So it seems that you either love or hate the writings of Tom King on Batman. There doesn’t seem to be much middle ground. Being 17 issues in one would expect most to know that his story telling style is slow burn followed with intense action. Personally it works for me with Batman, it just feels right.
King skips puns and comedy for this issue and gets straight to business with some rather dark storytelling. In this issue Bane is making his first moves on Batman. While Batman is making his moves to secure Claire aka Gotham Girl with Psycho Pirate so she can be cured. It plays out like a chess match between Batman and Bane. This is the setup for what is to come and it just flies by as you read it, leaving you wanting more.
Although it is a slow start to the arc, being two issues into it now, don’t be worried about where it is heading. King is rather good at fleshing out the story then hitting us rapid fire with tons of twists and turns. With the cliffhanger we have in this issue, you can expect next issue to being the ramp up to the stories conclusion in Batman #20.
The art team knocked this issue out of the park, one of my favorite issues art wise so far in the current run. Finch, Miki, and Bellaire nail the feel and flow of Tom Kings writing in this issue. I find myself going back and just admiring several pages again and again. The use of color and contrast is just so visually pleasing here, from the dark scenes to Claire’s eyes that pop off the page.
Tom King and David Finch come back together to raise the bar for this series. Leaving us with yet another cliff hanger making the next two weeks that much more difficult.
Reviewed by Tim Montoya
Written by Tom King
Art by David Finch, Danny Miki, Jordie Bellaire
Published by DC
Release Date: February 15th, 2017