Batman: One Bad Day – Clayface is a tragic story of quicksand
Clayface has always been an interesting character to me. My first real introduction to the character was through Batman: The Animated Series where he was portrayed as a down on his luck actor turned villain. That wanting to be an actor is an aspect of the character that always stands out to me. Batman: One Bad Day – Clayface focuses on that aspect as Basil Karlo trades Gotham for Los Angeles to pursue his dream for it to turn into a nightmare.
Written by Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing, there’s something rather sad and tragic about Batman: One Bad Day – Clayface. I myself have a lot of talented friends, some who have goals and dreams to be actors or singers. Many working their asses off to still achieve that. But the reality is, no matter talent and ability, some times things don’t work out. There’s also the aspect of tripping over yourself, being too dug into your vision of how things should go.
Here Basil has forged a new identity and still pursuing that dream and he’s close. But, others succeed instead drawing out the anger and jealousy that feels like a driver for the character. Kelly and Lanzing plays the story off the concept of an person who is so dug in and sure of himself but also everyone at the same time. He’s both focused inward and vampiric sucking from others. That’s the oddity of Basil, as Clayface, he could be the greatest actor but is just too stubborn and thinks he’s right when he just might not be.
The art by Xermánico is fantastic. With color by Romulo Fajardo Jr. and lettering by Tom Napolitano, the team balances the brightness and dreams of LA with a tinge of horror. Clayface’s actions are frightening, violent, and shows the monster literally exploding at times. That’s matched by the glitz and brightness of the city around him. The lettering also balances that human vs. monster aspect quite well with it all coming together for visuals that help play off of the story’s underlying themes and concepts. They work with and enhance the narrative, a solid match of script and art.
Kelly and Lanzing deliver a story of clay turning to quicksand as Karlo’s actions spiral out of control. They present a person who could have found a happy life, at least one that was acceptable, but due to an inability of getting out of one’s own way, it’s another tale of tragedy.!
Story: Collin Kelly, Jackson Lanzing Art: Xermánico
Color: Romulo Fajardo Jr. Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
Purchase: TFAW – Zeus Comics – comiXology/Kindle