DC Comics has requested retailers not sell this week’s Batman Incorporated #3 until Aug 22. The decision to delay it was in response to the Batman movie shooting in Aurora, Colorado. The comic features a disturbing scene in which a teacher pulls out a gun in class, though she doesn’t actually use it.

Artist Chris Burnham tweeted:

Batman Inc #3 is going to be delayed a month due to some grim imagery that would seem wholly inappropriate given the Aurora killings.

The book printed on time. I’m looking at a copy on my desk right now. This isn’t a scheduling excuse, we’re trying to do the right thing.

It’s not just a Batman comic with guns in it. There’s a specific scene that made DC & the whole Bat-team say “Yikes.” Too close for comfort.

Digital double standard

This sensitivity does not apparently apply to digital comics like Batman: Arkham Unhinged #35, which is eerily similar to the shooting but still available for download. It tells the origin of Black Mask, who becomes a criminal when his parents neglect him to attend social events. He dons a Janus mask and shoots up a theater they frequented as revenge. Batman stops him and in the process the mask is melted onto his face.

“That first meeting with Batman taught me a valuable lesson: never get into any situation without knowing a way out,” Black Mask advises fellow criminals. “Always give yourself an exit strategy.”

DC Comics has full control over the distribution of digital comics so riddle me this why the contradiction?

The company did not respond when asked to comment.