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Wednesday, December 14, 2016 

Batman's origins made grosser for no good reason

With the 12th issue of the latest Batman volume, Tom King and the editors at DC have just proven it's possible to make a retcon for a character whose world is dark very distasteful and unappealing. The article also brings up a very repellent tampering done to Catwoman:
In what is sure to be a controversial development, “Batman” #12 by Tom King and Mikel Janin reveals the true meaning of the current story arc’s title, “I am Suicide,” with an explosive reinterpretation of core moments from the Dark Knight’s origin. In a letter from Bruce Wayne to Selina Kyle as the latter was being transferred to Arkham Asylum following her alleged murder of 237 people, Batman ruminates on their shared traumas, ultimately confiding that he only resolved to dedicate his life to fighting crime after attempting suicide as a child.

[...] Last issue, Selina engaged in a similarly nihilistic internal monologue about why there was no hope for redemption for her crimes...
There's no redemption for this story, that's for sure. Again, I knew the current changes away from "New 52" would not guarantee better storytelling, and turning Selina into a murderess - much as DC did with Jean Loring over a decade ago, only on a larger scale here - only makes the perfect jumping-off point for anybody who cares about Catwoman as a character.

And how does Bruce Wayne attempt suicide, according to this retcon?
At this point comes the major new details in the classic origin story, the moment a ten-year-old Bruce Wayne attempted to cut his wrists with his father’s razor blade. He describes this as his act of surrender, after which “my life was no longer my life,” and it was at that moment he made his oath to fight crime.
They almost make it sound like he went through a lazarus effect, before coming back and deciding upon his crimefighting career. But it's just disgusting, and proves why superhero comics are being ruined by the obsession with retconning their origins every which way but loose. Do they honestly think this'll make any more of an impression on Bat-fans than any other dumb retcon they wasted their time with years before? Nor will it guarantee better sales.

And it all demonstrates how bankrupt and pointless superhero writing's been rendered. What Bruce Wayne is seen doing in this retcon actually reduces his heroism by making it look as though he almost gave up, or had little else to live for, not to mention it's in poor taste, even for a series where the angle is usually dark.

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