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Comic Book: Batman: Digital Justice
Batman brings justice to Facebook.

Batman: Digital Justice is a graphic novel written by Pepe Moreno, published in 1990 by DC Comics, which follows the attempts of Legacy Character James Gordon (the Commissioner's grandson) to become the new Batman for a new era.

The story takes place "sometime into the next century" in a Cyber Punk Gotham City which is being overrun once again by crime, aided by several high-ranking officials. The police force's robotic lapdogs, the so-called "servo enforcers", are going berserk and killing random citizens, ostensibly in the course of duty; but Jim Gordon becomes suspicious when he is unable to verify their internal memory logs nor even to positively identify any of the victims, and suspects that someone with high-level computer access is using the servos as private assassins. In an attempt to get him off the case, his superiors put him on bodyguard duty for arrogant superstar Gata, but Gordon will not be distracted. However, as the investigation continues, Gordon's partner Lena is murdered, and Gordon himself narrowly escapes a similar fate.

Gordon, skirting the Despair Event Horizon, happens upon a crumbling statue — of Gotham's 20th Century hero Batman. He subsequently finds an old costume among his grandfather's personal effects... and the Batman is reborn. Unfortunately, one of his oldest and most deadly foes has also resurfaced, and will stop at nothing short of the utter and complete destruction of Batman.

Batman: Digital Justice is also particularly noteworthy for being written and illustrated entirely using computer-generated images, a'la the movie TRON. While not the first all-digital comic (that honor goes to the 1985 series Shatter), Digital Justice was a radical departure from the dot-matrix look of its predecessor, utilizing then-advanced graphics and even 3-D modelling techniques to create a pseudo-photorealistic look.

This graphic novel contains examples of:

  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: The servo-enforcers. Subverted in that they're being controlled by the Joker virus.
  • Alternate Continuity
  • Attention Whore: Gata. In fact, she's so jealous of the media attention being given to Batman that she sets herself up as his adversary Catwoman specifically to capitalize.
  • Bat Deduction: Oddly enough, not from Batman himself but from the kid who eventually becomes Robin: "What's the matter, you think we don't know you're the Batman?" This one is actually plausible, since Gordon is sporting nasty bruises the morning after one of Batman's exploits.
  • Cleavage Window / Stripperific: Gata usually wears a latex bodysuit which exposes her nether regions, these being covered by very small pieces of colored tape.
    • A lot of women tend to go quasi-topless, in fact.
  • Conspicuous CG: On occasion, consecutive panels depict the exact same artwork, zoomed in or out or panned to achieve various effects.
  • Cool Car / Flying Car: the Batcraft.
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Downplayed; the Mayor of Gotham is shown to have "bio-cybernetic" implants, but these don't figure into the actual plot.
  • Cyber Punk
    • Cyber Punk Is Techno: You can practically hear that thudding techno beat whenever Gata appears on the page.
  • Da Chief: Captain Grover.
  • Dating Catwoman: Atypically for this trope, Gordon never gets any closer to her (romantically speaking) than "There's something about her..." or "I am your friend". Of course, putting Batman and Catwoman together without invoking this trope would be... wrong.
  • Digital Avatar: for both Batman (see page image) and The Joker.
  • Dirty Cop: Captain Grover. Really, it wouldn't be Gotham without (at least) one.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Lena's death sends Gordon nearly over the edge...
    • Hope Spot: ... until he happens upon a statue of Batman — but he doesn't yet know what to do with the inspiration. "Batman... He's damn sure needed now!" (He realizes that, since Everything Is Online and protected by rigid security access, he could never wage a one-man war on crime without getting caught in short order.)
  • Everything Is Online... except for one small computer in the Batcave.
  • Exty Years from Now: The story is set "sometime into the next century".
  • Flying Car: Flying police cars are shown, as well as the Thememobile Batcraft.
  • Future Slang: "Batteries running low... really need that day off."
  • Legacy Character: Batman, Robin and Catwoman all become this.
    • Spin-Offspring: Jim Gordon is the grandson of Commissioner James Gordon.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Gata is a clone of the Mayor.
  • Meaningful Name: "Gata" is Spanish for "female cat"note . Or, to put it another way, a "cat woman".
  • Not Enough to Bury: The servo enforcers' victims. Gordon invokes the trope by name at one point.
  • Omniscient Council of Vagueness: The Mob Lord, the Media Man, the Law Man and the Mayor conspire with the Joker Virus to rule Gotham.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Captain Grover wouldn't stay corrupt.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right: Batman's raison d'etre.
  • Shout-Out: A full-page spread is devoted to a re-creation of a Time Magazine cover.
    • Also: "He's gone! ... De-rezzed!"
    • Another one from TRON: Whenever the city is viewed from high above, it is rendered as a giant circuit board, not unlike TRON's opening scene.
  • Tech Marches On: 3 1/4" floppy disks are shown to be in common usage. On one occasion it's appropriate, since the computer depicted is supposed to be ancient.
  • Title Drop
  • Unintentional Period Piece: The computer-rendered images, state of the art when the comic was produced, started to look dated in the early 2000s.
  • We Will Not Use Photoshop in the Future: the video variety, and averted at that; we see quite a few instances of the digital media using computer trickery to "edit reality".
  • Whip It Good: Catwoman uses a whip, just like her predecessor.
  • The Virus: written by the madman himself.
  • Zeroes and Ones: Turns up in conversation a couple of times, if not in trope-form itself.
    Batman: You get him?
    Robin: Can a CPU add one and zero?
    Comics of the 1990sCable
Batman: Detective No. 27DC Comics SeriesBatman: Earth One
Whatever Happened to The Caped Crusader?Franchise/BatmanBatman: Detective No. 27

alternative title(s): Batman Digital Justice
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