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Earlier today, some spoilers for Batman Inc. #8 caused a bit of a media maelstrom. We did our best to hide the info but by now I'm sure your all aware that Damian Wayne bites the big one. So what does that mean for Peter Tomasi's Batman & Robin?
With the news of Damian's death in Batman Incorporated #8, many fans are anxious to learn who will be taking his place in Batman & Robin. CBR spoke to series writer Peter Tomasi to talk about the fallout.
Peter's response to learning that Morrison would be killing off Damian in Batman Inc. #8.
Peter Tomasi: I threw my hands up and yelled: "KHAAAAAN!-- Actually, I knew Damian was going to die for quite a while, but my first reaction truthfully was, "Damn, he's such an interesting character and one I love writing that I hope there's some way that Grant, over the course of time, will change his mind." As you'll see in "Batman, Incorporated" #8, it was not to be.
Tomais was actually there from the beginning as he was the editor of the Bat line during Damian initial introduction to DC Comics. He admits that if Damian had to die, he wishes it could've been in his book.
Peter Tomasi: I approached it knowing that I had an ending to work towards, and as I mentioned earlier, it gave me the freedom to keep our story centered on the hearts and minds of Bruce and Damian and not worry as much about the villain of the month angle. As long as we focused on that, I felt we were being true to our mission statement (which everyone can read in the back pages of the first collected volume "Batman and Robin: Born To Kill"). Now, as a writer, I'd be lying through my teeth if I said I didn't care that one of our main characters was getting killed off in another series -- if Damian had to die, I would have loved to craft that story. But Damian was Grant's baby, so he deserved, and of course earned, the right to bring his character to the fated doomsday he'd been working on for so many years.
The first story I knew I had to tell after Damian's death would be Bruce's reaction in "Batman and Robin" #18. It's an entirely silent issue; no text, no sound effects, storytelling at its purest form -- show don't tell -- and, holy crap, does Patrick Gleason show why, in my humble opinion, he might be one of the best Batman artists ever. He knocks it out of the park.
I think issues #17 and 18 of "Batman and Robin" show just how much Bruce needed Damian and Damian needed Bruce, and the reverberations of Damian's murder don't stop there. There are five stages of grief, and we intend to explore it in a very visceral way.The title of the series for the next several issues will change, the first being "Batman And Red Robin," the second being "Batman And Red Hood."
First Tim Drake and then Jason Todd will feature in Batman & Robin but it sounds like neither will be the permanent replacement. However, Tomasi plays coy when the interviewer tries to get a straight answer about Drake's role.
Peter Tomasi: I wouldn't jump to conclusions that Tim Drake is coming back in a big way. Red Robin is in issue #19, but not necessarily as a partner... I will say that I didn't want to take the usual road that's been travelled when it comes to the "Batman needs a Robin" angle.
With a title like Batman & Robin, we know that it's inevitable that someone will be stepping in to fill Damian's shoes. One prevailing question is which Batman-writer will be the one to decide who that is? Will it be Tomasi after all, or maybe Scott Snyder in the main Bat book or will Morrision himself balance the scales? Candidates include Drake, Todd, Harper Row, Carrie Kelley, Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown. Who would you like to see fight crime side by side with Batman?
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