Batman villain Bane is known for one thing: breaking Batman’s back. So naturally, whenever he shows up again, you can usually expect the threat of amateur chiropractice to rise up. This week’s Batman #10 is all about that threat… and it might send a shiver down your spine while you’re reading it.
Batman #10 sees the Dark Knight singlehandedly attempting to assault Bane’s island stronghold to retrieve the villain Psycho-Pirate, who Batman needs to help the ailing Gotham Girl (with the help of his own Suicide Squad). Again and and again, Batman repeats the same demand to Bane: turn Psycho-Pirate over, or “I’ll break your damn back.” Those are some fightin’ words, Bats.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t go too well for the Batman, who gets the overwhelmed by Bane’s forces and brought before the villain himself. And… well, you should guess what happens next, right?
Yup, despite all of Batman’s threatening, it’s he who gets his back broken. Again. It’s a 1993 redux all up in this comic! But no, we’re not going to see Batman get replaced by a hilariously ‘90s brute again as we did after Knightfall. Because Batman is older. Smarter. Wiser. And, apparently, more hardcore than ever.
Because you see, thinking that Batman is done, Bane tosses the fallen hero into a cell filling up with rising water—the same cell he was kept in as a child. Instead of meeting a gruesome end, Batman, through sheer force of will, fights through the pain of his broken back to punch some grips into the wall…
… And then performs a little chiropractic treatment of his own.
In the space of one issue, Batman gets his back broken, and then casually unbreaks it himself. It’s sort of ludicrous, but I kind of love it? This is peak Batman, in terms of Batman being a hyper-prepared badass. His spine fixed, Batman calls in the cavalry in the form of Catwoman—who narrates the issue in the form of a letter she once wrote Bruce about her past as an orphan—and ends the issue with a declaration of his plan once more:
Oh dear. Are we going to round three in the Bane v. Bats matchup? Being the Dark Knight is backbreaking work.