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Batman Comics Just Made Thomas Wayne's Death Even Darker

Spoilers ahead for "Wake," appearing in Batman: Urban Legends #7!

In his dying moments, Thomas Wayne saw his son would become Batman, and it filled him with fear—making his death even darker. In the story “Wake,” appearing in Batman: Urban Legends #7, a dying Bruce Wayne makes a shocking confession to Terry McGinnis—and adds a new layer to Thomas Wayne’s death.

Batman’s origin is classic and known by comic fans the world over: mugger Joe Chill shoots and kills Thomas and Martha Wayne, while their son Bruce watches. Bruce swears to avenge their death and becomes Batman. This origin story has become so iconic that very few tweaks have been made. One notable example is the Flashpoint Batman, who was Thomas Wayne, revealed to have survived the mugging attempt. In a gross distortion of his son’s fate, Thomas becomes Batman. Another occurred after Zero Hour, when the mugger’s identity was changed—it was now some random criminal and not Joe Chill. Any alterations to Batman’s origin are few and far between, but a new one happens in “Wake” written by Jackson Lanzig and Colin Kelly, with art by Max Dunbar, colors by Sebastian Cheng, and letters by Aditya Bidikar. The story is the leadoff to Batman: Urban Legends #7, on sale now in print and digital.

Related: Batman's Darkest Side Actually Comes From His Mother, Martha Wayne

In the future world of Batman Beyond, someone has murdered Bruce Wayne, and as he lays dying, Bruce reminiscences about his life and his career as Batman. He tells Terry that in his father’s dying moments, he saw that his son Bruce would turn into Batman. Thomas Wayne saw that his son’s legacy would be one of fear, and this horrified him. Bruce saw the terror in his father’s eyes as he died. Bruce tells Terry not to let this be his legacy, and to go “beyond.” Bruce then passes away.

Batman has one of the darkest origin stories in comics, and now an even darker layer has been added. Thomas and Martha Wayne’s last few seconds on Earth were already filled with terror and fear. The revelation that Thomas Wayne saw that his son would become Batman, and it horrified him, takes this a step further. Bruce saw his father’s fear and it impacted him as well. This would haunt Bruce for the rest of his life, but on his death bed, he realizes good can come of it—it can inspire Terry to do better; to improve on his legacy, and take it “beyond.”

Batman’s father, Thomas Wayne, saw what his son would grow up and become, and it filled him with fear—adding a dark layer to an already dark origin.

Next: Flashpoint Batman Is Seriously Trying to Make Up for Killing Alfred

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