Batman is put to the ultimate test! Faced with either losing his future as Batman or the person he loves most, the Dark Knight must decide which ultimate price he is willing to pay.
“The First Ally” wraps up in All-Star Batman #14. The issue bounces back and forth focused on Alfred’s training when he was younger and the present where Alfred must rescue Bruce from Briar and his Knight. It’s an interesting story with some twists until the end that are good but when thinking about them feel rather too predictable and an attempt to be in your face introspective. It’s like those times when the hero must face the evil version of themselves. It can work, but at the same time maybe the metaphor doesn’t have to be literal?
Writer Scott Snyder does put together a solid tale though and together with the previous thirteen issues he has crafted a story that’s a solid breakdown of Batman as a character and this last arc has done an excellent job of adding depth to Alfred. I’d love to see more of his history explored.
The art by Rafael Albuquerque is amazing as expected and there’s one moment that’ll stand out and get readers to scream “hell yeah.” Albuquerque is one of the best artists out there and the art is as awesome as expected.
Albuquerque does double duty joined by Rafael Scavone in writing in a back-up story that actually dovetails into the main story nicely. It’s a cool twist and a great way to bring the stories together. That story’s art is provided by Sebastian Fiumara and it works well with Albuquerque’s main story art. The two styles feel like they’re part of the same comic and I’d like to see more of Fiumara on Batman (as well as Albuquerque).
This is a solid finale that has some really solid moments and Snyder has pulled off an impressive thing in adding depth to characters in a way that feels natural. Overall, this series has done a great job of exploring Batman in a way that we get to think about the themes of the character but at the same time it’s done in stories that are entertaining from beginning to end.
Story: Scott Snyder, Rafael Albuquerque, Rafael Scavone
Art: Rafael Albuquerque, Sebastian Fiumara
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.65 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review