batman incorporate

Literally everything about Batman is so much better when you think about all the little behind the scenes things that must have happened to make Bruce such a goddamn dad

Like yeah he’s really bad with change and his communication abilities are really lacking due to being extremely heavily isolated and traumatized for the majority of his formative years, but like

I am at least 99% convinced that all the bat-named things like the batmobile, batcomputer, batfridge, etc., were originally normal phrases like ‘the car,’ ‘the computer,’ etc., but then Robin showed up he started calling them bat-things because he was nine, and Batman went along with it.

It’s too late to turn back now. Too late to make excuses to anyone. He’s committed. Nightwing doesn’t say anything. The other Robins have no idea. No one has any idea.

Everyone thinks Batman is legitimately obsessed with bats.

No, he just wanted his cave to be child-friendly, and when it turned out Robin #1 really liked the bat idea and thought it was cool enough that it should be incorporated into everything, Batman fucking incorporated it into everything. He just wanted to make the kid happy, damnit

His son is terrible at naming things.

Batman Incorporated: The best BatCat story?

There are many stories that involve Batman and Catwoman. Some are phenomenal, others are disappointing. When we think of the best BatCat stories, one immediately thinks back to Hush, or maybe something from the Bronze Age like “A Night on the Town’ and I would include Injustice as well (especially Year 1).

However, there is one story that always makes me think, “Wow, that might be the best portrayal of the Batman and Catwoman relationship”. The story is from Batman: Incorporated, issues # 1 and 2 (November 2010). First off, this story does not have the greatest plot, it has some decent dialogue and the art work is pretty good in places. But I believe it captured the BatCat relationship perfectly.

The story begins with Batman enlisting Catwoman’s help to break into a high security vault in Japan which is something she is only too happy to do:

After successfully retrieving the special diamond from the vault, Bruce and Selina continue with the primary mission of recruiting Mr. Unknown to Batman Incorporated. At this stage in their relationship, there are no secret identities and the attraction is still burning:

Let’s be honest - we all know exactly what they did before going to work.

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Bruce's Will

The batkids find Bruce’s will one day and read it to see what they’re going to get when he dies. Dick is all “Cool, I get to be Batman again!” Tim is pleased to get the entire Wayne Enterprises corporation. Jason is psyched about getting the entire Justice League, Barbara gets leadership of Batman Incorporated, Cass gets all his trophies and the batcopter, and Damian gets the rest, which would be the manor, any of the other properties Bruce owns, most of his money, etc. And then Stephanie eagerly scans the will for her name, excited to see how much money she’s going to get, when…  

“BRUUUUUUCE!!!” She stomps angrily upstairs into Bruce’s study, screaming at the top of her lungs. She marches into the study and slams the door open loudly, Tim at her heels. “I’M NOT IN YOUR WILL????”

Bruce looks up, surprised. “Excuse me?" 

Stephanie stomps over, shoving the will in his face and screaming, "I THOUGHT I WAS YOUR HONORARY CHILD!!! I THOUGHT WE WERE FAMILY, AND YOU GO AHEAD AND DISGRACE ME LIKE THIS???" 

Tim tries to calm her down. "Stephanie, sweetie, I think you’re overreacting-" 

"SHUT UP, TIM, I AM TRYING TO BE ENRAGED RIGHT NOW! AND I SWEAR TO JESUS IF YOU TELL ME I’M OVERREACTING AGAIN I’M GOING TO PUNCH YOU RIGHT IN THE NECK.” She turns back to Bruce. “AND YOU! HOW COULD YOU LEAVE YOUR OWN DAUGHTER OUT OF YOUR WILL???" 

Bruce crosses his legs calmly, ignoring Tim’s frantic hand motions behind Steph’s back. "Stephanie, you do realize I’m not your actual father, right?" 

"WELL YEAH, BUT I THOUGHT WE HAD A GOOD HONORARY FAMILY THING GOING!! I DATE YOUR SON AND FORCE MYSELF INTO YOUR FAMILY, AND YOU ACT LIKE I ACTUALLY BELONG! THAT’S OUR THING!!!" 

Bruce sighs and massages his temples. "Fine fine fine, I’ll put you in the will you little banshee." 

”…Wait, seriously? Well that was easy. Okay, I want the Batcave.“ 

"That goes to Dick." 

"Oh. Fine then, I want Alfred." 

"He’s a person??" 

*huffs* "Well, what can I have then?" 

Bruce looks around the study until his eyes land on a lamp in the corner. "Uh… I can give you this lamp, I guess?" 

There’s a beat of silence as Steph stares at the lamp before finally grinning and shaking Bruce’s hand. "I’ll take it!" 

She happily skips out of the study with Tim in tow, leaving a starstruck Bruce behind them. "And that, Timmy my dear, is how you negotiate. Can’t wait until that old bastard dies and that lamp is mine!" 

"Um, Steph, you do know that’s just a dusty $20 lamp he bought on sale from Walmart, right?" 

"It’s the symbolism that counts, honey." 

After Damian died Alfred stopped letting anyone disobey Bruce’s orders to stay in the cave. And for a while, no one even wanted to argue.

The first time Tim tried to convince Dick to help him go after Bruce on a mission they’d been ordered off of Alfred overheard it. The reprimand Tim received for his suggestion has gone down as the harshest Alfred has ever given. After that no one even considered crossing Alfred’s follow Bruce’s instructions line.

Once Damian was back things didn’t change very much. In fact it wasn’t until after Damian had been back a month that Alfred could watch the kid leave even the house without worrying. The whole first week he forbade Damian even leaving the manor grounds.

Once they’d established that Damian’s powers made him practically invulnerable Alfred was a little more lenient on his rule as long as things didn’t look too bad.

After Damian lost his powers? You bet Alfred was back to being super strict on the rule. Damian learned very early on that crossing Alfred on this was a bad idea (he hadn’t believed Tim’s story, but now he did)

As time went on Alfred finally let up on the rule, but it was mostly because so much had happened.

All the kids were out of the manor most of the time, with Dick in Spyral, Jason running around the world, Tim with the Titans, and Damian on his redemption quest (something Alfred would have forbade had he learned of it before Damian brought home Goliath and introduced him to Maya)

Plus he had his hands full with amnesiac Bruce. So yes, he let the rule slide, more so because he couldn’t monitor the danger than anything.

Even so, Alfred made Damian agree to check with him on a regular (if not daily) basis to make sure the kid was ok. If anything seemed even slightly off he was ready to send in one of the family to make sure he was ok, secret year of redemption or not.

Every time Damian was even a little late checking in Alfred would get this flutter of fear that he might not ever check back in. The fear was quickly erased the moment Damian did call, but still. And every time Damian came back home or to the cave Alfred would absently touch Damian, on his hand, or by ruffling his hair, even hug him, just to make sure Dami was really there. Anything to remind him that the kid was ok, more than ok. Alive.