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Article by Gregg Katzman

Article by Gregg Katzman

2014’s Justice League: War marked the beginning of a new shared universe. Since Batman and DC’s iconic heroes joined forces and defeated Darkseid, the Dark Knight’s family has grown quite a bit. Damian Wayne – who’s the son of Bruce Wayne and Talia al Ghul – has become Robin (and a member of the Teen Titans); Dick Grayson is Nightwing; Luke Fox is Batwing; Kate Kane is Batwoman; Barbara Gordon is Batgirl (although we haven’t seen this universe’s version of Batgirl since her brief cameo in Batman: Bad Blood); last but not least, Alfred Pennyworth is, of course, always awesome as himself.

Since War, three Caped Crusaders movies within this continuity have been released: Son of Batman (which established Damian), Batman vs. Robin (which expanded on Damian’s relationship with his father), and Batman: Bad Blood (which introduced Batwoman, Batwing, and – very briefly – Batgirl). The World’s Greatest Detective has also played a part in Justice League: Throne of AtlantisJustice League vs. Teen Titans, and Justice League Dark. Now that this version of Batman and (most) of his allies have been fleshed out, it’s time to bring Bane into the picture!

Bat Family

Batman: Bad Blood

Just like The Dark Knight Returns, a movie inspired by Knightfall should be a two-parter. The first film needs to reveal Bane’s origin story (which is told in Vengeance of Bane) and have him unleash a swarm of villains from Arkham Asylum. This enormous threat to Gotham City would allow the movie to focus on various Batman-family characters as they do their part to capture these fiends throughout the city. Meanwhile, Batman would be going above and beyond to make sure he’s doing everything possible to combat this overwhelming threat. There’s so much potential for fan service as Batwing, Batwoman, Nightwing, Robin, Batman, and maybe even Batgirl take down some familiar faces. Batman would be physically and mentally broken before Bane confronts him in the final act and reveals that he’s the one behind all of the chaos. When all is said and done, the first part would conclude with Batman brutally defeated and incapacitated.

Nightwing

Batman: Bad Blood

Part two features Dick Grayson putting on the cape and cowl. This briefly happened in Batman: Bad Blood, but now Grayson would have an entire movie as Batman. The first Robin stepping up as Batman makes the most sense and it would be nice to see the bond between Damian and Grayson continue to grow. Sure, Damian would protest at first and eventually wants to be Batman, but after a brief debate between Bruce’s allies, Damian could humorously express that Grayson’s the right choice to be Batman… for now, that is!

“What about Jean-Paul Valley?!” Trying to introduce Jean-Paul Valley – the character who became a violent version of Batman when Bruce Wayne was out of commission in the comics – and properly develop him would likely add way too much to the two-parter’s story. Attempting to juggle Bane and the Batman-family is plenty of material on its own (especially if we’re incorporating Batgirl); throwing Jean-Paul Valley into the mix could mean his story will feel rushed, so I’d much rather see them capitalize on the characters they’ve already spent time building while only needing to adequately introduce one major character: Bane. While Jean-Paul Valley does bring a different element to the Bat-family, Grayson’s Batman could still unleash some major anger during his final clash with Bane, so the big fight with the powerful foe could still offer quite a few nods to the source material.

Batman and Robin

Batman and Robin #1

With Grayson established as Batman, the next movie(s) could pull some inspiration from Grant Morrison’s Batman & Robin run – or maybe even the Black Mirror – as the new dynamic duo protects Gotham and Grayson temporarily assists the Justice League – or Teen Titans – in their movies. As for Bruce Wayne, he could be fully recovered after a film or two and Grayson would go back to being Nightwing – we all know Grayson wouldn’t want to be Batman for too long anyway! Maybe – just maybe – they could celebrate Bruce Wayne’s return as Batman with a movie inspired by Hush? Fingers crossed!

A two-parter inspired by Knightfall would be pretty easy to adapt in the current animated universe and it would be full of potential. You’d get two movies that have just the right mix of awesome action, compelling moments, and character insight. As if that wasn’t enough, this “big event” would change the Batman family’s status quo for at least one more year of animated projects.

Oh, and to the “no more Batman animated movies” crowd: I hope you’re supporting Justice League Dark and Teen Titans: The Judas Contract! The success of those movies will give the powers that be more faith in non-Batman properties. Plus, they’re good movies. Check ’em out!

Here’s a preview of Bane Conquest #1, by Chuck Dixon, Graham Nolan, and Gregory Wright!

Bane1 Bane2 Bane3 Bane4 Bane5 Banecover BaneVariant

 

Get Teen Titans: The Judas Contract here: https://goo.gl/4hU2bv

Get Batman comics & collectibles here: https://goo.gl/mdhV7S

 

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