‘Batman: Black Mirror’ Comic Review
If you only buy one Batman graphic novel this month, or even this year, make it The Black Mirror. Scott Snyder has crafted an epic tome that stands alongside some of the best Batman stories written this past decade. Since Dick Grayson has donned the cowl much of the early stories have been part of what can only be described as an ‘adjustment period’ which introduced a range of new enemies that proved to be hit or miss. Even before Bruce Wayne made his return his shadow has been constantly over this new period of the Batman Legacy.
This cluster of story arcs manages to bring Grayson into his own in the role of Batman. The strongest elements of the series to date have been kept intact, such as the new dynamic between Grayson and Damian as Robin and a Batman with a lighter attitude and Gotham, all the while Snyder creates the sense that this IS Batman, not just Dick Grayson as Batman.
When the new villains are rolled out over the cause of the long story (which ultimately doesn’t feel long enough) we get a selection of crazy, colourful nutjobs as well as the more terrifying cold and calculating psychopaths. We have The Dealer, who auctions of a collection of paraphernalia belonging the classic villains giving him all many of gadgets at hand. Then, when a killer whale is left dead in the lobby of Gotham Bank, we get introduced to Tiger Shark – a blindfolded and mostly muted pirate with an old school attitude. Most interesting though is James Gordon Jr, an established homicidal maniac who arrives back in town after finding a medication that cures him. Oracle, however, has her reservations. Some of the new villains of late haven’t quite managed to pique long term interest, but all of these characters have an interesting set-up which bodes well for the future.
‘The Black Mirror’ spans many issues, meaning that there are story arcs which come and go. Throughout there are some overarching plot threads which will keep the pages turning until the final chapters close. In a sense it reads like a series of a television series that keeps you drawn in. As it was said before: if you only want to buy one new Batman graphic novel make it this one.