Review: Batman: White Knight #1

In a world where Batman has gone too far, The Joker must save Gotham City.

He’s been called a maniac, a killer and the “Clown Prince of Crime” but “white knight”? Never. Until now…

Set in a world where the Joker is cured of his insanity and homicidal tendencies, The Joker, now known as “Jack,” sets about trying to right his wrongs. First he plans to reconcile with Harley Quinn, and then he’ll try to save the city from the one person who he thinks is truly Gotham City’s greatest villain: Batman!

After much hype, Batman: White Knight #1 is here from writer/artist Sean Gordon Murphy. This miniseries spins the Batman/Joker dynamic by having Batman cross a line and assault the Joker in front of the Gotham police, Nightwing, and Batgirl. Through a mcguffin, the Joker is rendered sane and returns to his Jack Napier persona deciding the right the wrongs of Batman and becoming his own champion of Gotham.

Visually, Batman: White Knight is fantastic, but that’s expected from a series by Murphy. It’s right up there with the rocking style he’s delivered over and over again. His Batman, Batmobile, Nightwing, Joker, Batgirl, Gordon, and more, all look fantastic, but this isn’t a shock at all. When Sean Gordon Murphy is on a book, the art is going to be amazing. It’s the story where things are a bit more meh.

We’ve seen numerous stories focusing on the dynamic of Batman and Joker and even a sane Joker was explored in Scott Snyder’s run. We’ve also seen a Batman who crosses the line like this and then questions his actions. In this one issue, there’s nothing new, we’ve seen it before. That’s not to say it’s bad at all, it’s just this one issue doesn’t do enough to stand out from the miniseries or stories we’ve seen before (numerous times). In fact, there’s moments that the comic feels like Sean Gordon Murphy doing his best Frank Miller impersonation.

Visually, it’s great, but storywise, it’s rather forgettable… right now.

That isn’t to say the whole of this might be something special. The first issue is the set up, which is some of its problems, and what comes next might actually get interesting. But, for a first issue that’s supposed to hook us, it just feels like something that’s been done before.

Story: Sean Gordon Murphy Art: Sean Gordon Murphy
Story: 6.75 Art: 9.0 Overall: 6.85 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review