Wednesday, June 10, 2015

SPOILERS: Batman #41

Well, the day is here... Batman is dead, and Jim Gordon is the new one. Strange idea from the start, but hey... turns out, it's pretty fun.

The Spoilers:

This is a total introductory issue where the overall plot isn't really concern #1. The story is split between one of Jim's early operations as Batman, saving a Gotham baseball legend from a high ranking member of the Whisper Gang, who is controlling some sort of energy monster projection, and three months ago, when Geri Powers was trying to convince him to take on the job as Batman.

In the past, Jim was initially resistant to the idea, suggesting that Geri pick one of her younger more eager recruits, but Geri wants someone who truly knows Gotham and is equally invested, and Jim's the only man she can think of. Eventually, Jim agrees to take on the mantle after a conversation with Harvey and seeing one of the recruits speaking with his infant son. Geri introduces Jim to his new equipment and team, first being Daryl Gutierrez, the designer of the suit (which can change colors at will) and Julia Perry, his operations support... who is actually Julia Pennyworth, lying about having no prior connection to Batman.

Back in the present Jim eventually saves the ball player, revealing that he's in a more Batman looking body suit within the armor. And that's about it. We also learn that Powers Industries is real into creating and utilizing new elements unknown to science yet, so who wants to bet that'll come into play soon?

OH. One more thing. First page? Just a dude sitting on a bench. Last page ends with that dude too, who we see from behind has shaggy hair and a haggard beard. There's also another dude who walks by, who seems to recognize the dude on the bench... Want to guess who it is?


The Thoughts:

I was real hesitant towards this entire idea, it's well documented... hell, before we knew anything I think I said something along the lines of "man, it'd be dumb if that's Jim Gordon in there." Yeah well, I guess I'm eating it now, because I came away really thinking this was a fun issue.

Team Batman really did the smart thing of not laying the plot on real thick this first issue and establishing that above all else, this seems like it's going to be a good deal of fun, hell, there's even a bit of dry wit and humor throughout the issue. The issue also does just enough to spark interest in the bigger picture with stuff like Julia being an obvious plant and that last page... Which makes me concerned with how soon that happened. Seems like it could be a Superior Spider-Man sort of deal where people know there's an out and it's only a matter of time, but the difference there was it was bad guy vs. good guy, so we'll see. 

The art is fantastic as usual... I feel like I don't even need to praise Capullo, Miki and FCO anymore, I mean, what's the point? They've heard it all by now, right? The only thing I wasn't a fan of was the way Capullo draws Maggie... Seems like he may have been using real old reference on her, or something... Because she looks like a middle-aged malnourished man in those first couple of pages, then you read Detective Comics and she looks herself (as in, how she's looked in Batwoman). I don't know, maybe it's a "fix it in the trade" sort of thing.

Weird looking Maggie aside, that's literally the only negative thing I have to say about the issue, and that's from a guy who was SUPER hesitant towards this entire idea. Really looking forward to where this one goes.


  1. Well it was alright first issue. My only problem is the possible way out they may have had at the end of the issue. This is Mach speed to do that but overall it will enjoyable to read a bat book by Snyder that is not in tied to a 10 issue arc

  2. This was a fantastic read super fun! I love the bat signal pointing down on the villains like a spot light. Jim Gordon non mecha bat suit looks good as well. This run is gonna be exciting.

  3. Ugh. Stellar work by Capullo and Snyder, but Detective Comics just ignored half of this issue to tell their own Bullock story about him hating Batman and being kept in the dark.

  4. You know, we often go into "best thing he's written since Black Mirror" territory with Snyder, but I think this actually is. Writing Gordon really alleviates some problems I have with his writing, and being more cops & corporations, too. For starters, he loves Frank Miller so much, writing Gordon means he gets to essentially just do Year One journal entries.

    Monologue boxes: Long-past overrated for Batman. Still lovely to see for Gordon! Coupled with the heavy emphasis on his Marine Corps history, there's a nice sense of continuity there. It also jives really well with how Gordon was the only cop who went to Dick Grayson's WayneTech crime lab in the beginning of Scott's run.

    The Powers metamaterial intrigue nets us both cool new Batman powers but also does in a small way continue a theme Morrison had been doing with Incorporated, power armors, leveling up, getting exotic.

    I suspected I might like this ridiculous set-up more than I've liked his Bruce era stuff, and hey, look, I do!