Batman: Rebirth #1 – A (Comic) Book Review

Now fully into the DC’s “Rebirth” movement, you just knew I’d have to check out Batman: Rebirth #1.

I’ve been reading the collected editions of Scott Snyder’s masterful Batman run, so when I heard someone named Tom King was taking over the title, I honestly felt as though he probably would not live up to the superb precedent.  A friend told me Tom King was the real deal, though, so I felt compelled to pick it up when I went in for Superman: Rebirth #1.  (Yes, I can’t believe Superman got me into the comic book shop rather than Batman.  It’s nuts.  I admit it.)

I have to say, it was a good read.  I’ve always enjoyed Mikel Janin’s art, so everything looked fluid and dynamic as I would expect, and new writer Tom King quickly established his Batman as a man who knows he’s crazy for fighting against the evil sickness of the city but does it anyway.  His Batman is willing to take chances and has supreme confidence in doing the impossible.  Furthermore, his Batman is willing to try new things, too, as proven by his offer to Duke Thomas.  It’s Thomas’ new role that has me most excited about this book, frankly, and I think that was absolutely King’s point.

I’m still a little confused by the plot involving the Calendar Man, but I enjoyed the funky take on the classic villain.  I’ve never seen him depicted in such a way, which King readily acknowledged within the context of the story.

Of course, other than Duke’s new development, this is a Batman we know and expect, and that’s okay.  The dialogue proved crisp, the story unfolded naturally with urgent pacing, and he even experimented a little with the narrative style.  Snyder got a co-writing credit with this issue, but I have faith that King will maintain the excellence we’ve come to expect from the Batman title.

And while I know it debuted a while ago, I have to say that I like the slight changes made to Batman’s costume.  The purple inside the cape along with the yellow border around the emblem adds some much needed color to the character.  It’s a little weird, but I like that and I think it suits the character well.