Writer: Scott Snyder
Pencils: Greg Capullo
Inks: Jonathan Glapion
Colors: FCO Plascencia
Letters: Tom Napolitano
Variant Cover: Jock

Last September DC introduced their Black Label imprint, a home for more adult-themed out-of-continuity stories, with Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo’s somewhat controversial Batman: Damned. Now Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo are following that up with another Batman title, Last Knight on Earth, a swan song to the long collaboration the pair has enjoyed on the Dark Knight.

The first issue begins with Batman following a series of mysterious leads before pivoting into a “Bruce Wayne as an inmate in Arkham” storyline. This is fairly quickly resolved, and we finally get to the real story. Batman finds himself in a desert, where the world is a wasteland. The heroes have lost, everything’s been destroyed. Those that are left are fleeing. Also, the Joker is a severed head in a jar, so there’s that.

This issue hits a lot of notes. It opens with a strong noir vibe, but takes a hard turn into psychological thriller territory, before landing firmly in the realm of “post-apocalyptic wanderer” tales. The chapters are all well-written and engaging, as one would expect from a Scott Snyder Batman story. There’s a certain disconnect between the various chapters, however. The first two chapters, basically half the book, are spent on an introduction that has very little to do with the broader story and ultimately has little to no payoff.

(To be clear, it’s not that the first half is bad, it just doesn’t really connect with the rest of the book the way it feels like it’s intended to.)

The art team of Greg Capullo on pencils, Jonathan Glapion on inks and FCO Plascencia is running on all cylinders. Snyder and Capullo have done a lot of Batman together, and it shows here. Snyder knows how to write to Capullo’s strengths, and Capullo knows how to balance the detective, the action hero, and the creepy villains. The storytelling is well-paced, flowing seamlessly through the varied settings and tones. The color palette shifts drastically from scene to scene in a stunning manner.

What more can be said? If you’re a fan of Snyder and Capullo on Batman you’ll love this. If you like superheroes wandering post-apocalyptic wastelands, you’ll love this. If you really liked Old Man Logan, but wished it was about Batman, you’ll love this. Batman Last Knight on Earth is shaping up to be a fitting end to an epic Batman run.

Batman Last Knight on Earth

8.6

Post-Apocalyptic Wasteland

8.0/10

Storytelling

8.0/10

Bat-Action

8.5/10

Cryptic Chapter Titles

10.0/10

Pros

  • Batman Wandering a Post-Apocalyptic Wasteland
  • Joker's Severed Head
  • Engaging Art
  • Giant Green Lantern Babies

Cons

  • Disconnected Halves
  • Two Pages of Info-Dump
  • Can't think of anything else to complain about...
Brendan Hykes
brendanhykes@gmail.com
Brendan is a writer, father and lifelong Pittsburgher. Also weirdly obsessed with puzzles. He can mostly be found on twitter @brendanhykes.

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