Batman quits Gotham, setting up 2022 DC event 'Shadows of the Bat'

Batman: Fear State: Omega #1
(Image credit: Jamal Campbell (DC))

For 81 years, Batman has been the protector of Gotham City - but come November 2021, that is no more.

(Image credit: Simone Bianchi (DC))

As revealed in the DC November 2021 solicitations, Batman is leaving Gotham City - with his wards and allies to fill the void as protectors of the city. Earlier this year, Bruce Wayne was forced to relinquish his family fortune and businesses as part of 'The Joker War,' so this is yet another blow to the Bat-franchise.

Batman leaving Gotham will be one of the lasting effects of the current 'Fear State' event - a crossover whose coda, November 30's Batman: Fear State: Omega #1, will lay it all out according to the issue's description.

Described as "a new day" dawning on the city of Gotham, Batman will be absent from his hometown - although his absence "does not mean the city is without heroes."

(Image credit: Viktor Bogdanovic (DC))

The recently announced Robins series seems to be a key part of that, as Batman's current and former Robins will be banding together as a unit to fill the Batman-shaped hole his absence has carved into the city.

And this will apparently set up another major Bat-event to begin in 2022 - 'Shadows of the Bat.' The same day Batman: Fear State: Omega #1 hits shelves, so will Detective Comics 2021 Annual #1 - described as a "prelude" to the 'Shadows of the Bat' event to be centralized in the ongoing Detective Comics title.

(Image credit: Jamal Campbell (DC))

As the Bat-family attempts to fill the hole left by their departed leader, Gotham City will be looking to fill the hole left by the destruction of Arkham Asylum with a new facility, Arkham Tower. According to the description for Detective Comics 2021 Annual #1, the former Gotham resident Batman (AKA Bruce Wayne) will be at odds with Nightwing (AKA Dick Grayson) about the role Arkham needs to play in the city.

In a bit of meta-ness, Batman's decision to leave Gotham City coincides with Batman series writer James Tynion IV's decision to leave the Bat-titles, with November's Batman #117 (and Batman: Fear State: Omega #1) serving as his swansong.

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)