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started: March 1, 2001
finished: May 31, 2001
This idea started with the idea of Spellbinder hypnotizing people and the dilemma facing Batman at the end of Part II, having to find a bomb in a city of millions. This was one of my early ideas, but I didn't get around to writing it for a while because of one simple reason: I couldn't think of how to solve it. I was as clueless as Batman. So, it resided in the back of my mind for a while, until I could think of a solution.
The solution involved some manipulation. I decided to add a twist and have Batman be the one carrying the bomb, and Max would have to help him.
A couple ideas were thrown out while writing this story. First, I had imagined that after Batman was taken by the Jokerz, Max would use Ace to find him. Instead of a big Jokerz gathering, just the small group would be holding Batman. Then, when Batman was about to blow up the city, Ace would race forward and bite the bomb-detonating mechanism, thereby saving the city. However, that idea was scrapped.
Also, while writing Part III, originally Spellbinder didn't call Batman after his hideout blew up. Instead, I wrote a scene where Batman tracked down Greg and got the information from him. Here it is:
Greg was relaxing at the bar, enjoying a good drink, when a black gloved hand grabbed his shoulder and turned him around. "Some people said you'd be here," Batman said.
"What do you want?" Greg asked.
Batman glared at him. "Outside," he ordered. "Now."
He didn't wait for an answer and forcefully led Greg out of the bar. "Hey," Greg said, trying to escape from his iron grip. "You're violating my personal space."
Batman shoved him against the wall. "Where's Spellbinder?" he asked with ice in his voice.
Greg laughed. "We have to stop running into each other like this."
Batman sighed. Greg was obviously drunk. This wasn't going to do him any good, unless…
Batman reached inside his coat pocket and grabbed his cell phone. Greg protested, but Batman just flung him away. Then he launched to a rooftop and started testing the speed-dials.
"Hello, Joe's Pizza," a voice said.
Batman terminated the call. That wasn't the right one. He tried the second speed-dial. "I told you not to bother me," Spellbinder said.
Perfect. "Well," said Batman, "I'm just hard to get rid of."
There was a pause at the other end. "You are tenacious, aren't you," Spellbinder said. "I heard that a small accident happened to my old hideout." Batman suppressed a growl. "I suppose you deserve a hint for being so persistent. Very well, then. If you head to Gotham Central Park, you're sure to find the man you're looking for there." The call ended, and Batman took off into the night.
However, this scene was cut for two reasons. One, Greg was supposed to be high school age and shouldn't be drinking, at least not in a bar. Two (main reason), the idea of having him at the park was better. It gave a transition to the Jokerz.
This story is also notable as my first multi-part Batman Beyond story.
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