DC Sets Up A Perfect New Batman Villain With Alfred’s Return


This post contains SPOILERS for Batman vs Robin #1

In the new Batman vs Robin event, the return of Alfred Pennyworth is far more complex than DC’s typical resurrections, potentially teasing a new villain not even Batman will be prepared for. While Damian Wayne has become a dark new magical threat, even the corrupted Robin is surprised to see Alfred standing before him alive and well. As such, it seems as though Pennyworth’s resurrection is part of a much grander scheme at play in the DC Universe.

Back in 2016’s City of Bane event, Alfred Pennyworth was murdered by Bane right in front of Damian Wayne’s Robin who was helpless to save the Bat-Family’s beloved butler. Over time, the loss of Alfred drove a wedge between the Boy Wonder and his father Batman, one that resulted in Robin leaving Gotham to forge his own path. Now, Damian has seemingly unleashed the demon behind the Lazarus Pits known as Nezha, resulting in his own corruption as the dark being’s supernatural agent.


Related: Robin’s Two-Face Form Is Damian Wayne’s Perfect Villain

However, the new Batman vs Robin #1 from writer Mark Waid and artist Mahmud Asrar surprisingly features the return of Alfred at the doorstep of Wayne Manor, much to Bruce Wayne’s natural shock. Cycling through every impersonator and shape-shifting foe he can think of, Batman can’t fathom how Alfred has genuinely returned. Likewise, the darkened Damian can’t accept Alfred’s return when his presence in the Batcave is revealed, refusing to believe it either (while also confirming he’s not responsible).

While there are multiple moments that seemingly confirm Alfred is the real deal, there’s just as many elements that make his return even more confusing. For example, Bruce confirms Alfred’s body was cremated. Likewise, it was recently confirmed by Ra’s al Ghul himself that the resurrecting Lazarus Pits are currenlty cursed (hence the fact that he’s still deceased in the current DC Universe). By whatever mysterious method Alfred came back, it clearly wasn’t through the traditional channels.

Although Alfred’s return could certainly be the work of the demon Nezha without Damian’s knowledge as a means to manipulate him further, there could be a larger (and likely nefarious) plan in the works. That being said, Alfred Pennyworth might just be the only one who can get through to Robin and bring him back into the light (which has already been teased). It’s doubtful Batman will be able to get through to his son on his own as the event continues. Batman vs Robin #1 is on sale now.


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