No need to wait for Wednesdays anymore as publishers decide that they will send the spoilers for upcoming comics to news reporters a few days before the comic hits the store shelves. DC Comics did this today with news that Batman Incorporated will reveal the death of a major character.
And in case you didn’t get it from the title of this post, MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.
“Batman Incorporated #8” will feature the death of current Robin, Damian Wayne.
The article, published by the New York Post, has the spoiler in the title of the article. So even if you wanted to avoid it, a simple Google search of “Damian Wayne” will bring the news item to the top of your search results. This has become general practice by the major publishers as a way to draw a crowd into the comic shop on Wednesdays to get the comic. The sad thing is that the Post article reveals the big spoiler and then—wait for it—puts a “Spoiler Alert” label in the middle of the article so you are warned about how he dies.
Face, meet palm.
I could talk about how stupid the placement of the spoiler alert is for the article. I could rage about how the title of the article alone is the freaking spoiler. But I can’t take my rage out on the lowly Post reporter in charge of this article.
I blame Peter J. Tomasi for the feelings of rage I have right now.
When Damian was first introduced by Morrison years ago, I really looked at it questionably. Granted, Batman had been around long enough so the idea of him being a father made sense. Knowing Morrison to be able to pull off story beats on a slow burn, I wanted to see was how the story would play out before making any judgements.
And then Morrison killed Batman. Gutsy move.
Damian had a place. He had the essence of the famous “Bat-dick” characterization that Batman had for years paired with a much happier Batman in Dick Grayson. It was a team up that worked.
Then Bruce came back, which was expected. But what would happen with the Batman & Robin team of Grayson and Damian that I had grown to enjoy in such a short time period? Having Bruce team up with Damian as Robin seemed to be a mismatch, as the characters shared personality traits that were too similar. There wasn’t going to be a balance to the Batman & Robin team that I expected.
Then New 52 hit. Peter J. Tomasi took up the reigns of Batman & Robin and introduced a nicely done father and son dynamic. Tomasi had Bruce turn away from allowing his parent’s death to bring sadness, and would instead find a more positive direction to take. Bruce realized he had a young son that he had to be a positive role model for in a world filled with murderous clowns. Damian would test Bruce’s patience, and time and time again the bond they shared of father and son hit a note in the storytelling that made Batman & Robin a title I had to read first when it came out.
Morrison may have created the mindset and character of Damian Wayne, but it was Tomasi who showed that Damian had heart. The past few issues of Batman & Robin, including the annual, felt like a swan song for the young Wayne. And from the news of the article, I can now see why.
For me, Tim Drake is Robin. He was my Robin who I grew up reading. This young punk named Damian is supposed to be someone I dislike, because he could never replace my Robin, right? I’m supposed to cheer for his death, right? I’m really pissed off at Tomasi for making me like this character. He really feels like Robin to me now. (I guess I could say that Drake will always be my old DCU Robin, and Damian is my New 52 Robin.)
Then, in the mists of my nerd rage, I remember that Damian is a Wayne first, and an al Ghul second, and those al Ghuls have a funny way of coming back from the dead. So yes, I may have some story points spoiled for me already, but I’ll look for that little window of hope that a Lazarus Pit will be available as a back door to Damian’s future return.
That is, unless Morrison writes that possibility out. If he does, he will feel my nerd rage!