Saturday, April 20, 2019

Batman #69 - Second Opinion


“It Takes Two to Tango”

Writer: Tom King
Artist: Yanick Paquette
Colorist: Nathan Fairbairn
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Release Date: April 17, 2019
Cover Price: $3.99
Review by: J. Dawn
 
We’ve done it. We’ve survived the onslaught of Knightmares plaguing our hero and arrived at the end of the arc. Depending on your level of enjoyment thus far, you’ll either be thrilled it’s over or excited to see the conclusion. Win-win, right? Let’s dive in and find out.
 
King and Paquette weave together all of the threads from King’s run that has had fans clamoring for more. We get a reference to the 2nd annual, ties to “I am Suicide”, “I am Bane”, Batman #50, and many more. In fact, Batman #69 feels like the genesis of King’s run – a culmination of everything that’s come before, while setting the stage for the finale. In it, we see Bruce’s internal struggle with reconciling the idea of a “happy Batman”, alongside Thomas’ motivation for teaming up with Bane. I think this pairing could be controversial, but King expertly portrays Thomas as the dominant party…At least in his mind. Bane never reveals his whole hand, but from this issue, we can see that Thomas feels to be in control. I apologize if I’m being vague: I don’t want to completely spoil everything in this issue, and I think both Bruce and Selina’s interactions, alongside Thomas and Bane’s should be experienced firsthand. I truly do believe that King understands these characters psychologically and portrays them in an exciting, unique fashion.


 
The art and colors need all the praise they can receive. This “dance” of history, colors, and choreography play like a “Greatest Hits” album in all the best ways. It’s a great example of how King keeps track of all of his themes, as well as showing the synergy between writer and artist. I particularly liked the contrast between the two pairings: Bruce and Selina’s segments evoke a magical, surreal quality while Bane and Thomas’ section is gritty and worldly. It’s a great way to transition from the dream world back to reality.

Bits and Pieces:
 
I often feel at a loss for words when I read Batman. On a biweekly basis, I’m treated to an emotional tour de force that excites me and astonishes me like no other book I’ve read. I could be considered a fanboy, but if so, I’m okay with it, as each issue is just an absolute pleasure. Knightmares concludes in a satisfying way that not only excites me but justifies everything that’s come before it. Bring on Bane.
 
8.8/10

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