Batman (Earth 2 / New 52)
+ Catwoman + Batman II
Created by James Robinson, Jim Lee, and Nicola Scott
In 1971, wealthy heir Thomas Wayne was just beginning his medical career when he came across the young mobster, Frankie Falcone. Wayne saved Falcone's life; he'd just suffered a gunshot wound, and Falcone was determined to show his gratitude. Wayne resisted but eventually the two became friends.
Wayne met his future wife, Martha, at one of Falcone's lavish parties and the group indulged in a decadent lifestyle, including parties and drugs.
In 1973, the Waynes had a son, Bruce, and withdrew from Falcone's circle. Frankie was so angry that he sent three thugs to beat Wayne. He was rescued by his manservant and bodyguard, Jarvis Pennyworth.
Falcone left them alone for a while but the blood was still bad and in 1979, Falcone hired the hitman Joe Chill to kill the Waynes. They were shot in Park Row of Gotham City, which was later called Crime Alley. There young Bruce Wayne witnessed the tragedy and lost his parents forever.
In truth, Thomas Wayne had survived but in order to protect his son, he and Dr. Leslie Thompkins faked his death and Wayne disappeared. (Earth 2 Annual #2)
Bruce Wayne was effectively raised by the Wayne's new servant, Alfred Pennyworth (son of Jarvis). Once when Bruce was young, they took a road trip and their car broke down outside Smallville, Kansas. The orphan met Clark Kent and Pete Ross at the Kent farm. Clark invited Bruce to play baseball and after some coaxing to come out of his shell, Bruce began to enjoy himself. After observing Clark for a time, Bruce deduced that Kent was stronger than normal people (which the boy neither confirmed nor denied). (Batman/Superman #3)
As an adult, Bruce Wayne became obsessed with fighting the injustices that had resulted in his parents' deaths. He trained mentally and physically and donned a costume to fight crime as the Batman. He was one of the world's first three "wonders" (a term used by the public to refer to their super-powered and costumed protectors). As one of this Ternion—with Superman and Wonder Woman—Batman was Earth's primary defense. (Earth 2 #1)
In 1994, Thomas Wayne resurfaced and began taking revenge on the hired thugs who'd wronged him in the past. He stole a drug called Miraclo from a colleague named Rex Mason (Tyler?), which gave him super-strength and endurance for an hour at a time. With these powers, he killed Joe Chill and the others by crushing their skulls. Batman was quick to investigate, and just stopped his masked father from killing Falcone, too. Batman followed Thomas Wayne from Falcone's to an apartment and was convinced that the killer was Jarvis Pennyworth. Nothing could have prepared him for the discovery that it was his father, alive all this time.
Bruce was not ecstatic, but enraged. He had dedicated his life to a cause based on his parents' unjust deaths and now knew that they'd brought it upon themselves. Thomas admitted that he was probably addicted Miraclo, and after his son left, he returned and killed Falcone. Bruce shut Thomas out of his life but his father continued to watch as his son married Selina Kyle (aka Catwoman), and they bore his granddaughter, Helena. (Earth 2 Annual #2)
Both parents trained Helena in the ways of their alter egos, but Batman was overly cautious about sending her out into the streets. It was Selina who finally encouraged Helena to step out as Robin—against Bruce's wishes. One day while training, an emergency alarm sounded in the Batcave and Robin rushed to parents' aid. She arrived to find they had been attacked by Steppenwolf's forces. Her mother was already dead and the Batman was weak. Helena became furious with grief and rushed into a burning building after her mother's killers, but Batman called to Superman for help. Superman in turn sent his cousin Kara (Supergirl) to remove Robin from the building. (Worlds' Finest #0)
As with all Earths in the multiverse, Earth 2 eventually became the target of the conqueror called Darkseid. Darkseid dispatched Kaiyo the Trickster to assess the "fitness" of that world's heroes—and that of Earth Prime. Kaiyo used a Boom Tube to cross the boundary between Earths and transported the Batman and Superman of Earth Prime to Earth 2. They were split up to create maximum conflict with their counterparts. Superman Prime was shunted to the Kent farm in Smallville, and Batman Prime to Wayne Manor in Gotham City. The Earth 2 Batman was also sent to Smallville and defended himself against Superman by using kryptonite. (Batman/Superman #1)
Meanwhile, Batman Prime met the Catwoman of Earth 2 and learned that on that world, they were married. Kaiyo then brought the two Batmen and Supermen into conflict with each other. Wonder Woman was first to bring order to the situation, compelling Kaiyo to reveal her motives. (#2) The trickster revealed that they were being tested by Darkseid. When all learned that the government had been hiding an extra-dimensional crystal, Kaiyo warned them that the crystal (which amplified energies) was their only hope to defeat Darkseid. (#3)
The heroes of Earth 2 wanted to destroy the crystal while those from Earth Prime sought to use it. Because of this, Kaiyo predicted that the Prime heroes would fare better against Darkseid. As she retreated, she erased all memories of these events. (#4)
Kaiyo was right; Darkseid attacked Earth 2 with full invasion from Apokolips, led by Steppenwolf. A new "wonder," Mr. Eight, wanted to solve the situation by completely destroying those parts of the planet infected by Darkseid's Anti-Life mind control. As a diversion, Mr. Eight created opal kryptonite which turned Superman against Wonder Woman. Batman was uncharacteristically unprepared to prevent Mr. Eight from detonating huge bombs and retreating into Ninth Dimension. (Earth 2 #0)
A year later, Batman devised their biggest move of the war—a virus to take down Darkseid's control towers. Wonder Woman helped get Batman in position just before she herself killed. Batman's virus had to be delivered by hand, and so he was at ground zero when his virus took hold, and died when the control tower exploded. (#1)
Batman II, the Mysterious Successor
Five years after Bruce's death, new wonders appeared and Thomas Wayne decided to honor his son's memory by becoming a new Batman. He began showing up on the scene of certain metahuman conflicts, first in Cambodia, where he followed the Atom into a mission to capture Henri Roy. Batman secretly aided the Atom and then moved on to interrogate Mister Icicle (Jaime Encana). The Icicle mentioned Kanto, the assassin of Apokolips, and said that Batman should seek out Hawkgirl. Before leaving, Batman shot Icicle. (Earth 2 Annual #1) He found Hawkgirl in China and put her onto Kanto's trail before swiftly disappearing. (Earth 2 #13)
The Batman accelerated his plans when the original Superman returned as a brainwashed pawn of Darkseid. Both Batman and Superman converged at the World Army's Arkham Command Center with different goals. Batman's aim was to free certain prisoners in the facility's stasis chambers. En route to the underground he ran into resistance: the Army's Major Sonia Sato, and the new Red Tornado. Sato failed to subdue the dark crusader and noted that he seemed unusually strong. Batman argued that some of the Army's prisoners' crimes didn't justify their imprisonment. (#17)
Sato conceded to Batman's demands only after he'd been restrained by the Red Tornado. He found two subjects whose help they required: Aquawomanand Jimmy Olsen. His third was the Joker, whom he had no intention of freeing. Instead the Dark Knight put a bullet through the maniac's head. (#18)
James Robinson on Batman: "He says DC Editorial is allowing him to create pretty much whole-cloth, he's often very aware of the deep threads of history of these characters in their many permutations. With that in mind, if it's not Bruce acting as the Batman of the parallel universe of 'Earth 2,' he doesn't want it to be some random character no one has heard of. "This isn't some new person coming in to be Batman,' Robinson assures readers, 'This is definitely a part of Batman lore.' " (MTV)
Technically, the second Batman's first appearance was one month prior to Earth 2 Annual #1 (cover dates July 2013). He appeared in the DC featurette called "Channel 52," where reporter Molly Mayne spoke of his appearances.
The original Batman of Earth 2 had no super-human powers but had trained to become a first-rate detective, athlete, and hand-to-hand combatant.
Thomas Wayne uses the Miraclo drug to achieve super-human strength, some invulnerability, and speed—all for one hour at a time.