Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Batman/Superman #3 Review

Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artist: David Marquez, Alejandro Sanchez, and John J. Hill
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 23, 2019

I keep getting this notion that this Batman/Superman "Infected Secret Six" story is getting overshadowed by the Year of the Villain and Event Leviathan and while I am not fully invested yet myself, I think everything should get its fair shake.  Unfortunately, it came out last and was then delayed...much like Joshua Williamson's Justice League Odyssey was and that book never seemed to gain the traction it needed to run with the other two Justice League books.  So, what is a Batman/Superman book to do?  Well, for starters, it needs to pick up the pace and start taking advantage of its premise.  I need this book to matter (at least to me, unlike Eric Shea, I don't speak for everyone else) and I need it to matter starting now.  There are too many books out there for me to be wowed by a Shazam/Superman fight.  However, the cliffhanger at the end of the last issue was pretty kick-ass and might just be what the doctor ordered.  Well, is it?  Let's find out...

The issue opens with Batman letting you in on a big secret of his...he's a real dick!  Listen, I know what he's going on about because for once, I can say that I am just like Batman.  He uses fear as a tool, but that tool is powered by finding out and using any secret his friends and enemies have and he doesn't really differentiate between them much.  Of course, the Batman Who Laughs does the same and at the moment, Superman is hanging with him and at the end of the last issue I was convinced that it was all a ruse, but it seems that Supes actually infected himself and is helping the BWL escape from the Hall of Justice.

While Superman really gets into his role, the BWL is playing coy with his plan and it really seems he knows what's what and is pushing Superman to the point of no return...until Batman swoops in and stops it all.  Why???  I was actually getting into it and the tension just thinking that Superman could turn was pretty damn awesome.  We put that aside for the BWL to taunt Batman with the idea that he won't give up the names of the Secret Six...but most of us know them already!!!!  I know it's an outside thing and not Joshua Williamson's fault (probably), but if you read the hundreds of leaks about who the Secret Six are then you have to be like me and just wish we could get over the hemming and hawing and get to the story stat!

It's then off to visit Jim Gordon and if you read the Batman Who Laughs mini-series, you didn't need any leak to tell you he was infected since it was the big ending reveal.  I guess not everyone here has read that because Willamson took his time getting here, but at least we are here and moving forward.  This is my favorite part art-wise and the call out to the DCYOU Batman book was really cool.  Hey, I was not a huge fan of the book then, but I spent some time in the shit with it so this reunion with the Rookie was nice.

Unfortunately, the reunion is short-lived as Superman shows up and goes ham of Bat Bunny and the World's Finest gain a little ground in the war, but even this ends up turning on the quicker than Superman on...I think you know the rest.  What you may or may not know is who the next Infected reveal is.  

The issue closes with the Batman Who Laughs monologuing and it's a dark slant on what Batman was saying at the beginning of the issue.  With everything being talked about nowadays concerning the future of the DCU (I'm talking 5G stuff here), the ending points to something much bigger than just going after Batman and Superman and I'm all for that.

That ending really makes this book feel bigger and bigger.  That's all well and good down the line, but did it get me excited for the here and now?  Kind of.  I'm sorry, but that's all I can muster right now.  Three issues in and Joshua Williamson is still playing around with his reveals and beyond that, we don't have much at all.  We are getting there, though, it's just taking a bit too long at the start if you ask me.  We are supposed to find out the rest of the Secret Six next issue and even if you know them already, it's a good thing since we can get the bus moving.

I liked the art throughout the book, though I could stand for a bit more backgrounds on some pages.  Where David Marquez shines is the Infected and I hope that trend continues because there is a whole lot of potential for cool art when all is revealed.

Bits and Pieces:

Things are picking up a bit, but if you already know the Secret Six roster, you are probably getting as impatient as me waiting to get to the Fireworks factory.  The cliffhanger does point this book in an even bigger direction, but we have a bit of time until that goes down and I want to enjoy the journey as well as the destination.  David Marquez's art looks great, now if Joshua Williamson could pick up the pace a bit, we could have something special here.  Let's hope we get there soon.


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