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Detective Comics Vol 2 23.4: Man-Bat

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"Descent": Dr. Kirk Langstron has been waiting for two days at Gotham Square Park, knowing that bats prey on the weak and vulnerable. This park is a prime example, and today, finally, the bat he has been waiting for has finally come to feed - his wife, [[Fran


Quote1 This is my formula. I can control it. And I will. Quote2
-- Man-Bat



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Synopsis for "Descent"

Dr. Kirk Langstron has been waiting for two days at Gotham Square Park, knowing that bats prey on the weak and vulnerable. This park is a prime example, and today, finally, the bat he has been waiting for has finally come to feed - his wife, Francine.

Though Kirk loves her, she had betrayed his trust, and created her own corrupt version of his Man-Bat Serum. Now, he must succumb to his addiction to the serum, and become a bat himself, in order to catch her and make her pay. But before he will give her any attention, he first deprives her of the innocent child she stole for her meal, angering her.

Their last encounter of this type had seen him lose to her, but tonight, he is stronger, faster, and fiercer. After being forced to the ground, Francine reverts to her human self, and realizes coolly that in order to gain that increased strength, Kirk had to combine their two formulas. Grinning, she realizes that in order to beat her, he had to become her. Frustrated by her mocking, Kirk leaves her naked in the street.

Five days later, Francine has been charged with the murders she committed, and Kirk is surprised by how little he feels about it. Despite the feelings he had for her before he realized that their marriage was a lie, he feels nothing. He worries that, perhaps, the combined formula has affected him. And though she was addicted to her formula, he refuses to let himself succumb to the addiction. He intends to control it, even as he downs another vial of the serum.

He must control it, because in the absence of the Batman, Gotham is in chaos. Kirk must serve as Gotham's new protector, as Man-Bat. His methods of fighting crime, are not the same as those of the Batman - but killing criminals is certainly effective, comparatively. By day ten of his studies with the new serum, Kirk has become quite addicted to it, even as he tries to improve it. And as his violent crime-fighting sprees continue, he garners the unwanted and unexpected attention of the Gotham City Police Department.

By day twelve, his resentment of the police has devolved to a base hatred that sees him doing violence against policemen rather than fighting crime. Each transformation, he becomes more like a creature, and less like a man.

Within a month, Kirk himself, is reduced to scouring Gotham Square Park for vulnerable prey.



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