Spoiler Alert: Major Spoilers ahead for Batman #33 by Tom King and Joelle Jones.
Everyone finds it awkward to some extent when the father chooses to marry again. While he and his future wife could be happy, you can’t be sure about the reactions of all those related to the wedding. Sometimes kids love it, or they might hate it, but, they will have various acceptance issues, and that’s nothing compared to how the ex would feel when the news reaches her.
This is the situation that Tom King and Joelle Jones have created in Batman #33, and they explore the scenario in the context of the Bat-family after Selina Kyle had agreed to a marriage proposal by Bruce Wayne in the last issue of the series. While Batman and Catwoman indulge in a pre-honeymoon trip the kind that only a Bat couple could undertake, this news also breaches the walls of Wayne Manor.
My Four Sons
Bruce Wayne has one literal son Damian and three son-like figures in Dick Grayson, Jason Todd and Duke Thomas. They come to know of the wedding, not from Bruce Wayne, but, through an upset Alfred who is generally burdened to handle things that Bruce finds unpleasant to handle personally. They are astonished by what Alfred tells them.
Dick is not only the oldest among them, but, also the most sensible of ex-Batman apprentices and he doesn’t appear perturbed by the news and simply looks indifferent, which could be possibly due to his separate ways with Bruce, however, it is also surprising since he has considered Selina as an enemy most of the time. Jason is aghast at the news and vents his frustration at the latest Bruce disciple, Duke. Jason draws parallels between Duke and the typical Robin who is supposedly responsible for making Batman brighter than letting him marry an enemy. Jason goes on to refute Duke’s real work as Gotham’s daytime protector, The Signal.
Damian’s’ Reaction? What About Talia Al Ghul?
The Bat and The Cat Are Too Much For Even Robin To Stop
Since he is the latest one, Duke doesn’t show any anger when Alfred announced the marriage. This was more predictable compared to the indifference shown by Dick because Duke had considered Selina to be a Batman ally and probably more than an ally, assuming he is as good a detective as his mentor. In fact, Duke might have been the only one among those close to Bruce to have seen this coming. Responding to Jason’s finger gesture, Duke redirects him towards Damian, indicating that it was Damian who is managing the responsibility of Robin right now and not him.
The news has probably delivered the biggest blow on Damian as he is quite young and also because he is the only one biologically fathered by Bruce, thus, the only one who is now set to get a new stepmom. Damian Wayne ironically is about to become the only DC Comics superhero with two supervillain mothers.
How About The Response of Damian Wayne’s Mom?
Since the Batman and Catwoman were traversing the desert towards a country called Khadym, it had to be Alfred who had to tell the Bat-family about the marriage on Bruce’s behalf. Alfred also informed the Bat-family that the duo was undertaking a mission which was against the international agreement and could snowball into a global crisis of the kind that would need an intervention by the Justice League.
We wonder what prompted The Bat and The Cat to illegally enter a nation and ignite a possible war? Damian figures out that his father and soon to be stepmom might have gone to that distant nation only because Batman had located Damian’s mother and his ex-love Talia al Ghul.
That Special Moment When Your Fiance Is About To Meet Your Ex
While it has not been told as to why Batman and Catwoman would search for Damian’s mom, to begin with. It might be possible that Batman wanted to honor his son by informing his mother that he was going to marry again and a 15-hour horse ride through a desolate desert was the most practical way to do that.
The other possibility is that Batman also wants to make peace with Talia through some closure and expects some acceptance because it is always good to eliminate all possible chances of a showdown at the wedding. Damian will soon have a new mother, and it is not easy to imagine the young Selina guiding Damian to brush his teeth and finish his homework before going to bed, it will be a correct thing to inform the child of Ra’s al Ghul that her son will soon have a stepmother. This might either eliminate the drama or prepone a violent face off.
It is also possible that Selina might have wanted to face her predecessor so that she could solely claim Bruce’s heart by snatching it away from Talia. This is quite typical of someone who loves to steal but never likes to share. Selina is the one who sent away Khadym’s guard appointed by Justice League. Bruce intends to stay out of tangles, and this indicates that the trip was Selina’s plan and not Bruce’s. In any case, you better lay low when your current flame wants to meet your ex.
Therefore, it is an apt title to call this new storyline “Rules of Engagement” because the engagement of Bruce and Selina needs its own set of rules and must be breaking the rules set by others. The story’s second chapter Batman#34 will come out on November 1 with lot more breaking of rules and ensuing chaos.
Just in case you wanted to ask, Ace the Bat-Hound will be seen in this, and he will have his own response to the announcement by Alfred. Another character that gets a mention here is the Bat-Cow by Grant Morrison, and it also confirmed that the most crucial New 52 era chapter has entered DC’s Rebirth!