably, Bruce rejects this offer, and in the ensuing melee a helicopter explodes and Batman is presumed dead.

BUT! In fact, Bruce survived the explosion, and is immediately called away on Justice League business to investigate the murder of the New God Orion, who was killed by a bullet of radion fired backwards through time. In the course of his investigation into this act of deicide, he is captured by the servants of Darkseid and is subject to weeks of psychic torture before overcoming his captors through the sheer force of his will, finally coming face-to-face with the Dark God himself. In his final moment, Batman breaks his vow to never kill or use a firearm -- and, armed with the same bullet that was used to kill Orion, he achieves the ultimate fulfillment of his life's mission by murdering the cosmic personification of evil, before falling victim to the dread Omega Sanction, becoming hopelessly dislodged from time and space. Batman RIP.

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