REVIEW: ‘Batman: Black and White,’ Issue #6

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Batman Black and White #6

Batman: Black and White #6 is published by DC Comics, written by Brandon Thompson, Pierrick Colinet, Elsa Charretier, Nick Derington, John Arcudi, and Scott Snyder with art by Jesus Merino, Khary Randolph, Elsa Charretier, Nick Derington, James Harren, John Romita Jr., Klaus Janson, and Babs Tarr, and letters by Deron Bennett, Ariana Maher, Steve Wands, and Tom Napolitano. For the latest entry in this series of anthology books, the assembled creators shine a light on the many different ways Batman is viewed. These perspectives come from friends, foes, and the civilians caught in the middle. Thus, asking the question: What is the Batman truly? And can he be more than one thing?

Batman: Black and White #6 explores the various natures of the Dark Knight in some interesting ways. While some stories simply place the concept front and center, others are more subtle with their intent. This is particularly true of the book’s opening story, “Second Signal.”

In this tale, we see two young brothers from the Hill area of Gotham have constructed a Bat-Signal in the hopes of attracting the Caped Crusader’s attention. Unlike many in Gotham who have come to believe Batman will always show up to save them, these brothers seem less sure. Batman isn’t seen as often in this area of town. While the why of this is never explicitly stated, it isn’t hard to guess. And it’s obvious enough that even one of Batman’s villains has noticed.

But Batman does arrive and realizes the oversight he has made. And in that idealistic style that comics are always home to, he accepts his fault and sets himself not to repeat that mistake.

While I enjoyed the nuance of the first story, my favorite takes a blunter approach to the many faces of Batman in a story titled “The Abyss.” In this tale, the reader is presented with three different eyewitness accounts of a battle between Batman and Man-bat. As the characters debate the merits and flaws of Batman and his presence in the given situation, some psychological commentary is given about the nature of Batman, and what it might mean for Gotham if his mind should continue down the path it seems to be on. And even though the analysis is from a less than trustworthy source, one cannot argue that he has a point.

While these stories were the highlights for me, Batman: Black and White #6 is filled with creative and unique looks at the many facets of Batman. From the strong scripts to the unique art which graces each tale, and right down to the solid lettering work, there isn’t a real problem to be found in this book.

The only thing that really keeps it from hitting the heights of many of the previous entries in the series is a lack of truly hard-hitting moments. So many of the earlier entries landed some truly great pieces of powerful short story writing. Not so much here.

So while Batman: Black and White #6 may stumble a little compared to its predecessors, it nevertheless delivers some solid stories that are well worth reading.

Batman: Black and White #6 is available now wherever comics are sold.

Batman: Black and White #6 
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TL;DR

So while Batman: Black and White #6 may stumble a little compared to its predecessors, it nevertheless delivers some solid stories that are well worth reading.