Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The Batman Who Laughs #1 Review and *SPOILERS*

Laugh It Up

Written By: James Tynion IV
Art By: Riley Rossmo, Ivan Plascencia, Tom Napolitano
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: November 15, 2017

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

We've reached the end of our Dark Knights from the Dark Multiverse with this issue and hopefully, DC saved the best for last because besides for The Merciless and The Devastator, I've found these one-shots to be pretty tedious and tired after awhile because for the most part, besides for the last two I mentioned, they followed the same formula for each story, while also confusing the hell out of me as to how the Dark Multiverse works with its negative numbering.  Some are just random negative numbers, while other correspond with the positive counterpart and even if they all jived........ these are supposed to be nightmares and fears of our Batman....... so nothing really makes sense in the long run.  I've gotten over that fact though so with that, let's check out The Batman Who Laughs and see what made the worst of the worst into the man he is today.  Let's check it out.

Explain It!:

Our issue begins on Earth -22, where Batman is unable to act while the Joker shows off his final joke, which not only destroys the city and the people that live there, but forces Batman to watch as the Joker recreates our hero's worst memory.  That's right, the Joker has wrangled up every family he can is leading them down a dark alley so that he can shoot the parents one by one before jokerizing the child.  Eventually, Batman breaks free of the chemical that was keeping him paralyzed and forces the Joker to stop the only way he can............. He kills him.  

We learn later that Batman is justifying his actions because the chemical compound that created the Joker was actually killing him, but we see that there was more to the Joker's last gag than the big show he was putting on because after luring all of the Bat Family to the Bat Cave for an impromptu training session, Batman eventually tells everyone that the real joke was a chemical that was released from the Joker the moment he died that is now changing Batman to start thinking like his rival once did and that he called them all there because they'd be the ones to notice first........ which he doesn't need and immediately blows them all away, leaving the Justice League to take care of, which that too isn't that hard for the Dark Knight for all of his preparations he's made in the past.

In the end, after forcing Superman to rip Lois and Jon apart from exposing him to a modified black Kryptonite, Batman destroys the whole world before Barbatos finds him and offers him countless worlds to conquer.  This leads us to now, where The Batman Who Laughs is telling a tied up person how you think you know the story from how the cards are played, but it couldn't be further from the truth with what he has planned and after seeing a spread page of all the nightmare figures from everyone in the Justice League, who are ready to be led by the Batman Who Laughs the moment the cosmic doors are opened.......... I'm saying our heroes are fucked.

That's it for this issue of The Batman Who Laughs and while I really don't care for Riley Rossmo's art, this is still an enjoyable issue that uses it's page space to really let you know who the Batman Who Laughs is, while expanding on the Metal story by showing us the next step in his plan of releasing the dark, nightmare versions of the members of the Justice League.  Some of the panel layouts in this at the beginning were kind of hard to follow, but that quickly became less of a problem and at the end of the issue, even with my dislike of the art style, I found myself having a good time with this issue, even for how dark and fucked up it was at times.  While not the best of the Dark Knights one-shots in my opinion, this is definitely something that a Batman fan would want to get because it shows us a dark Batman in a world where it would make sense for that character to become dark and actually feels like less of a leap to get us to that outcome.

Bits and Pieces:

While I don't believe that I'll ever become a fan of Riley Rossmo's art, this issue's story sure as hell did enough to make me see beyond that and show me a dark Batman that makes sense and feels like it could actually happen.  Yeah, it's not my favorite of these one-shots, but it's not far off from it either because James Tynion did a hell of job in writing a story about why Batman should never laugh.



  1. Thank God there's at least one other person who agrees with me about Riley Rossmo's art. Reviewers were fawning over it on Batman/Shadow and I thought I was crazy because I wasn't seeing it. It's different, I'll give it that. . .but not nearly as great as everyone was making it out to be.

  2. This was actually one of my least of of the Batman one shot stories ... I just thought there might be more to it since they held this one for last and he's the "leader" , but to me just felt to generic. I'm also out on Rossmos art it's a bucket of yuck . 5.5/10 for me

  3. My biggest issue with these is they nerf everyone batman beats. Superman and Super boy being crippled by blindness is not happening. We just saw this current incarnation of superman fight a Kryptonian, Cyborg Superman, and a bunch of other equally strong villains while blind. Him stopping flash is all but impossible prep or not. Then destroying the world...The very world with characters like Specter on it not happening.

    1. yea, they just kind of defeat everyone an so when our heroes end up winning, it will be odd

    2. Just reread it and i agree with you both but im thinking the fact he had child soldiers and he contingencies plans for the leauge is what gave him the edge with the heroes idk hoe he killed gods though lol

  4. This issue was pretty alright biggest mistake to me was he should have been talking to the joker i mean who was the guy at the end?

    1. we talked about this book on the Patreon Spotlight...i think it's Hawkman

    2. I haven't read Hawkman: Found yet, but I'm sure we'll find out for sure once that issue comes out.