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Pull Yourselves Together. Damian Wayne is not DEAD!

April 28, 2013

Just give him a second. He’ll be fine.

Well, maybe he’s dead in the literal sense, because he did have a sword driven through him and he did cease living due to horrific injuries, and he did die. But that is without a doubt not the end of his story.  Grant Morrison still has three more issues, and if there is one thing that is perfectly clear about his career other than that he is a pretty amazing writer, it is that he cares for his creations the same way that a parent does their children.

Through a series of precedents established in other Morrison books, I will hopefully convince you beyond a shadow of a doubt that Damian Wayne will live again before the last page is turned in Morrison’s epic Batman run.

I present my case:


“Are you my dad?” “Yes. Yes I am.”

Exhibit 1 – Buddy Baker’s family is brutally murdered in Animal Man #19, leaving the character depressed and shattered.  Morrison’s next few issues feature explorations of what reality actually is, in a revenge fueled trip through the limbo of forgotten characters and abandoned story-lines. Ultimately Buddy actually crosses over into our reality and meets and converses with Morrison tête-à-tête.  Morrison explains the whys and wherefores of the torture that Buddy has gone through, and how it is all for the sake of drama.  His last act as the writer, whether it be an act of kindness to Buddy or to the next writer who took over the book, Morrison resurrects Buddy’s wife and kids and erases all memories of his crazy trip through the backstage of reality, comics, and both of our universes.  Morrison can be a brutal man to his creations, but he can also be very kind and nurturing.

Exhibit 2 – All Star Super Man – the entire story hinges on the looming DEATH of Superman, which never comes to pass.  Yes, he disappears into the heart of the sun, seemingly for all time, but he’s alive, and where there is life there is hope.

final crisis batman


Exhibit 3 – Batman in Final Crisis issue 6:  Batman is seemingly killed by Darkseid’s Omega beams and experiences the “Death that is life!”  BATMAN IS DEAD!?! Yes.  For one whole issue Batman was dead.  At the end of issue 7 Bruce Wayne turns up in Prehistoric times drawing on the wall of a cave.  (I’ve heard that Morrison didn’t want to end it that way, but don’t recall where, but the fact is that the ending took back the death, and Batman was alive.)  Morrison let the character cool off for sometime before penning the Return of Bruce Wayne, in which the character actually fights his way back home through time and space.


You can’t keep a miracle down!

Exhibit 4 – Mister Miracle in 7 Soldiers:  Shilo Norman, super escape artist, seemingly dies more than once over the course of 7 Soldiers.  The first time was when trying to escape an artificial black hole.  The second, after surrendering himself to Darkseid in exchange for the ancient hero, Aurakles.  BUT, once again, at the last moment, Morrison can’t help but offer the audience a last sliver of hope with an image of Mister Miracle clawing his way out of his own grave, escaping death itself (again) in the last image of the series.

photo(3)Exhibit 5 – Zauriel in JLA:   Zauriel is killed in JLA #38  (page #21 Which I own the art of!) when the watchtower is destroyed by a series of nuclear missiles launched by Lex Luthor.  Zauriel remained dead for less than half an issue.  His story picked up immediately in Heaven, where he hoped to enlist divine assistance in the fight against Mageddon.  He was denied and offered the option to stay or return to Earth.  He returned to Earth and had a few more adventures before fading into obscurity and is probably now a resident of character limbo.

387px-New_X-Men_114Exhibit X – New X-Men: Morrison brought the merry mutants into the new millennium by discarding their silly costumes and embracing the soap opera-y aspects of Marvel’s flagship mutant book. Over the course of his run we would see at least three main characters (Some of their names rhyme with Green Gray and Lag-Neato!— sort of) seemingly perish, only to be re-born bigger, brighter, and more dangerous than ever.

Exhibit 7 – One last piece of evidence, unrelated to precedents established by Morrison’s prior work: Doesn’t anyone find it suspicious that Batman is currently telling the “Zero Year” storyline?  I’m sure Snyder and Capullo will tell a fantastic origin in the new 52, but the timing seems pretty convenient.   Maybe they’re excusing themselves from continuity for 11 issues so they don’t spoil anything, or be forced to play by whatever crazy rules and plot lines that will be established in the coming 3 issues of Batman Inc?

In closing, I’d like to point out that the trick that Morrison likes to pull again and again is convincing you that all hope is lost, and then he goes one step further and shows you that hope is never lost.  Even though it is a hard fought journey, and quite a few characters go to hell and back, when the dust settles good always wins.  And you can rest assured that by the end of Batman Inc. #13, out this July, SOMEHOW Damian will be among the living, because Morrison likes to see the good guys win.

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