James Tynion IV's First Batman Story – Never Published Until Now

This week sees the launch of James Tynion IV's first solo issue of Batman. But he had written for the comic book before. Indeed, his first published comic book was an issue of Batman courtesy of his old writing professor Scott Snyder and Batman editor Mike Marts. Tynion tells this story on his newsletter and links to the script of his first, unpublished, Batman comic as a proof of ability, Bright City.

It will never be published as a comic, but this is your chance to see James' first Batman work.

It was a one-shot set in the future of Gotham, starring Commissioner Dick Grayson, and a Cyborg Tim Drake. It was more sentimental than anything. And sad. I just reread it tonight, and I'm still very proud of it.

It's too dense, a bit too obvious, and I had no idea how much dialogue you could fit in a single panel (some might say I STILL have no idea how to do that). The first draft was 24 pages, and if I had to re-edit it today, I would put those four extra pages back in there to let it breathe. I'd also put in a bit more action. Hell, give me 38 pages to do it RIGHT. But as an artifact, it's fascinating. I put a lot of sweat and tears into this script, going through about nine drafts with Scott before sending it in to the Bat-Offices. I wanted to give a kind of mission statement that showed I knew the world and the dynamics and the characters, but that I could also take those pieces and do new, strange stories with them.

If you decide to read it, you can see bits and pieces of a lot that I would come back to the following 8 years, in the hundreds of Batman comics with my name on them… The role of Tim Drake is particularly interesting, because it totally ties into what I did in my final Detective Comics arcs, which is bizarre, because I have not read this script in years.

It's wild how much of my Gotham is in that weird, sad one shot…

As a result, Tynion got a chance to co-write back-up stories with Scott in the Batman comic book. You can read about that in his newsletter and pick up Batman #86 in all comic shops, good or bad, on Wednesday.

(W) James Tynion IV (A) Danny Miki (A/CA) Tony S. Daniel
It's a new day in Gotham City, but not the same old Batman. With Bane vanquished and one of his longtime allies gone, Batman has to start picking up the pieces and stepping up his game. Batman has a new plan for Gotham City, but he's not the only one. Deathstroke has returned as well, under a mysterious new contract that could change everything.
Beginning a whole new chapter in the life of the Dark Knight, the epic art team of Tony S. Daniel and Danny Miki are joined by new series writer James Tynion IV! In Shops: Jan 08, 2020 SRP: $3.99

About Rich Johnston

Head writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world. Living in London, father of two. Political cartoonist.

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