Counter Monkey Review: Batman - Death of the Family #13-17 by Counter Monkey Jesse
WARNING: May contain mild spoilers and will contain personal opinions. (The views and opinions expressed in this review are solely of the individual(s) and are not the views of COMIX CONNECTION, its parent, affiliate, or subsidiary companies.)
The Joker is pulling his ultimate gag on Bats. Gasp! Egad! Swoon! to your hearts content
Writer: Scott Snyder
Snyder caught my attention as 2011 faded and I once again returned to the world of comics. I had never heard of him before, and had been out of the world for a few years. My good buddy asked if I wanted to go to the launch party thingy for the "New 52," to get Jim Lee's take on Justice League. (Bear with me, this comes back to point...ish.) So I figured, why not. I'll pick it up for the art alone, and see what happens. It was 20 years before that I did the same thing with Lee's - X-Men #1.
I was soon pulled into the world of DC like I had never been before. I had read a few runs here and there, or looked at a book every now and then, but until the New 52 I usually walked past anything with that blue DC logo.
While I was captivated by Lee's art on JL, the story in Batman really worked for me. The setting up the idea of the Court of Owls, the Talons, and that whole side of Gotham that Batman didn't know. It was great reading. So after all that goes down, the Joker decides to make his return (or actual debut in my opinion) in the "New."
Snyder set out to tell a twisted tale that would be one of the most demented Joker stories of all time in the now concluded "Death of the Family."
He almost pulled it off.
Don't get me wrong. It's a great read. His take on Joker and Batman have been fantastic. Dark, twisted, and frankly a little too morbid for my tastes. All the while I hear friends and readers speculating who will die. While my overly analytical mind looks at the title and thinks, they either have to kill everyone...or no one.
I won't tell you how it ends. There are some big reveals in this weeks final issue of the story in Batman #17. I enjoyed the ride, the ups the downs, the panic about turning the page and freaking out about what I would find. There is some outstanding dialogue between Bats and Joker.
Snyder seems to really get the characters, and writes a great story. There were some moments or points that seemed to be disappointing, but over all I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the Night of/Court of Owls better. However, there seems to be major repercussions in the fallout of DotF.
If you like Batman, or love Joker...read it.
Artist: Greg Capullo
This guy seems gifted to draw this genre. His long time run on Spawn, and now all but one issue of the new Batman have been consistent and amazing. It's not 'realistic' but it is still gritty and dark. It carries weight and depth, both in talent and story. He is a master with shadows and light.
Capullo also does something in his design of Joker that is just beyond creepy. And it carries into the story too. It's been long enough in the news, that I have no fear of spoiling that Joker wears his own face as a mask. It was cut off in the first issue of Detective Comics, and he's been missing ever since. Well, he comes back, complete with his crusty rotten skin mask strapped on like Leatherface.
I could go on, but really just go get the issues or wait for the collection. Especially you die hard Joker fans.
I'm a little disappointed with the story as a whole. The idea was menacing, but I feel that it was much like the month of March. In like a lion, out like a lamb. I would have to say that overall, I am underwhelmed by the story. Maybe I'm missing something. Maybe I'm cynical. Maybe...I don't know. It was well told, and illustrated, but it didn't have the punch I was expecting, and it left me cold and empty, and wanting more...just like eating donuts does.
It wasn't horrible. I just suppose my expectations were too high.
I will say this: Capullo and Snyder are cool guys. Got to meet them at Baltimore Con, and they seemed like nice, level headed guys you could go grab a burger with and just enjoy a good conversation.
That said, I'm excited for what they have in store next! I'm rating this one high anyway, because these guys just keep cranking stuff out, on time and consistent. That is a huge plus in my book. I might not have loved the story, but I wasn't let down on dialogue/art/and character development.
RESULTS: 4.5 out of 5 Creepy Uncomfortable times Joker says he loves Batman
Wanna see a magic trick?
Counter Monkey Jesse "Mose" Arnold