Comicsphere: Batman Black And White
Batman and reinvention go together like a horse and carriage or whatever other pair of inseparable ideas you wish to use, hmm, maybe Batman and Robin. I said something similar earlier with works about the character that were operating under the same kind of mission statement: to reimagine the world of Gotham’s Dark Knight.
Anyway this collection gathers together some legendary names from the world of comics including Gaiman, Jim Lee, Chuck Dixon and Simon Bisley to name a few. Everyone wants a stab at the iconic characters and his great cast of villains and this is top notch stuff. Strangely there was only one story that disappointed and that was Gaiman’s — the whole framing device and post-modern take, deconstruction angle really didn’t work well for me at all … now that’s either because it just didn’t work or down to personal taste — I know what i think but you must make up your own mind. In a book of this size one bum note really isn’t going to derail the train.
The art is great — and the plasticity of the character really comes to the fore. That he can be all these things and still retain an essential quality of ‘batman-ness’. Ted McKeever for me turned in the most interesting take and covered the investigative side of Batman, kind of Batman CSI, for a look behind the curtain that is sometimes lacking in the pantomime stories or the action blockbuster batman tales.
This is one you can read over again and again and never tire of, each story, even the ones you may be less fond of, adding a different layer to an already multi-layered character.