In more ways than one it sure felt like Alfred was the unnecessary casualty of City of Bane. The extended event seemed like it needed a sacrifice to validate Tom King’s slow and messy final arc on Batman. I’m always against killing off characters for the sake of making a story feel important. An important story can be just as memorable and compelling without a death.
But this Alfred death is going to be a thing for the moment and DC is hyping it like a major event with Batman: Pennyworth R.I.P.
Alfred Pennyworth served the Wayne family for decades—even through the terrible loss of the Dark Knight’s parents. His shocking death at the hands of Bane is the only event that could possibly compare to that fateful night in Crime Alley, and it leaves Bruce at a similar crossroads. If Alfred was the glue that held the Bat-Family together, how will Batman deal with that all falling apart? And if the Caped Crusader is to be truly alone, he might either hang that cape up once and for all…or double down and carry on with this vengeful quest forever.
Co-written by James Tynion IV (Justice League, Justice League Dark, Detective Comics) and Peter J. Tomasi (Detective Comics, Adventures of the Super Sons, Batman and Robin) with art by Eddy Barrows (Freedom Fighters), Eber Ferreira (Blackest Night, Wonder Woman), and others, Batman: Pennyworth R.I.P. celebrates the life of one of the most important people in the history of Gotham City, while also addressing questions about what’s next.
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The thing is Alfred dying could lead to some interesting stories, but it seems a little irresponsible for King to leave the book and not have to deal with the fallout of his run’s biggest change to the status quo.
Instead, Tomasi and Tynion IV will have to handle the fallout on their runs on Detective Comics and Batman respectively. It’s also kinda wild how DC’s Pennyworth TV series just got renewed for a second season. This is that weird lack of synergy DC has with its TV/movie divisions as there’s no Titans comic to tie-in to the DC Universe Titans series, which just got picked up for a third season.
Batman: Pennyworth R.I.P. will be a 48-page Prestige Format one-shot and will be available Feb. 12, 2020.
Photo Credit: DC Comics