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DC Comics teases John Ridley's Batman of color in first look at 'Joker War Zone' one-shot

By Matthew Jackson

The Joker War event rages on in the pages of Batman, but this is a story that's bigger than one comic can contain. The ripple effect of The Joker's takeover of Wayne Enterprises and the final war he's waging against Batman has extended to every Bat-family book DC Comics is releasing right now, but even that's not enough to tell the whole story. Later this month, some of DC's top talent will shed even more light on the various characters inhabiting this event in a new one-shot, Joker War Zone, and today we got a look at a preview. 

Joker War Zone #1 will feature five new stories set amid the Joker War, told across 48 pages by several all-star creative teams highlighting characters and subplots that will have major implications for the future of Gotham City in this event and beyond. What kind of implications? Well, one key story in the issue, "Family Ties," features writer John Ridley and artist Olivier Coipel focusing on the Fox family and how the war has directly impacted them.

Joker War readers will know that Lucius Fox was poisoned by the Joker earlier in the event, and based on these previews pages his family is still dealing with the fallout from that pain, so much so that Luke Fox is prepared to dig out his Batwing suit and go to work. Ridley teased during the first weekend of DC FanDome that the Fox family will have a major role to play in his upcoming Batman miniseries that will likely feature a person of color under the cowl, and this could very well be the first step in the direction of that story, so pay attention. 

The one-shot will also feature the new story "Clown Hunt" from Joker War writer James Tynion IV and artist James Stokoe. As the title suggest, this story will shed new light on one of the event's most intriguing new characters, the vigilante known as Clownhunter, in ways that his appearances in Batman so far haven't been able to. 

Plus, writer Sam Johns and artist Laura Braga will spotlight Poison Ivy's return to Gotham City with the new story "Ashes of Eden," Tynion and artist Guillem March team up for a story starring Joker and Bane, and writer Joshua Williamson and artist David LaFuenta team for a new tale starring Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain. The war zone is vast, and if you're a reader looking at the big picture of Gotham City in the midst of this event, this feels like a one-shot you'll want to pick up. 

The Joker War Zone #1 is in comic book stores September 29.