Since diving into the darkness to find Neo-Gotham’s missing children, Batman Beyond has uncovered secret after secret buried underground by Bruce Wayne. Bruce set many obstacles in front of “the Garden,” including layers of magic, a kaiju-sized Killer Croc, and a zombified Court of Owls. Now, answers are finally ahead… if Terry McGinnis’ Batman can survive getting them.

In recently released solicitation info for Batman Beyond: Neo-Gothic #5 – by Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly, Max Dunbar, and Sebastian Cheng – there’s a promise that Batman will at last “face down the monster that lives in Gotham’s heart” – a being known as the Garden. But the Garden is no ordinary enemy. Instead, it is a product of three Metahuman villains and their combined powers. Poison Ivy, Swamp Thing, and Black Orchid have come together to create the impressive Garden, which seeks to take root in Gotham forever and consume whatever (or whomever) it needs along the way. Enjoy the issue’s cover art (from Dunbar and Christian Ward) and its official synopsis, below:

The Garden Is a Villain Like Nothing Batman Has Faced Before

TERRY FACES OFF WITH THE MONSTER THAT LIVES IN GOTHAM’S HEART: THE GARDEN! As Neo-Gotham above falls under the unstoppable shadow of Donovan Lumos’s City of Light, Batman faces down the monster that lives in Gotham’s heart: the Garden! With the combined powers of Swamp Thing, Poison Ivy, and Black Orchid, the Garden’s motivations are finally revealed…as is the tragic figure that lives at its center. Has Batman gone so far into the darkness that he can never return? Is it time for Terry McGinnis to join Bruce Wayne in the Garden’s endless embrace?

Since Batman left Neo-Gotham behind for the labyrinth of darkness known as the Gotham Deep, he and his companion Kyle the Catboi have faced all manner of enemies as they headed further into the unknown. After defeating Killer Croc and discovering the Court of Owls lurking behind a sealed vault, they encountered their first mention of the Garden. Terry soon discovered that John Constantine, the powerful magician and Kyle’s former mentor, had already disappeared into its glowing depths. Furthermore, The Garden is capable of creating its own monster – a towering creature claiming to be Batman and imbued with knowledge seemingly belonging to Bruce Wayne. The solicit confirms that the Garden combines the power of three metahumans: Poison Ivy, Swamp Thing, and Black Orchid. All three are touched by or serve the Green – the metaphysical embodiment of plant life on Earth – and by working together they can create a living, breathing hive of knowledge and power.

The Gotham Deep Is Hiding a Dark God

The Garden has shown a range of abilities already, and there is a deep well to draw from. Poison Ivy has demonstrated the ability to forge creatures and monsters out of plants, as well as communicate and feel through them, in addition to her ability to chemically manipulate people. Black Orchid is a master of disguise and a fusion of both plant and human, which may explain the Garden’s ability to feel like an entity on its own. Swamp Thing has an incredible range of gifts, but his ability to cause rapidly accelerated plant growth and control plant life would account for how much the Garden has already taken over. Most crucial of all – The Garden is greater than the sum of its parts and seems to be stronger than any of its individual creators – a major feat, since Swamp Thing alone once beat Batman and conquered Gotham single-handed.

With Bruce Wayne, John Constantine, the Court of Owls, and the three metahumans who created it already deeply connected to the Garden, it’s a slumbing god lurking beneath the surface of Gotham – one who is about to wake up. Now, Batman Beyond is facing an ultra-powerful foe even Bruce Wayne was never able to beat.

Batman Beyond: Neo-Gothic #5 will be available November 28 from DC Comics!

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