EDITOR'S NOTE: This post contains MAJOR SPOILERS for Batman Incorporated #8 which is due to hit shelves on February 26th 2013, if you DON'T want to be spoiled, DO NOT read this post!
Peter Tomasi recently talked about the recent news concerning Damian and what that means for Batman & Robin. He also talks about how close he is to the character, and what we can expect from future issues of Batman & Robin among other things.
CBR: At this point, there's very little that we know except that Damian will soon die in the pages of Grant's book. That's going to have an immediate impact on the Bat line in general, but on your series in particular. What was your first reaction when you heard of Grant's plan?
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.
CBR: With "Batman & Robin," how did you approach dealing with the death of your co-star in the pages of another series impact your approach moving forward? What was the first story you knew you had to tell when you heard the news?
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."
CBR: With you bringing Tim Drake back to the fore in a major way, how does Red Robin's joining the cast most impact the partnership at the core of this series and the emotional fallout from Damian's death? What's your impression of Tim as a partner as opposed to Damian?
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.
CBR: Tim Drake originally appeared a few years after Jason Todd's murder to make the argument that "Batman needs a Robin." Does the New 52 version of the character hold the same kind of thematic weight to this story?
Peter Tomasi: I think you're gonna need to wait until issue #19 to have an answer to that question. 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.
CBR: Overall, I'm sure there will be more than a few readers totally freaking out at this news, even as there's plenty of story yet to be told by both you and Grant. What can you say about why this story is one that needs to be told for the Batman line at this point?
Peter Tomasi: That's a tough question at this juncture to respond to, actually. Let's just say there's a big, epic picture in view over the horizon, but there's plenty of lightning storms and hurricanes for myself, Pat Gleason and our partners in crime Mick Gray and John Kalisz to still fly through before it all becomes clear.
To read the entire interview click here!
Posted by Dane Haji