Filed under: Comic Reviews, DC Comics | Tags: Batman, DCNew52, Greg Capullo, Jonathan Glapion, Scott Snyder
Holy-Moly, this is one damn fine comic book, if not the best of the 52. Issue #1 wasn’t just a fluke, this series has the best two creators working in perfect harmony to create one of the best Batman stories in years.
I really savoured this issue, taking my time to enjoy every page, panel and speak bubble, because every one is worthwhile. It’s hard to know where to start with this review because there is so much I loved about it, and I’d rather not spoil other people’s enjoyment of it – so my recommendation would be to go grab the issue, read it and come back after.
Finished it? Good. Take a few minutes to get your breath back.
Snyder knows exactly what he’s doing with this book. His storytelling is unlike many of the other 52 books, taking is far far away from the very linear techniques used elsewhere (character A goes here, does this, cliffhanger there, pick up from the same place next issues, repeat). With many other books I sometimes struggle to remember what happened last month and find myself confused at the start going “who was this evil dude again?” (see this months Legion!), but with Snyder’s books, ever issue is almost a self contained story. Alright it’s not going to make sense just picking up one issue and reading it on it’s own, but I feel satisfied with each one, left with a feeling that each page I read was worthwhile and not just a means to get you to buy next months issue to find out what’s going on (and then next month doing the same until infinity).
The best example of this is the start of this issue. There’s no real need for the (AMAZING) action sequence that unfolds in the first few pages, but it’s a nice way of opening the issue without a continuation of last months events. To me, Snyder is a bit like the Tarantino of the comics world, telling stories in a very unique way. There’s his cutting between different timelines, they way he tells important plot points through what appears as incidental mini-stories and then his good idea for kick ass action. His work to date on Detective Comics and Batman has made me seek out his other work – I can’t wait to start American Vampire and the first issue of Severed is pretty astonishing (check back for a review very soon!).
Capullo is the Robin to Snyder’s Batman, and to be fair, Jonathan Glapion needs special mention here too (he can be Nightwing if he likes). Every single panel of this book is beautiful and well thought out. I’d seen this cover a few months back in black and White and loved it, then saw it coloured and loved it more. You can imagine how thrilled I was when I turned the first page and that wonderful orange glow from the sunset over Gotham continued onto page 1, and then continued throuout the book. Gotham has never looked so radiant before, we are so used to seeing it as the black and grey nightmare that it is, but Glapion perfectly captures the city at the point just before the rats come out to play. The transition in the closing scene between dusk and night is executed perfectly and works nicely with the tones of the plot.
As you can tell, I love this book, and rightly so! I can see this series being up there with the likes of Hush, The Long Halloween and The Dark Knight Returns, so if that isn’t recommendation enough to go out and read this, I’ve no idea what is!
9/10 (only because I feel that the best is yet to come!)
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