Batman #1 and other new DC Comics reviews

Another week, another batch of issue #1s from DC. I’m skipping the ones I think are duds (Supergirl? Kinda blahh. Captain Atom? Irritating) and zooming in on the books that were striking for various reasons.

Batman #1 Writer Scott Snyder (American Vampire) really knows how to launch a new chapter in Batman‘s history. He pulls from the oldest aspects of the Batman myth, combines it with sinister-comic elements from the series’ best period (that would be the same Dick Sprang-drawn, ’50s era that Grant Morrison also enjoys), and gives the whole thing terrific forward-spin by setting up an honest-to-gosh mystery for Batman to solve. Throughout, the art by Greg Capullo leads with jutting jaws and faces creased with rage, exertion, fear, and grim determination. Batman’s mask covers the very tip of his beaky nose — a nice, distinctive touch. Snyder’s script, much of it about the depressed, disspirited city — talk about “investing in Gotham’s future,” its “fears, frustrations… demons” — works as a metaphor for the economy and general mood of America. Really, the only thing I didn’t care for here is the new, stiff, metallic-looking Batman cover logo. A-

Catwoman #1 Comic books come under fire so regularly for their objectification of women that this Catwoman amounts to a nose-thumbing manifesto: It’s all about the gradual yet partial undressing of Selina Kyle, culminating in a Cat-on-Batman sex scene. Literally. That’s Judd Winick’s story. What hell: go for it; Selina certainly seems to be enjoying herself. The art by Guillem March backs up everything Winick’s drives toward throughout. A low-down gas. B

Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 Roy Harper (Arsenal), Jason Todd (Red Hood), and Starfire (um, Koriand’r,  “born a princess, raised  a slave,” says Scott Lobdell’s script) team up to be all scarlet-hued together and to pull of a mission of… well, there’s a reason this book ends with a “To Be Explained” tag. The issue is all set-up, but that doesn’t mean it’s tossed-off, thanks to Kenneth Rocafort’s art work. His fractured panels can’t contain the energy of guns and blood thrust beyond their frames. Red Hood’s mask is an expressive collection of cross-hatched vehemence. B

More reviews to come in this space — soon, I hope. Please check back; thanks.

Twitter: @kentucker

Comments (42 total) Add your comment
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  • Cris

    Whether you like the DC reboot or not (and I’m not particularly happy about it myself), a mainstream entertainment site like EW.com is reviewing many of the new comics and has been talking about it for months.
    Kudos, DC, you accomplished exactly what you were trying to do. I hope you do succeed in bringing new readers into the medium, because while I may not be a huge fan of DC lately, I’m also plonking down money to check out these new titles, and if it helps introduce new readers, I’m all for that.

    • Staring

      Yeah it is a good thing. But I’d rather see the same response from a company that does not also have a connection to Time Warner.

      I hope we see some reviews for the X-Men relaunch.

      • Hypoxic

        But you’re cool with a relaunch from a company owned by Disney?

      • MB

        He means that EW and DC are both owned by the Time-Warner conglomerate.

      • Melinda

        The scary thing about all this…

        Ken Tucker actually seems to understand the comic industry FAR better than those pathetic posers like Jeff (Doc, hahaha) Jensen who simply insult the intelligence of EW readers.

    • Gregoire

      Im not going to lie, EW’s reviews have piqued my interest, and I haven’t bought a comic book in ten years.

  • Flip

    Catwoman #1 was f***ing AWESOME!!! That final scene with Batman and Catwoman was amazing–I love when they get physical, and I love that they’ve taken it beyond kissing to fetishistic sex with masks on. Thank goodness all the crap that’s happened to Selina over the past decade (the last 3-5 years in particular) seems to have been deleted.

    • sunwatcher

      Crap. All Crap. There is no storyline. It’s a weak ploy to grab more readers. The content and visuals are garbage. Nice job, DC.

  • Justin

    How bout just saying what they’re ABOUT. A brief summary of the actual story presented would be nice.

    • jujubeans

      Google it.

  • Big Walt

    Just shell out the four bucks you cheapskate.

  • hkr

    reboot sucks, makes everything i bought worthless if its been changed. i woulnt mind a reboot but they keep on rebooting titles. i dont mind change but to keep on changing stuff, come on.

  • huangzhenwei

    Im not going to lie, EW’s reviews have piqued my interest, and I haven’t bought a comic book in ten years.
    I’m Female, 22, and just this Christmas had a brief encounter with a mature man. It was wonderful. We met via internet dating on this site: SeekSugarDad.C óM- a good way to meet like-minded people, and he actually approached me first. It just so happens I like older man and he likes woman around my age. We had an amazing day and later on he joined me at a hotel. It was like a fantasy come true. Amazing company, amazing sex too and a really warm and loving man. He will turn 36 this month, and my goodness what a connection we had that day.——–

    • Rock Golf

      Sorry, but I just can’t believe any 12-year-old girl last bought a comic in 2001.

  • Jordan

    The hell with your reboot DC. Unless you make this Universe #53 and restore the DC timeline that’s been in play for over the last 25 years, I’m not buying a single comic or collection EVER again.

    • Flip

      It’s actually “To hell with”, not “the hell with”. Just so you know.

      • ~~~~

        It works either way.

      • The Masked Grammaro

        No, it doesn’t really work either way.

  • dublin04

    Did I miss your Green Arrow #! or Birds of Prey reviews yet? If not, please!

    • Realist

      Here’s your review: Green Arrow was f’n terrible. At least you only need to suffer three issues of writer JT Krul; he’s replaced by Keith Giffen starting with #4.

      Birds of Prey was rock-solid.

  • Oz

    Red Hood and the Outlaws was hilarious!!

  • dublin04

    Did I miss your Green Arrow or Birds of Prey reviews?
    If not-yes, please!

    • dublin04

      sorry for the double entry

      • Buffy

        You never have to apologize for a double entry baby.

  • don rychlick

    next time how about telling about the STORY in the book! if not i not reading you REVIEW GOT IT

  • Caboose

    I don’t know why you think Supergirl was “blahhh” because I thought it was AMAZING. One of the best of the #1s so far. It was easy to follow, captured your interest and kept the story flowing so nicely. Not to mention the art was amazing. That and Detective Comics #1 are my favorites so far. Though to say it was a dud was not an accurate description.

  • DaDude

    Jason Todd=Best Robin Ever

    • Tomoko

      People in the industry rcespet print more, even though a website can be just as good. So, with that said, 200 books for about 500 bucks isn’t that bad! Bring your books to a convention and you can get rid of them super fast..! People are always looking for upcoming talent, so it makes sense in that rcespet

  • printer gerber child food coupons

    Pleasant

  • viviennewestwood

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