Another Origin Tale
Batman: Zero Year
Writer: Scott Snyder
Pencils: Greg Capullo
Inks: Danny Miki
Colors: FCO Plascencia
Letters: Alex Garner
Produced: DC Comics
Once again we are at a "usually" spot here. This is where I would tell you about the book and do the spoiling as it were. Not today. This is yet another "Zero" book, in which our young hero Bruce Wayne is once again traumatized by the death of his parents and decides to become the Bat. For the most part the story is uninspired because HOW MANY TIMES CAN THIS STORY BE TOLD? Yeah I know there are a couple of twists, but do I really care? The fact that DC decided to have Zero Year month makes this all even worse.
I like Bruce Wayne with a high in tight hair cut, it gives him a more military look and shows he means business than just the playboy thing. I like that Gordon shows up in the Bats life faster than he did in the regular series and somewhat knows about the Batcave. I also enjoyed the story at the end.
The pencils are good by Capullo, he tells a good story with his panels and walks that all so narrow path of never too much and never to little in each. I really liked his desert portrayals and his cave work. In fact I am on board as one of his bigger fans and will usually pick up a book if he is working on it. The colors are good, especially in the said desert scenes and I really like the way they highlight the background in some panels.
This has been done countless times before, and to put this out DC really needed a massive 600 foot home run. This isn't it. It's OK, no better and no worse. This book and the idea behind it is Batman sells and "let's do another Bat book" to boost said sales. We are only two years and some months from the "NEW 52", where most of everything got turned upside down and DC as a company felt the need to do it again? Really?
Batman: Zero 5 out of 10 Tags
What's Black & White and Really Overdone?
Batman Black & White
Written: Lee Bermejo, Damion Scott, Rian Hughes, Marv Wolfman, Paul Dini
Pencils: Lee Bermejo, Damion Scott, Riccardo Burchielli, Rian Hughes, Stephane Roux
Letters: Carlos M. Mangual, Dezi Sienty, Taylor Esposito, Jared K. Fletcher
Produced: DC Comics
So if you read Legends of the Dark Knight then you have read this book. Seriously it is the same format with just LOD being in color. That said this is a really good vehicle for the Bat.
Just about everything is right with this book. The black and white set up leads to so much more interesting panels, allowing for a depth you just can't get out of a color book. Don't get me wrong I like the color books too, and the folks who have contributed to these stories have more time to do the art work than what would normally be given. It's also nice that the stories are smaller and self contained. All the story tellers with this issue #3 were spot on, with the telling being first rate. The final story with Harley, Poison Ivy and the Bat is by far my favorite.
The best part of this book and it's colored version is that these stories aren't a part of the big picture, but at any time any one of the stories could be. Much like LOD this book has a much cleaner less, for a lack of a better term dirty Batman. In short this is a Batman I can relate to.
Simple, this didn't need to happen either. DC has the LOD format, why not just have special B&W issues of that and call it good? The cool thing about comic books is they are unique. There is no other medium except maybe (HUGE MAYBE) daytime soaps where we get to live with, grow up with, and know our favorite characters fro an extended period of time. This mad publication of one Super Hero cheapens the rest of the canon in my opinion and makes the Batman less the Dark Knight and more the everyday Super Hero. That said it is a top of the line book and I highly recommend it.