"Balyushka!": This story is reprinted from Villains Giant #1. Batman: Gotham Nights #6 is a chapter in the digital-first series Batman: Gotham Nights (Volume 1 (Digital)) with a cover date of May, 2020.
Appearing in "Balyushka!"
- Batman (Flashback and main story)
- The Joker (Flashback and main story)
- Anne Crowley (Flashback only)
- Benny Dalrymple (Flashback only)
- Brian Fusselputz (Flashback only)
- GCPD (Flashback and main story)
- Father O'Doul (Apparent Death) (Flashback and main story)
- Joe Finnegan
- Philip Shoemaker (Flashback only)
- Sharon Jones (Flashback only)
- Gotham City (Flashback and main story)
- Batmobile (Flashback and main story)
Synopsis for "Balyushka!"
This story is reprinted from Villains Giant #1.
Alfred tells Bruce that it's been a busy year, given how many low-priority criminals he's put behind bars and asks him why. In response, Bruce tells him that he decided to go after them since the high-value targets just keep escaping justice. The swell in prison population however causes the city to greatly reduce funds for healthcare.
Joker hijacks a news interview with Father O'Doul talking about the healthcare cuts, to relay his message promising to fund all medical needs of five people a week if they post a video he'd be impressed with and have to say the word "Balyushka" in them. Despite his proposition being ignored early on, people eventually start taking up his offer out of desperation which causes a city-wide chaos.
Batman stops some of the people doing insane acts saying "Balyushka", but realizes he needs to stop Joker in order to put an end to it. As he tries to look up the meaning of the word for a clue, Joker announces new winners of the week including Father O'Doul who had tried to stop people from giving into Joker's proposition, but himself records a video apparently shooting himself after finding out he has stage 4 cancer.
Seeing a Pandora moth in Joker's video, Batman figures out he's at a Christmas tree farm. While taking him in, Joker states that he himself let the problem fester and next day the city council reinstates the healthcare fund in Bruce's presence, but decides to cut back on the college fund. The video phenomenon soon stops, but Joker develops another scheme, this time promising to pay off student loans if they make the Balyushka videos to impress him.
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