We look away from Gotham City and its takeover by Bane to see how Bruce Wayne is doing at a beach resort with Selina Kyle.

Batman 78
Written by Tom King
Pencils and Inks by Clay Mann
Colors by Tomeu Morey

Batman has been defeated. For the second time since Bane was introduced in the comics in late 1992, the hulking giant has managed to beat the Bat by using his brains and creating a vast psychological advantage over his opponent, taking over his city in the process.

There’s been an unspoken reason why Bane was able to beat Batman, though, that finally gets an admission here. Of all the things Bane did to mess with the Caped Crusader’s head, the only thing that really allowed him to overtake his opponent was having Catwoman jilt Batman at the ALTAR. Instead of starting a new life with Catwoman as his life partner, Batman instead had JURY DUTY and he battled his father from another timeline and he went back to fighting back Bane’s surge in Gotham City. But his heart was no longer in it and he lost to Bane.


Finally, in this issue, writer Tom King addresses the elephant in the room after Catwoman rescued Batman and began nursing him back to health. During their training, the former couple finally has a chance to talk about what happened and how it affected them. Because they are both stubborn, broody and confrontational people, it takes them almost a full issue to finally admit to how they’ve been feeling since their failed wedding.

King is so good with these issues. Whatever I think about his overall narrative and how he’s handled certain arcs in this series, when it comes down to the personal, the issues where he shows some down time and people being themselves, I’m not sure there’s anyone better at it right now.

It’s a nice break from all-out, total war.