If a writer creates a scene in which Alfred does something surprisingly bad ass, I will almost always give that book a 10/10. The amazing thing about “Batman” #8 is that even if Alfred had just stood back and let Bruce handle everything, I would’ve still given it a 10/10.
“Attack on Wayne Manor” should be an incredible read for any Batman fan. Seeing Bruce and Alfred improvise their way through a whole army of assassins as they scramble to the batcave is a real treat. Sure, it felt like the Talons broke into Wayne Manor a bit easily, but I overlooked that because I was having too much fun.
It seems like all of team Batman’s artists are performing at the top of their game here. Capullo knows how to draw action scenes better than almost anybody and issue #8 is almost all action, BUT don’t overlook the amount of detail that went into the manor, Gotham, and the cave! Look at the portrait on the wall, the architecture of all the unique buildings on the book’s opening page, the splintering wood, nods to classic Batcave memorabilia, and plenty more. The action is non-stop so it can be easy to flip through this book at a fast pace because you want to see what happens next, so make sure you go back and really appreciate every panel. Glapion and FCO must’ve worked overtime on this as well. I don’t think there’s been a darker looking Batman book in this series. The first few pages in particular are dependent on the shadows and drab colors and without those touches you wouldn’t get that feeling of isolation and depression that Bruce is feeling at that very moment.
Also, you’ve probably noticed that this book is going for a dollar more. So what are you getting exactly for your extra dollar? Well, the back-up tale actually picks up right where the main story left off! It’s an extension of the main plot and I don’t want to spoil it for you so I’ll just say that I really enjoyed it. Instead I’ll say a little about the art which is quite different from what Capullo, FCO, and Glapion have been doing, but not jarringly so. I’m already a bit bias because I’m a big fan of artist Rafael Albuquerque’s work on “American Vampire” (also written by Scott Snyder) and the colors by Fairbairn as well (he does the color on “Swamp Thing” and boy does he know how to use green! That’s written by Snyder as well, by the way). It’s rough, gritty, vibrantly colored, highly detailed and absolutely stunning. You’ll see a lot of cool cameos and a greater glimpse at the Court of Owl’s plan in motion, too.
I really can’t recommend this book enough so I’ll stop here. I think I got my point across that this is a great bat-book, a great comic in general, and a fine example of what sort of value you should get from a $3.99 title.