Flash the Bat-Signal, Jim Gordon is back in Cat-TalesOctober 8, 2013
I’m often asked what I would do differently if I was starting Cat-Tales today. I tell them honestly: Not much, but the big difference is that James Gordon would be police commissioner. Cat-Tales began when he had resigned after being shot in the ill-conceived Officer Down storyline, an event that was instrumental to getting that Runaway Snowball of WTFTM rolling that sparked A Girl’s Gotta Protect Her Reputation in the first place.
It was right for the time. It was right for the Catwoman story being told, and it was right for the meta commentary on DC Comics that is the series’s raison d’etre. But it’s not quite right for an ongoing Batman series. For years, I’ve planted my flag on the principle that stories have certain elements that are not negotiable, and where Batman is concerned Jim Gordon is one of them. That’s his chair.
He has been present in the series, as Barbara’s father and retired commissioner. It’s been wonderful, because the decision and his status as a retiree brought a depth to his relationship with Bruce. Still, I’ve missed him on that roof. Four stories ago in The Gotham Rogues the first clue dropped:
The man who had served as police commissioner since Jim Gordon retired wanted Batman to know he was being vetted for a Presidential Appointment to the Department of Justice… In all probability, Gotham would have a new police commissioner by the end of the year.
From the beginning, Commissioner Muskelli was established as a political animal. The change was easy to set in motion, and with so much drama in that tale, I trusted that the significance would be missed, or if noticed it would be quickly forgotten. Things have developed slowly, through Wayne Rises and Inside an Enigma. Now, at last, in the new story that begins today, Jim Gordon is back on the job.