Review Brew: Batman #21
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Jason Fabok
Colors: Brad Anderson
Ever since DC kicked off Rebirth one of the big mysteries hanging over the line was the introduction of the Watchmen characters into the DCU proper, one of the chief representations of that being the iconic button belonging to the Comedian. While Batman has largely hung out at the periphery of all of this during Tom King’s run, that changes quickly (no pun intended) here. While it doesn’t really answer any questions, it’s still a fun issue of Batman.
However, the only thing really standing in the way of that is just how astonishingly dense this issue is in terms of pre-existing continuity. It expects you to have read Flashpoint and DC Rebirth. That’s a bit of a deep cut for an issue, that just jumps into the midst of a heavy-duty crossover after a lengthy Bane story. That said though, King milks the otherworldliness of the crossover for all its worth, and that willingness to step outside the normal of the parameters of a typical Batman story has been a part of what’s allowed King’s run to stand out, even if it’s dictated by the needs of the larger story.
Jason Fabok takes over art duties for this issue, and he’s not slouching even by the consistently high standards this iteration of Batman’s artists have brought to the fore. He also gets to illustrate easily one of the best Batman fight scenes of the year. One that gets to move as deliberately as possible in the Watchmen-esque paneling that dominates the issue. Brad Anderson’s colors also give the issue a great deal of visual panache, especially given the more somber coloring of a typical Batman comic. The last few years have been a pretty great year for off-brand Batman in the DC line and even within the confines of the DC event cycle, this book continues to be exciting. While it’s not a perfect fit, The Button definitely is worth checking out.
4 Buttons out of 5