Wednesday, November 5, 2014

I Reads You Review: BATMAN #35


WRITER: Scott Snyder – @Ssnyder1835
PENCILS: Greg Capullo
INKS: Danny Miki
COLORS: FCO Plascencia
LETTERS: Steve Wands
COVER: Greg Capullo and Danny Miki with FCO Plascencia
VARIANT COVERS: Andy Kubert with Brad Anderson; Brian Stelfreeze (Monster Variant)
40pp, Color, $4.99 U.S. (December 2014)

Rated “T” for “Teen”

Batman created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger

Endgame #1

How do writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo follow their 12-issue Batman epic, “Zero Year?”  Well, pitting Batman against his super-powered teammates from the Justice League sounds like a idea.

Batman #35 (“Endgame” Part 1) opens Bruce Wayne reworks his infrastructure and recovers from the beatings he took during the events still being depicted in Batman: Eternal (because the events depicted in Batman #35 take place after whatever will be depicted in Batman: Eternal).  Suddenly, Wonder Woman drops by Bruce Wayne's new Batman base of operations at Old Wayne Tower, and, much to Bruce's surprise, she wants to kill him.

No, she really wants to kill him... as in homicide.  And so do Flash, Aquaman, and Superman.

The art team of Greg Capullo, inker Danny Miki, and colorist FCO Plascencia are visually and graphically a truly unique Batman art team, but it is not just about pretty pictures.  Their graphical storytelling heightens the sense of drama and conveys subtlety in character, emotion, and conflict.  Superheroes with colorful costumes usually seem odd and out of place in the moody shades of Gotham City.  They might seem so even in the more sparkly version of Gotham of this current ongoing Batman comic book series.  However, these artists make the Justice League seem a natural part of the ebb and flow of the weird crime and conflict of the Dark Knight's stomping grounds.

I think the reveal on the last page of who is behind the Justice League attack means that Endgame just might be something special.  In fact, that is what Scott Snyder's run as Batman writer has been, special.  I actually was not sure that I was ready for another long Batman story arc, but I am now.


[This comic book includes the short story, “The Paleman” by writer James Tynion IV, artist Kelley Jones, colorist by Michelle Madsen, and letterer by Dezi Sienty.]

Batman #35 features the first chapter of “The Paleman,” which looks to be a backup feature that is tied to Endgame.  I don't know how long this feature will run, but I hope it is for several issues because the artist of “The Paleman” is one of my favorites, Kelley Jones.

I have always thought that Jones was influenced by Berni Wrightson and also by an artist Jones once replaced on a 1980s comic book series, Mike Mignola.  Jones spun those influences into his own potent and idiosyncratic style.  It is just right for James Tynion IV's grim thriller of a script, and Michelle Madsen's brooding coloring is just right for Jones' shadowed compositions.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

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