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[personal profile] espanolbot posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Wow, both a lot happened and not much happened, but I'll try and summarise.

The Joker attempts to re-enact the 1989 Batman movie by parading down the middle of Gotham with poisonous carnival floats, and Batman enlists his rogues gallery in order to subdue Mr J so they can extract his spinal fluid to create a cure for the Joker's laughing plague.

The plan nearly works... if it wasn't for the Joker disabling both the rogues and the Bat Family with a ridiculously loud noise that scatters their gas masks. The Joker takes time out to gloat about how if Batman had known his city a little better than he would have known that there's an entire pool of the chemical needed to cure the plague below the city, and now he's going to die having failed spectacularly...

...Only for him to unmask Batman and for Dick Grayson to be under the cowl, to the Joker's surprise. So, yay, the Bat Famiyl presumably know he's still alive!

Turns out that Dick was acting as a distraction while Batman homed in on the broadcast signal from the cameras the Joker placed watching the pool, Bruce having figured that he must have had a stock of the chemical somewhere.


Unfortunately, the Joker shows up, having worked out what Batman was up to, and a really brutal fight breaks out between the two. The Joker burns a portion of Batman's face, stabs in through both shoulders, and jabs a sharpened playing card into one of his eyes, while Batman injects the Joker with a chemical that counteracts the Joker's new healing factor.

IF the Joker is who he says he is, then he'll still regenerate just slower than usual... But if he's a normal person who lucked out on finding a chemical that accelerates healing only a short time ago like Bruce thinks, then he'll need a new dose to heal those injures.



With his back broken, the Joker tries to crawl into the pit in order to heal himself before the cave collapses, only for Batman to grab him and hold him down until an enormous rock blocks off the chemical from both of them.


The cavern collapses, sealing the paralysed Joker and dying Batman within.

Time passes. The Bat Family and the citizens of Gotham having been healed by the cure Julia was able to make from the samples Bruce collected before the Joker showed up. Alfred is in the hospital and Julia says that they were able to reserve his severed hand so that they'll be able to reattach it, but the depressed Alfred isn't that keen. Reasoning that there's no one left for him to patch up now.

They talk for a while about how is it that Batman never bothered to use any of the things he's come across over the years to make himself immortal, be it magic, supertech or whatever. Alfred says that Bruce knew that he was a tragic figure, so that for him dying was always the way his story was going to end, as there wasn't any other way it COULD end... But he also knew that that was why you had to make the most of what little time you had, as that's what make you human. Working together and smiling at the void.

Which is probably why Bruce's last message to his friends and family is just one word.

"Ha."

---

...Might be alone in this, but I enjoyed this story. Everything is rolled together quite nicely, with an out readily avaliable for when or if they wanted to bring Bruce and the Joker back again. And, really, the Joker had to die in some form once he showed he knew who Bruce was, otherwise the dynamic between them would have changed too thoroughly. Don't expect it to stick when he comes back is all I'm saying (in addition to his look probably being changed to look like the Jared Leto version of the character).
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