Batman Beyond volume 2 #7
DC Comics (May, 2000)
WRITER: Hilary J. Bader
PENCILER: Min Ku
INKER: Sean Parsons
COLORIST: Lee Loughridge
LETTERER: Tim Harkins
ASSISTANT EDITOR: Frank Berrios
EDITOR: Joseph Illidge
A scientist is testing a machine at the school to aid in creating psych profiles, trying to get at specific memories. Terry is one of the test subjects and recalls the night he met Batman. When Terry is dumb enough to take himself and Max into Jokerz territory Batman saves him. Later that night, Terry finds a secret passage in Matt’s room that leads into an encounter with a cyborg calling himself Cable Man, where Terry learns Matt is really Batman and working for Terry’s boss, Bruce Wayne. Of course this all seems like nonsense, but the machine says he’s telling the truth. Then again, that was the plan for Batman to reveal Spellbinder’s plot and stop it.
What they got right: Had this been a full episode I suspect there would have been attempts to lay clues to the audience, throw some nods to the audience, or have Terry question everything or whatever. Instead the story plays it straight, leaving the audience to just go along with it until the gimmick is revealed, Bruce planting a suggestion in Terry’s head that will fool Spellbinder’s machine.
What they got wrong: Of course the concept that Matt is Batman is silly, but that’s part of Bruce’s plan. My problem is the liberties Bruce took. Terry calls him out on Bruce having his fake self says lines the real Bruce wouldn’t, but it’s in a scene that Terry shouldn’t even be aware of as Matt’s identity is revealed to the readers. And the villain Bruce creates, Cable Man, is really pathetic. You’d think a guy who spent most of his life dealing with supervillains could come up with something better. Or call Barbara since she and Dick came up with more believable villains.
Recommendation: It’s a fun idea if you’re a fan of the show but otherwise it’s not a must-read.