"Shaman (Book I of V)": Young Bruce Wayne accompanies tracker/bounty hunter Willy Doggett across the mountains of Alaska. He wants to learn from the best. An assassin named Tom Woodley appears and kills Doggett, while greatly injuring Bruce. Bruce fights back, and
- Tell everyone. All the punks, junkies, gunsels, enforcers... all the wise guys, leg-breakers, muscle boys... tell them they're finished. Tell them the streets belong to the Batman.
- -- Batman
Appearing in "Shaman (Book I of V)"
- Thomas Woodley (First appearance)
- Stan the Pimp (Cameo)
- Joe Chill (as an evil snowman) (In dream sequence only)
- Martha Wayne (In dream sequence only)
- Thomas Wayne (In dream sequence only)
- Selina Kyle (Cameo)
- Holly Robinson (Cameo)
- Gotham City Police Department
- Tina Wilson (Only appearance; dies)
- Willy Doggett (Only appearance; dies)
Synopsis for "Shaman (Book I of V)"
Young Bruce Wayne accompanies tracker/bounty hunter Willy Doggett across the mountains of Alaska. He wants to learn from the best. An assassin named Tom Woodley appears and kills Doggett, while greatly injuring Bruce. Bruce fights back, and during the struggle, Tom slips from his perch and falls seemingly to his death. An Alaskan Shaman and his daughter find Bruce and nurse him back to health. The Shaman tells Bruce an ancient Native American folktale about a bat, and he makes Bruce promise to never reveal the story to another living soul.
Bruce returns to the United States and his family home at Wayne Manor. His first attempt at crime fighting (depicted as his first uncostumed encounter with Selina Kyle) nearly ends in disaster, and he returns to Wayne Manor broken and bleeding. While resting in his father's study, a large bat crashes through the window. Inspired by animal's dark visage, Bruce decides to adopt the costumed identity of Batman in order to strike terror into the hearts of criminals.
The following evening, Batman investigates a break-in at Leslie Thompkins' free clinic. He beats up several thugs in the alley behind the clinic and finds a scared patient hovering in a corner. The woman screams the word "Chubala" and then plunges a knife directly into her own heart.
- This issue is reprinted in the Batman: Shaman trade paperback.
- This storyline takes place around the first weeks of Batman: Year One.
- The first half of this issue takes place in the month of December, a few weeks prior to Batman #404 (the month is based upon the timeline revealed in Year One).
- Page seventeen of this issue recaps Bruce's first scrap with Selina Kyle, as revealed in Batman: Year One, Part 1 #404.
- Alfred Pennyworth chronologically appeared last in Batman #404.
- Leslie Thompkins chronologically appears next in Detective Comics #457.
- The name of the girl who kills herself is Tina Wilson. Tina's name will not be revealed until issue #2.
- This issue was offered with a dual-cover, printed in four different color variations; Blue, Yellow, Pink and Orange. The cover logo was designed by Dean Motter. The Newstand version did not have the colored second cover.
- The famous phrase "Criminals are a cowardly and superstitious lot" is attributed to the in-universe author Sir Maxwell Floppy. In both the Golden and Silver Age versions of Batman's origin, Bruce mutters a version of this quote mere moments before the bat crashes through the study window. The author of the phrase is in fact Bill Finger and it was first written in Detective Comics #33.
- In Bruce's fever dream, he envisions mugger Joe Chill as a demonic looking snowman.
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