Written By: Tom King
Art By: Travis Moore, Giulia Brusco, Clayton Cowles
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 3, 2018
*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*
It's time for a one-shot where we look at Bruce Wayne and think whether or not he actually came away from his parents deaths unscathed....... Yeah, yeah, I know, he's a damn psychopath in a bat costume, talking about saving Gotham, but besides for the obvious is what I'm talking about. Anyway, with this being a one-shot there really isn't a lot to say going into this, so let's just get to it shall we?
Our issue begins with the murders of a man who worked on the Wayne Enterprises board and his wife and because of that, their young son came to Bruce Wayne to talk to him about it because of how similar their experiences are to one another. Really though, we have a nine panel layout, where we see this creepy kid talking about what's going on with him as the issue progresses, while the rest of the story is Batman getting to the bottom of the murder, which then escalates once it looks like Victor Zsasz is the killer........Which is odd as hell because he's locked up and even though Batman doesn't believe that Zsasz actually committed the murders, he still cuts himself as if he did........ odd.
So yeah, at first we have a murder that looks like Zsasz is the culprit, then we have another two murders, who ever the parents of Zsasz and then we just have a random murder that makes it look like Two-Face is the killer, which leads Batman to figure that something is off, especially with the clues left behind, which then lead our Caped Crusader to the apartment of the young boy's butler, who confesses to killing the boy's "Mathew" parents.
In the end, something still seems off to Batman, who then goes back to terrorize the butler and discovers that Mathew is deeply disturbed and is the one behind is parents deaths because he desperately wanted to be Bruce Wayne....... kind of like Tommy Eliot "Hush" and we end our issue with Bruce being deeply disturbed by these events.
That's it for this issue of Batman and while I initially was getting into this story because it seemed like we actually had a decent detective issue with respectable clues throughout, the more I read the more I saw holes starting in the story. Like, I have no idea why the murders continued after Mathew's parents were killed or why they were trying to push for it to look like Zsasz twice and then Two-Face...... or even why they pointed out the Butler as the killer, who didn't initially rat out Mathew as well....... or why the Butler lived somewhere else than Mathew even though he seemed to be his caretaker now. Even with that though, this beginning was at least intriguing, even though Zsasz cutting himself doesn't make any sense and the ending was pretty impactful for what King was going for, but the middle just made most of this story fall apart if you looked at its pieces. The art in this issue was decent and there's nothing really wrong with any of it, but all in all, this was an issue that didn't seem necessary.
Bits and Pieces:
While this issue starts out feeling like a really cool detective story, the pieces quickly fall apart as things start making less and less sense just to get us to the big reveal at the end. The art in this issue was decent, but overall, this story is pretty damn thin.