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Batman #103

Review by Paul Bowler

The Dark Knight and Ghost-Maker clash in Batman #103 and only one will walk away as Gotham’s hero! After a slow build up things now take a dramatic turn in Ghost Stories Part 3 as writer James Tynion IV ramps up the action and suspense. The idea of Bruce having a childhood rival who has lived, trained, and taken the same crime-fighting path as him is an intriguing one and this issues flashback to their confrontation in the Gobi desert further illustrates how their choices have inevitably brought them to this moment.

However, while Ghost-Hunter believes Bruce’s emotions make hm weak, Bruce clearly doesn’t, and it is this key difference in their crime-fighting natures that will undoubtably prove crucial moving forward, Tynion has really changed the landscaper of Gotham since Joker War. Lucius Fox now controls the majority of the Wayne fortune, Batman has less resources at his disposal, the citizens of Gotham are calling for Punchline to be released from prison, and Clownhunter has set his sights on taking out Harley Quinn who is trying to get her life back on track in the aftermath of Joker War.

Fortunately Batman still has the rest of the Bat-Family on side, including Barbara Gordon in he role as Oracle, but even she cannot get past Ghost-Hunter’s intricate Ghost-Net to uncover anything about this new threat to Gotham. With artistic duties for Batman #103 handled by Carlo Pagulayan & Danny Miki, Guillem March and colorist David Baron, the look and pace of the issue holds together very well, and overall the issue is packed with detail and awash with vivid colors that nicely accentuates the action. Batman going toe to toe with Ghost-Hunter is every bit the action-packed spectacle you’d expect, Harley Quinn’s moments of reminiscing in her run-down apartment and subsequent fight with Clownhunter are the big highlight though, and I really like how Harley is becoming one of the most interesting additions to Tynion’s ensemble cast for this book. 

The introduction of Ghost-Hunter has delivered a compelling new villain for Batman to face following Joker Wars turbulent fallout on Gotham, and the shared history between them offers a wealth of possibilities to explore. Ghost-Hunter has only been in Gotham for less than a day and he’s already been on a one-man crime-busting spree, but as he soon finds out, in Batman’s world everything isn’t always as cut and dried as it first seems. With familiar faces and a cast of colourful new character all jostling for attention, Batman #103 brings a frenetic mix action and exposition into this story-arc. It’s an exciting issue for sure, I just hope Tynion can maintain the momentum and keep all these plates spinning.

Publisher DC Comics

Writer James Tynion IV

Artists Carlo Pagulayan & Danny Miki, Guillem March

Colorist David Baron / Letterer Clayton Cowles

Cover Jorge Jimenez & Tomeu Morey

About The Author

Hi, I’m Paul Bowler, blogger and reviewer of films, TV shows, and comic books. I’m a Sci-Fi geek, a big fan of Doctor Who, Star Trek, movies, Sci-Fi, Horror, Comic Books, and all things PS4.You can follow me on Twitter @paul_bowler,or at my website, Sci-Fi Jubilee, and on YouTube and Facebook