Welcome to the new column “Comics Issues” where two Sound on Sight comics writers debate a important or controversial comics industry topic. First up, we discuss whether the DC New 52 was a successful initiative or not. Feel free to post your opinion in the comments below.
Batman #40 features the battle to end all battles between Batman and the Joker drawn in gory detail by Greg Capullo and Danny Miki, but the scraps of dialogue between the blows and explosion are occasionally weighed down by exposition. Snyder does punch things up in the third act and leave Gotham and the Batman title as wide open as it’s been since the dawn of the New 52. He and Capullo make “Endgame” the dark mirror of Batman Eternal, and it’s interesting to see this storyline fit in the larger context of their run on Batman and the weekly series, which preceded it. Questionable plot devices aside, Batman #40 concludes the “Endgame” in a brutal, personal manner that really shakes up the status quo on this book.
Batman #39 is headed towards another meeting of greatest foes. The Joker has been ahead of Batman at every punch in this arc. To save Gotham Batman must prove again the Joker underestimated him. When it unfolds, Batman will have to become the aggressor and improviser that the Joker has been. If he fails, he’ll become the bat hanging upside down. The Joker has promised his best trick of all, Snyder will deliver.
The first issue of the massively successful Wytches provides readers with a solid base while leaving us with a cliffhanger and excited for more. This issue finds Sailor trying to cope with the aftermath of her traumatic attack, while her parents attempt to search for answers to what’s happened to their daughter. Wytches #2 doesn’t reveal exactly what crashed through Sailor’s window at the end of the last issue, but it does show us how it effected her mind and body.
After spending a year developing the origin and mythos of Batman, Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo turn him loose in Batman #35 and show him at his prime fighting some of Earth’s mightiest heroes. The scale of the comic is huge as Batman battles the various Justice League members, and Capullo’s art shows their might in comparison to Batman’s mortality. The comic opens at the Royal Theatre in Gotham, which has spent lots of money on a special crane so there can be a literal “deus ex machina” in a staging of the Oresteia. Snyder and Capullo stage their narrative like a Greek tragedy giving Batman his own fatal flaw in the story. From Batman #35, it seems that the “Endgame” will be looking at Batman as legend while having many twists and turns along the way. Snyder does a good job showing Batman’s unique contingency plans for stopping the Justice League while Capullo shows them in action from Wonder Woman’s window breaking power to Flash’s crackling super speed. If anything, Batman #35 is an argument for why Greg Capullo should draw Justice League. FCO Plascencia continues to set the mood with his colors from the mix of somber and bright coloring in the theatre to Batman’s shadowy greys and blacks and the various color schemes for the Justice League members.