Batman, Vol. 1: I Am Gotham

Tom King and David Finch. DC, $19.99 (192p) ISBN 978-1-4012-6777-3
DC’s current Rebirth project aims to relaunch the publisher’s well-loved core characters in their most iconic forms. King’s (The Omega Men) new Batman is accessible to new readers (or fans of the films) while checking off every item on a longtime fan’s wish list. There’s a properly brooding but heroic Batman; a looming Gotham City with enough atmosphere to function, as the subtitle hints and the dialogue hammers on repeatedly, as a character itself; crisp, detailed artwork by Finch (Brightest Day); and a mix of classic characters (hey, the Calendar Man!) and newcomers like Gotham and Gotham Girl, two mysterious heroes with Superman-level powers. If anything, the book suffers from being too much by the numbers. Batman’s adventures are thrillingly drawn but light on emotional heft, despite some stirring moments. Strong themes run through the first volume, but they’re delivered unsubtly, with characters forever opining darkly on the symbolism of it all. It’s a good, solidly entertaining Batman comic—nothing less, not a touch more. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/2017
Release date: 01/17/2017
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