As Jace Fox continues to make a name for himself in Future State, he completely swears off his predecessor’s reliance on gadgets and advanced tech.
As Jace Fox spends more time with the mantle of Batman, the ideological and methodological differences between him and Bruce Wayne become increasingly obvious in DC Comics. Jace certainly possesses the grit and character necessary to be Batman, and arms himself fittingly; However, as Jace’s latest appearance in Future State: Gotham reveals, Jace is going all-in on flipping Bruce Wayne’s iconic use and reliance on high tech gadgets.
In the preview for Future State: Gotham #12 by Dennis Culver and Giannis Milonogiannis, Red Hood and The Next Batman continue their ongoing battle against the Next Joker. In previous issues, The Next Joker took control of the Magistrate’s city-wide surveillance system and cyber-soldiers using an advanced computer virus, spread by proximity and his touch. With the city under The Joker’s control, Red Hood and Batman team up and face their foe head-on, equipping themselves with advanced power armor to even the odds with the physically imposing clown.
As Batman and Joker face-off, Joker taunts Jace saying that his new power armor won’t be helpful, and that the virus will eventually over-write the armor’s systems, turning Jace into a machine zombie for him to manipulate. Jace quickly retorts that Joker has messed up, as his armor is impervious to the virus because it doesn’t run on a network, or have any smart capabilities. Without these key security flaws, Joker’s virus is useless, and their ongoing fight will be determined almost exclusively by who is the superior hand-to-hand combatant, a skill both Jace and the Next Joker are well versed in.
Regardless of who’s under the cowl, Batman is often characterized by the armory of gadgets he employs in his war on crime. From grappling-hooks to advanced bugs and surveillance tech, Bruce Wayne’s reliance on advanced tech possible through his wealth and connections to Wayne Tech is a hallmark of his Batman. In Jace’s comparatively limited time as the Caped Crusader, though, he has made it clear that gadgets are not the end-all-be-all for his Batman. He simply doesn’t have Bruce’s connections and wealth, nor does he need it. While the power suit he uses in Future State: Gotham does come from one of Bruce’s old safe-houses, in his own I Am Batman run Jace himself states that the more connected a device is, the more points of failure it has, in his case, to avoid being tracked by the Magistrate or anyone else. Jace favors a simple Batsuit that is nothing more than body armor, and a load of burner phones strapped to his belt, enough to fight and securely communicate with home base.
While Batman may often be characterized by a use of outlandish and cool gadgets, Jace Fox’s run with the mantle practically forswears all the sci-fi tools Bruce Wayne relies on as the Dark Knight. As Jace faces his own challenges in Future State, he strongly adheres to the philosophy that more tech means more problems.
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