In the throes of Future State, the streets of Gotham City cry for justice and Jace Fox answers the call! With a new and improved Bat-Suit, Jace hits the streets to inspire and protect…as he follows the trail of the voice of misinformation and violence—the anarchistic Anti-Oracle! Can the new Dark Knight counterbalance their plan to inspire armed rebellion in the citizens of Gotham?! Can one man inspire a city?
From the September 2021 solicitations in DC CONNECT #14:
I AM BATMAN #1
- Story by JOHN RIDLEY
- Art by OLIVIER COIPEL
- Cover by OLIVIER COIPEL
- $3.99 US | 32 PAGES | FC | DC
- Variants by GREG CAPULLO and FRANCESCO MATTINA
- 1:25 Variant by KAEL NGU
- Team card stock variant by GABRIELE DELL’OTTO
- $4.99 US
- ON SALE 9/14/21
- In the throes of Future State, the streets of Gotham City cry for justice and Jace Fox answers the call! With a new and improved Bat-Suit, Jace hits the streets to inspire and protect…as he follows the trail of the voice of misinformation and violence—the anarchistic Anti-Oracle! Can the new Dark Knight counterbalance their plan to inspire armed rebellion in the citizens of Gotham?! Can one man inspire a city?
I have to say, his costume rivals Sister Night’s, from HBO’s Watchman, as my favorite super-hero costume.
“In the TV series, the one who really speaks to me is Sister Night. She’s a wonderful character and a great costume. It’s got such nice flowing lines and nice areas of solid black. The telling little details like the sheriff’s badge and the crucifix. She was the character that I felt most drawn to draw.”
As ever, Trevante Rhodes would be my choice to play Tim “Jace” Fox if HBO Max were to ever do an I AM BATMAN-type of series…
He starred in the Academy Award for Best Picture winner Moonlight.
Anyway, the #0 issue to kick things off…
I Am Batman #0 – The age of a new Dark Knight begins! On August 10, picking up immediately from the events of The Next Batman: Second Son, Jace Fox begins the march toward his destiny when he fights to protect Alleytown against the oppressive forces of the Magistrate, using Batman armor and tech he’s found in Bruce Wayne’s old base of operations, the Hibernaculum!
- Written by John Ridley
- Art and Main Cover by Travel Foreman
- Card Stock Variant cover by Dave Wilkins
- Card Stock Variant cover by Derrick Chew
- Card Stock 1:25 Variant cover by Riccardo Federici
- 40 Pages; $4.99 ($5.99 card stock variant cover)
- On Sale Tuesday, August 10, 2021
This does literally pick up right after the last issue of THE NEXT BATMAN: SECOND SON.
I believe it was the weekly grind of THE NEXT BATMAN: SECOND SON that kind of burnt me out on all things Bat. Because I see after a bit of break I do want to see what happens next in the life of Jace Fox. The other Bat-people I can take or leave, but Jace is interesting to me.
Speaking of which, it was kind of funny to see that the November 2021 DC solicitations were basically DC saying that, “Yeah, we’re the Batman comic book company.”
I believe almost 60% of the books were Batman books. So they’re not going to even pretend anymore; and are probably not going to even bother wasting money on much of anything else anymore. It’s Batman, and then there’s everything else.
I feel that they could probably cut the number of Bat-books in half, if not more, but I’m sure they’ve looked at the numbers and the Bat is pretty much all the sells at DC. And it’s worked for almost the last 40 years, since THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, so the Bat it is. It’s what the people want. (BATMAN: THE IMPOSTER even got my attention.)
Batman feels like a really good fit for Warner Bros. to me, as well. It fits the brand. Yes, it’s really their only successful movie super-hero property (added because I think that the Joker is the greatest comic book movie ever made, and that The Batman will be their next hit movie), so I’m sure that factors into the overall perception that I have on the matter, but it is what it is…
Briefly on the art for this issue, Travel Foreman was fine for a weekly digital series, but I don’t really care for his style for a monthly series; and I also believe it was the art that attributed to my Bat burnout. It was just a bit too “basic.” Thankfully, Olivier Coipel is on for at least the first issue of I AM BATMAN, and I see that Stephen Segovia will be doing the art for issues two and three, and I presume he may be the regular artist going forward.
We’ll of course see how it all shakes out, but so far so good.
As for the #0 issue, more of the nice, slow burn that we got in THE NEXT BATMAN: SECOND SON.
I would hazard to guess that some may not care for that storytelling style. Because I know reading SECOND SON it felt almost like a Vertigo series (and I mean that in a good way), and this is just more of the same.
A couple of things that stood out for me was seeing the purpose the suit of “Bat-armor”, and seeing Jace with the Jace-cycle again…
This is a fairly grounded take on the Batman idea, which of course is already pretty grounded to begin with. And Jace’s raison d’être is a bit different, but I’m onboard.
Also, the ending with the “beginning”…
Thankfully the “Bat-armor” was just used for a few panels, because, oh boy, any more of that and I would have been gone in an instant. So John Ridley’s sensibilities and mine are simpatico, it would seem. And I would be fine without the cape and cowl altogether, but it’s naturally understandable for it. And the aforementioned Olivier Coipel designs from above for this Batman I like well enough, so no complaints.
Ironically, the costume is really the deal closer on this for me. Because if I didn’t like it, then there’s no way I would be able to read the comic.
With that said… it “begins.”