The crossover you didn’t know you needed is back this week and it’s aiming to deliver some detective-on-detective action like no other! Scott Snyder and Steve Orlando write a story drawn by Riley Rossmo…need we say more?
Writer: Steve Orlando, Scott Snyder
Artist: Riley Rossmo
Publisher: DC Comics
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
The second chapter in the historic team-up of history’s greatest vigilantes is here! The Shadow must convince Batman of his innocence so the two can seek out their true common foe, the Stag, before he takes out Batman’s greatest allies. Co-published with Dynamite Entertainment.
Why does this book matter?
The three creators behind this are all masters and should be respected enough to get you to take a look. Not convinced? It’s a Batman story that’s got plenty of supernatural goodness weaved in. Who can resist that!?
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
In true crossover fashion, Batman fights The Shadow to open this issue and it does not disappoint. Rossmo must be having the time of his life, because the art is possibly his best ever. From all the cool looks Batman sports (Batman in climbing gear; Batman without sleeves) and The Shadow’s windy and incredibly cool cape there’s so much to love. Storytelling wise, Rossmo does a good job integrating closeup panels dispersed across art that seems to blend into each other. It gives the dialogue a bit more purpose while the action unfolds on most of the page. The villain has a glass eyed weirdness that seems to even give Batman a fright, which helps to convey the supernatural element well. There’s also a humdinger of a full page spread of Batman attempting to stop a murder that’s dynamic as all hell. Every inch of these characters is filled with energy right down to the ankles. Great stuff.
That’s a functional mask.
Storywise, this issue is proof you should always give a comic series at least the first two issues to sell you on its story. The first issue left me wanting, but after reading this issue Orlando and Snyder have sold me on this detective caper. The supernatural element is solidified and it truly feels like Batman may be way over his head. There’s good detail in regards to The Shadow’s past as well as his purpose for communicating with Batman at all, which puts Batman at a rare disadvantage. It’s a cool angle and it should spring interesting plots ahead.
Batman needs more sword fighting in his life.
It can’t be perfect can it?
I’m not exactly sure where Bruce is at mentally here. He’s a bit frantic, in a rush to find answers, and even snaps at Alfred. If this is an earlier version of him it makes sense–he’s still learning, but it’s not the best look for Batman and seems to go against this character. It’s a minor gripe as it’s a subtle element you’d notice.
Is It Good?
If the first issue didn’t sell you this second issue will. Batman is up against a supernatural threat even he may be no match for and the integration of The Shadow is interesting to say the least. Batman/The Shadow is a cunning, clever, and must read supernatural story.