As the Bat-Titles crossover Fear State bears down upon Gotham in DC Comics, it’s beginning to look like Batman’s rogues’ gallery is getting stale.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for Fear State, including Batman #113, Detective Comics #1034, and Harley Quinn #7
As the newest crossover story to hit Gotham reaches fever pitch in Fear State, Batman’s villains are once again convening to take over the city, and, tried and true though it is, something in the old formula just doesn’t feel the same anymore. As longtime B-tier villain Scarecrow prepares to unleash his usual fear-based plan upon the beleaguered denizens of the crime capital of the world, it’s difficult to not feel a twinge of déjà vu at the spectacle, an unexplainable sensation that all of this has happened before. That’s because it has, and Gotham deserves better.
Masterminded by James Tynion IV, Fear State is the Bat-titles’ 2021 follow-up crossover to 2020’s Joker War, which saw the people of Gotham turn away from Batman following an extended period of chaos, electing an anti-vigilante mayor, Christopher Nakano. The story has deep ties to the Gotham City seen in DC’s Future State event. In that possible future, Gotham becomes a police state where vigilantes are killed on sight and Batman is believed to be dead, leading a new Dark Knight to rise and take up his crusade.