Elseworlds – Monthly Series
Matt Duarte – Writer
Rotating – Artists
The High Concept:
If there's one thing that DC's superheroes have over their marvellous counterparts is that there is a certain universality to them. Taking them out of their normal setting and placing them in a strange world or time to see what makes them tick, work, and explode.
Various, depending on the story arc.
The series will be divided into four issue story arcs (beginning, middle, elevation and conclusion), each starring a different character. Each story arc will feature one of the protagonists of one of the other 52 new series that DC is relaunching. Artists rotate every arc to fit the tone and setting of the story (and to keep deadlines). The stories do not take in a parallel Earth of any kind, so there won't be any crossovers into the “main” DCU at all or between them. These are purely imaginary stories (but then again, aren't they all?).
First arc features Batman, as he is by far the most popular character in the stable of DC's characters. The setting in this case is the medieval ages, more specifically in the 12th century eastern Spain. The backdrop for this whole story is that of the Moors invasion of the area, as King Jaume attempts to drive them out of the territories. A young boy named Berenguer (our “Bruce”) witnessed the brutal murder of his wealthy parents by invading forces inside the very walls of their castle. Managing to escape miraculously, Berenguer trains his whole life to hunt down the men responsible for his parents' murder, particularly the leader of the group, a half-Moor, half-Christian (our “Two-Face”, a mercenary who sells out to the highest wage). Dressed in an outfit inspired by the stories of dragons in the Bible, Berenguer sets out to strike fear into the heart of these invaders and drive them from his land.
Second arc features Catwoman (a step down from Batman, but still quite popular) set in the backdrop of ancient Egypt. The Pharaohs of Egypt used to be buried in sacred robes, along with their most valuable possessions (and sometimes, even servants). Only a madman would dare try to steal from their crypts, as they are surrounded by deadly traps and unsolvable mazes. However, one woman that the empire has nicknamed Sahkmet (“the Lioness”) is somehow raiding their most sacred ancestors, robbing them of their luxuries in the afterlife. How does she manage to avoid all the traps built in by the engineers? How does she know exactly where to look for the valuables while in there? And why does she have a predilection for the cats buried along the Pharaohs? In his dying days, Amhenotep, the ruler of the Eighteenth Dynasty, wants to know, for if he is to be buried soon, he wants it to be with the knowledge that his grave will be safe from this thief.
Third arc would feature an alteration of the modern Blue Beetle story, where the Reach tried to invade Krypton. The Scarab has fallen in the hands (or spine, as you would have it) of a young scientist named Jor-L, who saw incredibly promise in the alien technological capabilities of it. He initially accepts with the hopes of retro-engineering it, but as he starts donning the Scarab armour more and more on scientific adventures, he no longer finds pleasure in theoretical studies. As he explores the world and universe around him, he wanders away from the solar system of Krypton, where he experiences two new feelings: one of incredible power, completely unrelated to the armour he is wearing, and two, his scarab armour rebelling against him, no longer obeying his thoughts and orders. Jor-El must fight his way back to Krypton, scarab or no scarab, to share these new discoveries, and warn the rest of the world about the impending doom coming from their seemingly benevolent “Reach” allies.