Saturday, October 24, 2009

Batman #691

Pairing up Judd Winick with Mark Bagley was a good move. I seem to enjoy Winick's work when he's teamed with a solid artist, and that is the case again here. The opening sequence was brutal, with a bat-garbed Two-Face beating the crap out of Batwing. I had totally forgotten that Two-Face had doped up Bats last issue, so I was confused for a moment how that could happen, but Winick wisely reminded me fairly quickly. I like the idea that Two-Face has spent the last few weeks researching the chances of a replacement Batman, but all it takes for him to be convinced that he's wrong is a beating. I have to assume that Batwing has Bruce Wayne's Dark Knight voice down, because Two-Face had actually made a decent argument up to that point. I always like Alfred getting involved too, and his pragmatic entrance into the fight was interesting. I can't imagine that getting shot up with adrenaline needles after you've been drugged is too healthy, but Alfred did what needed to be done. I do think that sometimes the shared aspect of the DCU can weaken character concepts though. I hate that Winick had to come up with magical guards and boundaries for the Batcave to explain why no magician has ever found it. It's hard to keep Batman street-level when he has to counter teleporters and mages.

Is it too early for me to be sick of Black Mask? He shouldn't be pushing around established bat-villains this soon after his premiere appearance. His unlimited funds and roving band of flunkies are annoying too. He's too much a plot point and not enough of a character yet.

Bagley's serves the story well. He did a nice job dealing with the transition of Two-Face's costume from Batwing's drugged hallucination to reality. That was a nice little cheat to get Two-Face's promo bat suit into a comic without making any characters really wear it.


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