THE NEXT BATMAN: SECOND SON Digital Series

So, at the half-way point of the series.

Luke Fox goes looking for the culprit that forced Tamara’s overdose and relapse the first time (from the pages of Batwing!)—Ratcatcher! But is prepared for Ratcatcher’s dangerous new “family”?

So it opens with Luke Batwing action that sets the pace for the issue.

Add in a little Commissioner Montoya and the detectives from the “Future State” and their first mission together – dealing with the aforementioned Luke Batwing situation.

And then the delectable Fox Family drama…

Then back to the bat-action with Batwing Luke, and Ratcatcher, and homeless and runaway kids with automatic weapons, and Gotham City cops, and oh my… [insert smiley face]

And then the drama again.

And we close with the Tiffany situation, and we see where the seeds are first planted for John Ridley and Olivier Coipel’s BATMAN BLACK & WHITE issue.

So now we know where Tiffany Fox, The Kid-Sister Wonder™ first started.

Neat.

Oh, and there was a recent Newsarama interview with John Ridley…

An interesting exchange to me was…

Nrama: Grifter appeared in the first digital chapter of this - a relatively deep cut in comics, even if he reappeared recently in James Tynion IV’s Batman run. Are there any other deep cuts into past characters or storylines you’re aiming to include in Second Son?

Ridley: All I’m going to say is ‘Yes.’

Nrama: Deep cut or not, who else can we look forward to seeing in this book in future chapters? Will we see the likes of someone like Nightwing show up?

Ridley: I will say that there is a character showing up who I hope is very beloved in the DC universe. A character that I think is one of the really interesting characters in the DC universe. He, she, or they is a great character. I think underutilized. I could not be more excited to have this character come in and they will be very pivotal in explaining Jace’s past. How Jace might have any capacity to potentially put the cowl on.

I think that when this character shows up it really helps indicate where Jace is going to fit in the larger DC Universe, and the kinds of characters that already exist in the DC universe that if there is more of Jace, the kinds of characters that you might see.

But to answer your question, yeah, most definitely. You’re going to see some characters from the DC universe, but I think one in particular shows up that is really going to help bridge Jace’s previous existence to the present into the larger Bat universe.

Curious. Who can it be?

Gotta keep tuning in same bat-time, same bat-channel, I guess. [insert smiley face]

And after a bye week, an off-week, the drama continues.

Jace sizes up Arkadine’s new Gotham City muscle, Eabha O’Roark, with an ambush…and she’s going to be even more of a challenge than he could have anticipated! And what was the cause of the fracturing of the Fox family a decade earlier? What drove Lucius to move his eldest son overseas permanently? Secrets are about to be revealed…

A couple of beat-downs later, and…

So that was Eabha O’Roark.

And I like the motorcycle, the Jace-cycle.

It’s very, very cool looking. I wouldn’t mind having something like that myself.

And more “Future State” foreshadowing.

“Future State” foreshadowing with a dash of “end of issue” foreshadowing as well.

And at last… the drama. The delicious, Fox family drama.

And after a brief check-in with “Future State” detectives, Whitaker and Chubb. And more foreshadowing for those two showing how their path’s diverged and where we eventually meet them in FUTURE STATE: THE NEXT BATMAN #1

After that interlude we get some pre-courtroom goings on – and of course a bit of cliffhanger drama…

Yep, I’m really liking this.

It’s slow and boring, and no silly costumes and fisticuffs… perfect. Just how I like my super-hero comics. [insert smiley face]

No, this feels like a Vertigo comic almost. And that’s really cool, because Vertigo was pretty much all I read for years.

And this feels like a TV show too.

But that’s of course not surprising given who the writer is, John Ridley. And I wasn’t aware that he wrote an episode for the Static Shock animated series back in 2003, and for the Justice League animated series in 2004.

Of his television work, Guerilla is among my favorites.

Anyway, same Second Son-time, same Second Son-channel next week.

I’m kind of surprised that this comic isn’t promoted more clearly - I caught up this weekend, and was shocked at how closely it ties in with what Tynion and Tamaki are doing. I was under the impression that it would be before or after the point in the timeline that the main stories are happening, but instead, it’s a direct connection with everything else that’s going on. For the most part, I’m enjoying it, though I’m still annoyed that they refuse to explain where the name “Jace” came from, and the use of the “cancelled” term was so misplaced - it shows no understanding of how it works. If Ridley had just used “over” or “finished”, it would have been fine, but the attempt at relevancy fell flat - but thankfully, that’s the only time it felt so forced.

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@millernumber1

I’m pretty sure the use of “cancelled” was Jace be facetious, or being flippant, or dismissive or whatever.

So I don’t think (personally, at least) that there was any misplacement or anything like that in it’s use.

And the term “cancelled” isn’t really that hard to understand either. [insert smiley face]

In fact, the term “cancelled” is a facetious and flippant, and dismissive term. There is no other proper context for it other than that – that’s what it is, a flippant remark.

And that character, Ubetz… he’s someone who, like Vol said, is someone who is “internet famous” and beneath Jace even worrying about. He was a joke and was treated as such by Jace.

At least that’s how I read it.

And yeah, as for the name Jace…

John Ridley addressed it in an interview last month.

CBR: Can we expect this series to reveal why Tim changed his name to Jace?

Ridley: That’s another really good question. We will certainly get a much better sense of why, how, and when he changed his name from someone who was there when it happened. We may or may not get the full, complete story though. But I will say that it’s not haphazard. I’m not just making this up as I go along. Tim is a person who’s going through a transformation; he looked at his past and decided that he was not the same person. There a couple of reasons why he chose that name specifically and what the change means to him. His reasons were very personal.

As I’ve told other people, I want to treat these characters like they are real. I don’t want to say that I do that and no other writer does, but that name change is very real and very personal. In Second Son, you’ll get more of an understanding of it, but the full story will continue to be revealed, as we delve more into Jace, his existence, and who he is as a person.

CBR: So I gather there’s, there’s a reason why he chose that particular name.

Ridley: Yes, absolutely. There are many very personal reasons, both for me and for the character. It’s a part of my life that I’m proud to represent.

CBR: How much of Tim’s story is derived from your personal experience?

Ridley: A lot of it, from being around siblings who were better equipped and more successful than I was to obviously, being Black. I’m very fortunate to come from a Black family that was blessed with means, but also understanding that those means don’t necessarily protect you. Sometimes representing is an awesome responsibility, and it’s hard to live up to, but it’s a great feeling when you do live up to it. Sometimes it can feel burdensome, when you’ve fallen short, at least based on other people’s expectations. I can relate to all of those things.

I don’t put on a costume, go out at night, and try to fight crime. But I do understand what it means to have a moral compass and trying to do what’s right in a world that doesn’t understand what you’re doing. At some point, the public is going to realize that Jace is Black. We’re not going to shy away from what that means when that’s revealed. All of these things, are very much part of my lived experience, and an example of the things that I want to bring to the story.

So I imagine by issue #9 or #10, or by maybe issue #11, we’ll get a better understanding of it.

Which is what I assumed all along anyway.

Okay, this was the best issue yet…

What tragic event on Jace Fox’s 17th birthday forever altered the course of his young life and tore his family apart? The truth is at last revealed at his deposition…and it’s not what you think it is!

The truth as it were, starting from the beginning…

And then some mother Fox drama.

And then spoiled rich kid, Tim Fox…

So he’s about his “business,” huh? [insert smiley face]

And more of spoiled rich kid, full of himself, Tim Fox.

Yeah, the “I got a jet” line never works.

I tried it before and it didn’t work for me either.

And I’m kidding. It did work.

Still kidding.

Back to Timmy. I like him.

Yeah, Tim… not good.

And skip ahead, and…

Yep, not good.

This series is pretty good.

And like the issue said, “The truth is at last revealed at his deposition…and it’s not what you think it is!”

Yeah, I was not expecting this, but it was kind of cool.

And yeah, I don’t care about Jace (or Tim) becoming The Next Batman or anything like that. No, his life as Jace and Tim is much more interesting to me than any Batman stuff he might do.

And Jace kind of resents money now it seems. Interesting.

Jace-time!

The painful wounds of an estranged family are re-opened with Jace’s deposition…and more of his “origin” is revealed! The Next Batman’s formative years are revealed for the first time!

You should listen to your mother, Jace.

She’s just doing what’s best for you.

And then a “Future State” Chubb and Commissioner Montoya interlude about how the “Masks” are soon to be outlawed, and setting up how Whitaker came to be the way he is in the “Future State.”

And then Jace and drama… oh joy. :relaxed:

Listen to your father, Jace.

Kids just do not listen. They think they know all the answers. :relaxed:

And when think that you have all of the answers and you don’t listen to your parents you end up where… yes, military school.

And we meet Vol for the first time. Yay.

Hadiyah with the wisdom… the wise one.

You still should listen to your parents though, Jace. Then and now. :relaxed:

Anyway, we learn how Tim (Jace) learned how to fight.

As ever, this is a really good series, I think.

The pacing is just perfect – the slow burn is pitch perfect. It’s doing everything right. And I’m a little afraid because that rarely ever happens. :relaxed:

And just a few more issues to go, so not much time left for a let down, I guess. So I may have a near perfect series here.

Oh boy and oh joy.

Getting close to the end…

Tensions in the GCPD run high as Mayor Nakano’s anti-mask policies are dividing the force…and a brutal round one between Jace Fox and Eabha O’Roark doesn’t go the way anyone expects!

And so this weeks “episode” is set up.

And further foreshadowing, as was seen in the preview… Whitaker and Chubb and “Future State” set up.

And then Jace and the Jace-cycle.

I’m reminded a little of VIGILANTE: SOUTHLAND and Donny Fairchild.

A so few shots fired and punches thrown…

I like Jace’s “costume.” It’s very cool. I’d read a series with him dressed in a costume like that.

His The Next Batman costume I’m not liking at all, because it’s basically just Batman and so is boring. This one I’m liking though – it’s boring in it’s normalcy. :relaxed:

And Eabha O’Roark, from issue #7.

And we close with someone that John Ridley had teased a few weeks back in an interview…

Nrama: Deep cut or not, who else can we look forward to seeing in this book in future chapters? Will we see the likes of someone like Nightwing show up?

Ridley: I will say that there is a character showing up who I hope is very beloved in the DC universe. A character that I think is one of the really interesting characters in the DC universe. He, she, or they is a great character. I think underutilized. I could not be more excited to have this character come in and they will be very pivotal in explaining Jace’s past. How Jace might have any capacity to potentially put the cowl on.

I think that when this character shows up it really helps indicate where Jace is going to fit in the larger DC Universe, and the kinds of characters that already exist in the DC universe that if there is more of Jace, the kinds of characters that you might see.

But to answer your question, yeah, most definitely. You’re going to see some characters from the DC universe, but I think one in particular shows up that is really going to help bridge Jace’s previous existence to the present into the larger Bat universe.

And that someone is…

Very cool.

And as ever, really looking forward to seeing how this all ends.

Next time, same Jace-time, same Jace-channel.

Largely an action issue this week…

No quarter asked and none given as Katana arrives to save Jace from the clutches of the mysterious assassin The Morrigan! Also, Tanya Fox resolves the civil lawsuit against Jace once in for all…but what consequences will it hold for the future?!

Yep, largely an action issue with a bit of a revelation…

So that’s who trained Jace.

Cool.

Revelation aside, this was the weakest issue to date I thought due to the action.

But I guess you gotta have action in there somewhere.

Next week it all comes to an end. Interested to see what happens and how John Ridley wraps it all up.

And John Ridley is rumored to be relaunching BLACK PANTHER over at Marvel once Ta-Nehisi Coates’ run is over, so this is probably it for Jace for awhile.

Interesting that THE NEXT BATMAN: SECOND SON #12 is not listed on comixology at the moment. I guess there’s a delay somewhere?

Anyway, that Black Panther rumor was true…

The Marvel Comics superhero Black Panther is getting a new series and a new creative team in August. It will be written by the Oscar winning screenwriter John Ridley (“12 Years a Slave”), and drawn by Juann Cabal. (The current Black Panther series, which began in 2016 and has been written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, will conclude on May 26.)

Black Panther, created in 1966, is the first Black superhero in mainstream comics and hails from Wakanda, a fictional African country, where he is known as T’Challa and serves as king. Ridley said he is eager for the chance to write the hero. “First of all, Black Panther is just a great character in and of himself,” he said in a telephone interview. “But being a young Black kid growing up, every time you saw a hero that looked like you, even if their background didn’t reflect my lived experience, it was just something that made you feel closer to the wish fulfillment that is intrinsic in graphic novel writing.”

In the new story, Black Panther receives an urgent message from a Wakandan operative who is in danger. “It’s a hybrid espionage-superhero thriller, but at its core, it’s a love story,” Ridley said. “And I don’t mean just romantic love, although there’s some of that as well. It’s love between friends.”

He said he thought about his closest childhood friends “and the ways that we ran together and how our lives changed over time.”

He said he also wanted to reflect upon the last year. “We’re coming out of a summer where we saw Black people fighting for our rights, standing up, fighting in ways that we haven’t had to do in years,” he said. “And it was really important to me after the year we had where we can have these conversations with Black people and we can use words like love and caring and hope and regret and all these really fundamental emotions that everybody has.”

Huh…

I may have to check it out.

EDIT:

Well, probably not, but maybe…

I guess the issue came out after all.

Jace Fox makes a stunning discovery in subbasement 13 at Wayne Enterprises and a plan formulates. His mentor’s final words to him will become clear–be a symbol of better things.

The drama is back… hooray. :relaxed:

And then some Jace discovery of the aforementioned subbasement at Wayne Enterprises, Tricorner Yards. Some Lucius Fox drama, and a bit of Tim Fox self-doubt.

Interesting the Tiffany Fox evolution into Tiffany Fox: The Kid Sister Wonder ™.

And we close out with Jace and his discovery…

Well, that was a nice little series.

To be honest, I kind of glad it’s over. And I’m satisfied, and I have no burning desire to see anymore of Jace Fox as The Next Batman. Actually, no desire at all.

More Jace Fox would be okay, but if not, that’s okay too. Not everything has to be never ending.

Now bring on STATIC and ICON AND ROCKET.

Well even if the writers working on Black Panther that doesn’t necessarily mean we wont see him doing stuff with Jace Fox and get him into the suit in the modern day.

I want to see where this is going at the very least, to know whats going to happen between Luke and Jace.
Also Tiffany…Are they angling for her to eventually go the Batgirl route?

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@nuuninuunani

In a way, I guess.

Although, John Ridley really set Tiffany Fox up as Jace’s sidekick…

From John Ridley and Olivier Coipel’s BATMAN BLACK & WHITE issue:

So maybe they’ll do that.

In all, I guess I’m just a little bored now after the series ended. And I guess after thinking about it, I look at it as Jace is always going to be second (or third or fourth) fiddle to Bruce and Batman, so it’s like… “meh” to me now. But it was fun.

And I’ll just jump over to Milestone where the characters aren’t ever going to be second fiddle to Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman.

No, they’re in their own universe, so they’re the top dogs there and second to no one.

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I mean, that was kinda telegraphed from the get go that Jace wasn’t going to be overtaking Batman. Heck even in the Future State he was introduced in, we had another book showing that Bruce was still running around as Batman in the same city.

I had Noooo idea about this Black & White story though! I really appreciate you mentioning it ^.^ I’ll have to check it out

1 Like

@nuuninuunani

Yeah, I liked the "Afro puffs’ that Olivier Coipel put Tiffany Fox in… that looked cool to me.

Oh, and yeah, I never thought for a second that Jace was going to overtake Bruce as Batman. And was bemused by people who thought that he would. :relaxed:

And I never wanted him to either.

Really, I was just interested in whatever backstory that John Ridley was going to come up with…

Now I got it, and it was good, so I’m good.

And now bring on Icon, Reggie Hudlin. :relaxed:

EDIT:

Also, I was really into the idea of this series and Jace Fox, but then the Black Superman news came about and suddenly nothing else mattered. :relaxed:

But since I had started the thread I thought I may as well see it through to the end.

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And I guess there is going to be a new Batman series with Jace Fox…

I AM BATMAN.

I Am Batman #0 – The age of a new Dark Knight begins! On August 10, picking up immediately from the events of The Next Batman: Second Son , Jace Fox begins the march toward his destiny when he fights to protect Alleytown against the oppressive forces of the Magistrate, using Batman armor and tech he’s found in Bruce Wayne’s old base of operations, the Hibernaculum!

  • Written by John Ridley
  • Art and Main Cover by Travel Foreman
  • Card Stock Variant cover by Dave Wilkins
  • Card Stock Variant cover by Derrick Chew
  • Card Stock 1:25 Variant cover by Riccardo Federici
  • 40 Pages; $4.99 ($5.99 card stock variant cover)
  • On Sale Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Eh… we’ll see.

And probably not, because I’m a little Batman-ed out at the moment. I’ve had my fill of the Bat people.

And Icon and the Black Superman is more in line with my interests anyway…

And Jace is going to be wearing that Batman armor. So yeah… no, I don’t wanna see that. :laughing:

Either way, it’s nice to have choices for once. :relaxed:

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Ah, an august release. I suppose this must tie into that fall event they were talking about. Good to see that plot thread is continuing and wont just wind up being dropped.

I can certainly understand a bigger interest in Icon and that new Superman take over Batman. Heck, im still eagerly awaiting that ‘Nubia and the Amazons’ series that was announced as its the most hyped title for me.

When it comes to the Milestone stuff I confess its Static thats holding my interest the most. I still recall that cartoon

1 Like

@nuuninuunani

Yep, I wish this I AM BATMAN series all the best.

And for Milestone…

Icon first for me, then Static, then Hardware.

And I guess if Milestone gets a “second season,” maybe we’ll see if any of those ideas from a few years back get dusted off and brought to life.

We’ll see if this Earth M character is still something that they want to do…

EARTH M, an anthology featuring a mysterious new vigilante character.

Earth M is not only the name of the new Milestone Universe but it’s also the name of a new character that will exist outside of the city of Dakota in its own world. Written by Hudlin and Alice Randall, Covers will be drawn by the legendary Bill Sienkiewicz with interiors by Cowan and colors by Felix Serrano.

And that Love Army concept…

LOVE ARMY, a miniseries with story by Hudlin, about a secret army of women with amazing abilities and super-strength, sworn to protect the planet.

Love Army, also written by Hudlin features a strike “team of kick-a** women” from all over the world.

And I guess see if there’s any new ideas that they may have, and any new writers they may bring aboard.

Christopher Priest was there the first time around in a behind the scenes role in the early days, maybe this time he’ll also get involved and create a new character and write something?

Fun times ahead either way…

Interesting! Love Army if nothing else, kinda sounds like a Milestone Wonder Woman concept. Im certainly on board for that one if it comes out

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Well, today’s issue was very interesting, but I’m a bit frustrated/confused by the decision to jerk this series around. It feels like they could easily have made it an ongoing - The Next Batman - first arc “Second Son,” next arc “I Am Batman”.

I’m also really frustrated with the whole Jace thing - they still haven’t explained where Tim got the name or what it means to him other than “Not Tim”.

That being said, it is a good series, full of really interesting ideas that I’m very intrigued to see carried further. I just hope that it resolves some of the things I’m most invested in (What and where Jace means and comes from, Tam’s coma), and doesn’t put Luke down too much, since he’s my fave Fox.

Okay, this changes things a little bit.

From the September solicitations in DC CONNECT #14:

Olivier Coipel is the artist to the I AM BATMAN series proper.

I AM BATMAN #1

  • Story by JOHN RIDLEY
  • Art by OLIVIER COIPEL
  • Cover by OLIVIER COIPEL
  • $3.99 US | 32 PAGES | FC | DC
  • Variants by GREG CAPULLO and FRANCESCO MATTINA
  • 1:25 Variant by KAEL NGU
  • Team card stock variant by GABRIELE DELL’OTTO
  • $4.99 US
  • ON SALE 9/14/21
  • In the throes of Future State, the streets of Gotham City cry for justice and Jace Fox answers the call! With a new and improved Bat-Suit, Jace hits the streets to inspire and protect…as he follows the trail of the voice of misinformation and violence—the anarchistic Anti-Oracle! Can the new Dark Knight counterbalance their plan to inspire armed rebellion in the citizens of Gotham?! Can one man inspire a city?

And normally I think Batman looks a bit ridiculous, but the covering of the whole face looks kind of cool to me.

And Olivier Coipel with that cover draws what to me is the best The Next Batman has looked to date.

So I dunno… I may be able to talk myself into this… :relaxed: