In room 4 at San Diego Comic-Con, Batman writer and all-around hilarious dude, Kevin Smith, series artist Walt Flanagan and inker Art Thibert talked all things Batman. As a bonus to panel attendees, a copy of issue 6, the series dramatic conclusion to volume 1 was distributed and everyone had ample time to get caught up before the Q&A officially started.
The creative team behind Gyre alluded to volume 2 ramping up in early 2011, which may feature a return of the Joker, among other baddies. Asked about which voice Kevin heard in his head when he wrote the Joker’s part, he cited Mark Hamill as inspiration. But in spite of how fun it is to write the Joker’s part, Smith admits that he’s most interested in Bruce Wayne and Batman and his issues reflect that.
With regards to Gyre, Smith talked about how he felt sufficient creative license to take the normally very serious Batman down a definitively romantic path and how it was difficult to hear some of the backlash on the Internet over this particular twist. Apparently, many fans were dismayed by Batman’s romance with Silver St. Cloud, and were quite vocal about their distaste.
Without dropping any major spoilers in case you haven’t read issue 6, that particular sub-plot comes to a screeching halt in dramatic fashion. Looking towards volume 2, the creative team behind Gyre talked a bit about how the next batch of issues will have Batman returning to his more violent tendencies following his traumatic loss, and how the events in volume 1 will really drive the next story arc.
Of course, with Smith leading the panel, the questions veered into the semi-bizarre, with lengthy discussion of whether Bruce Wayne uses a fleshlight, if Batman should have stubble (DC says: Ahem, no.), and what limitations, if any, the team were working under. According to Smith, along with facial hair, naked Batman is a line one must not cross.
Be sure to pickup the final issue of Gyre (#6) which should be on the shelves of your friendly local comic shop in short order.