SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Tom King and Mikel Janin's Batman #31, in stores now.
As “The War of Jokes and Riddles” heads towards its massive climax, The Riddler seems to hold all the cards, while The Joker is left with no-one on his side and a desperate plan to still come out the victor. Batman’s plan to end the war between his two most deadly rivals revolves entirely around the lovable loser known as Kite Man.
In this week’s issue (by Tom King, Mikel Janin, June Chung and Clayton Cowles) we learn that The Dark Knight was one step ahead of his enemies the entire time as he prepares to bring The War of Jokes and Riddles to a permanent end -- but he couldn't have done it without the kite-themed supervillain that everyone's talking about.
Riddle Me This...
The last issue of Batman revealed that while it seemed like Kite Man was the last man standing on Team Joker, he’d actually been working as a spy for The Riddler the whole time. In a heartbreaking issue, we learned that even though The Riddler was responsible for the death of Kite Man’s son, he’s too much of a loser to say no to the man he should hate the most in the world and instead is working with The Riddler and Batman to bring down The Joker for good.
This week’s issue of Batman finds The Joker locked in his penthouse without any henchmen or supervillain back-up, and an army of supervillains led by Batman and The Riddler ready to break in and bring him down. The only problem is The Joker has riddled (no pun intended) the building with traps, bombs and explosives which will stop any attempt to get in from either the ground or the roof. However, thanks to the daring wall-crawling exploits of Catwoman, Batman is able to ascertain that The Joker doesn’t have booby traps on the windows, which means they can get to The Joker if only they can think of a way to get to the seventy-third floor.
This is where Kite Man comes in.
The great thing about superhero comics is that when someone is good at something, it usually means they’re the best in the world at it, and good ol’ Charlie Brown (yes, that is Kite Man’s real name) is the best in the world when it comes to kites. Thanks to his genius kite-based know-how, Kite Man is able to rig up special kites for Batman, The Riddler, Two-Face, Poison Ivy, The Scarecrow, Clayface, Mr. Zsasz and even Killer Croc, allowing the supervillain army to crash the building and ruin The Joker’s plans.
But that's just the tip of the story's iceberg.