18 November 2015

Faster than a DC Bullet: Project Gotham, Part XVI: Batman: Year Two: Fear the Reaper

Comic trade paperback, n.pag.
Published 2002 (contents: 1987-91)

Borrowed from the library
Read March 2015
Batman: Year Two: Fear the Reaper

Writer: Mike Barr
Pencillers: Alan Davis, Todd McFarlane
Inkers: Paul Neary, Mark Farmer, Alfredo Alcala, Pablo Marcos
Letterers: Richard Starkings, Todd Klein, Agustin Mas
Colorists: Steven Oliff, Gloria Vasquez, Tom Ziuko

Year Two, November - Year Three, August
The first of many overt attempts to "cash in" on Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli's Batman: Year One, this would be followed by Batman: Year Three, JLA: Year One, Batgirl: Year One, Robin: Year One, Nightwing: Year One, Huntress: Year One, and even Metamorpho: Year One and the (tragically uncollected, I'm sure) Guy Gardner: Year One. There's nothing to really distinguish Year Two from the slew of tales of Batman's early years that followed it in publication order, many of which I've already read. Basically Batman discovers that the Reaper, a vigilante who operated in Gotham after the Alan Scott Green Lantern and before himself is back, and things get weird as he decides this is the time he'll use a gun... and not just any gun, but literally the same gun that killed his parents. And, get this, thanks to contrivance, he has to team up with the guy who killed his parents to do it. Even for superhero comics, this is a bit goofy/implausible, but I think that in principle it could be made to work. Well, unfortunately Mike Barr and a cohort of artists don't succeed, but man, Alan Davis draws nice pictures.

Next Week: If you thought one year-long holiday-themed murder mystery was good, why not a second, in Dark Victory!?

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