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Batman Damned #1 (of 3) Review

by Olivier Roth on September 19, 2018

Writer: Brian Azzarello

Art: Lee Bermejo

Published by: DC Comics Black Label

 

Black Label is here, and Azzarello and Bermejo get the honors to be the first out of the gate with a take on Batman where the big tagline is: The Joker is Dead! The question now becomes, is Batman responsible? And can John Constantine help him determine the truth? Does he even want to?

 

Those are the questions that are asked right from the get-go (for those who read the back cover), and you know what? I’m intrigued and I couldn’t wait to check this out.

 

From the first page, the first thing that you’ll notice, if you are not familiar with Bermejo’s work, is that the work is breathtaking. Bermejo is a master of visual storytelling and has the capacity to draw you into his art by its fluidity in movement and his amazing use of color. From a reviewer’s standpoint, it’s perfect. It may not be to everyone’s taste, since he does sometimes overuse light in his images, but you can’t deny the talent to pull off these pages.

 

The story being told by Azzarello does offer a good compliment to Bermejo’s art, and leans into his strengths throughout. Azzarello, as many know, is a master of the noir genre, and superimposing this genre to a Batman story fits really well. We are told that this is a supernatural horror story, again, on the back cover, which I didn’t really get from this first issue. There were some vibes of it, but nothing to explicit just yet.

 

However, you know some supernatural is going to rear its head when John Constantine is involved. And we get two surprise guest-stars as well from DC’s magical world that may play a part in the story in future issues.

 

This may be one of those comics that will read a lot better once collected but is already worth it to pick up just on the art alone as well as the intrigue generated throughout.

Our Score:

8/10

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