Review by: jmstump

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Avg Rating: 4.0
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Size: pages
Price: 4.99

This book was a cock tease.  An awesome cock tease.

I had the pleasure of sitting in the second row for the DC Panel at Chicago in August.  When Azzarello showed up for a DC panel I was a little confused because I had never heard of him showing up to one before.  Then shortly after getting started they showed the cover to this issue.  I about fainted, then Azzarello started to describe it as “Batman the Animated Series with Doc Savage, The Spirit, Blackhawks, The Avenger, and Black Canary minus the powers.”  It was clear to me at that moment I must have suffered some severe head trauma.  Perhaps someone had slipped me something while I was waiting for the panel to start.  Then they showed the Rags Morales sketch of Doc Savage and Batman, more proof that this was going to happen.

After the con not a whole lot more news came out about this book.  When the preview hit I was stoked.  Finally we were going to get some great pulpy action with Batman.  Oh boy did this book deliver.  Sadly I felt it was a little on the short side, they tried to make up for it with extras (that were welcomed) but ultimately I was saddened by the fact that I have to wait till MARCH for more.  This book is poised to explode and I want to be there when it happens.

As we all know Azzarello had a stint with superheroes before, both Superman and Batman.  While I would argue his Batman story Broken City was fantastic his Superman left something to be desired.  I had heard rumor that he didn’t plan on doing superhero books again anytime soon.  I’m glad to see him back on board after he did the Batman story in Wednesday’s.  Ultimately the New Wave series is perfect for him since he does noir and pulp so well.

I would like to say many great things about Phil Noto’s art, but I feel none of them will do it justice.  This book is simply gorgeous, colors and all.  I feel like this book has been sitting on the shelf for years waiting for me to discover it and I think that adds so much more to how special the overall experience was.

One last thing I would like to address in my review that I’m sure all sorts of people are throwing hissy fits over on the internet.  Yes, Batman used a gun.  Frankly, I DON’T CARE.  I’m a big advocate of Batman not using guns, but there are a few things going to note on here.  One this is early Batman, he’s in his early 20s to be exact, he has things to learn.  It’s possible in the regular title that Doc Savage is the one that talks him out of using them.  Two, it makes sense with the world and style of writing that Azzarello has.  I once heard him say, “I just treat the cape as a trench coat,” in reference to writing Batman.  In other words a pulp/noir hero as this would use guns.  Lastly, and here may be a shocker for some, Batman was originally portrayed using a gun.  Later he ditched it while adopting his code.  This isn’t the first time and it won’t be the last that he uses one in a story.  I mean even Batman Begins had him use a gun, although I’m sure a lot of people missed or forgot about it.

Go buy this book.  It may feel short or a quick read, but it’s all sorts of awesome and the regular title will most likely only get better.  It’s rare I say this, but even the extras in the back of the book are worth the extra money.

Story: 5 - Excellent
Art: 5 - Excellent


  1. Hey, nice review, man. Broken City was great & I was trying to resist buying this because of the heavy price tag, but you may have sold me.

    Question: this book is not in continuity at all, right? So, why would people care if Batman uses guns?  

  2. @WadeWilson: It takes place on a different Earth.

  3. There are some people who get all crazy when it happens.  I know there was controversy when he did it in The Dark Knight Returns as well.

  4. When I saw the guns, I just thought, "Oh, this must be at a stage in Bruce’s career before he decided not to use guns." Thinking about it now, it is a bit funny who his current origin has him steadfastly against using guns, when the first decade or so of his actual stories seemed to have Batman using guns all the time.

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