cover image Batman, Vol. 1: The Court of Owls

Batman, Vol. 1: The Court of Owls

Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, and Jonathan Glapion. DC Comics, $24.99 (176p) ISBN 978-1-4012-3541-3

With this volume, anticipation for DC’s The New 52 reboot of their superhero universe, should be firmly replaced with a deep and abiding appreciation for what Snyder, Capullo, and Glapion have done with Gotham’s caped crusader. The initial story arc centers on the mysterious Court of Owls, a group of individuals who legend says control Gotham from the shadowy recesses of the city while using a deadly assassin named Talon to do their bidding. Batman must figure out whether the Court of Owls actually exists—something he claims to have fully investigated and discounted as a boy—and what connection the group might have to the history of the Wayne family, especially after a grisly murder brings with it a warning that “Bruce Wayne will die tomorrow.” The re-launch comes complete with villains old and new, and a cast of current and former Robins who aren’t afraid to stand up to the Bat. This is a clever and sophisticated Batman—with a dark, edgy, and thought-provoking narrative ably abetted by Capullo’s pulpish, detailed art. Readers will find it hard to put down. (May)