Every week, MTV News is breaking down the biggest, buzziest bits from DC Comics' year-long series "Batman Eternal." This week, we talked to writer John Layman over e-mail to find out what's going on with shifting alliances and new characters as Gotham City continues its journey to literally burning to the ground:
MTV News: We’ve seen Batman go through the gauntlet the past few issues, but here he’s kicking criminal butt, working out, and not even getting chided by Alfred for staying out all night. How much do things need to escalate before Batman truly loses control?
John Layman: Not for another few issues, at least.
MTV: Bard is an interesting duck in this issue. By the end, Batman determines that maybe he’s on the side of good, but earlier interactions indicate things might not be that straightforward. So whose side is Bard on? And what kind of game, if any, is he playing?
Layman: Bard was hand-picked by Gordon. That's really all you need to know.
MTV: When Stephanie gets attacked at the phone, booth, do her parents now think she’s dead? And if her Dad is Cluemaster, who is her Mom?
Layman: Her mom is a lady used to money and the good life, and keeping her good life is her priority, even over her daughter's well being. Not exactly Mother-Of-The-Year material here.
MTV: During the showdown on the roof, it almost seems like Forbes was going to give Batman a chance, before Bard made his move. Is there any possibility that Forbes wouldn’t have attacked Batman?
Layman: Forbes' loyalty is to Falcone, so the only way he wouldn't attack Batman is if Falcone gave him marching orders not to.
MTV: Let’s talk about the end of the issue. Is that Catwoman? And if so, what’s she doing in Japan? If not, who is that, and what do we need to know about her?
Layman: She's a new character, and in a week or two EVERYBODY is going to be talking about her. She'll be playing a very big role in Batman Eternal, and Batman's life, in the weeks and months to come. I daresay her introduction in this issue, and the next two issue of Eternal, is my single biggest contribution to the book.
"Batman Eternal #8" is on sale now.