BATMAN #587#588#589 - DC COMICS (2001)


It's Commissioner Gordon's birthday, and the GCPD throw him a party at the local pub. After kindly receiving gifts from his officers, Gordon reveals he has brought gifts for them, himself, as well. He withdraws a pocketful of handcuff keys and passes them out, and after the initial curiosity, gives his explanation. Number One, as a cop, handcuff keys are always the one thing you can never find when you need them. But Number Two, the handcuff key is a powerful symbol of what makes Police Officers unique, as regular people, over anybody else. They are the only people in the country who have the power to remove someone's freedom. And while it is a necessary task, it is also a weighty one. There are no pure evils, and every person they take away is somebody's child, somebody's husband, somebody's brother. The awesomeness of their responsibility is easy to forget, but has to be remembered at all times. Meanwhile, despite having told him he hadn't gotten him anything, Batman patrols with his police radio much more delicately than normal, offering as his present to Jim a night where none of his officers would need to be called away from his party. When Gordon's done talking, having promised Barbara he would be home early, he leaves the pub, and meets Catwoman in the alley outside. Several shots ring out, and a confused Gordon hits the ground with three bullets in his back.