BATMAN #41 May Star New BATMAN, But [Redacted] SPOILERS

DC Comics June 2015 solicitations
Credit: DC Comics

[Spoilers for Batman #41]

Page From Batman #41
Page From Batman #41
Credit: DC

Bruce Wayne is alive.

At least, the final page of Batman #41 implied the character is alive. A character was shown in silhouette, sitting on a park bench with his back to readers, when someone walked by, looked at his face and said, "Bruce Wayne?" The character appeared to be very relaxed, wearing a casual plaid shirt, and had what appeared to be a scruffy beard and neck-length hair.

In the previous issue of Batman — April's issue #40 — Bruce Wayne was supposedly dead after a brutal hand-to-hand battle between Batman and Joker. In the final scene of the fight, Batman and Joker were lying next to each other when an underground chamber collapsed on them. They were both assumed dead as Batman #40 concluded the six-issue "Endgame" storyline by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo.

Beginning with issue #41, which takes place two months after Batman's death, Gotham City has an "all-new Batman" — the mech-wearing, bulked up Jim Gordon. Solicitations and covers for Bat-family comics in June, July and August all star the all-new, mech-wearing Batman.

Even if Bruce Wayne is alive (as the end of Batman #41 implied), it appears that he's not acting as Batman anymore — at least not for the next few months.

Snyder and Capullo have admitted in interviews that Bruce Wayne would be coming back to life someday. Just this week, Capullo told Newsarama, "People already knew that. I mean, when I showed it to my 13-year-old at home — the end of 'Endgame' — he goes, 'Well, we all know Bruce Wayne's not dead. He's the main guy.' They know the true hero never dies, at least not permanently."

Readers have also noticed a hint about Bruce Wayne's survival that appeared in issue #40 and in the Free Comic Book Day eight-page Sneak Peek for Batman. In both stories, Capullo included a panel with two silhouetted characters — a man with bandages on him, walking with crutches next to a young character with an "R" on his jacket — whom some readers believe represents Bruce Wayne surviving (and walking next to his son, Damian Wayne/Robin).

Of course, if the end of Batman #41 is accurate and Bruce Wayne did survive the "Endgame" finale, the question remains — why isn't Bruce Wayne acting as Batman anymore?

Twitter activity