"1999: Beginnings And Endings": Bruce Wayne Jr. as Batman is now held captive by Ra's al-Ghul, or at least the person now wearing his Demons' Head mask, and is surprised that instead of his adversary wanting to kill him, he now actually wants him to take his place. The man in the Demon's Head ma
Superman & Batman: Generations #4 is an issue of the series Superman & Batman: Generations (Volume 1) with a cover date of March, 1999.
Synopsis for "1999: Beginnings And Endings"
Bruce Wayne Jr. as Batman is now held captive by Ra's al-Ghul, or at least the person now wearing his Demons' Head mask, and is surprised that instead of his adversary wanting to kill him, he now actually wants him to take his place. The man in the Demon's Head mask now takes Bruce Jr. to the Lazarus Pit, where Ra's al-Ghul had taken Bruce Wayne to twenty years earlier during their last encounter. The Lazarus Pit was what had given Batman's adversary long life, though it has given him madness in exchange for long life. Ra's proposed that both he and Bruce Wayne should go into the Pit, though this will cause one of them to die while the other is given immortality. Without any choice except to be killed for refusing the challenge, Bruce Wayne went into the pit with Ra's al-Ghul, experiencing the same pain as the fluids of the pit engulf them and Bruce not letting go of Ra's as he tries to climb out of it. Ra's' daughter Talia watched them both be engulfed by the Pit, then soon raised the platform only to reveal one body left on it, which turns out to be Bruce's.
The man wearing the Demon's Head mask then removes the mask to reveal himself as Bruce Wayne, now restored to the prime of his youth, though with a bit of a white streak in his hair. Bruce Wayne Jr. is surprised to find this out, as he was surprised that Bruce now had control of Ra's al-Ghul's secret empire, manipulating it over the years so that it now delivered food and medications to needy countries instead of drugs. And now Bruce is intending to turn over control of this empire to his son for one single purpose: to become Batman again.
Soon Bruce is back swinging over the buildings of Gotham in his Batman costume again, enjoying the sensation of his now-youthful body being pushed to the limits as he instantly takes down a criminal with ease. He then goes over to Bruce Wayne Jr.'s penthouse apartment and activates the Phantom Zone projector to let loose Superman, giving him some time off from his ten-year sentence for "good behavior". Clark is excited to see his old friend Bruce again with his youth now restored, as is a twenty-year old Asian male adult who now calls himself Knight-Wing. Although he addresses Bruce as being his grandfather, having been raised as Bruce Wayne Jr.'s son, Superman knows that he is actually his own grandson and says to the young man that he will make "a fine heir to the House of El".
With Bruce perplexed by Clark's decision to let the truth of Knight-Wing's heritage be known, the three of them now fly to the Ultra-Humanite's metallic fortress where Superman feels the answer lies to his enemy's taunt of having all of his powers. The fortress is sealed off by an impenetrable green shield which Kyle Rayner, the new bearer of the Green Lantern since Alan Scott retired, removes upon his arrival to help. As the four heroes enter, Kyle uses the energy ring to scan the entire fortress for anything that might be what Superman is looking for. Knight-Wing spots a vial of liquid in a lab, which Kyle confirms as resonating at the same frequency of radiation as Kryptonite. Superman swallows the liquid and soon discovers that his strength powers have returned. With all his other powers restored as well, Superman mixes the same formula and gives it to his grandson for him to also have Superman's powers, though on a limited scale.
A month or so later, Bruce and Clark watch Knight-Wing as he soars through the sky, getting used to his newfound abilities. He joins them on the roof of a building as Clark prepares to leave Earth to help countless other worlds who may be in need of him, believing that Earth will be in very good hands with its heroes present. As Knight-Wing watches Superman disappear beyond the limits of his telescopic vision, he has the feeling as if he is never going to see Superman again, but Bruce assures the young hero that he will show up from time to time.
Appearing in "1999: Beginnings And Endings"
- Bruce Wayne Jr./Batman
- Clark Wayne/Knight-Wing
- Kyle Rayner/Green Lantern (First appearance)
- Talia al Ghul
- Ra's al Ghul (Flashback only) (Dies)
- Knight-Wing's plane
Synopsis for "2919: Nineteen Twenty-Nine"
In a distant part of the galaxy, Bruce Wayne's bat-themed starship orbits a cold inhospitable planet that his instruments detect as possibly being Superman's new Fortress of Solitude. Transporting down to the surface wearing a portable force field, Bruce activates a secret door that turns out to be a platform that lowers him into the vast fortress filled with all sorts of mementos that his friend has collected over the past nine centuries. Soon Superman greets him, having long white hair and some facial lines, noticing that Bruce is also slightly aging. Bruce says that although the effects of the Lazarus Pit haven't worn off, he still ages one year every one hundred years. Superman says of himself that the older he gets, the slower his body ages.
The two of them reminisce about their actual first encounter with each other: in 1929, Clark Kent joined a junket of journalism students in Gotham City, where he met his future partner Lois Lane and his future friend Bruce Wayne, the person behind the Gotham Gazette's essay contest which Clark and the other students won. As Clark and Lois got to know each other as they toured through Gotham City looking for a story to write, a robot emerged from a nearby building on a rampage. Clark saw through his X-ray vision that the operator inside the robot was Lex Luthor. Telling Lois to stay safe near a doorway, Clark goes into action as Superboy to take the robot down. Soon the robot has Lois in its grasp, and as Superman told Luthor to let Lois go, Luthor responded by repelling Superboy with a flamethrower.
Bruce, watching the action from the Gotham Gazette office building, summons Alfred the butler to bring the costume he's been preparing to wear. Soon Bruce joins the action on the street in his colorful masked identity, also telling Luthor to let go of Lois. Luthor's robot tries to swat Bruce, but its arms can't reach where he is perched, and he is threatening to open the robot with a shaped charge. Luthor decides to retreat and thus takes off on a seated hovercraft. Superboy tries to stop Luthor, but sees that the robot is now running amok, and so deals with the robot by removing the arm still clutching Lois and then flying the machine to the moon where it is safely dumped. He returns to see that Bruce has helped Lois be freed from the robot arm's grasp, and without risking exposing his true identity, he uses the name Lois has "suggested" for him -- Robin.
After Superboy, Robin, and Lois examined the building that the robot came out of, Lois has determined that it came from the laboratory of Dr. Erwin Stanislaus. Superboy flies Lois to the lab while Robin gets there by motorcycle where they meet the scientist, who is all too eager to tell them about his former assistant Rex Thorul who has used his equipment to design a robot for robbing the Gotham City Bank. However, Superboy instantly detects the smell of spirit gum and removes a face mask to reveal Lex Luthor underneath. He immediately grabs Lois and activates a heli-pack with which he intends to fly away. Superboy tries to stop him again, but this time Luthor pulls out a piece of Kryptonite which immediately weakens Superboy. As Luthor gloats over his victory of seeing his adversary fall, Robin bends a piece of metal into the shape of a boomerang and uses it to knock the Kryptonite out of Luthor's hand, covering it with a lead pipe. Luthor then dumps Lois onto Robin and tries to make a getaway, but Superboy stops him by breaking one of the heli-pack's propeller blades and catching him in his fall.
Soon the police arrive to take Luthor away, and before the heroes take off, Lois gives Superboy a kiss on the mouth. Returning to Smallville, Clark Kent decides that he is going to move to Metropolis instead of Gotham City, which was where Lois was heading. Soon Pete Ross comes in the door to tell Clark that Lana Lang has turned into a sorceress by using the magic wand her father found in Merlin's cave, and so as Superboy he chases after the transformed Lana, who invites him to join her in putting right all the ills of the world.
After the reminiscing has ended, Bruce brings up the real reason he has tracked down Clark: things on Earth and in the galaxy have become too peaceful for them to make any more of a difference from all their efforts in the early years, and now they seek greater challenges elsewhere as a team of heroes. It is then that Superman shows Batman another ally who can join them -- his wife Lana. She reveals that one of her magic spells has given her immortality, and that she has never stopped loving Clark. Together the three of them are ready to tackle whatever trouble they can manage to get themselves into.
Appearing in "2919: Nineteen Twenty-Nine"
- Bruce Wayne/Batman, appearing also in flashback as Robin
- Kal-El/Superman, appearing also in flashback as Superboy
- Alfred Pennyworth (Flashback only)
- Lana Lang (First appearance) (Flashback and main story)
- Lois Lane (Flashback only)
- Pete Ross (First appearance) (Flashback only)
- Lex Luthor (Flashback only)
- Bobby Shaw (Flashback only)
- Dr. Erwin Stanislaus, revealed to be Lex Luthor (Flashback only)
- Jonathan Kent (Flashback only)
- Martha Kent (Flashback only)
- Mr. Whitney (Flashback only)
- Ralph Winget (Flashback only)
- Stan Coulter (Flashback only)
- Green Kryptonite (Flashback only)
- Merlin's Wand (Flashback only)
- Batman's Starship
- Cover gallery for the Superman & Batman: Generations series
- Images from Superman & Batman: Generations Vol 1 4
Links and References
Superman & Batman: Generations at Wikipedia