To be honest, I’ve kind of been struggling to figure out how to properly introduce this thing. Lee Bermejo is one of my favorite Batman artists, and certainly one of the most prolific ever to touch the character. As such, a book that serves as a showcase for his work is a surefire hit. Every page in this book is incredible. I can’t really do much more here than show you, so let’s jump right into this.
A Greatest Hits collection for the ages
Due to the pretty textless nature of this book, this review is going to be a short one. Regardless, this art is incredible. We all knew it was going to be (or not, if Bermejo isn’t your thing), but hey, he’s getting to do this for a reason. I’ve included my favorites in a gallery down below, but I cannot stress how good this all looks full size and in person. This might come as a surprise to readers who know me a little well, but I actually really love the realism in Bermejo’s work. It feels like the perfect blend of real world aesthetics and comic book fantasy without sacrificing a single inch of what makes the comics fun. I’ve been of the opinion for a while that if the movies are ABSOLUTELY committed to the idea that Batman has to wear body armor and be “realistic”, they should just look to Bermejo’s art. I was glad to see a little of it in 2022’s The Batman, but we can go further. I want Croc, I want Clayface, I want Ivy. I want the super cool muscle car to get even cooler and wackier. I love this art so much.
On the”story” side of things, I’m a little conflicted. On the one hand, it was a really cool to have a through line for the art, a fun and interesting way to separate the art into categories for some cohesive organization. On the other, it’s very barebones. I liked the game with the different characters swapped for symbols so you have to figure out who’s talking to Batman throughout the book. What I didn’t like was how generic the whole thing turned out to be once I had the answer. It’s not book-ruining by any means, and I understand that this wasn’t supposed to be a super dense noir thriller, but I do wish there was some more substance here.
- You like Lee Bermejo’s stunning take on the Batman universe.
- That’s it, that’s the book.
- It’s good.
This is a great showcase of cover art tied together in an interesting way. If you like Lee Bermejo, this is for you.
Disclaimer: DC Comics provided a copy of this issue for the purpose of this review.