Ricky Church reviews Batman #45…
When Batman almost gets taken out by a new threat, Jim Gordon might have to reevaluate what it means to wear the cowl before it’s too late for Gotham City!
Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo continue to roll out their surprises in this new era of Batman. As Gordon struggles to survive in an impossible situation, his determination to honour the original Batman’s legacy and better himself for the fight grows even as the mysterious Mr. Bloom escalates his operation in a surprising manner.
Gordon’s evolution into this new Batman continues to draw interest by peeling back layers of the character readers would never know was there. In an interesting piece of internal monologue, Gordon chides himself for acting like he had back-up going into a dangerous situation. He remarks he’s always had back-up throughout his career and can’t shake that feeling of safety even when he knows he doesn’t have it. It’s an intriguing parallel as Batman came to have many allies in his war on crime, though even with those allies he always acted as a lone wolf for the most part. The dichotomy Snyder deconstructs between these two characters is one of the most compelling aspects of this story.
What makes this comparison work so much more is Bruce Wayne’s current amnesiac state of mind. Since he remembers nothing of being Batman, all he sees is a life of a man left unfulfilled, one who didn’t even have pictures of family or friends around his house, treating it more as a mausoleum than a home. While some aspects of this belief are inaccurate, it still certainly hits close to the mark. After all, even though Bruce did confide in Alfred, several Robins and other allies, he kept many of those people at arm’s length away, opting to be a loner for most of his life. Gordon, however, can’t help but draw people in and stay connected with his allies.
Greg Capullo’s art remains a selling point of the Batman title. With the recent announcement that he’ll be leaving the book to work on Mark Millar’s latest project, its more important than ever to soak up his gorgeous work. His facial expressions are quite good, displaying various emotions very well. One instance is Gordon’s worried face as he nears death to his obvious relief once he’s saved, a difficult feat for someone whose face is 90% covered. Of course Capullo has had experience doing the same with the actual Batman, but its clear he’s not simply drawing Bruce Wayne Batman and attempting to pass it off as Gordon Batman in these scenes. Throughout the run Capullo has also displayed quite a great skill showcasing horrific elements and that remains the case with Mr. Bloom’s reveal. Danny Miki’s excellent colour work compliments Capullo’s art, popping off the page whether it is dark and moody or bright and vibrant.
Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo continue to knock it out of the park in ‘Superheavy’. Gordon’s time as Batman remains a highlight of the current story and, though it can be seen as a gimmick, it really is finding new layers of the character to discover and explore. This pair hasn’t let fans down yet with the their stories, making it more of a shame that Capullo will be departing in a few months, even if it is for a short while. Let’s hope he’ll be back on the Batman title sooner rather than later.