By Grant Morrison (writer), Tony Daniel (pencils), Sandu Florea (inks), Guy Major (colors)
Let’s face it; within these past few months almost every Batman story has been easily forgettable. Ra’s Al Ghul’s resurrection wasn’t monumental, Paul Dini’s lame one-shots still consist of unimportant villains, and Frank Miller and Jim Lee still continue to put out their All-Star garbage. And honestly, who the hell cares about what’s been going on in Batman Confidential? With nothing really big going on with Batman lately, it would be no surprise if many fans have ditched the Dark Knight titles. But before you cancel every Bat-title on your subscription list, let’s not forget about Batman – literally; the only Bat-title that matters.
In Batman #674, Grant Morrison and Tony Daniel leave us with an unforgettable issue. The book is filled with lots action and simply good storytelling. Daniel’s art captures the sheer intensity of the moment as the Dark Knight literally fights for his life, and Morrison’s inner dialogue allows readers to witness the riveting inner-workings of his mind. This issue is a sure pickup as it’s packed with lots critical moments and vivid images that will forever change the way you should look at the Dark Knight.
Most importantly, what makes Batman #674 an issue worth buying is that it serves as a milestone that reveals / adds on to Batman’s character. Just like the way Frank Miller and Dennis O’Neil have shaped Batman in the past, Morrison’s Batman in #674 adds new depth. We’ve seen the dark and violent Batman, and we’ve seen the sophisticated detective; but now, we see the cerebral Batman— a crime-fighting vigilante that is obsessed with preparing himself for all near-death and near-defeat situations. Morrison and Daniel set the bar high with this issue. They not only remind us just how badass Batman is, but they also prepare us for something big to come. (Grade: A+)
A Second Opinion
This issue is quite the stunner. Not only does the “bad guy” get away, but Batman’s now faced with a situation he’s never dealt with before. The themes Morrison brings to the table are ones that are quite obvious, yet never haven been addressed. If a superhero dies, and that superhero is an important fixture to his or her community, is the community (its citizens and law enforcement) ready to deal with such a scenario? How would they go about “replacing” the deceased superhero? These are the type of questions raised in Batman #674, and the lengths the community is willing to go through to find these answers is profound. This is shaping up to be one of the best Batman stories in years. Don’t miss it. (Grade: A)
– J. Montes