Writer: James Tynion IV / Artist: Jorge Jimenez / DC Comics
Joker War part three follows Batman as he’s doped up on the Joker’s new toxin while he fights a group of dead bodies made up of the people he has let die over the years in the same theater where he saw the Mask of Zorro when he was a child on the night he lost his parents.
That’s as scary for him as that run-on sentence was for anyone with an English degree.
There’s a lot going on, and it’s all in an effort to make Batman suffer. Sucks for him. But it’s good content for us.
This isn’t Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo Batman, but that doesn’t mean that James Tynion IV and Jorge Jimenez aren’t still heavy hitters at DC who can tell a good Batman story. Because they are. And this arc has been a lot of fun so far.
It’s a lot like Snyder’s over the top storytelling but a bit more grounded. There are still really crazy things going on, but they’re all in the realm of what we’ve come to know about Gotham and the crazy people that live there. There’s Joker gangs, a Poison Ivy occupied part of town called Eden, and a new vigilante named Clownhunter whose sole purpose is to, you guessed it, hunt clowns.
This arc is billed as the last time that the Joker and Batman will ever go head to head. We know that isn’t true. But that’s not stopping Tynion IV from swinging for the fences with the conflict in this story. They’re really putting Batman through the wringer. And he’s just taking the punches for our enjoyment. What a champ.
Jimenez’s art is always a treat for me. His characters are so full of life and their expressions so vibrant. Seeing his extended take on the Batman universe is really enjoyable. His Joker is equal parts comical and creepy. It’s a healthy balance, especially when you take into consideration what we’ve been given the past few years. Recently, the Joker has teetered a lot more over into the horrific/body horror side, which is fine if the story calls for it, but it’s also good to see Jimenez give his Joker a more classic feel.
As always, issue #97 makes sure that Batman is having the worst day of his life. There’s zombies, a clown killer, and Joker in a swimsuit. You don’t wanna miss it.
9 Movie Theater Zombies out of 10
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