Tuesday, September 15, 2009
I am so puzzled here. Not only does the Black Mask's plan seems like an excessively convoluted one, but I'm wondering whether it is Judd Winick's intent to confuse the reader much like the Black Mask is intentionally trying to confuse Batman.
In the most recent Batman arc, the caped crusader engaged in a long battle with Clayface and Lyle Blanco on the streets of Gotham City, causing mass destruction along the way. Buildings leveled, cars exploded, and people ran.
According to the Black Mask, the city took out private contracts to cover insurance on a certain string of tenement buildings. However, the insurance company was actually a dummy corporation--wait for the twist--for no one! All of this, including the battle itself, was a cunning attempt to throw Batman off course.
First, why and how is the city purchasing this insurance? Does the Black Mask have a marketing team under his employ so shrewd as to be able to persuade the city to trust this strange, unknown company? The other alternative is that the city is somehow involved with this villainous scheme.
Second, I'm confused as to what this dummy corporation actually is. To my knowledge, dummies are created as a front for other businesses in order to hide true ownership, avoid taxes, or fudge the numbers in the books. If this corporation is not a front, then is it an actual, functioning business? I think Black Mask probably meant that the city purchased insurance from a firm that does not really exist--possibly one that he fabricated himself.
I know that Gotham City is corrupt and indifferent, but this seems to stretch the extent of its irresponsibility.
Maybe Batman will figure this out, but Black Mask seems to have done a great job of bewildering me. That is why I'd like to ask the readers. Anyone have any ideas here or are you as confused as I am?