DC’s Next Batman Is Being Forced To Replace Bruce Wayne

In The Next Batman: Second Son #4, Tim “Jace” Fox’s lack of gear and technology forces him to do what he’s been avoiding most of his adult life.

Warning! Spoilers ahead for The Next Batman: Second Son #4

Tim “Jace” Fox has been partaking in a rudimentary form of vigilantism in Vietnam with no monetary support, but a new enemy is forcing him to up his game by embracing his family’s vast fortune and resources to become the next Batman like Bruce Wayne.

Upon his return to Gotham, Jace, decked out in a regular ski mask and backpack, surveils a special courier for Tyler Arkadine, a philanthropist that Jace accused of running a trafficking ring when infiltrating Arkadine’s mansion in Vietnam. Jace soon realizes that Arkadine has improved his systems to the point where they are no longer hackable without better technology. And the best way to obtain this type of tech is to work for his father at FoxTech, as revealed in The Next Batman: Second Son #4, written by John Ridley with art by Travel Foreman and Mark Morales.

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To fully understand the gravity of Jace’s decision to work for his father, it’s crucial to note his relationship with his family. Jace obviously has some serious reservations about their affluence, which he has expressed numerous times and in a myriad of ways throughout Second Son. One instance involves him mentioning how difficult it was for him to be home when his family was worth millions, so he couldn’t imagine what it would be like living with them as billionaires.

Jace also has a rocky relationship with his father Lucious Fox. The first time they speak after Jace arrives, there’s no room for small talk or pleasantries as Jace immediately takes offense for his father calling him by his legal name instead of Jace. It doesn’t take long before the conversation devolves to shouting and swearing before Jace eventually storms off.  While he and various family members have spoken about Jace leaving Gotham to remedy some past mistakes, it can be assumed that money also played a major contributing factor in his departure and his decision to stay away for as long as he did.

The fact that Jace not only considers but actually takes major strides towards embracing his family and their wealth says a lot. These are the very things that he’s spent a good chunk of his adult life avoiding and denouncing, which just goes to show how strongly he suspects Arkadine of wrongdoing and the lengths he’ll go to take him down and expose his transgressions to the world. But even more telling is how important justice must be to Jace Fox overall as he later officially succeeds Bruce Wayne by becoming the next Batman—and everyone knows how much funding is required to keep that going.

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