Review: Batman #92 Faces The Specter Of War

by Tony Thornley
Cover by Yasmine Putri

For months, the Dark Knight’s newest adversary has tested him, pitting Batman against some of his deadliest foes in an elaborate scheme. In Batman #92 though, the greatest threat isn’t the one directly in front of him…

What we’ve been seeing since this latest run started is chess pieces being set up, ready to tear Batman’s side of the board to bits. However, this issue shows that the actual game being played is not the one sitting in front of us. James Tynion IV, Guillem March, Tomeu Morey, and Clayton Cowles give the Dark Knight one of his most intense challenges yet.

The Riddler has a game to play at the behest of the Designer. However, Batman is about five steps ahead of him, sending him on a collision course with the master villain. Behind the scenes though, several other parties are making moves, all under the orders of a certain clown…

Honestly, I don’t know if I can say this issue was especially good, but I had a lot of fun. The Riddler’s game is fairly rote, and we get competence-porn Batman (one of least favorite tropes with the character) to solve it. On the flip side though, it’s a gleeful thrill-ride, with all the hallmarks of a fun Batman story to go with it. At one point, you realize that Deathstroke is still there because he’s just enjoying watching the man he was just tearing to pieces outsmart another foe. I think that’s what this run by Tynion will eventually be known for – a gleeful thrill ride that just likes being a campy action story.

March’s art is full of a lot of the same energy as the script. It’s driven by his grotesque take on the Riddler, who’s a rubbery ghoul here (recalling a bit of Jim Carrey, a bit of Frank Gorshin, with a heavy dose of horror). It’s not perfect (there are several times that his Batman is just plain off putting), but in general it’s a lot of fun. Morey’s colors helps set a tone for the story too, playing with the light sources in the scene and the color of light they project to drive the storytelling right alongside the line-art.

Batman is still in for the fight of his life, and it’s unclear where it’ll come from. Regardless of that, if the team maintains this sort of energy throughout, it’s going to be a fun ride.

Batman #92 is available now from DC Comics.

%d bloggers like this: