Batman #125 sets an ominous tone for Zdarsky and Jiménez run

Batman #125 preview
Batman #125 preview (Image credit: DC)

DC has released a preview of Batman #125, which marks the first issue by writer Chip Zdarsky, as artist Jorge Jiménez and colorist Tomeu Morey return to the series after seven months away. 

In addition to a new logo (below), DC has also revealed a trailer for the issue featuring the Three Jokers, which led us to speculate about their return in Batman #125. However, pages from the latest preview show Bruce merely dreaming about the tripled Clown Prince of Crime.

Still, it sets an ominous tone for Zdarsky's first arc. See below:

Zdarsky, Jiménez, and Morey begin their run together with 'Failsafe,' a six-issue story arc (the beginning of what Zdarsky calls a "long haul") that introduces a mysterious new threat to the Caped Crusader: Gotham City's billionaires are being gruesomely murdered.

"Bruce Wayne is at a turning point, haunted by dreams of a dark future," reads DC's description of 'Failsafe,' which also seems to double as the name of this new supervillain. "With the discovery of an archenemy's involvement and a tragedy unfolding, the Dark Knight's nightmares are just beginning."

The writer compared Failsafe to Doomsday, the Kryptonian monster who once killed Superman

Batman #125 cover by Jorge Jiménez with a new logo  (Image credit: DC)

"When DC approached me to write Batman, I immediately thought about things that could really challenge the character mentally, physically, and in terms of his relationships," Zdarsky said in an interview with ComicBook. "Failsafe is his Doomsday. When I started mapping out the story I got really excited about where it could take the title."

The 48-page Batman #125 also includes a backup story written and illustrated by Belén Ortega starring Catwoman. Gotham City erupts in chaos when the criminal underworld fights over one of the city's crown jewels. Caught in the middle, Selina has to figure out how to stop the bloodshed while maybe making a few dollars in the process.

Zdarsky is no stranger to Batman, as he just wrapped the 10-issue DC Black Label series Batman: The Knight, the first three issues of which were collected in a 96-page compendium edition on May 10 and included a Batman #125/'Failsafe' preview.

Jiménez and Morey last illustrated 2021's Batman #117, which was also then-writer James Tynion IV's last issue.

Here's a four-page unlettered preview of their work on Batman #125.

When first announced as the new Batman writer, Zdarsky initially revealed that he's working closely with the artist on crafting a somewhat different visual take on Batman and Gotham than Jiménez's previous work alongside Tynion.

"Early on in the process, I let him know I’d be going a little darker with the scripts and Jorge immediately grabbed onto that and turned in pages that were gritty and intense, but still had the bigger-than-life energy of a Jorge Jiménez drawing," Zdarsky explains. "He's the best! Truly the best."

Newsarama previously spoke to Jiménez and Morey about their new approach to Batman.

As for what comes after 'Failsafe,' again the writer says he's in it "for the long haul," saying that, much like his current Daredevil run at Marvel Comics (which relaunched with a new #1 in June), he plans to stick around for an extended stay on the title. What's more, his plans will ripple out across DC's Batman line into other titles.

"I've been cooking up plans that will be felt through all the Bat-titles, which have an amazing roster of talent on them, and I think readers will be pretty happy," promises Zdarsky.

Though well-known creators from Frank Miller to Ed Brubaker and many more have worked on both Daredevil and Batman, Zdarsky may be the first writer to write both DC's premiere urban vigilante and Marvel's at the same time.

Batman #125 by Chip Zdarsky and Jorge Jiménez goes on sale July 5. Here's a look at all of Batman #125's variant covers, by artists Jim Lee, InHyuk Lee, Gabriele Dell'Otto, Simone di Meo, Jiménez, JOCK, Alex Garner, and Chip Zdarsky.

With Batman getting some creative changes, now's the perfect time to start keeping track of all the new Batman comics planned for release in 2022 and beyond.

George Marston

I've been Newsarama's resident Marvel Comics expert and general comic book historian since 2011. I've also been the on-site reporter at most major comic conventions such as Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic Con, and C2E2. Outside of comic journalism, I am the artist of many weird pictures, and the guitarist of many heavy riffs. (They/Them)

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