Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Arkham Manor #4 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Gerry Duggan
Art By: Shawn Crystal, Dave McCaig
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 28, 2015

Cold Comfort

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

In the last issue of Arkham Manor we saw that the administration just lets the inmates do whatever the hell they want.  I mean, Bruce's disguise of Jack Shaw was found in the room of a man that had a drill put in his head after he beat up a bunch of orderlies and then he's simply checked out by a doctor for a concussion without any extra security...... No wonder everyone is always breaking out of Arkham.  Bruce eventually went back to his snooping around with none of the security caring and found where "The Spider" since we're calling him that now, has been hiding.  After a brief fight, the killer got away but Bruce found the almost dead body of Zsasz.... So yeah, Zsasz is alive.  At the end of the issue we saw the orderly Eric Border reveal himself as The Joker and somehow turn a amnesiac part of Clayface into a Jokerized Clownface........ It's A Mad House!  Let's check out this issue and see if Bruce can find the killer while Clownface runs amok.

Explain It!:

Our story begins with Clownface snailing through the halls of Arkham Manor and for some reason......... I don't know if it was due to all the screaming or what but Sybil Silverlock is out of her coma and running around like a champ.......... Like Steven Seagal in Hard To Kill.  Bruce saves her and we see that she escapes Arkahm Manor, so for all you Gotham Academy fans out there, expect Olive's mother to make an appearance soon.  Feeling that he doesn't have enough time to get to the cave and back, Bruce decides that he's going to have to ask Mr. Freeze for help in subduing the merry murder machine that is Clownface.  

After leading the monster to the kitchen, Mr. Freeze......... you know, freezes the monster and puts an end to it's muddy massacre.  When Bruce acts like his Jack Shaw persona is escaping the manor, he's surprised to find out that Mr. Freeze isn't leaving.  He was all set to let Freeze escape and do whatever harm he was going to do so that he could keep this Jack Shaw disguise and Freeze says he doesn't have anywhere to go.......... This is just odd to me that a crazy in Gotham would rather stay at Arkham but it's really crazy to me that Batman would be willing to let people die just so the cover of Jack Shaw can continue.........WTF?

In the end, Bruce gets all Batman-ed up and returns to the Manor to finally take down the Spider but as the issue closes it seems that our hero might have been coaxed right into the Spider's web.

That's it for this issue of Arkham Manor and while this issue really didn't have anything to do with the whole "killer in Arkham" story that we've been dealing with, it's still really enjoyable.  It's kind of odd actually, we have Joker making a clay doppelganger of himself, Sybil Silverlock escaping, Mr. Freeze doing something helpful and also refusing to escape and Batman making really poor superhero decisions........ It's not until the very end that we deal with anything from The Spider and nothing about the escaped inmate Wickham at all.  So yeah, a very strange installment to this mini series........ but like I said, it's still enjoyable.  I was actually afraid for this issue too because even though I've grown to really like Shawn Crystal's art, I really hated his take on Batman in the first issue, but here it comes off alright and I can stop being a dick and saying that I hate his Batman.  See you next month when we have our hero face off against The Spider as we come closer to the ending of this story.

Bits and Pieces:

A lot of things are going on in this issue and I was surprised how little was actually about the story we've been dealing with.  Yeah, it's in Arkham Manor and has to do with it's residents but this issue seems to put the whole "find the killer" plot on hold until the very end.  Even though that comes off sounding like a negative, this was a really fun issue that let us explore the characters of Arkham more and gave us some insight into what will go down in other comics that deal with Gotham.

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