"Lake of Fire": Punisher teams up with the replacement Batman (Azrael) whose brutal tactics compliment one another.
Batman and Punisher: Lake of Fire #1 is a one-shot with a cover date of August, 1994.
Synopsis for "Lake of Fire"
Punisher teams up with the replacement Batman (Azrael) whose brutal tactics compliment one another.
In a dream, Batman (Jean-Paul Valley) was in Hell being judged by Saint Dumas. Valley suddenly woke up and believed that he may have dreamt that due to exchanging his Order of St. Dumas robes for the Batsuit. Valley got into his Batsuit and decided to search for Cass Rimer, who was suspected of stealing a formula for rocket fuel from the Pentagon by the F.B.I., by searching for Rimer's associate Tony Bressi. Meanwhile, the Punisher had arrived in Gotham City in search for Jigsaw. The Punisher entered a bar where he got into a fight with several individuals, defeating them all, but one. Frank held the last bar patron at gunpoint, questioning him of Jigsaw's whereabouts, eventually being told that the gangster would be at St. Ludger's Church in Downtown Gotham. Meanwhile, at the Kochman Building, Russo and Rimer were watching tapes of the Punisher and discussing how everything went according to plan and that there would be a trap waiting for the Punisher at the church.
The Punisher arrived at the church and upon entrance, encountered a woman who appeared to be a nun. The woman splashed Frank with what appeared to be holy water, when in fact, it was a drug that disoriented him. Next, the woman started a fire within the church in an attempt to kill Frank. Frank attempted to make his way out, but got lost and collapsed. Suddenly, Batman (Jean-Paul Valley) arrived, crashing into the window, and recovered Frank's body, rushing out. Immediately, Batman and the Punisher recognized each other and the two agreed to form an alliance in order to take down Russo and Bressi and recover the rocket fuel formula. However, Batman pointed out that he would begin to hunt down the Punisher after the criminals are defeated. Later, Batman and the Punisher drove to Minsk Baths where the gunslinger suspected former KGB agents who could be potential buyers of the rocket fuel formula, could be based. When Frank and Batman arrived at the building, the guards refused to let them in, so the duo beat them up. Next, the two searched the building for the potential buyers with Frank triggering a fight. During the fight, Batman threw the Punisher a gas mask and threw a gas grenade onto the floor, knocking the criminals unconscious. Next, Batman summoned St. Dumas in hopes for assistance and was told to look for "fiery water." Suddenly, Batman noticed that Frank was gone. Batman, then returned to Batmobile while Frank watched him from the rooftop of the building.
An angry Batman drove away and decided to search for more information on Bressi on the Batmobile's computer. Batman arrived at Kochman Building to look for Bressi. Inside of the building, he encountered Russo and Rimer and fought them, eventually gaining the upper hand over Rimer and learning from him that he and Russo had placed a primer at the Reservoir Conduct and that it would detonate in ten minutes. Batman threw Rimer at a table and rushed out to the Gotham Reservoir Conduct. Shortly after Batman had arrived, the primer exploded, causing water to flow out of the reservoir. Back at Kochman Building, Russo was conversing with an associate over the phone, instructing him to inform the mayor that he would have the reservoir fixed for a price. Meanwhile, Frank appeared behind Russo, holding a gun against his head. The Punisher and Jigsaw fought, with the latter firing several shots at the former, shooting him in the shoulder and the Punisher throwing his knife at Jigsaw missing. The Punisher followed Jigsaw to the rooftop where they fought until the former pushed the latter off of the building. Before Russo could plummet to his death, Batman intervened and saved him by swinging from his grappling hook and landing in another floor of the building. Next, Batman tied up Russo and left him behind. Afterwards, the Joker appeared and cut Jigsaw free from the rope. Batman returned to the rooftop to confront Frank with the two fighting and exchanging blows. The Punisher was eventually knocked to the ground by Batman and shot him, but did no damage. Then, Batman charged at the Punisher, who pulled a gas grenade from his utlity belt and used it to disorient its owner, allowing the gunslinger to make his escape. Afterwards, the Punisher decided to go after Russo next, while Batman attempted to speak to Saint Dumas, claiming that he had failed, although Saint Dumas did not answer. Then, Batman jumped off of the building into the night.
Appearing in "Lake of Fire"
- Order of Saint Dumas
- Saint Dumas (In a vision)
- Batman (Bruce Wayne) (Mentioned only)
- Tony Bressi (Mentioned only)
- Easter Bunny (Mentioned only)
- KGB (Mentioned only)
- Armand Krol (Mentioned only)
- GCPD (Mentioned only)
- Hell (In a vision)
- Listed as being one of the stories that happened on Crossover Earth in the online companion to the All New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (2006)
- One-shot Prestige Format book.
- The first of two Batman and Punisher crossovers published for 1994.
- Though crossovers tend to be non-canonical, Batman #509 has Jean-Paul mention Jigsaw by name. This is probably due to the fact that Jean-Paul was growing more and more insane and actually believes he fought the criminal, thus they were allowed to get away with it.
- This was the first DC/Marvel crossover after a long period of time after the X-Men/Teen Titans one.
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