Welcome to the Silver/Bronze Future


–NOTE: Batman will commit to his daily and annual traditions, moving forward, although they won’t be listed with as much detail in the “future section” as compared to the main chronology we’ve already seen. Some of the items here will feature a time-traveling Batman from the past while others will focus on the canonical elder Batman of this future era.

–1987 to 1988, Arctic Circle/Metropolis
Flashback from Action Comics #583
—and referenced in Superman #423 and Action Comics #583. Alan Moore’s famous capstone to the Silver/Bronze Age—entitled “What Ever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?”—is a brilliant two-issue arc that includes Superman #423 and Action Comics #583, the final two Superman issues of the Silver/Bronze Age. While Crisis on Infinite Earths: The Compendium retcons “What Ever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?” to occur on Earth-423, and the story itself also begins with the line “This is an Imaginary Story… Aren’t they all?”, there’s actually no reason it can’t go on our timeline. In fact, there’s no better end to a continuity, and our timeline is stronger with its presence. As such, I’ve placed this tale as canon on both Earth-423 and Earth-1. Of course, most folks are downright adamant that this is non-canon, so I’ll leave it to personal headcanon choice. If you are against it, then simply ignore this item. Let’s have a synopsis, shall we? Superman’s secret ID has been exposed to the world, and Pete Ross has been murdered as a result. Fearing for his other friends’ safety, Superman has taken Lois Lane, Lana Lang, Perry White, Alice White, Jimmy Olsen, and Krypto to his Fortress of Solitude. Superman melts his giant key and battens down the hatches in preparation for a siege. Sure enough, villains arrive—including Brainiac (having assimilated Lex Luthor’s body), Kryptonite Man (formerly Kryptonite Kid), and the 30th century Legion of Super-Villains (Cosmic King, Saturn Queen, and Lightning Lord). Brainiac puts an impenetrable dome around the perimeter and the siege begins. By nightfall, Batman, Robin, Wonder Woman, Superwoman, Captain Marvel, Martian Manhunter, Green Arrow, Hawkman, and Vartox show up to assist Superman and Krypto, but the heroes cannot pierce the dome. Jimmy drinks super-serum to revert to his Elastic Lad identity while Lana bathes in radioactive goop to revert to Super-Lana. Elastic Lad and Super-Lana charge into battle. Luthor fends off his controller just long enough to beg for death, so Lana obliges and kills him! Brainiac simply animates Luthor’s corpse and continues controlling him. Jimmy and Lana are then killed in battle. After smashing into the Fortress of Solitude, Kryptonite Man and Krypto fight each other to death. The Legion of Super-Villains enter, but are scared back to the 30th century by the Man of Steel. Outside in the snow, Brainiac’s corpse body collapses. Without a suitable host, Brainiac detaches and dies. (Of course, this is Brainiac, who never really dies. He’s definitely copied himself somewhere.) Mr. Mxyzptlk next arrives to battle Superman. The Man of Steel zaps Mxyzptlk with a Phantom Zone Projector while the villain says his name backwards. This sends the imp to two separate dimensions simultaneously, killing him by literally ripping his body in twain. With the dome lifted, the heroes enter the damaged Fortress of Solitude to find a shaken Superman and Lois. The two decide that they will begin their life anew, cooking up a story that Superman has died. Back in the States, news of Superman’s “death”—verified by the heroes—hits the mainstream news outlets. (Lois will later tell journalists that Superman entered a Gold Kryptonite chamber and disappeared forever.) A funeral and memorial service are held. Shortly thereafter, Lois and Clark—now with a changed look and going by the pseudonym “Jordan Elliot”—get married and move to Iowa! Less than a year later, Lois gives birth to baby Jonathan Elliot, who has superpowers just like his pop.

–early 2000s CE, Gotham City.
Referenced in Batman #300. Welcome to the 21st century! A vast urban sprawl has connected cities from Boston to Washington DC into what is now known as Megalopolis-East. Gotham, along with the other major cities are known as “hubs.” But unlike the Mega-Cities of Judge Dredd’s world, Meg-East is a progressive utopia. New modes of automation, public space travel, zero-gravity hospitals in Earth’s orbit, and four day work week have all made the world a better place. This brave new world has likely come about as a direct result of the hard work of the superhero community. Wayne Enterprises rebrands as Wayne International—with new ventures in Brazil, Canada, and Zaire. Bruce, while still in charge as Chairman of the Board, appoints Dick as the new President of Wayne International. Talk about nepotism! Batman and Robin continue their regular crime-fighting operations, working mostly out of the Batcave underneath Wayne Foundation Tower. The Dynamic Duo gets upgraded costumes—although Batman’s looks exactly the same while Robin’s is a whole new look. The heroes build a new super-computer called Maximal IV (aka “Max”) and a new Batwing, essentially a Bat-rocket that can fly into space. Eventually, crime rates in Gotham plummet. Penguin retires from crime, traveling to Antarctica to study penguins. Catwoman retires to Katmandu. Joker and Two-Face remain in prison, but thanks to progressive reforms, they are finally well on their way to rehabilitation. Neither has the desire to break-out or commit any crimes. Riddler delivers his “final puzzle” to Batman and Robin, after which he completely disappears for good. With Gotham relatively safe and secure, Batman, now in his mid-fifties, enters into semi-retirement. Bruce will patrol every now and again with Dick, but he will mostly focus on Wayne International business, moving forward. Robin, despite seeing less action, forms an official partnership with the Meg-East Interstate Police. Not long after, Dick gets married to an unknown woman and has twins boys named Bruce Grayson and James Grayson. Commissioner Gordon retires to Maine to write his memoirs. Batman sends him a bunch of case files. Likewise, the Dark Knight also begins writing memoirs, entitled “The Batman Chronicles.” (Batman’s memoirs are also referenced in Batman #304 Part 2.) We are never told if Batman actually ever publishes his memoirs. Last but not least, Bruce falls in love with an unknown woman, with whom he begins dating.

–early 2000s CE, New Orleans.
Referenced in Batman #300. This item occurs four years prior to the main action of Batman #300. Batman travels to New Orleans when an unknown party hacks into and steals private data from Gulf Star Shipping Lines, ruining the company. Batman is unable to crack the case. Unknown to him, the clandestine color-themed criminal cult/syndicate known as Spectrum is responsible.

–mid 2000s CE, Earth.
Batman #300. Bruce, now nearing sixty-years-old, is asked to run for governor by a powerful political reform coalition. He tells them he will give it serious consideration. Bruce then goes on a much-deserved monthlong vacation. When an emergency pops-up in Gotham, Robin calls Batman home. Upon arrival in Gotham, Batman fights-off some strange man that are colored blue from head to toe. In the Batcave, Robin tells Batman that he (in his role as president of Wayne International) had an unsavory encounter with a strange brutish man at a party, after which several acts of industrial sabotage occurred at Wayne International properties. Worried, Dick sent Meg-East Police Intelligence Agent Annie Morgan to investigate. Annie was nearly killed by assassins, but managed to send cryptic clues as to the IDs of her would-be killers before slipping into a coma. After the briefing and some investigative computer hacking, Batman flies up to the Columbia Space Hospital in Earth’s orbit to check-up on Annie. Aboard the floating hospital, Batman is attacked by assassins covered in the color red. Robin phones Batman, alerting him that there’s been a massive data breach at Wayne International. They’ve been hacked! Bruce realizes that whoever has hacked them is the same group that hacked Gulf Star Shipping Lines four years ago. After a quick call to Jim Gordon and some searching on their super-computer, our heroes travel to the source of the hacking—Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. There, Batman and Robin infiltrate a massive underground compound, home to Spectrum, a criminal cult/syndicate complete with soldiers painted in every color of the rainbow. Batman and Robin watch as The Prism Man (i.e. the guy with whom Dick had a negative encounter at the party weeks earlier) speaks to his minions. Batman and Robin eventually defeat the bizarre leaders of Spectrum—Ultraviolet and Infrared—to shut down the organization once and for all. Later, Bruce officially retires as Batman, telling Dick that he’s been asked to run for governor! Bruce also tells Dick that he plans on asking his girlfriend for her hand in marriage! Our story, David Vern Reed’s most ambitious by far, ends here, but we can assume that Bruce runs for office. Whether he wins or loses is unknown, but we can probably assume that Bruce gets married and has children. How ever you imagine Bruce’s final days is really up to your own personal headcanon from here on out.

–2020s CE
There’s no comic book reference for this, but, as all men must, Bruce dies. The date is pure speculation, really a random guess on my part. Since no one has ever written this tale, we can invent our own version of his passing—peaceful or tragic. Fare thee well in the next continuity, old chum!

–2071 CE, Eastern US Seaboard, China, Antarctica, South Atlantic Ocean.
Justice League of America #11
. A time-traveling JLA (from the year 1971) goes to the year 3786 to capture the Lord of Time. The JLA easily does so and then attempts to head back to 1971. However, on their way back, Superman and the Time Bubble in which the rest of the team inhabits run into a barrier in the form of a space-time anomaly in the year 2071—(this was originally 2062, but thanks to retcons it is 2071). Due to a Felix Faust spell, the Demons Three have come alive in 2071 and have begun to destroy Earth. The Demons Three greet the time-traveling heroes by turning them into green mist and stuffing them in jars. But thanks to Green Lantern’s power ring, the heroes survive and escape. Noticing that the magick of the Demons Three can only be directed at specific individuals, Green Lantern uses his ring to make each member of the JLA look like another. Batman, for instance, turns into Wonder Woman. As the mixed-up JLA epically battles the Demons Three, time literally begins to devolve and break down. Eventually, however, the Demons Three are defeated and imprisoned once again. Superman then runs the Time Bubble back to 1971.

–2084 CE, New Gotham City.
World’s Finest Comics #135.
April 2. Batman and Robin defeat time-traveling villain Rak Darr in 1971, then return him back to his home-time of 2084. In Gotham (which has been officially renamed New Gotham City), the Dynamic Duo rescues Superman and Rak’s twin brother John Darr, who both have been captured by Rak’s henchmen. Batman, Robin, and Superman then use Rak’s time-sphere to return to 1971.

–2977 CE, Earth, Antares-II, Vaxon, limbo space.
Justice League #147-148 (“CRISIS IN THE 30th CENTURY”). Late January. Mordru, a magickal villain, kidnaps the JLA and Earth-2’s JSA from 1979, bringing them to the 30th century. Mordru has already captured members of the 30th century’s Legion of Super-Heroes—Brainiac 5, Chameleon Boy, Princess Projectra, Shadow Lass, Saturn Girl, Lightning Lad, Sun Boy, Wildfire, and Ultra-Boy. Mordru explains that he seeks the artifacts linked to the Demons Three (the Red Jar of Calythos, the Silver Wheel of Nyorlath, and the Green Bell of Uthool), which are currently spread across the universe. Mordru has already sent out several Legionnaires to retrieve the items. Dr. Fate uses his own magick to convince Mordru release some of the time-displaced heroes to assist the Legionnaires. Thus, Superman, Earth-2 Hawkman, and Dr. Fate meet up with Sun Boy and Wildfire, collecting the Silver Wheel on Antares-II. Batman and the Green Lanterns travel to the planet Vaxon to assist Brainiac 5 and Princess Projectra in negotiating the release of the Green Bell from the Vaxonian ruling council. Jay Garrick and Power Girl get the Red Jar from an interdimensional Bleedspace. With the artifacts in hand, Mordru summons Abnegazar, Rath, and Ghast. However, the Demons Three immediately take-down Mordru. After quarreling amongst themselves, the Demons Three try (but fail) to take each other down. This leads to each demon choosing proxy soldiers to war against one another. The heroes are all forced into a three-way battle pitting the JLA vs the JSA vs the Legion! As the giant team battle-royale ensues, Abnegazar attempts to usurp leadership from President Kandru (the President of Earth). Ghast, meanwhile, tries to take over a geo-lab deep under the planetary crust, but fails. Ghast’s mind-control spell also fails, leading to the JLA regaining their senses. Batman, Superman, Black Canary, and Green Arrow then take on Ghast and his Legion-cronies at Ice City, a metropolis built at the remains of the Arctic polar ice cap. When Rath combats Abnegazar, they obliterate each other completely, which releases the JSA and Legion from their control. The combined heroes then attack Ghast. They reassemble the scattered remains of the old JL Satellite to form a permanent prison for Ghast. Everyone then returns to their correct times and Earths.

–2981 CE, Gotham District of Metropolis.
The Brave and The Bold #179 and Legion of Super-Heroes #280. In 1981, Batman fights time displaced super-villain Anton Halkor, who has just bested the Legion of Super-Heroes (Element Lad, Colossal Boy, Cosmic Boy, Princess Projectra, Sun Boy, and Chameleon Boy) to steal an alien anti-matter bomb. Inside Gotham’s Museum of Science and Technology, Halkor replaces the anti-matter bomb with a World’s Fair time-capsule. As Batman fights Halkor, they both phase to 2981. While Halkor meets with his boss Universo (who has just escaped from the prison planet of Takron-Galtos), Batman orients himself with his surroundings and heads toward Legion HQ. Batman and the Legionnaires deduce that Halkor swapped the anti-matter bomb with the time-capsule, which is due to be unearthed in a few hours. The heroes then discover that Shadow Lass, Duo Damsel, Shrinking Violet, and Rond Vidar (Universo’s superhero son) are missing. (Having been mind-controlled by his dad, Vidar has exiled Shadow Lass, Duo Damsel, and Shrinking Violet to random points in the timestream.) After the Legion defeats Halkor in the sewer, Sun Boy tells Batman that Halkor is an arch-rival of James Gordon-Wayne (Bruce’s distant future relative). Shortly thereafter, while the Legionnaires (including the returning heroes that were lost in time) bust Universo, Batman re-wires the anti-matter bomb, causing it to rocket into space and detonate where it can cause no harm. Cosmic Boy then gives Batman a ride home back to 1981 in a time-sphere.

–3786 CE, Earth.
Justice League of America #11
. In 1971, the JLA, sans Snapper, gets into a Legion Time Bubble and hurtles forward through time along with Superman as he runs at ultra fast time-travel speed to the year 3786. In 3786, the JLA easily captures the Lord of Time before heading back toward their correct time. Of course, Superman and the Time Bubble make a brief stop in 2071 before actually going back to 1971.

–4069 CE, Cinopolis (Earth).
World’s Finest Comics #183
. Batman time-travels from 1974 to 4069 along with the Time Patrol, who are, unknown to him, secretly Brainiac and Lex Luthor disguised as ape-men from the future. In Cinopolis, the “Hollywood of the 41st century,” Batman witnesses a horrific dystopian world where ape-men rule over humans. This is, in fact, nothing more than a movie shoot of a Planet of the Apes reboot, but Brainiac and Luthor trick the gullible Dark Knight into thinking that it is not only the real state of the planet in the future, but that Superman has caused it as well. Batman is so convinced by this “Minority Report” that he agrees to return to 1974 and arrest Superman—and he actually does! Of course, the villains are eventually exposed and all’s well that ends well back in 1974.

–7250 CE, Earth.
Justice League of America #138-139. Adam Strange has been poisoned with Zeta Beam radiation (by Kanjar Ro) and is trapped in the 73rd century! As such, Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, and Aquaman travel from 1978 to now. In an unnamed city in the 73rd century, they find a confused Adam Strange, who has caused massive destruction across the globe. Even after teaming with a Green Lantern of this era, the super-powered heroes of the past are defeated by Adam Strange, who causes a massive earthquake. Thankfully, Adam Strange’s radiation poisoning fades away. The heroes then go back home. However, upon arriving back in the 20th century, the heroes are invisible and unable to communicate with their fellow JLAers. Adam Strange arrives to illuminate, explaining that Kanjar Ro is responsible. Having taken dictatorial control of the mega-city, Kanjar Ro threatens the League from the 73rd century. Hal then uses his power ring to teleport the entire satellite to the 73rd century! The tangible heroes are quickly defeated by mind-controlled 73rd century super-warriors working for Kanjar Ro. Adam Strange is able to revert the phantom heroes back to their prior state, after which the JLA turns the tables and defeats Kanjar Ro’s crew. Adam Strange then exposes and busts the 73rd century Green Lantern, revealing him as a disguised Kanjar Ro. The 20th century heroes, with their mission a success, return to their own time.

–11,960 CE, Earth.
Justice League of America #7
. In 1970, the evil alien Angellaxians capture and send a duplicate Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, and Green Lantern back to the Secret Sanctuary. There, the fakes, in order to get the best heroes out of the way, make up a story about Xotar, which convinces Batman, Superman, and J’onn J’onzz that is of utmost importance that they time-travel to the year 11,960 to stop him. Thus, the trio of heroes goes on a wild goose chase, soon finding that Xotar is safely in prison. Superman, Batman, and J’onn return to 1970 just in time to hear the whole story of the defeat of the Angellaxians while they were absent. (We are never told the method of travel that our heroes use to go to 11,960 CE. It is most likely that Superman uses a Legion Time Bubble, as referenced in Justice League of America #11.)

–unknown era, New Gotham City.
The Brave and the Bold #59
. 1972 Batman arrives in this unknown future, getting sent there—along with a whole city block—by Time Commander. Here, Batman gets in the middle of an alien invasion. The Dark Knight is only in this time period for a few minutes, during which 1972 Green Lantern contacts him with a means to defeat Time Commander and saves his life remotely.

–unknown moment in time, Earth.
Justice League of America #33
. Superman, Batman, Hawkman, Flash, and Green Lantern, while en route back to 1972 from the 216th century, get frozen in a random moment in time when they are attacked by a gigantic pink blob known as “The Endless One,” sent by the Alien-Ator to block the JLers from returning to their correct home-time. Doomed to an eternity trapped with the Endless One in this one single second of the timestream, the JL must act quickly if they hope to escape. Batman suggests that Green Lantern break them out the frozen second in which they are stuck by creating a self-contradictory paradox. Channeling Despero’s aging ray via his power ring, Green Lantern causes himself to grow very elderly. The paradox of aging despite being stuck in a single moment is too much for the pink blob to bear. The Endless One disappears and the JLers return to 1972.

–21,574 CE, Earth.
Justice League of America #33
. In 1972, the JLA assembles for a meeting at the Secret Sanctuary, but are attacked by Kaston Tharn, who uses robot claws to defeat the JLA and bring some of them hurtling to the distant future. Batman, Superman, and Hawkman are brought specifically to the year 21,574, where they are forced through a giant Kryptonite cloud, which currently covers most of the Earth. After going through the cloud, a weakened Superman, Batman, and Hawkman are brought to Tharn’s home-time in the 216th century.

–25,673 CE, Earth.
Justice League of America #33
. A formless invisible being from a “timeless” dimension, “The Alien-Ator,” arrives on Earth and turns all humans into green-faced monsters. An advanced computer program reveals that the only way to turn all back into regular humans is to build a chrono-kinetic ray capable of harvesting the “energy-action” of properly radiated metahumans. Thus, it is to the 20th century that the troubled green-faced former humans turn. Earth’s leading scientist Kaston Tharn brings a handful of JLers from 1972 to the 216th century. After dragging them through the Kryptonite clouded Earth of the 216th century, Tharn brings Batman, Superman, and Hawkman to the year 25,673, where he has already brought Green Lantern and Flash. The JLers battle robot claws until they are interrupted by Tharn, who has collected enought of their energy-action to transform from a green-faced creature back into a regular human being. Tharn explains the story of the Alien-Ator’s transformation of humanity and how the JLers have unwittingly saved Earth. Just then, Tharn’s aide delivers news that the Alien-Ator has traveled to 1972, prompting our heroes to depart the 257th century and head back toward their correct time period.

–801,972 CE, New Gotham City.
World’s Finest Comics #151
. In 1972, Batman evolves into a brainy evil asshole thanks to a Kryptonian “accelerator” machine. Sick of 1972, Batman builds a time machine and travels to the 8,020th century where he meets and befriends the humans of the day, who have all evolved into giant-brained assholes. A devolved caveman-like Superman appears from the Pleistocene Era, fights Batman, grabs him, and flies him back to prehistory.


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