Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, James Tynion IV, Rafael Albuquerque
Zero Year Crossover
Spoiler alert! You have been warned!
As the secret origin of Batman continues to build momentum, we the readers are treated with some stellar action sequences and some vivid metaphoric dream-induced visions. And all of that is just a minor part of what happens in this jam-packed issue. The creative team of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo have never disappointed, not once, in their almost two-year run on the title that is arguably single-handedly leading the pack of New 52 titles being released by DC Comics. This issue is no exception to that standard.
The first third of the book features the Red Hood Gang ruthlessly beating the man who would be the Batman, all the while continuing to deepen the mystery of their leader’s true identity. Could it be someone we the readers know? Is it a brand new character? Of course, we’ll have to wait and see. The second third of the book features the posturing between Bruce’s not-so-corrupt but not exactly good uncle Phillip and the man who would be the Riddler. This scene shows true gravitas in terms of dialogue and pacing and seems so cinematic in its approach that even though most readers will overlook it upon first glance, they are truly missing the core of what makes Snyder such a genius of a writer. All of his characters, even the bad guys (especially the bad guys) are so much more than black and white. The motivations are so complex and realistic that often times, they even become likeable. And the third act of the issue, arguably the most powerful, features another great father-son chat between Alfred and Bruce, a dream sequence induced by pain and suffering, and the birth of a legend. I couldn’t possibly do Capullo’s artwork justice by describing it any further.
This is, for lack of a better word, a perfect comic. It flows nicely, it looks great, and the dialogue is better than that of any other book on the stands today. The humanity behind these larger-than-life characters is uncanny. The backup stories, which usually just seem like a way for companies to get an extra buck out of their readers always actually adds to main feature story. And most of all, even in issues like this one, where nothing huge or epic really happens (meaning, more specifically, there isn’t a first appearance or a death of a fan-favorite character), every single moment and every single frame seems to be very well-thought-out and extremely important. Not a single page is wasted by this creative team. And I can’t wait to see what they give us next month.
My Rating: 5/5