“Long Shadows Part Two: New Day, New Knight”
Author: Judd Winick
Artist: Mark Bagley
Inker: Rob Hunter
Colorist: Ian Rannin
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Assistant Editor: Janelle Siegel
Editor: Mike Marts
I’ll be the first to admit that I absolutely hated Judd Winick’s run on Batman prior to Grant Morrison’s “Batman and Son” arc, but I have to hand it to him this time – I love what he’s done with the place since Bruce has gone.
As the title suggests, “New Day, New Knight” takes on a much lighter tone than we’re used to in a post-Miller Batman story, thanks in no small part to Dick Grayson’s circus sensibilities and Mark Bagley’s joyous artwork. There are plenty of moments that brought a smile to my face, and they should do yours as well. Batman #689 opens with a smile, as the new Batman busts up a gambling racket. Granted, this particular incarnation of Batman is a little too talkative for my liking, but it’s good to see Dick finally revel in his mentor’s shoes.
Behind the curtain, Two-Face and Penguin posture themselves for control of Gotham’s underworld. Two-Face’s camp has been filtering out Penguin’s plans to Batman through the appropriate channels, while Penguin forges dark alliances with some very dangerous people. His days as a “legitimate businessman” could well be numbered as their cold war is brought to the boil. I’ll be following this development with keen interest.
Despite this issue’s lighter tone, there’s plenty of room for an emotionally poignant exchange between Dick and Alfred. I think we all miss Bruce, so I never get sick of these scenes. Judd – through Dick – really cuts to the core of Batman’s butler, bringing out the human element in him and the rest of the cast, from Dick to Damian, even to Bruce posthumously. Winick emotionally grounds the story with a very simple and clever device.
The closing scene is reminiscent of Watchmen, as Batman races to extinguish a burning high-rise in his hovering Batmobile, no less. He puts on such a splendid show, I half expected him to make coffee for the rescued residents a la Owlman. It’s not all fun and games, though, as a classic rogue returns to ruin all of that.
Winick’s new Batman is a welcome departure from his old Batman. It may be light-hearted, but it’s certainly not light on heart.
This entry was posted on 14th August, 2009 at 12:00 pm and is filed under Batman, Comics, DC with tags Alfred Pennyworth, artist, author, batman, Batman and Son, Black Mask, Bruce Wayne, Clayface, cold war, colorist, comic, comic book, comic books, Comics, Damian al Ghul, Damian Wayne, Dark Knight, dc, dc comics, Dick Grayson, editor, Frank Miller, gambling racket, gotham, Gotham City, Grant Morrison, Harvey Dent, inker, Janelle Siegel, Judd Winich, letterer, light-hearted, Mark Bagley, Mike Marts, Oswald Cobblepot, Owlman, penciller, Penguin, review, Rob Hunter, Robin, Two-Face, Watchmen, writer. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.