Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Punchline #1 Review

What's a Joke Without A Punchline?

Written By: James Tynion IV, Sam Johns
Art By: Mirka Andolfo, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Gabriela Downie
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: November 10, 2020

The breakout character of the Joker War is here with her very own issue to not only further her story but to also give a little background on Alexis Kaye, the girl who would be known as Punchline. Let's jump into this issue and see what Punchline's plans are now that she's captured and what Harper Row, Bluebird will do to make sure that those plans aren't enacted. Let's check it out.

In this issue we see James Tynion IV go and bring a bit of topical storytelling into the mix with a city divided about how they feel about Alexis Kaye, Punchline and normally I'm not a fan of this because it's just so over the top and in your face that there's no real escape from reality when you dive into a superhero comic, but it's not so on the nose here and it feels separated enough that it comes off fresh here, not to mention that with the trial of Punchline going on, I dig that Harper Row and Dr. Leslie Thompkins are the ones who have been trusted with making sure that justice is served for the Joker's latest accomplice.  

Now, I love that Harper Row is back and even more that she's back in costume. I've been missing her and wanting her back for a long time but really though, while she and Leslie seem to be the heroes of this book, this is more about her brother Cullen Row and his indoctrination into the ideals of Punchline because the majority of the book is Cullen listening to her podcast about her search for the truth about the Joker and what he's really trying to say behind his attacks on Gotham City and Batman, which while leads to a compelling character, actually leaves this book pretty boring and lacking completely in excitement because you're essentially reading someone listening to a podcast. By the end though, it seems that Alexis has gained a lot of fans with her story and is aware of the people who are trying to see her brought down and all of this seems to be exactly what she wants.

All in all, I love what the art team brought to this book. The style in art, the colors, they're all just pretty perfect for what's going on here and while I thought that the story and character of Punchline was compelling, the way that the story was told left me kind of bored while reading and left me wondering if there was a better way to convey Punchline's journey into madness because watching someone listen to a podcast, with excessive narration boxes just comes off as over-written and a bit boring. So yeah, while I found this story compelling, I wish it was more exciting as it moved along and while I like the idea of a divided Gotham in how they see Punchline, a villain or a victim, it's hard for me to understand how people can think anyone who was helping the Joker take over the city, destroy and murder could be looked at in a sympathetic light, but I guess that could be the point of the story.

Bits and Pieces:

While I found the story compelling, I wish it were a bit more exciting in its execution because the way it came off, even with the things that I enjoyed, is that it was a bit over-written, and reading excessive narration boxes throughout a book is a bit of a slog. Even with that though, I did enjoy this issue and loved the art in this book and look forward to diving in deeper with Punchline.


1 comment:

  1. Is Sam Johns related to Geoff Johns? Maybe the world's greatest man child. Detective Shea, can get on this case?