Since the start of “Dream of Me” in Batman #33, Tom King and artist Joelle Jones have kicked the Caped Crusader into another gear. Batman has always been a dark character-driven saga. And now they’re laying another layer onto the mythos, or maybe resurrecting one is more apropos: adventure! Batman #34 ended on one of a moment that made most readers squeal and now Batman #35 this week will continue one of the best storylines happening in comics. We’ve been promised a heck of a clash between Catwoman and Talia Al Gul. Who wins? Who loses? Will Batman bleed to death in the meantime?
There’s very little not to love, not just like, love about this current arc. There’s been a major change of the status quo in the Dark Knight’s primary title. With Selina Kyle and Bruce Wayne becoming engaged the question hung in the air, “How is this going to wok?” Batman’s a solo act. Sure, he’s got partners, family even, but they’re hardly ever treated as equals. The Cat and the Bat have stood shoulder to shoulder. Would she change him too much and warp the series’ beloved tone? Would she become a prop for Bruce’s latest internal struggles? So far, this relationship is working splendidly!
I hesitate to say this but the main Batman title is a fun read! For some reason there’s an assumption that you can’t have a fun Batman story. Why? I love grim and gritty. I live for a great noir. What’s happening in the world’s greatest detective’s adventures right now is a breath of fresh air though. In some ways similar to Mark Waid’s turn on Daredevil, the creators are finding new ways to No longer will it be so easy to compare Tom King’s saga against Scott Snyder’s. With each issue of this series, Mr. King is making this his book. And Joelle Jones is turning in the best work of her career and, I daresay, surpassing the previous artists who’ve had a hand in the previous arcs. That’s not a knock against them, that’s a compliment to how freakin’ good this book is right now. For reals all, this title’s on fire! Feel the burn this week.