Evil incarnations of Batman will prowl the DC Universe in September in seven one-shots that tie into the upcoming event Dark Nights: Metal.
Announced this morning by DC Entertainment, each of the issues will feature “a different, corrupted version of Batman spawned from the Dark Multiverse to wreak havoc on Earth.” The news follows the release this week of Dark Days: The Forge, an oversize one-shot that teases a secret history of the DC Universe, and lays the foundation for July’s Dark Days: The Casting, and Dark Nights: Metal, the August-debuting miniseries by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo.
The series of Dark Knight one-shots debuts Sept. 20 with Batman: The Red Death #1, by writer Joshua Williamson and artist Carmine Di Giandomenico; followed Sept. 2y by Batman: The Murder Machine #1 by Frank Tieri and Ricardo Federici; Oct. 4 by Batman: The Dawnbreaker #1 by Sam Humphries and Ethan Van Sciver; Oct. 18 by Batman: The Drowned #1, by Dan Abnett and Philip Tan; Oct. 25 by Batman: The Merciless #1, by Peter J. Tomasi and Francis Manapul; Nov. 1 by Batman: The Devastator #1; and Nov. 15 by The Batman Who Laughs. The creative teams for the final two one-shots weren’t revealed.
The covers, which can be seen in the gallery above, depict the silhouettes of the different versions of Batman, most of which are superimposed by the logo of another hero (Nightwing, Aquaman, Green Lanntern, Wonder Woman) and, in one case, a villain (Doomsday). However, The Batman Who Laughs, a title that references the 1928 film that helped to inspire the creation of The Joker, doesn’t bear a character logo — at least not yet.
“With names like The Red Death, The Murder Machine, The Dawnbreaker, The Drowned, The Merciless, The Devastator and The Batman Who Laughs, it’s pretty clear that these creatures mean business and prove just how dangerous the Dark Multiverse will be for DC’s heroes,” DC Executive Editor Patrick McCallum said in a statement.
However, the impact of these Batmen from the Dark Multiverse won’t be limited to the one-shots: Their malevolent presence will infect some of DC’s supervillains, who want to bring Gotham City to its knees in a series of crossover stories titled “Gotham Resistance,” which begins Sept. 13 in Teen Titans #12, by Benjamin Percy and Mirka Andolfo, and continues Sept. 20 in Nightwing #29, by Tim Seeley and Paul Pelletier, before concluding Sept. 27 in Suicide Squad #26, by Rob Williams and Stjepan Sejic.
Priced at $3.99, each of the Batman one-shots will also ship with a foil-stamped cover by by Jason Fabok featuring a protective UV coating. Dark Nights: Metal #1, by Snyder and Capullo, goes on sale Aug. 16.