Regarding BATMAN #45

“Is this a kissing book?”

I’ve referenced that quote from THE PRINCESS BRIDE before, for those of you who might not be as much of a pushover for all the Bat/Cat stories we’ve been getting from Tom King as I’ve been. Issue 45 takes a break from the romance to detour into an alternate timeline created by Booster Gold, whose attempt at a wedding gift for Bruce Wayne has gone decidedly… awry.

Gotham City is different, and everything is terrible. King effectively and efficiently wields word-weapons like “a” Joker to tell us how bad things have gotten. Tim Drake languishes in a cubicle at a dead-end day job. Duke Thomas is some kind of Frankenstein’s monster being groomed by an unknown hand for some mysterious purpose. Jason Todd sells tires that pack more than a punch. And what’s the deal with Batman? Why is Bruce dancing at a fancy soirée with… wait… what?

As the terrible truth slowly slides into focus, King takes us on a ride that’s essentially his Bat-take on the classic Superman story “For the Man Who Has Everything” by Alan Moore, which Booster even alludes to!

Full review at Batman On Film!

Regarding BATMAN #44

And here I’ve been worried for weeks about the external threats that might muck up the impending marriage of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle! In issue 44, writer Tom King reflects on how their tumultuous past might affect their matrimonial present by presiding over a holy union of another kind, bringing artists Mikel Janín and Joëlle Jones together under the same roof for yet another impossibly handsome issue of what’s consistently been one of the best looking books on the market.

It’s 2:37 a.m., and Selina Kyle can’t sleep. Slipping from the bed she shares with The Batman, she suits up to swing from Gotham’s gargoyles before swan-diving into the nearest sewer… with a bomb? As she blows a hole beneath a bridal shop and slinks inside, she begins to reminisce about all the things she and Bruce have been over the years… and how almost all of it has had an element of antagonism. Does that apply to today? Are their very natures so at odds that they’ll never work out, or does each partner bring out all the things the other needs?

Full review at Batman On Film!

Regarding BATMAN #43

As nasty as the tactics and action in “The War of Jokes and Riddles” got, writer Tom King brought the weight of it home by capably communicating the emotional effects (and fallout) the battle had on Batman’s soul.

In this issue’s conclusion of “Everyone Loves Ivy,” King returns to those dark days to demonstrate how they’ve driven Ivy to her current status as the horticultural queen of the world. After an outrageous plan for getting punched full-on in the face by Superman lands Batman in the care of Dr. Harleen Quinzel, the pieces begin to fall into place for the unraveling of Ivy’s reign. Bruce communicates with Ivy via Harley as Selina speaks to her in person; the women discussing the roles they played (or, in Selina’s case, didn’t) in the Joker/Riddler battle royale, while Bruce reminds Ivy that anyone can come back from anything… if they want to.

Full review at Batman On Film!