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Batman The Detective #1

Review by Paul Bowler.

The Dark Knight embarks on an epic European adventure in Batman The Detective #1, the new DC Comics six-part mini-series helmed by the dynamic duo of writer Tom Taylor and artist Andy Kubert. 

Opening with a harrowing mid-air tragedy in the United Kingdom which spells out a dark and personal message for the Dark Knight, writer Tom Taylor quickly establishes this mini-series’ intriguing premise and brooding atmosphere of mystery. This Batman is older, somewhat past his prime and questioning his role in the world. However, Taylor deftly circumvents the usual tropes by making this a Dark Knight Detective that isn’t simply driven by the death of his parents and the more recent loss of Alfred, instead we have a Batman in the twilight of his career who is finally ready to move on from the ghosts of his past. The terrible attack in the UK simply provides the catalyst Batman needs to pack his bags, put the past to bed, and set out from Gotham City to investigate!

Batman The Detective also sees the Dark Knight’s visit to England leading to an encounter with the UK’s own dynamic duo of Beryl Hutchinson as The Knight and her new Squire, Amina, who looks set to become something a of new side-kick for Batman over the course of his European mission. Of course the characters and Britain are very different in this modern iteration when the Squire was originally introduced in the 1950s (The Knight, Percival Sheldrake, was created by Roy Thomas and Michael Bair for You All-Stars in 1948, while The Squire, his sidekick, was created by Bill Finger and Dick Sprang for Batman #62 in 1951), and their investigation into the crash-site at the West Pennie Moors in Lancashire spells  high-tech intrigue and supernatural danger for them both!

Andy Kubert’s pencils and inks are a perfect fit for this story. From the dramatic opening, to the emotionally charged scenes in the Bat-Cave, though to Batman and the Squire’s uncanny team-up against a spectral adversary Kubert’s art enriches every page with detail, while Brad Anderson’s vivid use of tone and shade accentuates  every nuance of Taylor’s action-packed story as it unfolds. The look of this incarnation of Batman is a cool hybridisation of Miller’s iconic Dark Knight Returns suit and the Snyderverse’s Kightmare Bat-Fleck, and the end result is extremely impressive looking indeed.

You can’t really go wrong with a superstar creative team like Tom Taylor and Andy Kubert.  The premise in itself is enough to ensure the first issue has the momentum to gets this new mini-series off to a strong start. Its going to be interesting to see where this adventure with new foes, allies, and the hunt for the menace known as Equilibrium will take Batman and Squire next. With its solid storytelling and great art Batman The Detective #1 deftly blends current themes with elements and characters from yesteryear; whilst also crafting a bold new take and look for the Dark Knight mythos.

Writer Tom Taylor / Pencils and Inks Andy Kubert

Colors Brad Anderson / Letters Clem Robins

Main & Variant Cover Kubert & Anderson

Variant Cover Riccardo Federici

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