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|First Published:||November 2, 2011|
|Previous Issue:||Detective Comics #2|
|Next Issue:||Detective Comics #4|
With half of his body paralyzed by a drug, Batman crouches over the body of the man that the Dollmaker claims is Commissioner Gordon. Batman has already determined that the body is not his friend's, but he can't be sure that Gordon isn't still in great danger either.
The Dollmaker announces his plans to make a doll of Batman as well, and then sell him off to the highest bidder. Naturally, Batman resists, and is forced to fight all of the Dollmaker's family with rapidly spreading paralysis in his body. With one of them clinging to his back, Batman desperately leaps out a window in order to escape becoming too vulnerable in front of his enemy. Struggling to stand, he drags the downed minion with him.
Somewhere within Gotham City's abandoned Mercy Hospital, Commissioner Gordon wakes with a shooting pain in his side. Feeling around, he finds a recently stitched surgical incision in his side, and realizes that someone has taken one of his organs from him. Looking up, he sees the face of Olivia Carr, the little girl who was kidnapped days previous. She explains that the Dollmaker intends to make her a part of his 'family', and that is why she appears to be safe for now. She explains that Batman is the only one who can save him, because there are orders to kill Gordon should the police appear. Suspicious, Gordon passes her a message to deliver to the Batman. At the Gotham Steel Works, Batman marvels at his opponent's durability. He suspects that the Dollmaker has replaced his bones with some kind of pliable material. He tries to extract answers from his victim, but eventually realizes that the man's tongue has been removed something which he interprets as the first solid lead thus far. At Gotham City Police Headquarters, Sgt. Harvey Bullock is frustrated to see that someone has already leaked news of the Commissioner's apparent death to the media. Reporter Charlotte Rivers corners him, and demands to know if the body is Gordon or not. He offers no comment, but she persists. With Bullock's back turned, he and the media fail to notice as Olivia Carr sneaks into the building.
In the Batcave, Bruce goes over the files from the Wesley Mathis case. He notes the fatherly relationship between Dollmaker and his victims, and suddenly remembers that Wesley Mathis also had a son, Barton Mathis. James Gordon had shot down Wesley Mathis in front of Barton Mathis long ago. Barton had explained to police that he had been forced to watch his father track and kill his victims. Those victims were then cannibalized. Barton Mathis was placed in foster care, but disappeared within a year. Using his computer, Bruce creates a projection of what his face might look like today, but there is no way to be sure that he is the Dollmaker without confronting him again. Alfred interrupts to warn that the Bat-Signal has been activated.
Back at the abandoned hospital, Commissioner Gordon overhears the Dollmaker explaining that he plans to remove his prisoner's liver before beginning the doll process, because he must save a life before his can be taken. He expresses an interest in filming the procedure, as he has a personal vendetta against Gordon. Gordon is the man who killed his father, and almost ruined his life. Gordon doesn't know what his captor is talking about, but Dollmaker responds that is staring his own victim in the face suggesting that the skin making up his new face actually belonged to his father.
On the roof of Gotham City Police Headquarters, Batman meets with Olivia. She begs him to help the Commissioner, warning that the Dollmaker is about to operate again. She passes him the note from Gordon: "COME TO MERCY HOSPITAL" with the R reversed. He leaves her with a police officer, but when the policeman approaches her she slits his throat, saying that her father would be disgusted by such a waste. At the hospital, Batman realizes that the backwards R is a code, implying that he needs to watch his back. Obviously, this is a setup. Even so, Batman approaches, needing to save the Commissioner regardless of the danger. Inside the hospital, he hears the voice of the Dollmaker welcome him, claiming that people have paid top dollar to watch him immortalize the Batman. Suddenly, one of the Dollmaker's thugs bursts through the wall, and chokes Batman out.
He wakes in a makeshift boxing ring. A bright light casts the Dollmaker in silhouette, as he announces that people have come to have a first hand look at the merchandise. Batman realizes that his wrists have been attached to cables reaching up to the ceiling. Meanwhile, a number of armed dolls dressed as the Joker also suspended from cables begin to advance on him.
- Batman (Bruce Wayne)
- Alfred Pennyworth
- James Gordon
- Harvey Bullock
- Charlotte Rivers
- The Dollmaker's Family
- Gotham City