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Nrama: Does it tie into the back-up stories that James is doing in Batman, with

the former Arkham patients?

Snyder: Yeah, he's in there too. James is writing him in there. It's all part of
the same thing.
Nrama: We've still got the visual theme of the flies. Did you and Greg talk abou
t that? In the past it was because of his face, but we've got the same theme goi
ng here.
Snyder: Yeah, Greg actually came up with that, for this issue, as a kind of runn
ing theme. I love it, because
not to give too much away, but what Joker is going
to say about himself, coming up in the next issue, and what he reveals to Batma
n about where he's been and what he's been doing, and how much he knows about ev
erything all of that has, for me, I think underpinnings of things that are pretty
devilish and paints him as, like, something that's come back from the grave.
Nrama: The first issue of this storyline felt very big and bombastic, with the J
ustice League involved. This one moved to a creepy, back-from-the-dead, sneaky J
oker feeling. Are you going to play with both those things in this story?
Snyder: Yeah, it's going to get big again. It gets small. And then I think you s
ee hints in this issue about these things that happen, with Gotham and everythin
Nrama: The promise of a "first" infection, and a second and third, and a "party
Snyder: Yeah. You can imagine, given those hints, it's going to dovetail very bi
We wanted to open with a big warning shot across the bow, saying, you know, "Thi
s one's for real."
And then also have it something that sends a message, that's like, "We're no lon
ger friends."
Friends to enemies.
And then we wanted to ratchet it down to show the terror of where is he? What's
he going to do?
And then once he reveals himself [in this issue], in a scary way, he's saying, "
Now let's start."
Nrama: I'm wondering about the juxtaposition with the scenes of how Batman dies
or how he thinks he may die, or fears he may die. I know we talked about this la
st month a little bit, but can you talk about why we're seeing those scenes inte
rspersed with this Joker story in particular?
Snyder: For me, this story, it's largely about this idea that Joker is saying, "
It's over." And "you're going to die this time and everyone is going down."
I wanted to do something where I'm putting pressure on Bruce. He's in the prime
of his life. You know? He's not anything close to the Dark Knight Returns sort o
f Batman, or anything like that.
But I think, for me, deep down not to get too "on-the-couch" about my run
but I
think the thing that fascinates me about Batman, in terms of his relationship to
Gotham, is his own mortality.

It's something that I have a lot of issues about, I think, in my own life.
And that sense of Batman turning himself into something that's larger than life,
and legend, and folktale
something that's bigger than his body and bigger than
his own physicality is a huge part of who he is. He means something.
And then to come along and say, well, the owls sort of said, we were here before
you. We're older than you.
And Joker last time they fought said, you know, you forgot that you're supposed
to be forever because you fell in love with all these stupid people, your family
; come back to what you're supposed to be. Zero Year is about that stuff too.
And for me, this is really the end of that theme, in a way, where Joker is sayin
g to him, you know, this is the end. And everything goes down.
And "you don't really understand how small you
d all of this, and me we're bigger than you.
pebbles into a river. None of it matters. I'll
tten very quickly, and I'll be remembered, and
t to nothing."

really are. You're just a man. An

Everything you do is just throwing
show you, because you'll be forgo
all the things that you did amoun

That's the greatest joke, according to Joker in this story, is that you think yo
ur life means something.
Nrama: And we're all just laughing at you.
Snyder: Right. That's the biggest nightmare.