Batman #28 Review

This issue kicks off the second act of the massive “War of Jokes and Riddles” storyline, as Joker and Riddler’s feud is casting an ever darker shadow over Gotham. Needless to say, life in Gotham City hasn’t gotten any easier for the millions suffering under a nonstop barrage of Joker and Riddler-fueled carnage. This arc continues to paint a captivating portrait of a city under siege and a hero utterly powerless to do more than simply count the dead.

In many ways, “The War of Jokes and Riddles” really is the antidote to the “Bat-god” portrayal of Batman that’s so prevalent these days. From the beginning, this series has served as an exploration of Batman’s limitations and mortality. There’s a very bleak quality to the script here, as Batman continues to relate his experiences during those fateful “Year Two” days and the futility in trying to bring a halt to a war that has by now claimed hundreds of lives. This issue offers a much better sense of why this previously untold chapter of Batman’s history so weighs on Bruce even now. Again, the purpose of this story is less to showcase the war itself than the psychological toll its taking on men like Batman and Gordon.

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