Warning: Minor SPOILERS for Batman #84
The final chapter of Tom King's Batman epic is fast approaching, with Bruce preparing for the final battle against his own father, Thomas Wayne. Now the secrets surrounding the return of the Flashpoint Batman have all been answered... revealing just how long he's been watching his son's rise and fall.
It's a question that has lingered ever since the two-part crossover involving "The Button," allowing Batman and The Flash to travel to the Flashpoint timeline. That trip meant Bruce finally got to meet his father as an adult -- and that version of Thomas met the man his son never got to become. So it came as a massive surprise when he somehow returned to break Batman as an ally of Bane. Thanks to Batman #84 that surprise is largely explained. Not only who is responsible for saving Thomas from the death of the Flashpoint timeline, but what caused him to turn against his own son.
The twist came so long ago, and Bane's plan to destroy Batman has escalated so much since, many fans may have forgotten that Thomas Wayne's return wasn't actually explained. After the two Batmen got their reunion, Bruce and Barry were forced to return as the Flashpoint timeline finally began to be erased from existence. It was then that Thomas gave his final words of advice -- "Let the Batman die with me." -- before he presumably ceased to exist, as well. So how did he not just survive, but emerge as the true villain pulling Bane's strings? Get that answer in our preview below:
The preview reveals the twist of the Flashpoint Batman clearly enough, but for those who may be thrown by the reverse order of the story, we'll simplify. It turns out Thomas didn't die along with his universe following the events of "The Button," but was pulled free by Eobard Thawne, the Reverse-Flash. It seems it's an act of revenge, after Thomas ran a sword through Thawne's chest in Flashpoint. The act was also presumed to have killed Thawne, but due to the unpredictability of the Speed Force (as Flash readers have since learned), killing Thawne simply shook him loose from the limits of his own reality. The only silver lining is that fans know Thawne was killed by Dr. Manhattan not long after stranding Thomas in the main DC Universe.
From there the Flashpoint Batman watched and waited, following Batman and Superman's double date, the courtship and proposal to Catwoman, and every other key event right along with readers. Now that he's stopped being merely an observer, and ended the threat of Bane for good, and used Alfred's death to further break Bruce, the true fight can begin. And Wednesday can't get here soon enough.
- BATMAN #84
- Release Date: December 4th, 2019
- Written by: Tom King
- Art by: Jorge Fornes, Jordie Bellaire
- Cover by: Mikel Janín
- Variant Cover by: Francesco Mattina
- "City of Bane" chapter eleven! The end is near as one victory leads to another defeat. As Batman reclaims his city from Bane, can he regain his sense of family? More specifically, when a man who is your father from another dimension has torn everything down around you, what will it take to build it back up? Especially when that man is currently staring you in the face and threatening to punch it. The final battle for Gotham City...and the cowl of the Caped Crusader...starts here!
Batman #84 will be available at your local comic book shop on December 4th, 2019.