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Simon Saint and Scarecrow explain the Batman: Fear State event to you

Fear State: Alpha #1
(Image credit: DC)

Want to know what 'Fear State,' the Batman crossover event occupying a good deal of the Batman family titles for the rest of 2021, is all about?

We could quote creators or remind you of DC's official copy explaining the event, or we can direct your attention to the following five preview pages from August 31's Fear State: Alpha #1 (opens in new tab) one-shot by James Tynion IV and Riccardo Federici.

The preview depicts the first meeting of Simon Saint (the new villain behind Future State: Batman from earlier this year) and Dr. Jonathan Crane, AKA the classic Batman villain the Scarecrow who has leveled up for this event. 

The two more or less explain what a 'Fear State' is and why they intend to turn Gotham City into one. 

Seriously, this is one of those times when less it more, so without further ado, check out the preview and look for more information about 'Fear State' below.

Original story follows...

Recent Gotham City-centric plot threads from January and February's Future State (opens in new tab) and Infinite Frontier #0 (opens in new tab) collide this August in the Batman "horror-themed" event 'Fear State.' 

'Fear State' crosses over the ongoing Catwoman and Harley Quinn comic book series with a pair of new titles as the machinations of the redesigned Scarecrow come to a head, as he sends Gotham City "straight to Hell."

"Fear State not only continues the Scarecrow's vision of a fear-controlled Gotham but also Mayor Christopher Nakano's mission to protect the city with his ground-breaking deal with the Magistrate," reads DC's description.

According to the publisher, in addition to launching several new series and plotlines across the entire Batman family of titles, the event sets up "a new status quo for 2022!"

'Fear State' begins August 10 in the 40-page I Am Batman #0 by writer John Ridley and artist Travel Foreman. Presumably the launch of a new regular series, the title picks up on the events of The Next Batman: Second Son (opens in new tab) by the same creative team. 

Interestingly, Second Son began as a digital-first series.

"Jace Fox begins the march toward his destiny when he fights to protect Alleytown against the oppressive forces of the Magistrate, using Batman armor and tech he's found in Bruce Wayne's old base of operations, the Hibernaculum!" reads DC's description.

I Am Batman #0 will feature a main cover by Foreman and two variant covers by Dave Wilkins and Derrick Chew, respectively. 

'Fear State' then continues in August 17's Catwoman #34 by Ram V and Fernando Blanco.

"Alleytown continues to be the hotspot in Gotham City, with Selina Kyle's quest to keep her home safe beset on all sides, not only by law enforcement gone bad, but a potential invasion by the city's villains as well," reads DC's description. "And if those problems aren't enough, Batman makes the scene, breaking his and Selina's vow to give each other another one-year break."

Catwoman #34's main cover is by Yanick Paquette (DC previously incorrectly credited Matteo Scalera) and features a variant cover by Jenny Frison.

Part three is August 24's Harley Quinn #6 by Stephanie Phillips and Laura Braga.

"What would any crisis that threatens all of Gotham City be without Harley Quinn?" DC asks rhetorically. "Boring, that's what! The mistress of mischief and mayhem teams up with Catwoman to kick the Magistrate out of Alleytown for good!"

Harley Quinn #6's main cover is by Riley Rossmo and features a variant cover by Derrick Chew. 

And finally, August 31's 40-page Batman: Fear State Alpha #1 by James Tynion IV and Riccardo Federici wraps up the event's first month.

"The event over a year in the making begins...Fear State settles upon Gotham City, and no one is safe!" read's DC's description. "Overwhelmed by the dual threat of the Scarecrow and Peacekeeper-01, Batman and his allies have been one step behind since the events of Infinite Frontier #0...and with the arrival of a mysterious anti-Oracle and the return of Poison Ivy...Batman might have more than he can handle! "

Batman: Fear State Alpha #1 main cover is by Ben Oliver and features three variant covers by Dylan Teague, Jorge Jimenez, and Francesco Mattina.

Fear State will then expand to the core Batman title beginning in September with issues #112 through #117.

DC has provided a sneak peek at Batman 'Fear State' variant covers by Jorge Molina, which connect to form a linked image of "the allies and enemies that the Dark Knight will encounter throughout this must-read event!"

Batman #112-117 connected variant covers (Image credit: DC)
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Fear State will make a bid to someday be counted among the best Batman stories of all time (opens in new tab).

I'm not just the Newsarama founder and editor-in-chief, I'm also a reader. And that reference is just a little bit older than the beginning of my Newsarama journey. I founded what would become the comic book news site in 1996, and except for a brief sojourn at Marvel Comics as its marketing and communications manager in 2003, I've been writing about new comic book titles, creative changes, and occasionally offering my perspective on important industry events and developments for the 25 years since. Despite many changes to Newsarama, my passion for the medium of comic books and the characters makes the last quarter-century (it's crazy to see that in writing) time spent doing what I love most.