When DC Comics relaunched its lineup with Rebirth earlier this year, fans probably expected what has become the normal shakeup of the DC continuity. Something akin to the New 52 relaunch where everything was generally the same, yet had its differences to set it apart.
In Rebirth, we saw the pre-New 52 Superman and Wally West return, and we learned that the Joker is somehow more complex than we originally thought. However, nothing was more significant than Batman finding the Comedian’s bloody badge in the Batcave in DC Rebirth #1 and declaring “we’re being watched.”
Up until now, the Watchmen have more or less lived in their own corner of the DC Universe. It’s never really explicitly stated, but it’s implied that the events of Watchmen are its own story, separate from the normal DC continuity. Batman’s discovery is going to change all of that, and according to writer Tom King, the mystery is going to start unraveling soon.
“It starts in Batman #9. It’ll hit there. This is a new continuity, so a lot of stuff is happening in Batman that affects the spine of the universe. It’s been going on, you just haven’t noticed it. For example, they just announced Suicide Squad vs the JLA – that’s coming out of the Amanda Waller stuff that we did in Batman.
It’s a long-term plan, so that spins out of the I Am Suicide arc. And then in Batman #9, you’ll see the first hints of how the Watchmen storyline will play throughout the Batman universe.”
What better character to unravel the mystery of the Watchmen in the Rebirth continuity than the World’s Greatest Detective. With the Watchmen story taking place during a specific time in an alternate 1980s, it’ll be interesting to see how they get weaved into the modern day world. I’d suspect that Dr. Manhattan would have something to do with it. And let’s be real, who wouldn’t want to see a matchup of Ozymandias vs The Batman? A guy can dream.
Also of note for Batman #9 is the return of the Man Who Broke the Bat, Bane, who King says “I think probably my favorite villain right now. I’m really having a great time with it.” Readers can pick up Batman #9 digitally or from your local comic book shop on October 19th!