All-Star Batman #1 review

'All-Star Batman' #1 art by Danny Miki, Joride Bellaire, John Romita Jr. & Dean White
'All-Star Batman' #1 art by Danny Miki, Joride Bellaire, John Romita Jr. & Dean White
'All-Star Batman' #1 cover art by Danny Miki, John Romita Jr. & Dean White
‘All-Star Batman’ #1 cover art by Danny Miki, John Romita Jr. & Dean White
  • Written by Scott Snyder
  • Pencils by John Romita Jr. & Declan Shalvey
  • Inks by Danny Miki & Declan Shalvey
  • Coloured by Jordie Bellaire & Dean White
  • Cover by Danny Miki, John Romita Jr. & Dean White

“My Own Worst Enemy” part one! Superstar writer Scott Snyder explodes into an all-new Batman series alongside legendary artist John Romita Jr., reimagining some of the Dark Knight’s greatest villains. First up: Two-Face! Batman must take Two-Face to a destination out of Gotham City, but the duplicitous villain has a two of spades up his sleeve. Every assassin, bounty hunter and ordinary citizen with something to hide is on their tails with one goal: kill Batman! Handcuffed together on the road to hell, this is Batman and Two-Face as you’ve never seen them before!

Pickup your copy of ‘All-Star Batman’ #1 at Comixology now!

Having multiple series running at any one time is always a danger. There’s every chance that one of the series won’t live up to the rest and will weaken the overall branding of the character. With ‘Batman’ coming out of the New 52 era with upwards of  four series to his name adding another felt like overkill.

Thankfully for us ‘All-Star Batman’ is under the watchful eye of Scott Snyder. Yes THE Scott Snyder. He retired from ‘Batman’ and setup camp at ‘All-Star Batman’ instead.

The series has an interesting premise, at least for its first arc. Taking both The Dark Knight and villain Two-Face out of Gotham. Much like the main ‘Batman’ series ‘All-Star Batman’ is taking the titular hero outside of his comfort zone. We’ve seen his undertake global adventures but this series already feels like a road trip buddy story.

Snyder is famous with Bat-fans for his huge story arcs. ‘Endgame’ and ‘Court of the Owls’ are two of the most highly regarded stories in recent history. Both however were almost entirely set in Gotham itself and kept the series within its comfort zone of dark and shadowy corners. ‘All-Star Batman’ is outside, in the daylight.

This first issue is almost entirely setup. It’s masked with a high octane opening but essentially all the happens is an overlong explanation of its premise. Batman is taking Two-Face somewhere and there are hit men hot on their trail.

Some of the most interesting moments in the issue come from the reactions of town locals to the arrive of Batman and his companion. Through backstory we learn what has brought them to this point but it is all fairly standard fare.

One of the most intriguing moments was seeing Duke in full costume, we’be yet to see this in any other Bat-book so I am intrigued as to where in the timeline this series is. I’m also intrigued to see what has motivated Alfred in to the situation we find him in at the end of this issue.

There’s enough intrigue in amongst the setup to keep readers entertained but I wonder how long this arc will be able to stretch itself out before it becomes a little tired.

Visually this book is really interesting. It feels a lot like Freddie E. Williams II work on ‘Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’. There’s a more youthful energy behind the pencil and the colours are vibrant to boot.

With present day scenes being set during the daytime there’s a chance to appreciate the latest version of the Batsuit in full glory. Rather than bathed in darkness. John Romit Jr. is also able to bring some new visual flare to Two-Face who we haven’t seen in ‘Batman’ comics for a little while.

His style of art is going to take a little getting used to but it certainly is a break from the norm in the world of ‘Batman’ and that is no bad thing.

Verdict

‘All-Star Batman’ #1 is a great start. It’s got huge premise and the story has already brought enough intrigue to keep up reading. The artwork is different but it’s great to see DC branching out from standard comic fare.

3 stars

 

 

3 stars

About Neil Vagg 1216 Articles
Neil is the GYCO Editorial Chief. He has a BA in Film & Tv and an MA in Scriptwriting; he currently works 9-5 as an office manager and 5-9 as a reviewer/web designer. He has been subscribing to comics for around nine years but has been reading them as long as he can remember. Favourite comics: Batman; Nightwing, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and All New X-Men Favourite films: Batman (any apart from & Robin); Star Trek Generations, Underworld, Beetlejuice Favourite TV shows: Fringe; Buffy, Arrow, TBBT, Being Human UK and Star Trek TNG