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Spotlight: BATMAN: EARTH ONE HC

You might think you know all the possible origins for Batman. Just wait until you see what Geoff Johns and Gary Frank have up their sleeves.

How many times have we seen Batman's origin? We all know the story. Young Bruce Wayne went to the theater with his parents. There was a mugging. His parents were killed. Bruce vowed vengeance and trained to become Batman. That may be the core of who Batman is, but there are different ways to continue this premise which could result in a slightly different Batman than what we're used to.

BATMAN: EARTH ONE is an example that Batman's origin can be told in a different manner.

Similar to SUPERMAN: EARTH ONE, the idea is to take the familiar elements and present them in a different way. It's a way to look at the characters in a different light. New twists and updates can be given as this is a clean slate. The idea is there but you also get the sense that anything goes...almost.

Geoff Johns' take on Batman is a little different. We do have a Batman that isn't as perfect as we know he will become. He can't do everything and isn't prepared to deal with every single situation. It might sound like YEAR ONE but there are plenty more differences.

We do start out with a younger Batman. He struggles to chase after his intended target. The story then flashes back to before the tragic incident that will change who Bruce Wayne is. This is where the differences start rolling in. Thomas Wayne is still incredibly rich and successful except now he is running for mayor. Alfred is an old friend of Thomas.' Alfred was in the Royal Marines and worked for a security firm. Unfortunately his presence at this moment isn't enough to change fate.

It's interesting how Johns depicts young Bruce. We've only seen a handful of depictions in the past and this is a different take on him. It makes perfect sense given his upbringing. He has a sense of entitlement in the few scenes before the fatal night.

It's these changes that run through the entire story and is also what fully separates this from past origins and Year One stories.

Of course this isn't the Alfred we know either. I mentioned a little on his background. It's not the same situation where he was from a line of butlers and following tradition in becoming the Waynes' butler. Bruce and Alfred will have a different sort of relationship and it adds a new element in guiding the journey of becoming Batman. They don't see eye to eye.

The idea of how Bruce became Batman, despite the tragedy, is almost like a storybook tale. As hard as Bruce's life and training was, everything had a way of working out perfectly. Alfred was the loyal and obedient servent. There may still be fellows like that out there but having some elements of disagreement gives this a more realistic take on their relationship.

There is a major change with someone close to Bruce. I won't go into the details or even hint at who I'm talking about. Once you read it, you'll know. It's changes like this that will draw the line for some readers.

Change can be a good thing. When it comes to beloved characters, fans can be very resistant to change. I will admit, I read through this story two and a half times. Of course at first I was wondering what was going on. I can easily accept some changes and different interpretations but I won't lie in saying a couple here threw me off. But then I stepped out of my Batman-fanboy shell and thought it over.

The idea of seeing these familiar characters in a new light is what the "Earth One" concept is all about. The creators can take the characters and do anything they want. They aren't under the constraints of decades history. If the background of a character needs to be changed for the sake of the story, there's nothing stopping the writer.

This also allows the story to have a bigger sense of suspense. In a typical Batman story, we pretty much know what the fates of the major characters will be. In an Earth One story, no one is safe.

After reading, I'm curious as to why Johns made some of these changes. It makes this an interesting read rather than simply rehashing what we already know. This is a Batman different than what we're used to seeing. Throw in the art by Gary Frank and you have all the reasons you'd need in deciding to pick this up.

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Posted by sethysquare

*like

Posted by CrimsonCake

Alfred will always be a butler to me,in a good way.

Edited by Noctis

I loved this take on Batman, so much so I'm reading it again, lol. Can't wait for Vol. 2! And I hope they make a Wonder Woman Earth One soon!!

Posted by sora_thekey

I really enjoyed Superman: Earth One. I hope I enjoy this take on Batman too.

I think Earth One is becoming DC's HC version of the Ultimate Universe... and I approve!

Posted by CraigWayne

I'll have to pick this up this weekend.I wonder if a Green Lantern or Wonder Woman Earth-One is next?

Posted by Jamerica

I need to buy this one soon!

Edited by longbowhunter

Never read any of the Earth One stuff. Slightly curious, but not enough to buy this.

Edited by Suprman

I have read it a couple of times now and I really enjoyed it. My biggest problem with the Earth One series is that each book feels really short, at least to me.

Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus

@sora_thekey said:

I really enjoyed Superman: Earth One. I hope I enjoy this take on Batman too.

I think Earth One is becoming DC's HC version of the Ultimate Universe... and I approve!

Finally someone says it! Thanks man, took the words right out of my mouth! Just got my copy yesterday and can't wait to read it! ^_^

Posted by JamDamage

I'm all for multiple universes take on characters. Ever since I picked up the Ultimate X-Men issue 1 I was sold on this concept. It keeps from tarnishing the original character and showing them other lights. this is nothing that us readers know and once in a while you get a really good story out of it. Looking forward to reading this. Seems like this might actually be the Ulitmate versions of what DC wanted to accomplish with their Allstar line that would have had them using the same idea Marvel was successful with with their Ultimate line. Why they didn't stick to the Allstar idea, I don't know? Allstar Superman got HUGE praise and, even tho Allstar Batman and Robin started off...............I don't know if I want to say shitty or weird, one this is for sure. It started getting really really good. It started turing into what we expected a Frank Miller Batman title to be. I still prey that and he and Jim Lee finish what they started because it was great in my opinion. Hope this works for DC because I'm huge Ulitmate Universe fan and I would love to be able to continue this concept with DC. Doing this instead of rebooting the whole damn line and pissing off everyone.

Posted by Queso6p4

Sounds interesting, and the photos are neat too.

Posted by TheMess1428

Are Superman: Earth One and Batman: Earth One in the same universe?

Posted by ArtisticNeedham

Wow, that death of his parents scene is a lot more intense than it usually is. Like a scene from CSI or something. I love that Alfred trained him, makes sense since he was an agent for the Queen right? so makes sense he would impart training on Bruce. I like that, not sure about the graphic death of his parents part.

Posted by sentryman555

@TheMess1428 said:

Are Superman: Earth One and Batman: Earth One in the same universe?

I would assume so but I'm not sure. I just read Batman: Earth One and their is no mention of Superman in it. I didn't think their would be cause an origin story should be self contained but I was wondering the same thing while reading it.

Posted by Cyborg6971

Man, now I wished I didn't order it from amazon. Now I have to wait a week to get it. BOO. It's been getting rave reviews and I can't wait to read it.

Posted by ComicStooge

Perhaps they should adapt this to film once TDKR is done?

Posted by zackattack529

superman earth one was better.

Posted by tjx_penn

@sora_thekey said:

I really enjoyed Superman: Earth One. I hope I enjoy this take on Batman too.

I think Earth One is becoming DC's HC version of the Ultimate Universe... and I approve!

you said it

Posted by azza04

I'm sold, ordering now....

Posted by Captain13

Harvey Bullock. Wow.

Posted by Knight_Justice

Mmmm... I really enjoyed Superman Earth One. Love the costume. Hope this is worth reading :)

Posted by Tyler Starke

I thought it was just ok but nothing to write home about.

It would have been nice if they fleshed out Alfreds training with bruce a little more, one of the concepts I really liked was making Bruce related to the Arkhams via his Mother Martha.

Posted by TheMess1428

@sentryman555 said:

@TheMess1428 said:

Are Superman: Earth One and Batman: Earth One in the same universe?

I would assume so but I'm not sure. I just read Batman: Earth One and their is no mention of Superman in it. I didn't think their would be cause an origin story should be self contained but I was wondering the same thing while reading it.

I wanted to read them as just some random Superman and Batman stories but if they are in the same universe, I am more interested to see what comes next and who else is getting a book.

Posted by ryu_talkative_batman

Any Earth 1 graphic novels are welcome on my shelf, gonna get this one and also the sequel to Earth 1 superman

Posted by primepower53

I must has this book.

Edited by Fantasgasmic

Earth One was a good idea (it's the Ultimate Universe) BEFORE New52. But since they rebooted all of everyone's continuity almost a year ago, I'm wondering why they felt beholden to the idea of books that aren't constrained by characters' histories. Isn't that what the point of New52 was? You can jump on and not have to know all the continuity. Which universe does that describe, DCnU or Earth One?

Posted by sethysquare

How come DC continues to produce excellent graphic novels but less could be said for other publishers. I read some of the season one and it was really boring.

Posted by wowylied

I can't wait to see how many years it will take to have this translated in my country...

Posted by Omega-Man

@TheMess1428: Yes they are they are both in Earth one thats why it's called Earth one

Posted by TheMess1428

@Omega-Man said:

@TheMess1428: Yes they are they are both in Earth one thats why it's called Earth one

Well they also made ALL-STAR SUPERMAN and ALL-STAR BATMAN AND ROBIN, THE BOY WONDER and they weren't in the same universe even though they both said All-Star on it.

Posted by Aph8825

Batman: Earth One is awesome take on the origin story of Batman. Im glad to see all these positive reviews after reading all the negative ones before the book even came out. Also Johns & Frank's take on Alfred is badass!

Posted by KRYPTON

Batman Noel was my favorite Hard Cover, now this title is. Im really hoping for a sequel

Posted by CaptainMexico

A new take on Batman's origin story sounds interesting. I'll certainly get this book.

Posted by IronAngelX

UGH!!! I preordered this book in January and have been anticipating it as much as I have the movie at the end of this month.

Posted by mettlekm

what an Ultimate idea!

Posted by PRECOCIOUSnefarious

read it in one sitting. could not put it down. every batman fan needs to read this.

Posted by mbembet

and after all this time geoff johns still doesn't get Batman this book is not worth to buy but blind geoff johns fantard will called it the best Batman book ever like usual :P

Posted by erik_norris

This might be sacrilege to some, but I think this is Geoff Johns' best work to date. The payoff for every plot thread is outstanding. It all comes together masterfully; a different take on the Batman mythos that still gets us to the characters we we've grown to know and love.

Especially Bullock.

Staff
Posted by Captain13

There's no real explanation for why he felt that he had to put on the Batsuit. Is he crazy like in Year One or is he sane like in the Nolanverse? Bruce was the weakest character here--he's not very compelling IMHO. He's no different than Phoenix Jones.

Harvey Bullock, Penguin, and Alfred are the real stars of this book. The problem is that there were TOO many great ideas in one book, and not enough explanation for some of them.

Posted by Dedpool

Been looking forward to this. I loved Superman: Earth one, and this sounds pretty good. I look at these like comicbook movie versions of the properties. Like if they wanted to make movies close to the comics but update them for the now.

Posted by Dedpool

@Omega-Man - Actually it was said they are NOT in the same universe, and this allows them to tell standalone stories where the heroes are the only heroes of their respective universes.

Edited by FadeToBlackBolt

Geoff Johns on Batman, does anyone even need to read this to know it will suck a**? 
 
 
Anyone with a brain knows Johns hates Batman and has no idea how to write him. 

Posted by haydenclaireheroes

This looks awesome!

Posted by Mucklefluga

So is Earth One the main earth or what? This confuses me so much

Posted by danhimself

I really liked it....I'm just hoping that they can pump these things out at a decent pace

Posted by KainScion

i dont see what all the hype is. it was an average story. not an average batman story mind you. it was like batman year one but with a crappier batman. sure there a few twists but they arent all that grand. this is the origin of batman that dc has been afraid to publish. it shows batman really not doing any good and being more the obsessed nut. it is good, but you can skip it. nothing really exciting happened.

Edited by SeanFoster

Will this be available digitally? I'd love to read it but I'm not interested in having a big hardcover in my room.

Posted by Wolverine0628

I can't decide...
Posted by CrimsonAlchemist

Geoff Johns can do no wrong!

Posted by thveej

It was alright, I enjoyed superman earth one better. the worst thing about both books is that it is just too short, but reading the Superman book it felt more self contained and more of a "complete" story, with this one and how it ends I am more excited about vol.2 and felt underwhelmed by vol.1. Don't know if thats a good thing or a bad thing.

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