Frankly the whole thing is just tasteless. I lived through the first stunt killing off Jason, my favourite Robin, whom they FUBARed with the Crisis on Infinite Earths reboot (after they said, just like this 'new 52' time, that Batman would remain the same), and the less said about that, the better. It's just pretentious, nothing more, and it proves that they have no new ideas. When they reached the first and most utter bankruptcy of creativity, they pulled a publicity stunt they knew would lead to Jason being killed off in one of the most revolting antics I have ever seen. It didn't work then, it doesn't work now: they were trying to isolate Batman, to concentrate on him as a character, but by that time they'd started the deterioration of his formerly stern-but-reasonable personality, a tormented man trying to do right, into the near-sociopath he is today. They failed to understand that it's his family, the supporting characters and other heroes around him, that make him more interesting. Batman was never a particularly nuanced character, but he was instead the figure that young readers hoped one day to grow into, whereas Robin was the character they either wished to befriend or saw a reflection of themselves in reality. They are a symbiotic gestalt, and dividing them doesn't work.
Hasn't anyone noticed that trying to have one without the other doesn't really work very well? Evidently no-one working for DC, least of all Grant Morrison, who perhaps should try writing without being on drugs, for once. Certainly, he's had a number of promising concepts, but his ability to actually realise those concepts is something I have never once seen exhibited in anything I've read of his. Like the rest of the crop of creative staff Marvel and DC both try to promote as if they were true celebrities, they have too many people drinking the kool-aid and ripping the flesh of anyone who dares criticise. Stunts like this don't exhibit integrity in any way whatsoever. They're nothing but tasteless stunts meant to milk money out of tragedy because they can't think of a creative or constructive way to bolster readership.
Killing off a character is one of the worst creative moves ever, especially in a story with unlimited scope. You are guaranteed to be killing off a character that is someone's favourite, and as such you are going to lose readers. They'll be reminded of the absence, it'll eat at them, and eventually -- even those Stockholm Syndrome-like drones that have dozens of titles in their pull list and never once read them -- they decide to stop. I did the same thing, back in the day. Marvel and DC apparently believe that the publicity will bring in new readers, but most are not retained. It's an extremely foolish decision, whether creatively or in terms of business, and they wonder why comic readership has hit all-time lows when they themselves don't respect their characters (and, through them, the readers).
The more people die as a result of Batman's inability to kill, the less he can be sympathised with as a hero. It would be one thing if many of his foes weren't proven serial killers, and especially when someone close to him is killed. He becomes not only unrealistic, but utterly unsympathetic; the Joker, for example, should have been dead a hundred times, but they don't dare. He's too valuable. So it's the rest of us that get the middle finger. Past a point, who cares what Batman goes through? It's not like he's going to actually do anything pro-active to stop it, is he? So what's the point? It's a concession of the superhero genre that, in cases like this, is an uncomfortably obvious elephant in the room.
I have my own concept of this world of superheroes, and it's a rare occasion I actually like something enough to accept it into that concept. Growing up reading comics taught me that there's a lot you have to toss out in order to enjoy things, but that's also part of the fun of reading, deciding what to make your own sort of personal story, your relationship with these characters. Since there's a revolving-door policy for creative teams on superhero stories, it's easy to toss out a team's work wholesale if it's not up to par...and with Marvel and DC since the 80s, there's been a lot of that. This? This is trash. What Morrison's done is trash, and it's a betrayal of Damian and all the readers as well. DC promised that this 'new 52' would be fresh and new and better, but I've yet to see it.
You can't make something better when you put it right back in the hands of the people that rendered it worthless in the first place.
I can only hope that maybe, just maybe, they'll realise their mistake and backpedal. Because as it stands, there's not a single thing that keeps me coming back to any of the Batman titles. A fanboyish approach to the writing, mediocre art more times than not, needlessly protracted stories...the comics I grew up with weren't all perfect, far from it. But they were overwhelmingly superior to the drek belched out especially in the past 15 years to try and wring a few bucks out of the customers still buying from the difficult condition known as nostalgia.