TREAD CAREFULLY: SPOILERS AHEAD
The following article contain major spoilers for Detective Comics #1004, by Peter J. Tomasi, Brad Walker, Andrew Hennessy, Nathan Fairbairn and Rob Leigh. It is on sale now.
DC has been on a #1000th issue streak, first with Action Comics last year and now with Detective Comics this year. For the landmark issue DC has chosen to bring back Arkham Knight into its main comic book continuity.
Who Is This Arkham Knight?
This isn’t the same Arkham Knight who was first seem in the Rocksteady video game and who turned out to be Jason Todd; as we learned in Issue #1000, the new Arkham Knight is actually Astrid Arkham, the daughter of Arkham Asylum’s head doctor Jeremiah.
Detective Comics #1000 has finally explained the reason for her crusade and it all ties back to Batman and The Joker.
The story goes that while interrogating Jeremiah, Batman comes to know that the doctor once fell in love with an Arkham physician named Ingrid Karlsson. Before long the two of them got married and conceived a child, but not even a pregnancy could interfere with Ingrid’s dedication to her patients.
So, with Arkham being Arkham, a riot broke out and a number of Gotham’s most notorious rogues escaped from their cells. To make matters worse, Ingrid went into labor amidst chaos. Batman was already on the scene trying to contain the chaos but even all of Bruce’s detective skills couldn’t have predicted what would happen next.
Much to the surprise of Jeremiah, a team consisting of Clayface, Two-Face, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Solomon Grundy and The Joker helped Ingrid delivered baby. However, while she cradled baby Astrid in her arms, a batarang flew straight into Ingrid’s neck, piercing her jugular vein and causing her to bleed out.
Before you get angry, know that it wasn’t Batsy who threw it. It was actually one of the new Arkham patients who happened to have found the batarang lying on the ground during the riot. It all prompted Grundy to crush the inmate’s head with his bare hands. But all of it was for nought. Ingrid was dead and Jeremiah was now a single father. While he did his best to raise Astrid while working in the asylum, he wasn’t able to prevent her from forming a bond with some of Arkham’s most insane criminals over the years- this includes her uncle Joker.
Why Did She Become The Arkham Knight?
Her connection with the other inmates along with her discovering the surveillance footage from the night her mother was murdered, which simply showed Batman pummeling inmates and her mother with a batarang sticking out of her neck, is what ultimately fueled Astrid’s hate for the Dark Knight. Also, did we mention that Jeremiah lied to his daughter as well. All of this made her don a suit of armor and become the Arkham Knight.
So, now that Batman knows the truth one can’t help but wonder if he’ll try to reason with Astrid and explain what really happened that night at Arkham Asylum. Then again, the Arkham Knight could very well be far beyond the point of reason.