James Tynion Teases Future of ‘Batman’

Article by Eric Lee

Batman writer James Tynion has discussed his plans for the title, as well as tie-in books like Joker.

In an interview with Newsarama, Tynion spoke at length on all the recent announcements, like Tim Fox being the “Future State” Batman or the launch of the Joker ongoing series. The biggest surprise is that the titles will intertwine with each other and eventually reach a narrative climax together.

The biggest thing that I can impart is that there’s a big plan in motion right now. Like, we have a bunch of plans for the Batman title, for the Joker title, for all of these titles, and we have some key moments where all of those threads are going to crescendo together. Then we have ways that they’re going to continue playing off of each other.

Among other similarities, Punchline-related plot threads that Tynion set up in Batman are set to continue in Joker. Furthermore, the titles will share Barbara Gordon acting as Oracle. She will be featured heavily in both books, as well as in Nightwing.

Harley in ‘Batman’

James Tynion also hints at an expanded role for Harley Quinn in Batman. She’s been more present in the title since “Joker War”. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Harley’s now a member of the Bat-family. In fact, she seems to be more of a nuisance to Batman than an ally.

Right now, the fun thing in the dynamic between Batman and Harley is that (she) considers herself Batman’s new sidekick. She thinks she’s the new Robin, essentially. Batman disagrees. Harley keeps showing up at the scene of the crime and keeps escalating things, and getting into trouble. Batman’s supportive of the idea of Harley trying to make things better, and make up for past crimes, but at the same time, Harley’s a chaos agent, and throwing a chaos agent in the mix is an often disastrous proposition.

Harley’s going to be a key character in the Batman title next year, and I love writing her. I’m very, very excited for everyone to see what we’ve got cooking for her, and I’m working closely with Stephanie Phillips and Riley Rossmo on their Harley series.

Additionally, any elements for Harley will carry over, between Batman and her self-titled comic. This is a different approach, after years of the Harley Quinn comic existing in a separate sphere of lite continuity from the other Bat-titles.

Other Future Hints

Tynion ends his interview with the next big baddie to haunt Batman: Scarecrow. Fans can anticipate a big Scarecrow arc with art by Justice League and “Joker War” illustrator Jorge Jimenez.

The big villain of the main Batman title next year is Scarecrow, who is one of my favorite Gotham villains. We’re going to be doing something very big with him. Jorge Jimenez has a phenomenal new design for him. We’re off to the races, and what I’m setting out to do is, I hope I can tell one of the best Scarecrow stories ever. It’s more than just a Scarecrow story. He’s not the only key piece to it. We also have some of the threads that are set up in the “Future State” storylines, particularly with the Magistrate and Peacekeepers. You’ll see the origins of those threads start in the Batman story in March. So, all of that’s going to come together. It’s going to be a big, crazy story, and I could not be more excited about it.

Sounds awesome! Tynion definitely has a full year ahead of him in Batman, as his run will continue after the “Future State” arc with issue #106 in March 2021.

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Eric Lee

Eric Lee hails from San Francisco, California and has been one of the biggest fans of Batman since he was 2 years old when his dad showed him Tim Burton's 'Batman' on a fuzzy VHS. Currently, Eric is an avid comic book reader and writer and illustrator working on his own graphic novel. You can see his doodles at meeleeart.com.