Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo
Zero Year Crossover
Spoilers for Batman 27! You have been warned!
This storyline may seem like it’s dragging to some fans, which I can certainly understand, but I’ll be completely honest when I say that Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo are in a difficult place: They can’t exactly reinvent or change Batman’s origin, but yet they kind of have to. It’s a weird state to be in. They have to stay loyal to the readers and fans (who are a violent and judgmental lot), but they also have to put a new spin or twist on the classic Batman origin. Therein lies the genius of this work. It’s not exactly breaking things and changing up the status quo or anything, but it’s certainly adding subtle nuances to an already grand mythology. And with little hints at future stories and nods to past ones (did you see that homage to Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns?), the storytellers are successfully creating a fun read for fans both new and old alike.
This issue isn’t exactly a plot-heavy one. Which is okay with me personally. I enjoy the fact that the premise of almost the entire issue is that Batman doesn’t quite trust Alfred or Gordon… yet. And by adding an extra layer to their characters and fleshing out how they really do play an integral role in why (or rather how) Batman works as a symbol and as a man, it makes this comic book universe just seem that much more plausible and, well, possible. We also learn that Gordon’s first few weeks on the job in Gotham City would define him in ways that we’ve always just kind of “understood,” but never really knew why. The dog-fighting scene was intense, to say the least. And Alfred flat-out calling Bruce on his motivation and punishing Gotham for what happened to him and his parents was brilliant writing. So even though Dr. Death got a fancy new look and origin, it didn’t really matter after all, because the main criminal mastermind of this act of the Zero Year storyline is (surprise, surprise) the Riddler. I wonder if Batman died in that last page? Yeah. Right.
So there you have it. Another quality issue into the storyline. But don’t get too into the story because next issue, Zero Year is taking a month off. Again. But that’s okay because we’re getting an entire issue that takes place not in the past, but right now. That’s right. Batman: Eternal starts (or rather, is previewed) next month in the pages of Batman 28. As much as I’m enjoying Zero Year, it’ll be nice to get a little break and a reminder that though Batman’s origin is awesome, he’ still kicking ass in the present (and into the future) as well. I’ll be here. Will you be checking it out? Or will you be taking a month off and coming back for 29?
My Rating: 5/5