REVIEW: ‘The Batman’s Grave,’ Issue #5

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Batman's Grave #5

The Batman’s Grave #5 (of 12) is published by DC Comics, written by Warren Ellis, with art by Bryan Hitch, inks by Kevin Nowlan and Hitch, colors by Alex Sinclair, and letters by Richard Starkings. After continuing the investigation from the previous issues, Batman heads to Arkham Asylum. While there, Batman’s witts are put to the test as more of the puzzle begins to unfold around him. As more pieces come into play, it is unclear if the Dark Knight will make it out of Arkham alive.

While at Arkham, Batman is me by Warden Jeremiah Arkham. While walking through the facility, Batman passes many of the inmates currently serving their sentences, including a man lying naked on the floor outside his cell and several inmates mopping up what appears to be blood. The image is disturbing but represents the type of treatment given by the facility. However, the most notable part of Batman’s tour is the fact the Warden offers him a room, believing he belongs among his patients and is as insane as them. After meeting up with Commissioner Gordon, Batman finally comes face-to-face with Eduardo Flamingo, the man who attacked him in Vincent Stannik’s apartment in issue one.

The Batman's Grave #5

In theory, seeing Flamingo again should connect some of the dots and plot points of this story. However, I still don’t know what this mini-series is about, what it is setting out to explore, and how these deaths are even linked. The latter half of the book is just fighting and while Hitch’s art is better in this issue than previous ones, the scenes themselves go on for too long and add too little to the overarching plot. Ellis promised a deep dive into the fragile nature of Batman’s mortality but so far, past the first issue, we haven’t seen that theme again. Without that concept, The Batman’s Grave #5 is a subpar to mediocre Batman mystery, which are a dime a dozen and a lot of writers have done better.

In addition to a stagnant plot, the quality of letting has also remained subpar. While slightly better than the previous issue, where it was downright atrocious, the lettering lacks impact because Starkings chooses to not use upper case fonts for everything. Batman’s screams of pain and even the action words, which are few and in between despite so much of the latter half of the book being a fight, fall flat.

The only saving grace of this book is Sinclair’s coloring. The book is bright and Sinclair is able to add some life to Arkham’s dull backgrounds. Even still, The Batman’s Grave #5 is not good and apparently, not getting better.

The Batman’s Grave #5 (of 12) is available now wherever comic books are sold and online.

The Batman's Grave #5
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TL;DR

The only saving grace of this book is Sinclair’s coloring. The book is bright and Sinclair is able to add some life to Arkham’s dull backgrounds. Even still, The Batman’s Grave #5 is not good and apparently, not getting better.