Batman: Beyond the White Knight moves into its fifth chapter next week, but what if I told you we had a glimpse at what to expect in issue #6? Well, the good news is we absolutely do, and ComicBook.com also had the chance to speak to writer Sean Murphy all about the series and the anticipated issue, which teases a long-awaited throwdown between Dick Grayson and Jason Todd. We also had the chance to talk a bit about what's in store for Bruce Wayne, Harley Quinn, and Jack, and the very unexpected and unconventional dynamic they find themselves in, and you can check out a preview of the new issue below as well.
Issue #5 will shake things up a bit in the dynamic between Bruce, Jack, and Harley, and in issue #6 Murphy wanted to make sure that Harley comes to certain realizations on her own and stays empowered despite the audience being in the dark about certain elements, and Murphy is happy with how it came together.
"I am. Yeah. She's empowered in her own way. I mean, we quickly realized that she figures out on her own. Jack called her pudding, which was a clue for her. She's obviously okay with it and she's been pushing the idea. She's convinced that her and Bruce have a future, but he's just not seeing it yet and she's sort of getting tired of waiting for him, but she doesn't want to push him either. And I just think that she accepts that it's this weird love triangle between the three of them," Murphy said.
While Jack is all-in, Bruce is having a more difficult time seeing a future between himself and Harley. That said, fans love the pairing, and it's a relationship that many are invested in even if they were against it early on.
"And Jack probably accepts it too, but Bruce has a real hard time wrapping his head around it because he just can't get his head around the fact that Harley Quinn and Batman would ever have a relationship, because in any other book that would make no sense," Murphy said. "But we've sort of been teasing it in the White Knight universe since 2017. I feel like we've sort of earned this moment. I have a lot of readers who reach out and they say, 'I really like the idea of Bruce and Harley and I was really against it when I first heard about it, but coming along for the ride kind of won me over slowly.' And I think that's the best compliment that I can get."
The issue and the series overall will also start to examine their marriage, because they are actually married after all, and what that actually means in the context of this world, what they want out of that, and how that can exist in this world. Murphy also wants to leave things a bit up to the audience too regarding that.
"Yeah. I'm sort of trying to leave it up to the readers to decide if... They're married. Are they husband and wife? Yes and no. Technically they are, but what does that mean? They really haven't had time to discuss it because there are so many other things going on in the book and at the end, we'll have to have some kind of resolution. What are they as a couple, especially if we move into volume four at some point? Are they just married and sharing a house? I mean, that seems kind of pedestrian for two such dynamic characters. I imagine if they have a romance it'll never be traditional. I don't see them ever having a wedding with a white dress. Other books do that really well. I'm trying to make this one a bit different and make it complicated. You know what I mean?"
Beyond the White Knight isn't just about Harley, Bruce, and Jack though, and issue #6 will also provide a welcome look into Bruce and Dick's relationship, both in terms of how it become so frayed in the first place and how it could be moving forward. Murphy also knows that things might have been a bit rough for Nightwing fans to this point, and issue #6 should provide some light at the end of that tunnel.
"Yeah, if you're a fan of Dick Grayson, then I imagine the White Knight might be a tough read for you because he often comes across as... Well, I guess he's kind of the villain here, although it's sort of a miscommunication. He is the antagonist for most of this plot. He's not a bad guy. He's just committed to creating a crime-free Gotham and he was willing to sacrifice people's freedom in order to get it. He's not a bad guy. It's just one man's opinion, in a way," Murphy said.
"Yeah, Dick, my worry was he was too unlikeable and by issue six here, I really wanted to give Dick a lot of time in the spotlight and explain his reasons and give him some redemption too and have him and Bruce sort of start working together and get back to the fun, because him being a pouty teenager through most of White Knight gets kind of old after a while. I definitely wanted to win back Dick Grayson fans with this issue," Murphy said.
Batman: Beyond the White Knight #6 hits comic stores and digital platforms on October 25th.
What did you think of the preview? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all things comics with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!0comments