Exclusive: Superman and Commissioner Gordan joining Batman in 'Zero Year'
(CBR) Come November, "Zero Year" won't just be hitting Gotham City.
DC Comics today revealed to CBR News that the Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo "Batman" origin story will gain two tie-ins with "Detective Comics" #25 and "Action Comics" #25. Written and drawn by regular creative teams of John Layman & Jason Fabok and Greg Pak & Aaron Kuder, each issue will focus on the mysterious apocalyptic past of Gotham, as seen through the eyes of Commissioner Gordon and Superman.
Within the city, the "Detective" tale offers a new take on Gotham's legendary corruption and Jim Gordon's fight against it. "My issue is before Batman and Gordon even officially meet. It's the warm-up to their meeting, and a prelude to their inevitable partnership," Layman said.
Meanwhile in Metropolis, "Action" #25 returns both Pak and the series to their first version of the New 52 Man of Steel. "I've had a huge amount of fun writing the young T-shirt-and-work-boots Superman in this first 'Batman/Superman' storyline, so I was immediately intrigued by the possibility of doing another story in that general time period for the 'Zero Year' tie-in," Pak said. He noted that readers will see more of Superman before he was fully formed. "We're going to see a young, cocky Superman testing his limits by taking on what might be the most powerful opponent he could ever find. In short, for the first time, Clark begins to think he might be an actual force of nature. We'll see if he's right.
"I also loved the idea of launching my 'Action' run with a story set in the past. It's a great way to start the character at the beginning and lay out some of the big themes we're thinking about in a big way. And the nice capper is that Scott Snyder's one of my favorite people in comics and I was thrilled by the chance to come over and play in his backyard."
Both tie-ins present brief pauses from the ongoing stories of "Detective" and "Action," but Layman is used to working with all sorts of twists in the Bat Universe. "I'm treating 'Detective' a little like jazz," he said. "While I do have long range plans, a lot of it is improv, and I'm prepared to dodge and swerve at a moment's notice in order to accommodate other things, crossovers and special events and whatnot. It also helps that I'm trying to do issues relatively self-contained. Each issue is a case, or some aspect of the case. This allows me to be spontaneous with new stories as company-wide or Bat-universe wide events occur."
Similarly, Pak relishes the idea of working with both Superman and Batman's pasts. "I love writing these characters at different stages in their lives," he said. At each moment, there's a different nuance in how they relate to each other, and it's tons of fun figuring out just how the relationship works. And yes, you'll absolutely see things that we're exploring in the current 'Batman/Superman' story reverberate into the modern day stories I'll eventually be telling. I don't want to spoil things, but I will say that there's always a degree of conflict in this relationship that's great fuel for compelling drama and character development.
"They're both heroes and they share the same ultimate goals. But I think these two heroes are still works-in-progress, each constantly struggling to figure out how to do the right thing -- and sometimes they come to very different conclusions. So Bruce and Clark are always challenging each other -- sometimes in ridiculously dangerous ways and sometimes in the best way possible."
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