Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Batman #61 Review


The Ones You Remember

Writer: Tom King
Artist: Travis Moore
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: December 19, 2018
Cover Price: $3.99

It's back to Master Bruce and while DC wanted to claim that his original appearance in Batman #38 was a horror masterpiece, I wasn't too impressed.  It felt like a Hush 2.0 story and if you held a gun to my head right now, I wouldn't be able to tell you the kids name.  It's Matthew Warner, by the way, and we are back with the kid who wanted to be Bruce Wayne because...well, because Tom King is trying his hardest to convince us all that everything before issue #50 was all part of a bigger story...that he promised after so many people lost their shit after the non-wedding.  So, does it all wrap together and make sense or does it fall apart like a banana dropping clues?  Let's find out...


We start off with a scene we've all seen a million times...Bruce in the alley, bleeding parents at his feet.  As we get a couple pages in, King reveals that this probably isn't Bruce because Batman is on the case.  Okay, so this is obviously some sort of dream sequence with Master Bruce, right?  Yea, pretty much. 




We see Batman asking fist questions trying to find some of Martha's missing pearls and going after the killer of Martha and Thomas...no, it's not Joe Chill, just some unrelated guy on a train.  Now, if you remember issue #38, they took Master Bruce to Arkham for killing his parents with the help of his butler, Mr. Taylor.  Case Closed.  So, what is going on here?  I guess King is counting on people not knowing this issue involved Master Bruce (even though the solicit crows on about it and King himself talked about it a bunch on twitter) because while reading it, you are just waiting for the big twist.

The twist comes and it's that Master Bruce was making all this up in his head and has been doing it over and over with the end result of killing seven people. Seven people!!! Seven people and they haven't isolated him from other inmates?  Also, why is he not in Arkham now?  It seems he is heading there now, not because he murdered his parents to be like Bruce Wayne and then murdered four other people to confuse the police and then carved Martha and Thomas into his face while defacing his dead parents' gravestone.  Nope, he is heading to Arkham now because it "won't be our problem" and of course, it gets him to Bane and King's connecting story.




I did skip over a big part, though, as we get three pages of F. Scott Fitzgerald quotes from "The Crack-Up" to show us all what a big brain Tom King has.  I've read "The Crack-Up" as well and I am a big dummy!  Of course, it goes so well with the Russian Folktale and Shakespeare that has spared King from actually writing his own dialogue and narration.  The glaring problem with all of these instances is they are almost always the best-written parts of the book!  I actually yearn for the good old days when this book was filled with repeating, but at least original, dialogue.




This issue was the answer to the question nobody was asking.  I get that King is desperately trying to persuade us that this story was all part of the grand scheme, but there is nothing here and he has to fudge the details to even get where he wants to take it.  I'm guessing all that will be revealed later is that this young boy will get his wish and get to team up with Thomas Wayne and truly become Master Bruce in his eyes.  Without any explanation of the how and why of Thomas Wayne at this point, though, I can't say I am excited by that prospect either.  There was a brief moment that I thought I might change my mind on this book, but that ship has sailed and I am not on it.  

I did like the art a lot this issue.  Art has never been a problem in this run, though, and pretty pictures do not a great story make.  At least I can look at it and smile a little though.

Bits and Pieces:

Tom King continues his Hush-lite story of Master Bruce this week.  It's obvious this issue exists, not to expand on what we've already got, but to remind us of the character and get him to where Bane can use him.  Funny, he should have already been there and all I was reminded of is how much he reminds me of Tommy Elliot.  At least we get F. Scott Fitzgerald and some nice art!


3.5/10

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

was king paying homage to psycho with the ending "we all go a little mad sometimes"

Tywebbsbombers said...

I almost stopped reading when Batman saw the toy train and then knew immediately the exact train the bald turd would be riding. I wanted so much for Batman to smash into the train and shake down all the passengers, only to have the guy actually by flying on a plane to Istanbul, and the guy's son looks up and says, "we forgot my toy train at the apartment."

Jim Werner said...

I want my train daddy!

Jim Werner said...

Yep

Action Jackson said...

And here I thought there was a chance the Arkham Knight could have been the first villian King could have made his own. A stupid fool I was for giving him the benefit of the doubt, thanks for this Edgelord-Hush. Spot on score Jim, I couldn't agree more. Please dc, somebody just kill this book, its brought me nothing but a deep loathing for a character I used to read every chance I could. King stop writing Batman, your bad at it.
3.5/10

Atom from Longbox Junk said...

I'm right with you. I'm counting down the (promised) issues until the end of King's run like a prisoner scratching lines on the wall. . .

Jim Werner said...

lol

Unknown said...

This issue was extremely confusing, especially with the incorrect summary for this book! I guess my digital copy had the intro to issue #62, something about Professor Pyg. This issue had no Professor Pyg and I kept trying to read into it as though he was there somehow... Aaaaaaaaaah!!