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Snyder And Capullo To Tell The New 52 Origin Of The Dark Knight In ‘Batman: Zero Year’

This was seemingly inevitable. When DC Comics relaunched its entire universe under the New 52 initiative, specifically stating that their major heroes had only been active for about five years, updated origins for their core characters were almost certainly coming. As such, the biggest question for long-time readers wasn’t “if,” but rather “who” and “when.” As of this morning those questions have been answered for at least one iconic DC hero, and fans of the current creative team on Batman received good news, as the publisher announced that Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo will be updating the Dark Knight’s origin with an 11 issue story titled Batman: Zero Year, which chronicles the details of the earliest adventure of Batman within the New 52 universe.

Series writer Snyder spoke to the Associated Press about the announcement:

“It’s not ‘let’s redo the origin.’ It’s time for a new story showing how Batman became who he is in the New 52. We tried to preserve as much of Batman’s history as we could and keep what we could of this history intact. It’s ‘The Zero Year,’ the one that no one has told the story of before. We see how Bruce became the Batman, built the cave, faced off with his first super villain … It’s time for a new story showing how Batman became who he is in The New 52. It builds up the mythology.”

Snyder went on to say that he has no plans to “take apart ‘Year One.’” That, along with his opening line about not redoing the origin, seems a conscious attempt to reach out to fans who might find this announcement potentially troubling. Whereas Superman’s origin has been tweaked and retold several times over the last few decades — John Byrne’s post-Crisis work, Superman Birthright, Secret Identity, etc. — Batman’s origin has, comparatively, been left mostly untouched, with Frank Miller’s seminal Batman: Year One perhaps being the gold standard for origin stories in comics since 1987. Even the title of this upcoming storyline is an obvious deference to Miller’s story. That said, in a new DC universe in which Bruce Wayne has only been Batman for roughly five years, and so much has changed around him, his origins almost certainly have to be revisited. And given the immense success of Snyder and Capullo’s run on Batman since the fall of 2011, no other team of creators currently operating under DC’s auspices seems better equipped to handle the responsibility of revisiting Batman’s earliest tales. It’s an immense task, but given both sales numbers and critical acclaim, Snyder and Capullo have seemingly earned the trust of many Batman readers at this point.

Batman: Zero Year kicks off this June with Batman #21.

[Click image to enlarge]

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