Batman vs. the new DC villain Abyss begins in Batman #118 preview

Batman #118 variant cover
Batman #118 variant cover (Image credit: Bjorn Barends (DC))

A new era for the Dark Knight begins in December 7's Batman #118 - he's leaving his hometown of Gotham City, and doing it with an all-new creative team for his titular book.

Writer Joshua Williamson and artist Jorge Molina will be taking over from the Batman title's current creative team just after the finale of the current 'Fear State' event, which will spell out how and why Bruce Wayne has decided to leave Gotham City.

"Yeah, he’s leaving Gotham. After Fear State, he has a plan to leave for certain reasons. And then he’s hesitant, he has a moment where he’s hesitant to leave. And then something happens and it’s a mission he has to go on, it’s a case, and he’s like ‘I have to leave,'" Williamson told The Comics Beat

Check out this preview of Batman #118, showing what appears to be Batman's final adventure in Gotham (for the time being, of course):

"And so he leaves to take care of that case. And he leaves Gotham in the hands of other people, and there’s a big story next year about that, about what’s going on in Gotham while he’s gone. But then I get to do a bunch of stories with him outside of Gotham for a bit."

A key part of that case will be a major new DC villain called the Abyss. Williamson says that this antagonist knows "how to use the darkness to manipulate and scare people" just as Batman is prone to do, but more.

"I think people will be surprised the direction the stuff with the Abyss goes," Williamson says. "He’s only in #118 [a] little bit and then he’ll be in 119, 120, 121, but I think people will be surprised with the way he’s introduced. It will be kind of a surprising thing. But yeah, he uses darkness as a tool. Not like a Shadow Thief kind of way, you’ll see when we’re getting in there. It’s a different way."

Molina has drawn the main cover to Batman #118, and will be joined with variant covers by Viktor Bogdanovic (four versions), Francesco Mattina, Jock, Kael Ngu (three versions), a Jorge Molina design variant, Bjorn Barends (two versions), Skan Srisuwan (two versions), Mico Suayan (two versions), and Sun Khamunaki (two versions). Check them out here:

Your eyes aren't fooling you - that Batman #118 variant cover by Bogdanovic pays homage to a classic Spider-Man cover by Todd McFarlane.

Batman #118 goes on sale on December 7.

Keep track of this and all the new Batman comics, graphic novels, and collections in 2021 and beyond. 

Chris Arrant

Chris Arrant covered comic book news for Newsarama from 2003 to 2022 (and as editor/senior editor from 2015 to 2022) and has also written for USA Today, Life, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, the Harvey Awards, and the Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table. (He/him)