Blake M. Petit BlakeMPetit@gmail.com
Batman and sons join the New 52 with new tricks, new toys, and one very unexpected adversary!
A few characters went relatively unchanged when the Flashpoint Effect (whatever the hell that is) changed the DC Universe. In Batman #1
, there are no drastic changes, no major differences, no sudden revelations that the whole world has changed around us. We just get a solid Batman story with nice action, a strong mystery, and good art. Things are off to a great start.
It begins with Batman in Arkham Asylum, a group of his nastiest enemies waiting for him, and leads to Bruce Wayne and all three of his sons (the non-prodigal ones, anyway) at a swanky presentation, before Batman is summoned to the scene of one of the nastiest murder scenes in recent memory. The search for the culprit provides a pretty shocking result, and a launching pad for a very interesting story.
has an instinctive understanding of Bruce Wayne and the other men in his family, and a very good feel for Gotham City itself. He touches upon some of Batmanís most important relationships here as well, including Alfred, Gordon, and the denizens of Arkham. The ending is the sort of thing that could be horrifying (and not in a good way) if I thought there wasnít more to it than presented here, but the rest of the book is more than good enough for me to put faith that Snyder has a strong story in the works that can justify a conclusion that seems so absurd.
makes his DC debut here, and his artwork is pretty good. His Batman is pretty unique compared to other Bat-artists. There seems to be a Frank Miller influence here, but the character is a bit more polished than the Batman we saw in The Dark Knight Returns
Ė smoother, more streamlined. DCís edict to make the characters younger is clearly in play here as well Ė Bruce, Dick Grayson, and Tim Drake are all younger than weíre used to seeing them (and, in fact, itís a little difficult to reconcile this Dick Grayson with the one that appeared in Nightwing #1
this week). Itís not bad, but it will take some getting used to. I like his depiction of Batmanís rogues, particularly the Joker, and I love
his take on the Batcave. Itís big, spacious, and very high-tech. In fact, aside from the characters looking a little younger, the biggest difference is that Capullo and Snyder seem to have boosted Bruceís already-considerable toys to an even more impressive degree.
I really liked this first issue. This book is easily in the upper echelon of DCís New 52 thus far.