Comic Review: Batman Volume 5: Zero Year – Dark City

Posted: August 3, 2015 in Comics

As with the previous volume Batman Zero Year once again looks back at Bruce’s first adventures as Batman. In this volume he must contend with The Riddler and Dr Death. The later of the two I was not familiar with but he’s an excellent and terrifying villain and the crimes he is associated with are the stuff right out of nightmares. On the other hand The Riddler provides a great counter point to Dr Death and despite being one the most annoying Batman villains, in my opinion of course, he does a good job here of being a massive ego maniac. Which I wager is the point!

Gotham City has never looked more impressive than it has here, it’s a unique look at the city one which I won’t reveal here because it will ruin a lot of the story. What I can say is the majority of the tale takes place during the daylight and is all the more impressive because of this. It’s a total flip to what we’re used to seeing in Batman and it works without a doubt.

Running along side the main story are small insights into Bruce’s past. From childhood through to his teen years and you get a great sense of his mind-set post the murder of his parents. The results are heart-breaking and in one particularly powerful scene horribly tense as Bruce fears he is literally loosing his mind and going insane. It’s a very powerful page or two which really cemented who Bruce is.

Scott Snyder is putting out some of the best Batman stories I’ve ever read and his writing feels effortless. Bruce’s interactions with both Alfred and Gordon feel real and full of depth. Snyder gives Alfred a brilliant monologue that aims to try and shock Bruce out of being Batman while giving him some home truths. Very powerful stuff. As is the beginnings of Bruce’s friendship with Gordon which has much more of a rocky start than you may think!

Greg Capullo’s artwork is amazing. The comic is filled with striking images that practically beg you to tear out the page and frame them! Hahaha NOT that I’d ever do that but the art is seriously that good and it just acts like the perfect marriage between artist and writer.

Zero Year-Dark City is essential Batman reading. I love that I own this. Hopefully if you’ve not got on the Snyder run yet you will pick it up.

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