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|First Published:||November 6, 2013|
|Previous Issue:||Detective Comics #24|
|Next Issue:||Detective Comics #26|
Lt. Jim Gordon was a good cop, trying to take down Roman Sionis' criminal empire in a city of crooked cops. Unfortunately, during the blackout Sionis' and his men were eager to make their move, and when Jim tried to bring them down, he found himself betrayed by one of the GCPD's own. Caught, Sionis had Jim thrown from the Trigate Bridge. Since its construction, more than two thousand suicides were recorded from the bridge. Less than two dozen of those who jumped survived, and only then with severe internal injuries. On that day, though, Jim fell from that great height, and walked.
Things had not been easy for Jim lately. The blackout was accompanied by a storm that had since grown and was growing still into a projected super-storm. Meanwhile, the Red Hood Gang had been dragging citizens into criminal conspiracies through blackmail, followed by a ripple effect of costumed criminals and a masked vigilante to deal with them in ways the GCPD couldn't or wouldn't. All of this had happened in just the past week.
Sionis had been leading a derivative gang called the Black Mask gang. They had hit a company called Gotham WattWorks that had started manufacturing a special battery which was hoped to last hundreds of times longer than regular batteries; such a valuable commodity during the blackout that it would be like diamonds if the gang got their hands on them - and they did, killing five in the process. He arrived too late to the scene because his partner, Francis Laney, had taken a bad turn. He began to realize, then, that his bumbling and sloppy partner might actually have been just as crooked as the rest of the force seemed to be under Commissioner Loeb's leadership.
Jim was frustrated to discover that despite the technology available to well-moneyed departments like that of Metropolis, Gotham's department was ineffectual on account of its total lack of technology and funding required to solve crimes. His attempts to do so despite that fact brought the attention of the Commissioner himself. When Jim explained that he had found a connection between recent Black Mask robberies and Janus Cosmetics, Loeb warned him not to investigate by paying Janus' CEO, Roman Sionis, a visit. Instead, he tasked Jim with bringing in the vigilante - the same vigilante who had successfully brought down a number of the Falcone family's men.
Taking a leaf from the vigilante's book, Jim played by his own rules, and went straight to Janus Cosmetics. While there, he learned that Sionis seemed to have an unusual preoccupation with masks - a produce that his company sold. Though that was not concrete evidence in itself, it was enough to prove to Jim that Sionis was behind everything. Despite his anger that Jim disobeyed him, Loeb agreed to get him some help in handling the Sionis issue and the fact that many cops were on Sionis' payroll to look the other way. That help was Zachary Henshaw, from Internal Affairs.
Henshaw spent a week with Jim collecting evidence, pretending to build a case. They finally hit paydirt on the night that the super-storm rolled in. But it was Henshaw that betrayed him, having been working for Sionis the whole time. When Jim emerged from the river, confused at how he had survived, and why Henshaw would spend a week pretending to work with him to find evidence against their fellow officers if he wasn't going to use it.
He found Henshaw at the precinct, planting the seeds for the discovery of Jim's "suicide," but that plan went awry when Jim appeared, alive and well, and punched him in the face. Jim placed him under arrest, but the other officers turned on him. Fortunately, Jim had a plan. He had broken into the Henshaw's apartment, and discovered the files containing all of the evidence he had collected against the other officers as an insurance policy against turning on him. Since Jim had it, he could bring them all down. Unfortunately Laney had pulled his gun on his partner, and it was only the swift action of Harvey Bullock that saved Jim's life. Despite the fact that the criminals were still running wild after turning off the power, and that the GCPD would be short-staffed significantly - nearly a dozen corrupt officers were removed from duty that day.
Sionis escaped in the meantime, becoming the Black Mask, and ensuring that all of the police on his payroll were killed, including Laney and Henshaw. Henshaw's death drew the Commissioner out of his office, and Jim could see in his eyes that he hadn't known about Henshaw's corruption - but that he was inwardly conflicted about just how corrupt he had allowed his department to become. Jim promised himself that he would never give up fighting the good fight, to keep control of Gotham - and its police.
Afterwards, Jim couldn't help but return to the scene of the crime, where his plan to take down Sionis had gone wrong. He had used a flashlight that his daughter Barbara had given him for Christmas as a signal for his Henshaw to move in on Sionis, and in the scuffle, it had been broken beyond repair. His signal, though, had not gone unnoticed. When he fell, that night, from the bridge, it was the Batman who saved his life.
Perhaps this meant that his fight for justice in Gotham was not being fought by him alone. And perhaps, if he ever needed help again, it would be fitting to get a bigger flashlight.
Today, Commissioner Jim Gordon and Officer Henry Wallace are called to investigate an apparent suicide from the New Trigate Bridge, but the Commissioner is unconvinced that it is a genuine suicide. Witnesses had heard the sound of hundreds of flapping wings as the body was torn to pieces in the air. It was nothing but a skeleton, by the time the victim hit the ground.
Wallace had been injured while cordoning off the scene, as he had spotted Kirk Langstrom in the assembled crowd - apparently in bad shape. Langstrom had been raving that a woman had done it, and that it was his responsibility to stop her. Wallace had decided it would be a good idea to take Langstrom into custody when he suddenly transformed into a giant man-bat and clawed at the officer's face before flying away. Concerned at this news, Jim has Wallace come back with him to the GCPD Headquarters' roof to get some help.
- James Gordon
- Zachary Henshaw
- Black Mask
- Red Hood Gang
- Black Mask Gang
- Francis Laney
- Gillian Loeb
- Harvey Bullock
- Gotham City
- New Trigate Bridge