Writer: Marc Silvestri

Artist: Marc Silvestri

Colorist: Arid Prianto

what’s it about?

The Joker will go to any lengths to get Harley Quinn back after she is abducted by a strange culprit.

But who? Mysterious, Joker-like monsters are stalking the streets of Gotham, collecting severed heads. But why? Jim Gordon is missing, and after receiving a package containing a bloody piece of Gotham’s commissioner, Batman knows he must be willing to do anything to save him. But how? When The Joker proposes an uneasy alliance with Batman, the answers to those questions begin to become clear— and they will shake Gotham City and the Bat-Family to their core.

This meticulously crafted tale of the Dark Knight’s deadliest team-up will introduce you to a grim and gritty Gotham that only Marc Silvestri could bring you.

The Good

Books like Batman & The Joker: The Deadly Duo are why I’m glad that DC’s Black Label exists. This issue features a darker and more macabre take on the Gotham that we know and fear. Silvestri’s art brings us a hauntingly beautiful rendering of Batman’s home city and its inhabitants. Silvetri’s take on Batman is wonderful; depicting a deep appreciation for Batman’s detective capabilities as well as Batman’s ability to make us smile, even in the darkest of situations. The Joker is depicted as a grotesque force of nature. Although we only see Harley and Selina for brief moments it’s enough to intrigue the reader. Every page and every panel is stunningly illustrated. Silvestri’s take on Batman is a visual treat but his narration is the real star of this issue. Batman’s analysis of every GCPD officer and every situation he encounters is a welcome insight into the Dark Knight’s methodology.

The Bad

Silvestri’s art is wonderful, as you’ve come to expect from the Image Comics founder and current CEO. There were some panels that seemed to feature poses that exist outside of what we have come to expect from Batman. There’s a rather funny panel in which Batman jumps over a corrupt GCPD in such a way as to willfully remove his toupee. It’s a funny panel in an otherwise dark tale that is off putting due to the weird angle in which Batman is depicted. Batman & The Joker: The Deadly Duo is a really fun book but DC might be going over the top here with nearly $5.00 cover price and over ten variant covers. It’s prices and gimmicks like this that will keep the average reader away. It’s a shame too, this is an amazing book that could potentially become a classic.

VERDICT: 8.5

About the Author: Tom Tormey

Tom Tormey

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