Hello and welcome to the World of Bats, the Batman Book Club!
This week we’ll be exploring some of the work in the world of Batman by famed comic book creator (Christopher) Priest, by checking on a chunk of his acclaimed run on Deathstroke that heavily features the Dark Knight, Deathstroke #30-35 “Deathstroke Vs. Batman” with art by Carlo Pagulayan.
The Hill feels very much like the other comics of its time. The post-NML stories all tend to blend together in my head, thanks in large part to the art style.
That said, it has a great ending.
I enjoyed the Deathstroke story more, but I again have to attribute that preference in large part to my preferences in comic book art. Never for a minute was I convinced that the twist set up in this story would actually stick.
Hmm, yeah I can kind of see what you mean with the art. That does feel evocative of the style at the time – which isn’t inherently bad, I think the style fits the moody, dark feel that Gotham should have, but still, I think it was more the story that was special about the one-shot than the art.
But yeah, the twist was an…interesting way to set the two against each other. I did appreciate how Priest really tied things together with past Batman events. It almost could have worked and then they just said “nah, nevermind.” Thus it makes you wonder if they weren’t going to go through with it, why bother putting the idea in our head in the first place?
That said, I imagine Priest wouldn’t have gone through with it, because the last time he tried to change a big thing or part of the identity of another person’s creation it went…really badly.
These were interesting stories. I definitely preferred the Deathstroke one. It does seem a bit unbelievable that Batman wouldn’t just do his own DNA test instead of going through all of that with Slade. Talia will never win Mother of the Year. I have to say that the more I read with Damian in it, the more I like him. The Hill felt a bit dated to me, but it was good to see Batman learning how to inspire fear in the criminals he fights.
Both of these were pretty enjoyable. In the Deathstroke one I thought Batman was acting a bit out of character. Like others have said, if it matters to him he can do his own DNA test. But ultimately it doesn’t matter to him, so it kind of felt like a waste of time and effort for him to antagonize Slade.
The Hill has an interesting premise and I did enjoy the way it ended. Batman going to extraordinary lengths for a bad guy that isn’t afraid of him was pretty cool. It did feel a bit dated, but not too much. It’s always neat to see Batman in disguise