Sunday, August 18, 2002


As reviewed at Comics Worth Reading,

Writer: Dwayne McDuffie
Penciller: Val Semeiks
Inker: Dan Green
DC Comics, 32 color pages, $2.50

The three-part story concludes, and Mr. McDuffie nails the landing. In this story, Batman is spooky, because he needs to be, but not oppressively so. There's lots of action -- even an allusion to much-earlier stories when he dangles a bad guy off a roof -- but the key factor here is his intelligence and most importantly, his knowledge of his city. I'm reminded of how well-rounded the Dark Knight Detective is supposed to be as a character through this excellent portrayal.

One line in particular made me giggle. When someone orders "kill everybody who isn't me", it's both in character and an important break in the building tension and mayhem. I shouldn't neglect to mention the well-crafted, strongly visualized art, either. It's easy to read and well-staged.

This is an old-fashioned story. It has an ending, a strong sense of justice, and even a moral. That makes it a brilliant tonic when compared to many of today's never-ending superhero comics of questionable ethics. I would be one of the first in line to buy continuing work by Mr. McDuffie in the future. Someone needs to give this guy a regular comic gig.

Johanna Draper Carlson
Reviews of Comics Worth Reading --