I thought it would be interesting to see how the rest of the Bat family of writers are handling the aftermath of Damien's death. If we take a quick look at James Tynion's effort we'll see he's following Peters Tomasi's line of thinking that Batman is still in denial.
Tynion got a short feature and the end of Scot Snyder's Batman #19. At first I thought it just another tacked on story to justify the added dollar for the issue (that and the fold out cover) but I thrilled to see it explored the world of Batman and Superman in real time. I'm eagerly anticipating the return of the Batman/Superman comic for early this summer and here we get a sneak peek into that dynamic. The added bonus here is that Superman and Batman are not only allies but friends.
It seems Superman has been trying to contact the Caped Crusader and accusing Batman of ignoring his calls. From there we get to see the world's greatest superheroes together in the panel we see above. Call me a geek but I thought it was pretty exciting. Yes, we've seen them together in the Justice League but this seems a lot more organic to their relationship.
Tynion and artist Alex Maleev depict the two in the natural state. Superman regally floating above the city, stock still but impressively powerful. Batman, haunched over in the shadows using binoculars, ever the detective. (Also not surprised to find Superman floating nearby.)
Superman shows his concern for Batman by asking about Damien. Batman, emotions still raw from Damien's demise cuts him off with typical impatience. Well, not so typical in this case. Even an intervention from Superman isn't enough to break down the wall.
Batman, still in denial.
Our next set of frames comes from the greater part of Batman #19. Snyder and artist Capullo continue to explore Batman's denial. We find Batman in the depths of the Bat Cave. He had just been ruminating over a recent case with Robin and a close scrape with death. As was his want, Damien teases Batman about his fallibility. Now Batman stands over a pool of water deep in thought. Alfred tries to shake Batman out of his gloom by voicing concern over recent events and how Batman reacted to the "death" of Jason Todd. As Batman did in Tynion's story he cuts of Alfred with a curt, "enough". Alfred can only look on with a mixture of shock and dismay.
Batman, still in denial.
Soon Tomasi will move on from the "denial" storyline and explore the next step of the five stages of grief and that is "anger". I'll continue to seek out clues that his fellow writers are following his lead. (Then again, it'll hard to tell Batman's regular anger from the anger over Damien's death but I'm game.)
(p.s., Did anyone else get the impression that Batman was standing over a water filled Lazarus pit?)