Artist/writer Sean Gordon Murphy essentially created his own Gotham City continuity earlier this year with the 8-issue Batman: White Knight series. Now, he’s returning to that world and also adding Azrael.
Murphy’s new project is called Batman: Curse of the White Knight. It’s due in 2019, and he will again be pulling double duty, handling both writing and artwork. In an announcement that first appeared online with Paste Magazine, Murphy said his next story will pick up where Batman: White Knight left off (the artwork included here is also via Paste).
Batman: White Knight, for those who didn’t read it, is an alternate take on Gotham City, complete with a full cadre of redesigns for everything from Batman’s rogues gallery to his many Bat-vehicles. That story’s central conceit was that The Joker had been mentally rehabilitated, leaving Batman alone with all his crazy. Plus, for some reason there were two Harley Quinns (more on that below). White Knight sold like hotcakes and was later added to DC’s new prestige line for adult readers, Black Label. A collected edition of White Knight is due in October.
But enough about White Knight! What of this new book? Here’s the official synopsis, via Paste:
Batman: Curse of the White Knight
Writer/Artist: Sean Gordon Murphy
Release Date: 2019
In this explosive sequel to Sean Murphy’s critically acclaimed blockbuster BATMAN: WHITE KNIGHT, the Joker recruits a savage partner to help him expose a shocking revelation about the Wayne family’s legacy and run Gotham into the ground. As Batman rushes to protect the city and his loved ones from this corrupt conspiracy, the mystery of his ancestry unravels and deals a devastating blow to the Dark Knight. Exciting new villains and unexpected allies will clash across history in this unforgettable chapter of the WHITE KNIGHT saga—and the truth about the blood they shed will shake Gotham to its core!
Let’s be real: that “savage partner” is probably Azrael, the religious, uh, enthusiast of the Batfamily who took over as Batman in the ‘90s after Bruce had his back broken by Bane. Murphy teased new Azrael artwork on his Twitter yesterday, prior to the official announcement.
Murphy also answered some email questions from Paste about the new book. Here are some highlights:
- He first thought of The Joker rehabilitation story in White Knight when he was 12.
- The reason White Knight has two Harleys is…”I think my argument was pretty simple: if one Harley makes readers happy, then why not two?”
- He’s calling his new, re-designed continuity “The Murphyverse.”
- This story will see him writing “a former Batman ally” (clearly Azrael), who becomes a greater threat than The Joker. Look for Batman and The Joker to probably team up, or something.