Writer: Tom King
Artist: David Finch and Matt Banning
Colors: Jordie Bellaire
Letters: John Workman
Reviewed by David Hildebrand
Batman has been my most anticipated book from DC. Snyder and Capullo finished a sensational run of the Dark Knight and paved the way for King and Finch to put their own mark on the caped crusader. I think the duo has done a great job with this first issue. They don’t try anything too daring and the end result is a solid start to their run on everyone’s favorite Gotham hero.
The story begins with an all too familiar scene. Commissioner Gordon and Batman are on a rooftop. The Bat-Signal illuminating the night sky above them. Batman and Gordon are discussing a raid that took place on Fort Marshall where three surface to air missiles were stolen. Just as Gordon suggests that Batman should have a phone number, a plane flying overhead is struck with a missile. Our story picks up the pace from here and doesn’t let up. I couldn’t help but smile when Gordon is in mid-sentence as he turns towards Batman, and he isn’t there. Batman has six minutes to stop the plane from crashing into Gotham Square where the casualties will be exceptional. Batman is in the Batmobile and shortly thereafter on top of the crippled plane. And from here it feels like we are watching the opening action sequence to a James Bond film. Batman is communicating with Duke and Alfred, trying to figure up the correct calculations needed to safely land the plane away from the city and into the water. And who are the other two heroes that grace the cover of the book? Well, you are going to have to read and see for yourself.
King has done an outstanding job with The Vision, as well as The Sheriff of Babylon. He has started Batman off right with a story that is tense, exciting, and emotional. He has proven with this one issue that Batman is in safe hands and the reader shouldn’t be concerned. I look forward to the story progressing. I do like Finch’s art, but his work in this issue is hit and miss with me. I don’t like the look of the Batmobile. I see a combination from the animated series with the batface from the 40’s. It just doesn’t look good to me and I was hoping for a more sleeker looking ride. The Batmobile aside, the rest of the issue is drawn well. Gotham City looks amazing and the characters have the right style and grit to them. Bellaire’s colors are gorgeous and adds a sense of realism.
Buy it! Here we are at the start of King’s run of the caped crusader. Embrace it! He has done a fine job with this first issue and I have no doubts that he will do Batman justice. The issue was fast paced and caught my attention right away. If you are a Batman fan, I’m sure you already picked this up. However, if you are on the fence, it is a safe bet that you will enjoy what King has begun.