Batwoman fills Batman’s boots

Batman is dead. Long live Batman.

Or not.

One of the ongoing dilemmas in the DC Universe is that multiple timelines and dimensions mean multiple storylines that may or may not be consistent. Add to that the fact that superheroes, especially famous ones, return from the dead time and time again and you have infinite possibilities.

That’s why, at this weekend’s New York Comic Con, when a panel opened with “Who here thinks Batman is dead?” not a single hand went up. All DC will say is that Bruce Wayne is “elsewhere.” Which means somebody has to do the Caped Crusader’s job.

While Bat-fans debated who should take over Detective Comics, writer Greg Rucka and artist J.H. Williams III announced that this summer, DC’s flagship title will feature its first lesbian superhero: Batwoman.

Rucka said that he and Williams have been working on the title for almost two years.

Batwoman returned to the stable of superheroes — after 30 years — in 2006 DC’s 52. We learned that her identity is Kate Kane, a lesbian socialite, and that she has a past with Renee Montoya, a lesbian former police detective also featured in 52.

Despite the hype — and a nod to female writer Devin Grayson to develop a separate Batwoman series with the title character as a contemporary lesbian — the character ended up all but disappearing from 52. Grayson found out from a newspaper article that the development project was dead.

Since then, DC has sent mixed signals about the project. In fact, last year at WonderCon DC announced the Batwoman series and then denied it the next day. But the decision to put Batwoman at the helm of the publisher’s longest-running title indicates that the character’s sexual orientation wasn’t the reason for the delays.

The New York Comic Con program included a preview of Detective Comics #824:

Although we can’t tell a whole lot from the preview, I’m glad to see that at least she got some new boots to replace the high-heeled versions she wore in 52. I mean, she wouldn’t be much of a lesbian superhero if she didn’t wear comfortable shoes.

What do you think about Batwoman taking over Detective Comics? Is she a worthy successor to Batman or will she fly off into the sunset as she did in 52?

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