Hush has control of all Batman’s caches, and Batman spends an entire issue trying to reclaim them. It’s the comics equivalent of a high-stakes game of Risk. Who has Australia?? It’s Batman Eternal #33!
Writer: Kyle Higgins
Consulting Writers: Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Ray Fawkes and Tim Seeley
Artist: Jason Fabok
Colorist: Brad Anderson
Letterer: Steve Wands
Jason Bard doesn’t want to panic anyone, but the two options are either that the explosion last issue was an issue, or Batman is out for revenge and all your children will be dead by morning. Listen: it’s ether one of the other, and who are we to decide or imply which of those two options is the truth? Certainly the best way to continue to move forward is if Gotham actively pits the militia against Batman just in case.
Julia thinks Batman should put out a statement, which is the most incredible thing I’ve ever heard. Does Batman have someone handling his PR? Does he send out regular press releases to everybody in his mailing list? “hey: Batman here. Just wanted to let you all know I definitely didn’t blow up the US Army Troops, okay thanks for listening, I’m going to go find the man dressed like an Egyptian mummy and go punch him until he confesses”. Batman’s concern at this time isn’t a Mailchimp campaign, but to reclaim the seventeen remaining safehouses he has, to make sure they don’t explode too. Julia insists on going too, which Batman is either gleeful about, or sad to hear: it’s very hard to understand his enigmatic glares.
Hush and Jason Bard have another meeting on top of GCPD, because that’s just where Hush lives now I guess. Jason is drinking from a bottle of whisky which he’s pouring into a glass – good to keep some decorum when drinking in public – because he’s depressed that Hush tricked him into murdering his own men. Hush, seeking to motivate his employee, smashes the bottle and threatens to perform impromptu surgery on the guy. This Jason Bard sure became a punching-bag quickly, didn’t he? Hush says that someone called “Gilpatrick” in the SWAT division has a plan for catching Batman. I’m sure it’ll go well.
Julia and Batman start going on their safe-hunt, tracking down safehouses, breaking into them, and deactivating the bombs. Julia takes this as a great opportunity to give Batman a guilt trip about his caches being used by his enemy because they were so easy to capture, and he looks enigmatic about it. Again… hard to tell what he’s thinking.
Maybe he’s thinking “helicopter!” because sure enough there’s a helicopter which swoops down and starts firing at them. Whilst distracted, a SWAT office charges Batman and knocks him through a skylight, saying “I’m giving you one chance”. YEAH and that one chance was not stopping Batman immediately because you wanted to say something before your beatdown. This dude is toast. His big gimmick is a glue cannon, which Batman almost immediately dismantles and turns on him. Great work everybody.
While that was going on, Julia took the time to break into the safehouse, which Batman promptly dissolves using acid. Having shown her how to sort the first one out, they decide to split up to take out all the other ones in the city.
At Wayne Enterprises, some dude called “John” is trying to lecture bloody Lucius Fox about discretion, like Fox hasn’t spent the last seventy years pretending he doesn’t know who Batman is. This John feller is worried that the fact it said “Wayne Enterprises” on the caches might look bad for Wayne Enterprises, on account of the explosions and all. Lucius immediately goes to Batman to give him a ticking off, and Batman is actually pretty sorry about what he’s done. Lucius continues to pretend he doesn’t know who Batman is, and asks if this will all be sorted soon – apparently so.
On the way to the next cache, Batman has a chat over comms with Alfred. Alfred is basically now completely recovered from the toxin due to that convenient dose of anti-toxin they realised they had lying around, and he’s a bit miffed that his only daughter whom he’s never mentioned before to anyone has now been recruited to the cause. But you were fine will all those tweenagers getting dressed up as Robin, Alfred? In fairness, Batman actually brings that up, although Alfred claims that only somebody who knows Gotham should be allowed to keep Gotham safe.
Alfred may have a point, really, because at the next safehouse she visits, Julia is confronted by Hush. Oh no! The man who has failed to do anything for the past thirty-three issues has Alfred’s daughter in his clutches! What will he do? Probably… fail.
19 issues to go!
Steve Morris runs this site! Having previously written for sites including The Beat, ComicsAlliance, CBR and The MNT, he can be found on Twitter here. He’s a bunny.
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