Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Batman: Killing Time #1 Review

Back to Basics With Batman

Written by: Tom King
Art by: David Marquez
Colors by: Alejandro Sánchez
Letters by: Clayton Cowles
Cover art by: David Marquez, Alejandro Sánchez
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: March 1, 2022

Batman: Killing Time #1 kicks off a robbery staged by four of Gotham's toughest criminals - Killer Croc, Catwoman, Riddler, and Penguin. When all the planning and pieces fall into place, Batman soon learns the prize has nothing to do with money.

Was It Good?

Batman: Killing Time #1 is, in short, pretty good.

Tom King returns to a Batman title with the "promise" of telling a straightforward Batman story, and so far, that's exactly what we get here. A large cross-section of Batman's Rogues Gallery team up for a heist that requires above-average planning, coordination, and guile. I like the smartness of the plan and the success of its execution is not a strike against Batman's detecting abilities but a testament to the cleverness of the Rogues - especially Riddler.

The story centers around a bank robbery by Killer Croc, but the robbery is a diversion for a different heist happening elsewhere in Gotham. King masterfully jumps back and forth in time to show how the setup was achieved, how civilians were used, and how the whole heist comes together without injecting too much confusion. There's a LOT of jumping back and forth in time but it's manageable.

The issue concludes with Batman learning about the second heist. He's aware of what was stolen, although he doesn't let Commissioner Gordon or the readers in on what was taken. The object's importance goes back to Ancient Greece, but it's not clear what the object is or why it's so valuable. Presumably, the object's importance will be revealed in a later issue, so we shall see.

The art by Marquez and Sánchez is exquisite. Whatever your opinion of King's storytelling reputation, he knows how to partner with excellent artists, and this first issue is no exception. The linework is darn near perfect, the coloring is beautiful, and the panels are composed for maximum dramatic effect. This is a stunning comic.

Overall, I'm on board with this arc. Now, this is a Tom King book so expectations for getting blindsided with nonsense are high, but so far, this is a strong start for a "traditional" Batman story. 

Make sure to listen to our Weekly DC Comics Recap and Review Podcast to hear us talk more about this book.  Just look up "Weird Science DC Comics" anywhere you listen to podcasts, and make sure to rate, review, and subscribe!

Bits and Pieces

Batman: Killing Time #1 kicks off an exceptionally strong start for a traditional Batman detective story. The heist is well-planned and executed, all the advertised Rogues are present and acting as their traditional selves, and the mystery of what was stolen elicits enough curiosity to want to know more. Beyond the story, the art is simply phenomenal.



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