Off My Mind: Why Scott Snyder's Reveal in BATMAN #10 Makes Sense [SPOILERS]

  • 121 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Posted by G-Man (34953 posts) - - Show Bio

Hopefully you've read BATMAN #10 by now. Since the "New 52" started, we've seen Bruce Wayne dealing with a long hidden mystery in Gotham City. He thought he knew everything about the city but soon discovered the existence of the Court of Owls.

The Court stemmed from an old nursery rhyme. After Thomas and Martha Wayne were killed, Bruce wondered if there was more to their deaths than a simply mugging. Investigating the possibility of the existence of the Court of Owls lead him to the conclusion that they did not exist. This was an error that would soon come back to haunt him.

In the first nine issues of BATMAN, we've had mystery after mystery. Revelations have been sprouting left and right but none have been as huge as the one in issue #10. We now know the answer to the question of who has been behind a lot of the recent events.

This revelation changes the history of the Waynes as we thought we knew it. Scott Snyder made a bold move in firmly establishing this as an official part of Batman's mythos. This is why it makes perfect sense.

Final warning: there will be spoilers below!

== TEASER ==

The idea that Bruce Wayne had a brother, Thomas Wayne Jr. isn't a new concept. Those opposed to the idea of Bruce having a brother can't accuse Snyder of changing history because it's an idea that was established. Only nothing was ever really done with it.

The main source for Thomas Jr.'s existence is WORLD'S FINEST #223 from 1974. Batman was on the hunt for the Boomerang Killer. Along with Superman and Deadman, Batman was determined to find the killer. Deadman, inhabiting a civilian's body, managed to follow the killer to an apartment. When Batman and Deadman entered, they found a notebook with the name, Thomas Willowwood.

Deadman pointed out that Willowwood was the "upstate funny farm." Willowwood was also the name of the facility in BATMAN #10. Obviously there would have to be a reason for a patient at Willowwood to have that name as their surname as well. When Batman (and Deadman) visit the sanitarium, the doctor informs Batman that he can't give him access to Thomas Willowwood's records but is able to tell him that he escaped about a year ago. As for why his last name was Willowwood, the doctor informs them that Thomas came to them as a child and the name was used because his family name is a secret.

With Deadman able to inhabit people's body's, he jumps into the doctor's after Batman says there's no time to get a court order. As much as Batman dislikes using these methods, the killer is still on the loose. He reads that Thomas arrived there as a small child and was insane from injuries resulting from severe trauma after a car accident.

It's unfortunate that Thomas is still disturbed. It turned out that he was being used to kill others. The real killer convinced Thomas that the victims were enemies that were out to get him. Thomas seemed to have disappeared but what happened was Deadman took over his body and left. With Deadman in "control" of Thomas' body, innocents couldn't be harmed and Deadman had a new body for himself.

What doesn't make sense is the very next story in the same issue makes no mention of Deadman taking over Thomas Jr.'s body. He's back to his normal routine of randomly taking over people in order to get to the bottom of things. What ever happened to this Thomas Jr.?

Of course this isn't the only Thomas Wayne Jr. we've seen. In the reverse world of Earth 3, Thomas Wayne Jr. exists as Owlman and is part of the Crime Syndicate of Amerika. It was made that Owlman was Thomas Wayne Jr. in JLA: EARTH-2, published in 2000.

The character, Owlman, in the Crime Syndicate is meant to be the opposite of Batman. You could say he's his dark reflection. But this isn't simply an evil Bruce Wayne.

Owlman is actually Thomas Wayne Jr. on his world. Instead of Thomas Sr. and Martha getting killed, it turns out that Martha and Bruce were murdered. Thomas Jr. blamed his father for their deaths and became Owlman while Thomas Sr. became the commissioner.

The key here is the fact that Thomas Wayne Jr was Owlman, totally fitting considering Lincoln possibly being Thomas Wayne Jr and his connection to the Court of Owls.

In other words, Snyder didn't simply re-write history and introduce a (possible) brother to Bruce Wayne just for shock value. The existence of Thomas Jr. already existed. For whatever reason, absolutely nothing was done with it. Bringing him back could have been done by anyone. Thankfully and obviously Snyder put deep thought into how to make it work and work so well.

We'll have to keep reading to see how these events play out. Bruce doesn't fully believe the confession but he was wrong about the Court's existence in the first place.

Staff
#1 Posted by krspaceT (1487 posts) - - Show Bio

well at least Alfred isn;t evil

#2 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29501 posts) - - Show Bio

Loved that twist.

#3 Posted by zachkastner (188 posts) - - Show Bio
@InnerVenom123: Loved that twist.

Me too. I was pacing around my room during Lincoln's "Who Am I" monologue. I was bleeding anxiety.

#4 Posted by NightFang (10074 posts) - - Show Bio

@krspaceT said:

well at least Alfred isn;t evil

Until it tunes out he's the baby daddy.

#5 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29501 posts) - - Show Bio

@zachkastner said:

@InnerVenom123: Loved that twist.

Me too. I was pacing around my room during Lincoln's "Who Am I" monologue. I was bleeding anxiety.

Love the fact that he said "WHO?" over and over.

Like an owl.

But that's because I'm silly. :P

#6 Edited by colonyofcells (2038 posts) - - Show Bio

Bruce having siblings makes sense to me since doctors tend to have lots of children bec. doctors are rich. I was expecting issue 10 to reveal Bruce had a brother named Alex and issue 11 to reveal that Bruce also has a brother named Gabriel. They can also reboot main earth Helena as the sister of Bruce.

#7 Posted by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

Great twist indeed. Loved it. :)

I loved Morrison's run but most people who did not kept saying that he was using too many obscure references to past comics. Now let's see how these people react when Snyder does it and expressly reference a Morrison idea.

Also, it just goes to show how much that whole "the New 52 is for new readers" was BS. ^^

#8 Posted by viin (592 posts) - - Show Bio

should we start taking bets on when DC will make this into an animated movie?

#9 Posted by Booster_Bronze (204 posts) - - Show Bio

I love how Willowwood looks like a twisted, dark version of Wayne Manor.

#10 Posted by UltimateSMfan (1419 posts) - - Show Bio

@zachkastner said:

@InnerVenom123: Loved that twist.

Me too. I was pacing around my room during Lincoln's "Who Am I" monologue. I was bleeding anxiety.

lol fr a moment there i thought it was gonna be thomas (bruce's dad) n i almost jumped of my seat till i read 'jr.' then i read the rest and proclaimed scott snyder a genius!! bring on issue 11!!!!!!

#11 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29501 posts) - - Show Bio

@Booster_Bronze said:

I love how Willowwood looks like a twisted, dark version of Wayne Manor.

Oh, that is perfect.

I have to re-read this now.

#12 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29501 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap said:

Also, it just goes to show how much that whole "the New 52 is for new readers" was BS. ^^

You do realize that you don't HAVE to get the old continuity reference to find the twist shocking, right?

#13 Posted by Jodez (150 posts) - - Show Bio

So wait Thomas Wayne Jr. is Owlman, and Thomas Wayne Jr. of the Reverse Earth 2 (or is it 3?) is also Owlman... Why is he Owlman in both the regular and reverse worlds? Shouldn't he be Batman in one of them? Unless that means that the Bruce who died in the reverse Earth would've still grown up to be Batman if he hadn't died?

#14 Posted by edge0076 (56 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap said:

Great twist indeed. Loved it. :)

I loved Morrison's run but most people who did not kept saying that he was using too many obscure references to past comics. Now let's see how these people react when Snyder does it and expressly reference a Morrison idea.

Except that as explained in the above article, the idea existed well before Morrison ever wrote Batman.

#15 Posted by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

@edge0076 said:

@DarthShap said:

Great twist indeed. Loved it. :)

I loved Morrison's run but most people who did not kept saying that he was using too many obscure references to past comics. Now let's see how these people react when Snyder does it and expressly reference a Morrison idea.

Except that as explained in the above article, the idea existed well before Morrison ever wrote Batman.

Actually, you are the one who did not read the article properly.

Yes, pre-Crisis Earth-3 Owlman existed before Morrison wrote Batman. The character even existed before Morrison wrote anything.

However, it is Morrison who came up with the idea that in the antimatter universe (in JLA : Earth 2), Owlman was Thomas Jr.

#16 Posted by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123 said:

@DarthShap said:

Also, it just goes to show how much that whole "the New 52 is for new readers" was BS. ^^

You do realize that you don't HAVE to get the old continuity reference to find the twist shocking, right?

But then it is just that. A cheap soap opera like shocking twist :

"I am...your evil twin brother".

I would not be surprised if a lot of new readers found it cheesy and out of place in their Batman book.

However, continuity legitimizes this twist because it is a reference to a sillier past that continuity fans love.

That is kind of the point of this article, is it not? Explaining this legitimacy to readers who did not know about it.

#17 Posted by edge0076 (56 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap said:

@edge0076 said:

@DarthShap said:

Great twist indeed. Loved it. :)

I loved Morrison's run but most people who did not kept saying that he was using too many obscure references to past comics. Now let's see how these people react when Snyder does it and expressly reference a Morrison idea.

Except that as explained in the above article, the idea existed well before Morrison ever wrote Batman.

Actually, you are the one who did not read the article properly.

Yes, pre-Crisis Earth-3 Owlman existed before Morrison wrote Batman. The character even existed before Morrison wrote anything.

However, it is Morrison who came up with the idea that in the antimatter universe (in JLA : Earth 2), Owlman was Thomas Jr.

But you didn't expressly mention by name JLA Earth 2 in your initial post. All you mentioned was Morrison's run, by which one can assume you meant his Batman run because it did, indeed use many "obscure references" as opposed to his JLA run which I feel really didn't at all.

Now that that's out of the way, I've always pretty much preferred all the ideas Morrison put into his JLA run than his Batman run.

#18 Posted by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jodez said:

So wait Thomas Wayne Jr. is Owlman, and Thomas Wayne Jr. of the Reverse Earth 2 (or is it 3?) is also Owlman... Why is he Owlman in both the regular and reverse worlds? Shouldn't he be Batman in one of them? Unless that means that the Bruce who died in the reverse Earth would've still grown up to be Batman if he hadn't died?

The storyline was called "Earth 2" but it took place in the Antimatter Universe (which in turn was based on Pre-Crisis Earth-3).

I did not think about that but now that you mention it, it is about to get very nerdy:

In JLA: Syndicate Rules and in Trinity, Busiek introduced the idea that the Antimatter Universe was always evolving to reflect New Earth. When Riddler became a good guy on New Earth (Dini's post-Infinite Crisis Detective Comics run), the Antimatter Riddler, Enigma, became a villain in Trinity.

If that still applies, what it should mean is that post-Flashpoint, there is a Bruce Wayne Owlman in the Anti-Matter universe now that Junior exists as Owlman on New Earth.

#19 Posted by Gylan Thomas (2727 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap said:

Great twist indeed. Loved it. :)

I loved Morrison's run but most people who did not kept saying that he was using too many obscure references to past comics. Now let's see how these people react when Snyder does it and expressly reference a Morrison idea.

Also, it just goes to show how much that whole "the New 52 is for new readers" was BS. ^^

I'm one of those who didn't like Morrisons run.

It wasn't that he was using obscure things from the old continuity but rather the way he did it. I still prefer Snyders writing.

#20 Posted by Superbat420 (251 posts) - - Show Bio

Who the fuck is Alex and Gabriel? Did you really just assume random ass names for his brothers? Makes no sense at all colo ly of cells

#21 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29501 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap: They're not twins.

Besides, death itself has no shock value in comics anymore.

Good twists are incredibly rare in this medium, and this comic had a really goddamn good twist.

#22 Posted by RedOwl_1 (1664 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123 said:

Love the fact that he said "WHO?" over and over.

Like an owl.

But that's because I'm silly. :P

I did too XD

#23 Posted by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123 said:

@DarthShap: They're not twins.

Besides, death itself has no shock value in comics anymore.

Good twists are incredibly rare in this medium, and this comic had a really goddamn good twist.

I know they are not twins. I was referring to that FRIENDS episode ("He's Hans Ramoray, Drake's evil twin.") and to soap opera clichés in general.

Other than that, I guess it is a matter of opinion but again, the whole point of this article is to explain why this is a good twist to readers who would find it cheap (and I have talked to a few today).

#24 Posted by BigBDawg (263 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap: A very good question, Darth. After all, I can imagine a lot of the stuff kept on are kept the same for the most part I bet. And it'd be interesting that way for sure. =)

#25 Edited by TheMess1428 (2176 posts) - - Show Bio

@Superbat420 said:

Who the fuck is Alex and Gabriel? Did you really just assume random ass names for his brothers? Makes no sense at all colo ly of cells

Those are Cyclops' brothers in Marvel that they kept introducing later and later and tried to explain that they existed the entire time but we never knew. Alex Summers and Gabriel Summers.

#26 Posted by The_MVPs (84694 posts) - - Show Bio

Great story, great arc, and hopefully a great new character in the Batman continuity.

Moderator
#27 Posted by Phaedrusgr (1672 posts) - - Show Bio

If you read the interview, you may see that there's a chance he is not Bruce's brother after all. Let's wait and see, I say. I trust Snyder. I think he knows Batman better than anyone else and furthermore his whole approaching is respectful having no nonsense that doesn't fit to the bat-cosmos. That's just me though.

#28 Posted by EvanTheMexiJew (99 posts) - - Show Bio

I thought the villain was going to be Dr. Hurt if it wasn't going to be Owlman. Maybe they could team up one day? :)

#29 Posted by The_MVPs (84694 posts) - - Show Bio
@EvanTheMexiJew said:
I thought the villain was going to be Dr. Hurt if it wasn't going to be Owlman. Maybe they could team up one day? :)
Oh snap. That would have been cool to.
Moderator
#30 Posted by Jodez (150 posts) - - Show Bio

@DarthShap said:

@Jodez said:

So wait Thomas Wayne Jr. is Owlman, and Thomas Wayne Jr. of the Reverse Earth 2 (or is it 3?) is also Owlman... Why is he Owlman in both the regular and reverse worlds? Shouldn't he be Batman in one of them? Unless that means that the Bruce who died in the reverse Earth would've still grown up to be Batman if he hadn't died?

The storyline was called "Earth 2" but it took place in the Antimatter Universe (which in turn was based on Pre-Crisis Earth-3).

I did not think about that but now that you mention it, it is about to get very nerdy:

In JLA: Syndicate Rules and in Trinity, Busiek introduced the idea that the Antimatter Universe was always evolving to reflect New Earth. When Riddler became a good guy on New Earth (Dini's post-Infinite Crisis Detective Comics run), the Antimatter Riddler, Enigma, became a villain in Trinity.

If that still applies, what it should mean is that post-Flashpoint, there is a Bruce Wayne Owlman in the Anti-Matter universe now that Junior exists as Owlman on New Earth.

See now that kinda makes sense, I kinda liked the old Owlman though

#31 Edited by DarthShap (875 posts) - - Show Bio

@EvanTheMexiJew said:

I thought the villain was going to be Dr. Hurt if it wasn't going to be Owlman. Maybe they could team up one day? :)

"War of the Waynes." ^^

It kinds of sounds cool actually.

@Jodez said:

See now that kinda makes sense, I kinda liked the old Owlman though

He will be back. Since September, we have already been to New Earth, Earth-1 (the graphic novels), and Earth-2. There is no way DC does not give us Earth-3 or the Anti-matter universe next.

#32 Posted by Booster_Bronze (204 posts) - - Show Bio

I think that Snyder did EXACTLY what the whole purpose of the DCnU and the reboot was: To simplify alot of confusing, convoluted crap for new readers. The original ideas (that of Bruce having a brother and then Morrison naming a Thomas Wayne Jr.) were simply conbined and simplified into ONE idea that made more sense than alternate realities and all that confusing stuff.

Also, a dream team-up I would LOVE to see: Hush and Thomas Wayne Jr. Imagine it, Hush trying to help Thomas gain control of the family fortune, both guys having a personal grudge against Bruce, not just Batman as most of his rogue's gallery do.

#33 Posted by Miss_Garrick (1757 posts) - - Show Bio

Considering how some comic characters have been around for more than 70 years, Mr. Snyder taking previously established story elements from an old continuity and putting a interesting new twist on them today is a great idea!

#34 Posted by PrioritySeven (23 posts) - - Show Bio

@Booster_Bronze said:

I think that Snyder did EXACTLY what the whole purpose of the DCnU and the reboot was: To simplify alot of confusing, convoluted crap for new readers. The original ideas (that of Bruce having a brother and then Morrison naming a Thomas Wayne Jr.) were simply conbined and simplified into ONE idea that made more sense than alternate realities and all that confusing stuff.

Also, a dream team-up I would LOVE to see: Hush and Thomas Wayne Jr. Imagine it, Hush trying to help Thomas gain control of the family fortune, both guys having a personal grudge against Bruce, not just Batman as most of his rogue's gallery do.

Duder, I LOVE the idea of Hush and Thomas Wayne Jr. vs Bruce! Who knows, maybe it's on Snyder's radar for the future?

#35 Edited by Maybeland (14 posts) - - Show Bio

I have a problem with the magically appearing Waynes of Snyder and Morrison.

I'll give it to Snyder for keeping it down to one and making the reveal 10 issues instead of 60 spread out over 3 different titles.

But doesn't this all seem a little soap opera-ey to anybody I mean I was shocked that March didn't have an eyepach, a mustache, and Amnesia!

I'd also argue that this reveal is way too repetitive of what Snyder did with James Jr. in Black Mirror.

Can we get a Batman book that doesn't involve trudging up evil relatives out of thin air( or 40 years ago).

#36 Posted by Cancer the Conqueror (78 posts) - - Show Bio

@Booster_Bronze: Actually, back in high school when I was struggling to craft a fan-fic "Ultimate DC Universe", I rewrote it that Thomas Wayne Jr. WAS Hush! Blending the two characters together worked well, but even if it could actually exist, it looks like Snyder took the shock value of using an obscure character from the 70's. As for the people who think bringing that aforementioned character back, at that point we're getting into the often legthy debate about the relevancy of comic-books. Without getting into too much detail, I agree with the idea of bringing back unused characters of yore; what's the point of introducing your own character to fit your story when, with enough digging, you can discover a smaller character that can easily fit the profile?

#37 Posted by Azrael66 (277 posts) - - Show Bio

Amazing twist. Amazing issue.

#38 Posted by mbembet (219 posts) - - Show Bio

stupid arc and scott snyder is overrated

#39 Posted by BlackArmor (6141 posts) - - Show Bio

@mbembet said:

stupid arc and scott snyder is overrated

I thought it was impossible for opinions to be wrong. Thanks for correcting me.

Edit: Yo be fair Snyder is slightly overrated and I do mean slightly

#40 Posted by Emperormeister734 (814 posts) - - Show Bio
#41 Posted by GTG12 (1575 posts) - - Show Bio

This was an amazing twist from an amazing book.

#42 Posted by ChaosAgent (61 posts) - - Show Bio

@InnerVenom123: Ahaha, nice.

I didn't catch that, myself.

#43 Posted by JamDamage (1114 posts) - - Show Bio

This issue was great. I hope the arch finally ends with issue 12 because I'm sick of the suspence after each issue. Bruce having a brother, and making him an owl is just a silly good idea. Other then X-Force this is was the best book this week. Lot's of good books this week.

#44 Posted by bunkerbuster05 (307 posts) - - Show Bio

@NightFang said:

@krspaceT said:

well at least Alfred isn;t evil

Until it tunes out he's the baby daddy.

WHAT A TWIST!

#45 Posted by Webjaker (366 posts) - - Show Bio

The ONE and ONLY criticism I had about Snyder's Batman title was that Bruce Wayne and Lincoln March were drawn almost identically - well dont I feel stupid! Well played sir ... well played

#46 Edited by darkrider (450 posts) - - Show Bio

surprisingly the comic of the week for me was green lantern

#47 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

See now this will be interesting if it turns out that Bruce does have a brother and that it is not a shock value new concept but something that is being reintroduced into the Batman mythos. It will be fascinating to see where Snyder goes with that.

#48 Posted by CrimsonTempest (307 posts) - - Show Bio
@mbembet said:
stupid arc and scott snyder is overrated
You have no idea what you're uttering, do you?
#49 Posted by CrimsonTempest (307 posts) - - Show Bio
@Booster_Bronze said:

I think that Snyder did EXACTLY what the whole purpose of the DCnU and the reboot was: To simplify alot of confusing, convoluted crap for new readers. The original ideas (that of Bruce having a brother and then Morrison naming a Thomas Wayne Jr.) were simply conbined and simplified into ONE idea that made more sense than alternate realities and all that confusing stuff.

Also, a dream team-up I would LOVE to see: Hush and Thomas Wayne Jr. Imagine it, Hush trying to help Thomas gain control of the family fortune, both guys having a personal grudge against Bruce, not just Batman as most of his rogue's gallery do.

The psychotic trio against Batman: Hush, Thomas Jr., and James Jr. Best team-up ever.
#50 Posted by Agiyosi (32 posts) - - Show Bio

I've been really enjoying this reboot of Batman, but I wasn't blown away by it like a lot of folks. And as I wasn't crazy about the art, it is starting to grow on me. This issue, though, brought it all home for me.

I love the idea of Bruce having an (evil) brother. Great origin story, IMO. I just hope that it sticks and that if you establish he does indeed have a brother, this brother of the Batman must be written to be a rather extraordinary character.

This edit will also create new pages on Comic Vine for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Comic Vine users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.