In the brand new Batman books as part of DC’s rebirth – Bruce Wayne gets some new superhero friends…or does he?
It took me a long time to push the button and purchase Volume 1 of of DC rebirth Batman – maybe because most of what I was collecting and reading before were older and classed as ‘classics’. It also introduced two new heroes from the looks of it, ones with superpowers akin to Superman. I’ve never been too interested in Superman I’ve always felt more comfortable reading books based in and around Gotham – they were human beings without superpowers and I suppose there was more of a connection there. However, all my concerns were put to rest and I am Gotham proved to be a very good book.
Batman: I am Gotham Review
I am Gotham begins with an explosive scene between Batman and The Calendar Man and introduces Duke who appears to be the new Robin but you quickly find out that Bruce Wayne has something else in mind for him. The glorious artwork brings you to The Calendar Man ‘rebirthing’ which is symbolic of where the new issues are placed – you also see that Bruce Wayne has had somewhat of a rebirth to and now looks to be in his early 30s.
Bruce Wayne looks to be in great shape in his new found youth as does his restyled suit which is fairly similar to the suits worn in the New 52.
Of course, the main focal point of I am Gotham is the introduction and mystery surrounding two new characters – Gotham and Gotham Girl – who are they? What do they want? Where did they come from?
These two characters for a while looked to be great additions to the Batman family, I’ll be honest I wasn’t bowled over with the thought of the first book in Rebirth to be about bringing some new people in with powers greater than Batman’s.
When they came on the scene they literally came out of nowhere, offered no explanation or introduction and it was almost a ‘we’re here’ and it was left at that. Obviously being the World’s Greatest Detective Batman couldn’t have that and as he dug deeper so did the reader and soon you realise their introduction wasn’t quite two dimension and there was some substance behind them. They weren’t quite
Supermen who came from somewhere else – they had a backstory which was touched upon but you knew it had something to do with Amanda Waller and that was enough for me to know something wasn’t right.
As a spoiler free review I won’t go into details on the fate of Gotham and Gotham girl but let me tell you that it is explosive and dark – exactly what you’d want from a Batman book.
Towards the end your suspicions will turn towards the real culprits behind everything that’s been happening and long time fans will be pleased to see some familiar faces in the villains and what the next book is likely to involve.
I persevered however and flicked through expertly detailed pages and excellent dialogue and was pleasantly surprised to be taken on a brilliant written plot line which as time went on became clear to me that I am Gotham was more of a prologue for what Tom King had in store rather than the first chapter. The pacing was fantastic and I became engrossed the further I got into the book.
I’ll be perfectly honest and say that I didn’t give I am Gotham the benefit of the doubt before the first page and I am so happy to say Tom King and David Finch proved me wrong and gave me a great experience and insight into what’s to come. Batman feels fresh whilst holding on to the core aspects of what I think make Batman great – intrigue, action and mystery. At time of writing I already have Volume 2 I am Suicide and I absolutely can not wait especially since Bane looks to be making a grand scene. I can’t wait to see what the new Bane will be like.
Batman: I am Gotham is a great debut in the Rebirth series and brings in the old and the new which gives Batman a fresh whilst retaining its core. I am Gotham won’t be regarded as one of the greats but it is definitely well worth the purchase and time as it feels Tim King and David Finch are working toward something big.