Yellow Oval Confirmed to Return to Batman's Costume

An iconic element of Batman's costume is set to make its return to the pages of the DC Comics universe.

Batman appeared wearing a new suit in the pages of last week's issue of Doomsday Clock, the Watchmen sequel/crossover with the DC Comics universe. The suit's most notable change was reinstating the bat symbol set against a yellow oval on Batman's chest.

Now Doomsday Clock artist Gary Frank has confirmed that the costume won't just be confined to the event series, but will appear across other DC Comics titles.

"This will be used across the other comics, yes," Frank told a fan on Twitter who complimented the emblem's design.

Doomsday Clock is set about one year into the future of the DC Comics universe. This means that the Batman comics and other series where Batman appears have some time before they catch up to the new look of the Dark Knight.

Frank appears to have a fondness for the yellow oval Batman symbol. He used a similar design when he drew the Batman: Earth One graphic novels.

The yellow oval was first instituted in the 1960s "new look" redesign of Batman. The introduction of the oval accompanied a lightening of the Batsuit's dark colors that signified a move away from Batman's dark and gothic roots into something more akin to the other DC Comics heroes of the era. The oval was made iconic as part of Adam West's costume in the 1960s Batman television series and was reintroduced to modern audiences when it appeared on Michael Keaton's Batsuit in the 1989 Batman movie.

The symbol was most-recently used in the design of Batman's costume for the Batman Incorporated series that concluded writer Grant Morrison's long run on the character. The symbol has often drawn critical questions from fans - "Why would a stealthy fight like Batman have a bright yellow symbol on his chest?" - though some Batman stories have answered that question by suggesting Batman is goading his opponents into aiming for the most heavily-armored part of his body.

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The return of Batman's classic yellow oval comes just as DC Comics has announced the return of Superman's classic red trunks.

Doomsday Clock #3 is on sale now.