Wednesday, February 13, 2013

365 Comics...44: Batman #17 (2013)

I can't remember the last time I've been this satisfied with an ending to a major storyline, to the point where I feel like the final chapter is the strongest of the story.
Scott Snyder hit all the right notes with this conclusion to "Death of the Family", a title which should have been taken literally, rather than thinking that poor Alfred was going to bite it (is that a spoiler?).   There we so many perfect moments:
Page 4: Joker's death trap (classic Joker)
Page 7: The "oh no he didn't" reveal with that freaky 2-faced cat
Page 8 & 9: Joker explaining his deluded sense of Batman's courtship of him
Page 12: Of course Batman has away out of the death trap (Joker's reaction:"that's not funny")
Page 13: Batfather and Robinson
Page 18: Bats takes a crowbar to Joker (showing a little vindication for Jason? That even the wayward son still matters him)
Page 20 -22: Batman has figured it out and Joker is not amused
Page 23: The notebook & the Bat family (particularly noting Bab's and Jason's position is the scene)
Page 24: Bruce & Alfred (Alfred:"Go to hell"... one of the best moments in a Batman comic ever)
Page 25 - 26: A brilliant explanation of the Batman/ Joker dynamic and why Joker was so upset that Batman had figured it out... If Batman truly loved him for who he really was...
Page 27 -28: Death of the family
Page 29: last laugh
I don't get The significance of the fly though.
So good, this one. Soo goood.


King Beauregard said...

Looking around the Internet, people seem to not get the joke. The joke with the fake faces was supposed to be tricking Batman into losing his cool and killing his family. But Batman has always been one for last minute saves, and this time was no exception.

The "death" of the family, such as it actually happened, was mostly unintentional on the Joker's part.

And we also got a demonstrative rebuttal to the Joker's argument that the family makes Batman weaker. Together, they were able to fight off the maddening effects of the Joker toxin, where individually they might not have. Snyder is a smart cookie, and if Joker charged that the family makes Batman weaker and then backed it up by taking them hostage, the rebuttal has to be more active than Batman saying "nuh-uh!"

For me, the highlight of this story was learning that, where the Joker is concerned, BATMAN is a superstitious cowardly lot. Well, not quite cowardly, but afraid that there would be retribution if he took care of the Joker permanently. I guess this also makes Batman pretty genre-savvy too, almost like he imagines a Didio-esque figure saying, "we need to introduce a bigger badder Joker".

I also liked Bruce and Damian, and the tear. Oh wait, it wasn't a tear, it was cascading water. Nicely played, Capullo and possibly Snyder!

KENT! said...

My favorite aspect of the story is the twisted romance the Joker was trying to develop with Batman (a sort of Dean Pelton/Jeff Winger thing going on) and that the Joker feIt that the masks that they wear,the faces they put on are their true identities and that only they truly understand that about one another, and accept them and love them for who they truly are. Who they maybe or may have been should be irrelevant if they both love and accept who they are now. Its Batman's realization of this twisted logic Joker has applied to their relationship and his Manipulation of it (to Joker its a betrayal)

KENT! said...

stupid smartphone...
as I was saying... It was Batman's manipulation of the Joker's perception of their "love" that quite literally sent him over the edge. he just didn't want to believe that alter egoes actually mattered to Bats since they didn't matter at all to him. Brilliant.