Last year, Batman fans who had long-waited for the wedding between the titular hero and Catwoman were disappointed when Batman #50 arrived, but the wedding did not. Catwoman left Batman at the altar, setting off a chain of events leading to Batman's fall and the rise of the City of Bane. Now, in this week's Batman #78, Bat and Cat are reunited as they prepare to save Gotham City and it's a reunion that sheds new light on why the wedding didn't happen.
Spoilers for this week's Batman #78 beyond this point.
The issue finds Batman and Catwoman appearing to vacation on a beach somewhere, but while they pair are soaking up some sun it would be wrong to call this a vacation. Instead, the beach time has a few purposes. Bruce continues to recover, and rest form his injuries from several issues ago, but something that will allow the pair to take down Bane will be coming to the beach soon. The pair are waiting and training so that they can be ready for it.
Of course, that means a lot of time together and that means the conversation begins to turn to the elephant in the room: their doomed relationship and the wedding that wasn't. After quite a few tense will they or won't they moments, one night Selina lays out for Bruce how she felt after she left him, revealing how much crying she did even though she had believed that by leaving him she was sacrificing her own happiness to ensure Batman remained. Bruce reveals a bit of his own pain as well.
The real revelation, though, comes the next day. While training on the beach, Catwoman tries to anger Batman into being more aggressive and blames herself for the entire decline of the relationship and what happened after -- his fall, the fall of Gotham, all of it. But Batman doesn't play ball. Instead, he opens up and tells her that none of it is her fault. He reveals that he, too, was afraid. He takes it even further, though, and explains that perhaps they had to fail, and he had to fall in order for him to gain perspective, clarity, and will to keep fighting.
That's right: Catwoman isn't the reason the wedding didn't happen. They both are. It's an interesting bit of perspective, but it's one that also sees a shift. Batman admits that he needs Catwoman in his world and, by the end of the issue, the pair are back together again. It's a shift that may also see an impact beyond their romantic pairing. With the air cleared about their failed wedding, the path is clear for the two to work together as a team even better as they prepare to take on Bane for the soul of Gotham City.
Batman #78 is on sale now.