Review: Batman #28

Abel Loza Abel Loza
Expert Contributor
August 13th, 2017

If you give me the chance, ill talk your ear off about comic books. As the legend states, "Abel's first words were 'Batman.'" #TeamBatman

Review: Batman #28
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Reviewed by:
Rating:
4
On August 13, 2017
Last modified:August 13, 2017

Summary:

Tom King, with help of Mikel Janin and June Chung, continue to tell an excellent classic Batman story. This was a solid issue to read after taking a break from the main story line during Batman #27, and while giving us a fill for details and story, King does a good job of leaving enough out for us to want more in the upcoming issues.

Price:
Momentum Builder

Reviewed by:
Rating:

4
On August 13, 2017
Last modified:August 13, 2017

Summary:

Tom King, with help of Mikel Janin and June Chung, continue to tell an excellent classic Batman story. This was a solid issue to read after taking a break from the main story line during Batman #27, and while giving us a fill for details and story, King does a good job of leaving enough out for us to want more in the upcoming issues.

MORE NEWS FROM THE WEB

In The War of Jokes and Riddles Part 3, Tom King returns us to the main story after taking a break in Batman #27 to give us a look at how over-his-head Batman really was during the war for Gotham City. King is using The War of Jokes and Riddles as a vessel to tell a Batman “Year Two” story, which explores the theme that Bruce Wayne hasn’t always been in control of Batman or Gotham. Our Batman expert, Abel Loza, breaks down the newest issue in Tom King’s Batman run.

Review: Batman #28

Batman losing it. Courtesy of DC Comics.

“The City has fallen before…This is Gotham…This is what happens…What happens next… is we catch it.”

Quick Synopsis:

While Gotham City is still under siege by the war brought on by the Joker and Riddler, Batman and Commissioner Gordon are trying to find a way to stop the war form continuing to spill over to the rest of the city. After meeting with both the Joker and the Riddler, Gordon learns that in order to end this war, Batman has to be turned over to either side to be killed. After an unsuccessful assassination attempt of Batman, by both Deadshot and Deathstroke, the two mercenaries engaged in a five day battle that left the city of Gotham red with blood. The Battle of the Snipers left Batman feeling helpless and responsible for all the deaths in Gotham.

Courtesy of DC Comics

Break Down:

Spoiler ahead!

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Once you think there are no more layers to this Batman onion that could be peeled back, Tom King finds a way to tell a Batman story with a fresh and interesting take. We have always taken for granted the fact that Batman always seems to be the one member of the Justice League to be in total control and doesn’t let his emotions get the best of him. The entire Tower of Babel story line (and animated movie based on that story line, Doom) is based on the angle that Batman has a contingency plan for every member of the Justice League in case they turn bad. Long story short: Batman always looks in control and always seems to be two steps ahead of everyone.

Batman losing control. Courtesy of DC Comics

Credit: DC Comics

There have been few instances where we explore the fact that Batman couldn’t have always been like this, and just like with every skill we have, there are some speed bumps along the way to perfect a craft. The War of Jokes and Riddles is being used as a “Year Two” story line by Tom King to show the growing pains Batman had to go through to become a better superhero. There is something visceral about seeing Batman struggle and feeling powerless, and learning how to control his anger. This theme plays into King’s continued deconstruction of Batman and Bruce Wayne.

Although The War of Jokes and Riddles arc technically has been a Batman story, one can argue that the story hasn’t been entirely centered on Batman. The first few issues have been dedicated how to the Joker and the Riddler (we can’t forget Kite Man) split Gotham’s underground in two, with Batman being a player in that storyline. In Batman #28, we finally get to see a more Batman-centric issue, which explores the deep problems Batman had in controlling the war from spreading across Gotham.

This is highlighted by the Battle of the Snipers (side note: I love that The War of Jokes and Riddles has battles. Like the Battle of the Snipers was the Battle of Midway. As a history major and buff, this is extremely interesting and raises the stakes for me) where Batman loses control of Deadshot and Deathstroke for five days. When he is finally able to get to the mercenaries, he loses control and almost kills Deadshot. He lost control of the war and of his temper, two things we rarely see Batman do.

The art of Mikel Janin and the coloring of June Chung really have been an incredibly great asset to King’s story on this run. When these three team up together, the issues come to life and tell a multi-faceted story. For example, the panel in Batman #28 where Batman and Catwoman meet in the past while having the conversation in the present, contrasting the two conversations on one page, are brought to life by the art of Janin and the coloring of Chung (as seen above).

Another good example of this is the Battle of the Snipers (as seen below).

Batman #28 was an interesting and fresh way for Tom King to continue to tell a Batman “Year Two” story during The War of Jokes and Riddles. During this issue, King also continues to peal back more layers in the Batman myths which leaves Bruce Wayne as vulnerable and relatable as he has ever been. The art of Batman #28 also continues to excel and adds a dimension to King’s story that gives the reader a full immersive experience of the The War of Jokes and Riddles.

What did you think of Batman #28?

Are you enjoying The War of Jokes and Riddles story arc so far?

What do you think of Tom King's characterization of Batman?

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Abel Loza is a Contributor to ComiConverse. Follow him on Twitter: @st_abel45

Review: Batman #28

  • 4

Momentum Builder

Tom King, with help of Mikel Janin and June Chung, continue to tell an excellent classic Batman story. This was a solid issue to read after taking a break from the main story line during Batman #27, and while giving us a fill for details and story, King does a good job of leaving enough out for us to want more in the upcoming issues.

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