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Infusing a dark multiverse infection inside a half-dozen hand-picked heroes, the Batman Who Laughs now adds the honorable Jim Gordon to his rotten ranks along with Donna Troy, Shazam, Hawkman, Supergirl, and Blue Beetle as part of DC Comics' ongoing "Year of the Villain" storyline.
With James Tynion IV and Steve Epting's Hell Arisen #1 presenting the epic clash between Apex Lex and the twisted Batman starting tomorrow, there's time to squeeze in one more one-shot to set the stage for the Secret Six in Year of the Villain - The Infected: The Commissioner #1 — and SYFY WIRE has a special exclusive preview to share.
Written by Paul Jenkins (Witchblade, Sentry) and accented with startling artwork from Jack Herbert (Earth 2: World's End), colors via Adriano Lucas and an eerie main cover from Viktor Bogdanovic, The Commissioner #1 (Dec. 18) finds Gordon grappling with the effects of the Batman Who Laughs' potent toxin when his lifelong sense of duty is suddenly stripped away. Gotham City's most revered public pillar of justice has finally reached his boiling point and gives in to his worst impulses that just might yank the entire town into engulfing darkness with him.
"This is the story of how one of the trusted heroes of DC becomes tainted, and gives in to his innermost desires," Jenkins tells SYFY WIRE. "In the case of each “Infected” hero, they decide on a new path forward after being infected with a toxin by The Batman Who Laughs. Jim Gordon has a very special place of trust in Gotham — he is beyond reproach. So, just imagine what he sets in motion when he decides to sabotage all those years of loyalty. Until now, he has always tried to put out all the fires… and now, he’s going to metaphorically burn Gotham to the ground and start again.
Jenkins explains how Jack Herbert and Adriano Lucas's electrifying art ratchets up his story to resonate strongly with both new and longtime readers.
"Jack and Adriano’s work speaks for itself — it’s dynamic, and beautiful," he notes. "They have a great eye for camera and action, and the colors in the issue are so spot-on. I’m really jazzed by their brilliant interpretation of the storytelling, and how the script has come to life. All the angles, the close-ups, the “acting.” It’s a pleasure to work with artists who add so much depth to the storytelling."
Artist Jack Herbert reveals how fans will see a very different Gordon in this dark-tinted one-shot, a Machiavellian version who is cold, distant, and acidic.
"Paul Jenkins and I came to the conclusion that this story would have a noir mood, with a good mix of mystery and action," Herbert tells SYFY WIRE. "We don’t reveal much to the reader at first, maintaining an aura of mystery around what is happening to Gordon. I was inspired by the cinematic noir concept, where characters are enigmatic and secretive. They always seem to want to talk more than they are able to express. Like in film noir, Gotham City is portrayed as an oppressive, dangerous place that can corrupt good men."
Now decend into our exclusive five-page peek at DC's Year of the Villain - The Infected: The Commissioner #1 in the gallery below and see how the upstanding James Gordon drops into his own private hell.