Here’s some weird news: Matt Reeves’s upcoming Arkham TV series, set at Gotham City’s infamous Arkham Asylum, will not be related to the director’s The Batman or the upcoming The Batman Part II. Instead, it will be set in James Gunn‘s DCU.
A bit of clarification before we get into Gunn’s quotes. Right now, with the current output of DC and Warner Bros. Discovery ramping down in anticipation of the upcoming DCU reboot, certain projects have been classified as “Elseworlds,” aka out of continuity with the DCU. That includes (retroactively) The Batman, as there will be an entirely different Batman in Gunn’s DCU. However, a sequel is in the works to the hit movie starring Robert Pattinson, and The Penguin, a TV series starring Colin Farrell, will premiere on Max (formerly HBO Max) next year.
Well before the debut of The Batman in 2020, Reeves revealed that he was working on both the Penguin-focused show and what at the time was supposed to be a series focused on the Gotham police department. However, as they developed it turned into a series about Arkham Asylum, the place that — at least in The Batman — holds The Riddler (Paul Dano), The Joker (Barry Keoghan), and presumably more villains and maniacs.
James Gunn Explains Arkham Is Set In The DCU, Not “The Batverse”
So the assumption was that this Arkham series would be connected to The Batman. Not so, says James Gunn. The info was revealed via your number one source for DCU news, James Gunn’s Threads account. Responding to a fan asking about Reeves’s upcoming output in “the Batverse,” Gunn said, “Right now Matt is producing Arkham as a DCU series, so there’s just the two for now.”
That set off a bevy of confusion. Gunn clarified that “It wasn’t changed” from a The Batman-related series to a DCU one. “It was one of the first pitches we bought when Peter [Safran] and I came onboard,” Gunn clarified. “I don’t know the permutations it went through before that time.”
Gunn and Safran came on board officially towards the end of 2022, which means that sometime between 2020 and then the series went from a Gotham PD series, to an Arkham Asylum series, to being set in the new DCU continuity. That seems like three different TV series to me! Pretty weird!
Regardless, that also means that neither Dano nor Keoghan will (most likely) be involved in the series. Nor will Pattinson as Batman; instead, if there is a Batman appearance, it would likely be whoever will be cast for the planned Brave and the Bold movie, which will team this new Batman with his jerk son, Damian Wayne.
All these permutations and continuity confusion are enough to send anyone to Arkham Asylum, if you ask me! Nobody asked me, though.