Review – Batman #49
Writer: Scott Synder, James Tynion IV
Artist: Yanick Paquette
Letterer: Steve Wands
Colorist: Nathan Fairbairn
Variant Cover: Neal Adams
Publisher: DC Comics
“Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice” is next month! You know what that means don’t you? Time for DC to discard these silly story arcs involving their two most popular characters and go back to status quo! Goodbye Robo-Gordon and Hipster Supes, it was fun while it lasted. It’s not us, it’s you (prepare to hear that speech on the 15th of this month). They both return in issue #50 of their titles, but what does that mean for issue #49? Let’s find out, shall we?
“Superheavy part 9” has Bruce Wayne returning to Wayne Manor to talk to Alfred. He finally knows he was once Batman, but doesn’t remember how to be Batman again. Fortunately right before his last fight with Joker Bruce built a machine that would store his memories and skills as Batman to his successor. Alfred claims that the machine will kill any normal man from the stress of being Batman, which Bruce has now become. Will Bruce Wayne have to die for Batman to live? More importantly, will Alfred help…or try to stop him?
For once we have a Bruce and Alfred-centric story. Bloom is still destroying the city, but we do not see a single scene from that incident, nor does Gordon appear. Half of the book takes place in Bruce’s mind, so it gives the artist free reign to draw panels you normally wouldn’t see in a Batman title. Bruce basically has a Batcave in his mind also. It’s also very interesting that Joe Chill and the Court of Owls help maintain the Batcave in his mind. They are directly responsible for creating Batman, so in his mind he sees them not as enemies but as allies.
Greg Capullo is not the artist this month, but Yanick Paquette fills in as best as he can. He style even mimics Capullo to a point, so at times you won’t even notice the difference. It seems like they’re really gearing up for issue #50 so it’s understandable that he took this issue off. I’m still not sure how I feel about a “Batman machine” in the Batcave, but then I remembered it’s a comic book. If it’s one place to suspend your suspension of disbelief it’s here.
Well comic fans, you got exactly what you wanted, the return of status quo. It may sound spoiler-ish but that’s the nature of comics: the more things change the more they stay the same. I applaud Snyder and Capullo for trying something new. Did I agree with the direction? Not really, but the writing and art is so good that I can go with it. Will this still be a new direction for Batman? Find out next month. Same Bat time. Same Bat Channel.
via DC Comics