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Review: Batman: The Knight #1

Batman: The Knight #1

For quite some time, comic readers only knew Chip Zdarsky for his comedic series. With Marvel’s Daredevil, Zdarsky planted a new flag showing off he could do “serious” and more brooding comics. The result is a run that has been praised by critic and fans alike. Now, he’s taken his talents to DC Comics and sees if he can repeat the quality with Batman: The Knight #1, the start of a new series taking a look at Bruce Wayne’s early years.

The early years of Bruce Wayne training to become Batman have been danced around in various ways over the years. Generally though, we get a story about a young man angry and reeling from tragedy lashing out on a journey of training and discovery. The details and specifics change but the general idea remains the same. Batman: The Knight #1 is a new take on the story. It bridges that gap between the angry and the journey around the world to train.

Batman: The Knight #1 is an interesting start to the story. It’s slow and a bit of a headscratcher. We get the foundations of what Bruce Wayne will become but very rough and at times unlikeable. He stands up for justice. He also is very brash and headstrong. At times he comes off as a bully. It’s not until the very end of the comic that we get a better sense of the Bruce Wayne we know.

Zdarsky gives us a slow start in Batman: The Knight #1 and honestly a character that at times is not enjoyable at all. You want to pull him aside and slap him around making Alfred’s handling of things even more saintly than that character already is. But, maybe that’s part of the point and the plan? Zdarsky is delivering a story that we get to see Bruce’s journey to become the world’s greatest detective and it has to start somewhere. The growth is the point of the journey.

The art by Carmine Di Giandomenico is solid. With color by Ivan Plascencia and lettering by Pat Brosseau the characters look great but there’s a timeless aspect to it all that’s interesting. This story could be the present. It could be the past. It’s all kind of up in the air allowing the reader to focus on the interactions between the characters which is key. This is very much focused on Bruce attempting to figure things out and those he entrusts near him. The action is limited and instead we get a solid sense of mood and feelings through the art and its subtle body language.

Batman: The Knight #1 isn’t a bad start but it also doesn’t excite. It’s an interesting comic that doesn’t quite yet make the case as to why it exists and also doesn’t quite make a whole lot of sense character wise leaving out what has lead up to the current state. Zdarsky has show he can play the long game and pays off after a while, we just might need to wait a little bit more until we get to that moment.s

Story: Chip Zdarsky Art: Carmine Di Giandomenico
Color: Ivan Plascencia Letterer: Pat Brosseau
Story: 7.75 Art: 8.15 Overall: 7.8 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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