Monday, March 4, 2024

Batman #145 Review


Written by: Chip Zdarsky
Art by: Jorge Jiménez
Colors by: Tomeu Morey
Letters by: Clayton Cowles
Cover art by: Jorge Jiménez, Tomeu Morey
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: March 5, 2024

Batman #145 returns to the Failsafe conflict when Batman suits up with a harder, meaner edge against anyone who breaks the law in Gotham.
Is Batman #145 Good?

Yes, Batman #145 generally works, except for one super-annoying problem that Chip Zdarsky and DC Editorial should have seen coming. What is that problem? Read on.

When last we left Batman, before the poorly-timed Joker: Year One arc, Failsafe returned after Zur-En-Arrh briefly took control of Bruce Wayne's body to win a brutally decisive fight against the Joker. Joker was left with a broken back, and Failsafe put a battered Batman in an adjoining jail cell, leading to the start of Joker's tall tale about his first year as the Clown Prince of Crime.

Now, with Joker's story finished, Bruce makes a strong attempt to escape his jail cell in the underbelly of Blackgate Prison. Meanwhile, Failsafe/Zur-En-Arrh assumes the mantle of Batman and begins an uncompromising takedown of Gotham's criminals while sweet-talking the Bat Family into believing he's really Bruce's consciousness uploaded into the Failsafe shell. Gotham citizens get a front-row seat to Batman in his most authoritarian phase yet... but is it really him?

Watch our Batman #145 Video Review

What's great about Batman #145? Except for the annoying problem, the issue is action-packed, fast-paced, dramatic, well-plotted, and intriguing. The positive aspects Zdarsky displayed in his writing when he first took over Batman and introduced Failsafe are on full display, so the issue feels like a return to (good) form.

What's not so great about Batman #145? On the first and last pages, we get a very clear pronouncement that the Joker: Year One story that interrupted the flow and momentum of this series is complete and utter bull hockey. It was all made up, and readers who paid money to get a more definitive take on Joker's first year have now been told that they got suckered by DC... again.

It's one thing to interrupt a series for a tie-in to an event or a cooldown for a side story. It's another to interrupt the series to tell a story about the same characters that appear to be a complete fabrication. How many times is DC going to waste its readers' time and money?

To be fair, the developments in this issue are potentially exciting, and the steps taken are clearly a setup for this coming Summer's Absolute Power event. That said, it would serve everyone greatly if DC would get its writing and scheduling act together.

How's the art? The big deal visual in this issue is Failsafe's new look as a cyborg version of Batman, and it looks great. Kudos to Jiménez for creating a "new" Batman that looks familiar from the shadows but is different enough close-up to be an intimidating thing that stands on its own.

About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.

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Bits and Pieces:

Batman #145 delivers great art, action, pacing, and cool plot developments for a present threat to Batman and a future threat to the world in the forthcoming Absolute Power event. That said, this issue almost immediately invalidates the Joker: Year One arc, which means DC Editorial is doing a very poor job by wasting everyone's time and money.



  1. Part 1 Contrary to what some people say, most fans don't want to hate what they want to enjoy, at least I don't. Sadly I can't be as positive as this review cause everything else just keeps in the way of the strong points of this run. I think it would be better if I do a positive and negative for this one:
    Positives: robot batman acting as bruce to deceive his family by making amends while the real one is in prison trying to get back and riddled with guilt and pain is a very good premise. It's one I can get behind and like I said before, failsafe itself makes sense. Batman would think about what if my physical body won't go on forever so let's make a robot and upload a personality on it to either stop me or go on in future. It has been shown in canon before and fits his personality. Zdarsky writes the characters in their own voices and they sound and act like themselves (at least for now, I still have not forgotten gotham war or specifically his nightwing). All the batfamily interactions were on point this issue with red hood and damian being strong highlights. The prison also intrigues me.
    The negatives in part 2>

    1. Part2 The negatives: I have said before and I will say it again and again that Zur doesn't make sense. They even lamp shaded it themselves this issue by having that doctor tell joker that Bruce didn't finish the training cause he didn't believe in the teaching but it doesn't solve anything cause he still went and compromised his greatest weapon aka his mind later on. No way someone like him who studied psychology of crime among other things would go with this -dissociative -alter -personality no- memory or record of it -training. I buy him trying it in his youth but actually committing to it? Nope. If you want this kind of premise, feel free to go and write Moonknight but this isn't Batman material. Secondly, it might be personal preference this one but how many villains know who batman really is at this point? And answering that how has he kept it private this long if this many know who he is. Btw joker calling batman brucie or the like and referencing that he knows batman is bruce breaks his character and the whole point of his history. Even if he knews he wouldn't acknowledge it and would make sure it stays secret (shown multiple points in the past both in comics and other media) and would keep it for a last laugh final plan kind of deal to use. Them sitting in front of each other without masks and having a chill talk is very ooc and personally i think is lame cause this isn't the end of joker. (Also joker is a beyond horrible psychopathic killer who has brutally murdered Bruce's son and has hurt his loved ones and city. Any interaction with him that doesn't have bruce reflecting that is ooc . I appreciate the calm and cool headedness of batman but he still would act less chill with joker in a cell. the encounter in Hush or that prison scene in under the red hood movie is a good example of how it would really go) thirdly, the idea that all this war between batman and joker did not happen because of gotham itself creating them individually but rather the result of this lame new doctor character putting them against each other is horrible and doesn't make sense( the worst problem of this run). Where was any mention of this before Zdarsky came and insists this happened? A very bad retcon and a damaging at that. So in conclusion Zur bad, The whole demasking thing bad, the doctor character horrible. Nothing this run stands on except failsafe works (and I am saying this by not counting the travesty that is gotham war) so I can't engage with the positives and the rather well written tone of the characters cause the negatives are so much more horrible.

  2. Gotham War was awful - Failsafe was OK to a point, Batman surviving a fall from orbit with no protection stretched the credulity of his plot armor, and I am so done with ZEA and the split personalities having split personalities tropes - I like Zdarsky and the artwork is great, but his plotlines have been all over the place....