This was not written by me. I found this on tumblr. As soon as I read it, I knew I immediately had to post it on here. It so beautifully and gracefully sums up how much Grant has messed up and continues to do so in his series, which is unjustly high-praised, Batman Inc.
Took the words right out of my heart.
My name is Juli. I’m 21 and studying art, and my father got me into comic books as a young girl. I’ve begun my own collection, and the first thing that I tell people when discussing comics is that my favorite character is Talia al Ghul.
I fell in love with her as a character, for what she stood for. Her heart and her love and her struggles touched me in a deep and meaningful way.
I have been actively roleplaying as Talia online for the past six months. And along the way, I have gathered as many of her appearances in the comics as I have been able. I’ve gotten into her head, and talked to other Talia fans, and explored the facets of emotion. I feel like I know this character intimately. I don’t claim perfection in the understanding of her, but I know that I know her better than most. I will defend her time and time again, because let’s face it: Talia has not been a very well received character (and I’m not blaming Catwoman fans).
I’ve been waiting for Batman Inc. 2 for months. I knew you were writing her story and I wanted so badly for it to live up to this image in my head. I had seven dollars in my bank account and I was ready to use half of it to buy this issue (by the time it was out, it had a good bit more in it, but I digress).
I read it last night, while I was on break during my summer job as a camp counselor.
And I started to cry. And it was not because I was happy.
I was angry, Mr. Morrison. I was angry.
Granted, I enjoyed a vast majority of the issue. Melisande and Ra’s at Woodstock? Wonderful. Seeing pictures into Talia’s rarely-seen childhood? Great.
But I cried and nearly threw my Android to the ground when I read the line “Talia, did you put something in my drink?”
For months, I as a Talia lover and roleplayer have had to defend the character I adore. Saying, “No, no, she didn’t rape Bruce.” Because I believe with all of my heart that Talia loves him. She has shown time and time again that she does because time and time again she has risked everything for him. Everything she knows, everything safe. I used your quote:
“For a long time, [DC] said [Son of the Demon] was out of continuity. Now it’s just kind of out of continuity. I didn’t actually read it before I started writing this. I messed up a lot of details, like Batman wasn’t drugged when he was having sex with Talia and it didn’t take place in the desert. I was relying on shaky memories. But now we have this new “Superboy punch” continuity [after Superboy Prime attacked the fabric of the universe during Infinite Crisis]. People still don’t realize how important that single punch was to cover everyone’s ass.”
Time and TIME again to try to prove that it was not so. But now you’ve retconned your retcon, and it makes me unbelievably angry. All it does it make people who don’t know Talia as I do see her as a crazy and selfish rapist bitch. And that is so far from the truth.
You also claimed that this issue would be “for the girls,” but I found no emotion here. We didn’t get into Talia’s head or see her heart, or gain any real understanding into why she does what she does. Her wants, her fears, her motivations. I could talk all day about it because I have psychoanalyzed her based on as many of her appearances that I can. I wanted something like that. Something like “The Prison” of Batman Chronicles #8. Where we see Talia’s heart. And here, we saw very little.
This was your shot at redeeming yourself for me. You failed. And so, I won’t be picking up Batman Inc. again because I can’t bear to see this twisting of Talia’s characterization anymore. I will not watch the character I love the most be turned into what you’re making her out to be. I won’t.
So I respectfully add myself to the tally of discouraged and disappointed female comic book readers.