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"War of Jokes & Riddles, Part One": In a flashback to Batman's second year as the caped crusader, we see the Joker is holding auditions. He seems to have lost the ability to laugh and now he is desperately trying to find a comedian who can. He is surrounded by the corpses


Quote1 And so it came. Over the next months as I fought to hold the city together, Gotham divided. Then fell. Into slaughter. Misery. Torture. Mayhem. Havoc. Betrayal. Devastation. Insanity. People think they understand me. Alfred, Gordon, the boys. All of Gotham, in its way. Even you. A man in pain, trying to save who he can. They think...but... they don't understand...anything. They don't know a thing about me. But you have to. Before. Before any of this. You have to know. What I did...what I had to do. During the War of Jokes and Riddles. Quote2
-- Batman



Appearing in "War of Jokes & Riddles, Part One"

Featured Characters:

  • Batman (Flashback and main story)

Supporting Characters:

Antagonists:

Other Characters:

Locations:

Items:

Synopsis for "War of Jokes & Riddles, Part One"

In a flashback to Batman's second year as the caped crusader, we see the Joker is holding auditions. He seems to have lost the ability to laugh and now he is desperately trying to find a comedian who can. He is surrounded by the corpses of the comedians that failed. Meanwhile, the Riddler manages to escape out of Arkham Asylum, where he had been locked up after the events of Zero Year. He kills a police detective and manages to walk out of the building unharmed by blackmailing the guards. Joker is later seen blowing up a comedy bar and shooting several innocent bystanders, but he is unable to find joy in his acts of terrorism.

At night, the Riddler pays the Joker a visit in his office, talking riddles on his way there. The Riddler tells Joker why he thinks he has lost the ability to laugh. He believes that the Joker's plans have been foiled by Batman too often and that because of this, the punchlines to the Joker's crimes have become too predictable, for he always loses. The Riddler reveals that Batman has made him feel the same, describing him as a riddle he cannot solve. The Riddler believes that if one of them were to kill Batman, it would leave the other feeling unsatisfied and that if they would go to war with each other over the right to kill Batman, Batman would still live because they would be too busy fighting each other. So the Riddler presents a solution to the Joker. He suggests they kill Batman together. The Joker, however, is unconvinced and shoots the Riddler in the Stomach. He then walks out of his office, leaving the Riddler to die.

Shortly afterward, Batman crashes into the office and finds the Riddler, still wounded. The Riddler warns Batman that the Joker stole his bomb on the way out and Batman leaves the Riddler behind to give chase to the Joker. Once alone in the office, the Riddler crawls up and walks out of the office.

The story then moves to the present day, where Bruce Wayne is describing these events to Selina Kyle. He tells her that the events of that night marked the beginning of a conflict that would plague Gotham City for months and to truly understand Bruce, she would have to hear what he did durring the War of Jokes and Riddles.



Notes

  • This book was first published on June 21, 2017.
  • No special notes.

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