Batman #71 is published by DC Comics, written by Tom King, with art by Mikel Janin and Jorge Fornes, colors by Jordie Bellaire, and letters by Clayton Cowles. The issue where the previous one left off as Batman is still fighting Bane but Jim Gordon seems to be running in a figure a tad more brooding than the Dark Knight we know.
In Batman #71, the caped crusader faces off with Bane, only to realize after speaking to Batgirl and other members of the batfamily, that his memories are not what they seem. However, in Bruce Wayne’s quest to hang up the cape and cowl, Thomas Wayne steps in, although we have yet to be see whose side the Flashpoint Batman is on.
Every time I think this arc is reaching its peak and starting to get better, I am proven wrong. I am exhausted with this storyline because so far its convoluted nature has had no major payoff. The narration continues to move at a glacial pace. The book follows Bruce as he attempts to understand with the help of the batfamily what of his memories are real and what isn’t.
Janin and Fornes’ art as complimented by Bellaire’s colors is the only major high point of the book. Batman #71 features dynamic action sequences that are spliced in with present-day events. The art style differs from the possible dream sequences and the present. It is a helpful visual cue for readers and considering how confusing this arc has been, it is appreciated.
However, as happy as I was to see Barbara Gordon and Tim Drake, especially in Janin’s style, their part did not move the story nearly far enough. Readers are still being played with as to whether we are in a dream sequence or not and unlike in King’s Mister Miracle, it has been executed atrociously. If there is a greater theme or meaning, like the loss and damaged psyche addressed in Mister Miracle, it is loosely addressed and basically non-existent.
This story had heaps of potential as Bane has broken the Batman so many times. Additionally, Batman stories that focus on Bruce’s conflicted and often broken psyche are often some of the greatest Batman comics in his history. This run wants to do far more than it accomplishes. It attempts to create a mind-bending narrative that challenges the Bat but instead, it is a slow and boring story that will not move despite now being almost 10 issues in.
Overall, I am bored with this storyline and nothing of interest has happened. The pacing is moving far too slow and at this point, this arc needs to end. It has gone on far too long. Four more parts to this storyline remain but I am concerned much like the previous arc, it will not end there.
If you are looking for a solid Batman comic that delves into the darkness of Bruce Wayne, like this comic attempts to do, I recommend picking up The Batman Who Laughs instead.
Batman #71 is available now everywhere comics are sold.