Writer: Peter Tomasi / Artist: Frances Manapul / DC Comics

Dark Knights: Metal has been an insane series, and all of the tie-in issues have far exceeded expectation. The Dark Knight’s worse fears have manifested themselves into the worse creations in hero-turned-villain history. One of seven evil Batmen from the Dark Multiverse of DC’s “Metal” event, Batman: Merciless comes correct in every way.

All these Earths. All these versions of our heroes. But where are they now? Where are they when the world needs them most? A.R.G.U.S. HQ is our backdrop as world-changing decisions are made. Kill or be killed. Mercy or action.

But this issue shines brighter than Major Armstrong’s sparkle entrance in the mindset of the man who becomes The Merciless. Bruce witnesses Diana fall to Ares and vows to avenge her, no matter the cost. Diana warned him of its power. She enlightened him on its ability to corrupt even the most just. But a man torn is a vengeful beast. Bruce took up the mantle in hopes that he’d be the one to bring about control to war. Apply rules, checks, and balances to it. A jaded, merciful fool was he.

The psychological torment we’re put through adds a layer of greatness that could garner its own issue. The artwork is phenomenal. That end of the issue plot twist tho?! Maaaaannnn, when the last time you found this much joy in Batman beatin’ the brakes off your favorite superhero? Not near never.

9.5 Langley Coordinates out of 10

Reading Dark Knights Metal? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.

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