Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Batman: Urban Legends #1 Review


The Legend is Real

Writer: Stephanie Phillips, Matthew Rosenberg, Brandon Thomas, Chip Zdarsky
Artist: Eddy Barrows, Ryan Benjamin, Laura Braga, Max Dunbar, Marcus To
Cover Price: $7.99
Release Date: March 9, 2021

We could debate all day and night over the need for another Bat Book at DC Comics.  It always comes down to money anyway, and Batman brings in the cashunda!  So, I will not tell you that we need a new Batman book, but I am going to tell you that I need a Batman book written by Chip Zdarsky!  Here it is, and he's brought some friends with him.  Let's get into the review...

Chip Zdarsky and Eddy Barrows kick off the book with a Red Hood story that shows why I love Chip's writing.  Like his Daredevil book at Marvel, there isn't any cheap surface-level nonsense, even with this story dealing heavily in past stories.  While in the present, Jason Todd is investigating a new drug that's hitting the streets of Gotham, we also see flashbacks of the young Jason trying to become Robin and beyond.  Yea, the story deals with Jason's death at the hands of the Joker, but I think Red Hood fans will like this because it focuses on Jason and Bruce's emotions.  There isn't a crowbar in sight, either!  Zdarsky sets this up to show Jason's heart and the anger he still has inside him.  It's only part 1 of 6, but I'm hooked already.

Stephanie Phillips and Laura Braga then give readers an update on the Harley/Ivy relationship, and while I'm hoping we see more of this in her solo book (also written by Phillips), with all the craziness with Ivy since Heroes in Crisis (I hate even mentioning the book), It's nice to give the gals some time together.  Now, the cynic in me worries this is because Ivy is coming into Infinite Frontier as a straight-up villain, but even if that's the case, we'll always have Urban Legends, or whatever the saying is.  This story is fan service for the Harley/Ivy stans, but they deserve it after the roller coaster ride of emotions of the last few years.

Next, we get an Outsiders story by Brandon Thomas and Max Dunbar that I want to love but only liked so far.  It felt a bit disjointed at times, but it looked great, and it had some great setpieces for Katana and Black Lightning to fight their way through.  I will tell you that the cliffhanger had me laughing in a good way, and I am looking forward to continuing. 

The final story is a Grifter story by Matthew Rosenberg and Ryan Benjamin, and it might be my favorite.  I loved Rosenberg's Grifter backup in Future State, and that love continues here.  If you have listened to any of our podcasts, you will know I am a character guy.  Give me excellent character work, and I am in, and Rosenberg does it here.  Many people told me they skipped the Grifter backups because they didn't know or care about Grifter.  Please don't sleep on this story!  Rosenberg knows and cares about the character enough for all of us!  Plus, it looks great and is just damn funny and action-packed.  I take back the "might" from earlier... this is my favorite story in a photo finish with Zdarsky's Red Hood.

Overall, the only thing that people might not be too thrilled about is the $7.99 price of admission.  I know that DC Comics has (and will continue) to jam in extra stories to up the price tag of these types of things, but that is not the case here, at least with this #1.  These stories are strong enough to see different people having different favorites, and I can't wait to read more.

Bits and Pieces:

Urban Legends was an enjoyable read, and while I couldn't wait to read Chip Zdarsky's Red Hood story, I liked the whole package.  Chip's story wasn't even my favorite by the end, and it had nothing to do with the quality of his story because it was great!  Check it out, and don't skip any, you hear!


If you would like to buy Batman: Urban Legends #1 click HERE or on the Cover below


  1. I really enjoyed Red Hood and The Grifter stories. I hope each one will have their own ongoing comic series with Chip and Matthew.

    1. I would even love a double feature book for $4.99-$5.99 with those two every month