DC is set to launch a new comic book series that ties in to the events of Pennyworth, the alternate-universe Batman prequel series from Gotham producers Danny Cannon and Bruno Heller. The series, which centers on the younger years of Batman's butler and father figure Alfred Pennyworth, takes place in England, where Pennyworth meets Thomas Wayne and Martha Kane for the first time, and starts down a path that will lead him to becoming Bruce Wayne's right-hand man in his never-ending war on crime. The comic book series will reportedly take place in the years between the TV show and Alfred's years at Wayne Manor, with flash-forwards to seeing the elder Pennyworth working for the Waynes.
This represents the first time Alfred has ever headlined his own comic book series. Ironically, the first Nightwing series was launched with a one-shot that centered around Dick Grayson persuading Alfred to return to Wayne Manor following the events of the Knightfall/KnightQuest/KnightsEnd storylines.
Comic book tie-ins to major film and TV projects from DC and Marvel used to be standard operating procedure, but in recent years have become less and less common. There were some tie-in comics for Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises, which could only be accessed by buying a specific smartphone who had a tie-in deal with Warner Bros. at the time. One-shot stories set in the world of Zack Snyder's Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice were released but bundled with consumer products like Dr. Pepper and General Mills cereals. Unless we're missing something, the last DC movie to get a direct comics adaptation was 2005's Constantine, and the last movie to get tie-in comics in the direct market was Green Lantern in 2011. There have been some comic book minseries set in the Arrowverse, centered on characters from Arrow, The Flash, and Supergirl.
Here's how DC describes the series, which is set to launch in comic shops and digitally in August:
Spanning the years between the hit TV show and today, Pennyworth tells the continuing adventures of Alfred Pennyworth as an MI6 counterintelligence agent - this time in Cold War-era Soviet Russia. When Alfred and his partner receive intelligence that nuclear weapons are being manufactured near the Arctic Circle, they're off to infiltrate the remote military base to learn more. But things don't go exactly as planned, and the ramifications of this mission may be more far-reaching than anyone could have guessed, as our present-day butler gets dragged back into his past…
Pennyworth will run for seven issues, from writer Scott Bryan Wilson (Batman: Gotham Knights) and artist Juan Gedeon (Venom).