sj_esposito's Batman #11 - My Brother's Keeper; The Fall of the House of Wayne, Conclusion review

Not that strong a finish for a very strong story

WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS BELOW!

As much as I hate to say this, this ending fell kind of flat in my opinion. As others have stated, the fight was corny and stupidly out of the realm of possibility. That turbine would have sucked Bruce and Lincoln into as soon as they got remotely close, and having Lincoln flying around the skyline giving Bruce a good talking to was ridiculous. Worse yet was the actual diatribe--it was way too much. Lincoln telling his story the way he did was totally cliched and, frankly, I expect better of Snyder than to deliver a villain's backstory in such a clumsy manner. Snyder has major tendancies toward long narration and even longer-winded characters, but I usually don't mind it--and most of the time enjoy it--because he does it in a creative manner. However this time, it felt rushed and just silly.

Also, I take issue with the fact that Bruce blew Lincoln out of the sky, and yet he happens to be waiting for Bruce in the tower when he crashes through it. Again, this was not very well-thought out in terms of choreography. And I understand that Snyder didn't want to close any doors here, but Lincoln's body not being recovered from the wreckage kind of felt like a cop out.

The second half of the issue is leaps and bounds better. The interaction between Dick and Bruce was spot-on and I love the way Snyder and Capullo portray Bruce's out-of-cowl personality. Scott brings the voice of Dick that we saw in The Black Mirror and it contrasts nicely with Bruce's. The relationship is clearly not in any danger in spite of the events that preceded this issue, and it's nice to see Bruce put in the effort to make sure Dick knows that.

The art is typical Capullo--amazing. I don't have much more to add than that, except for the fact that I love seeing the cybernetics in Bruce's eye at the end.

All-in-all, this story has been fantastic, but I feel this issue was the worst of the bunch in terms of it's role in the overall plot and how it executes that role. I would say the Court of Owls isn't quite as stellar as The Black Mirror, partly because the story isn't as impactful, but it's certainly a modern classic that should be in everyone's Top 30 Batman stories list.

I'm excited to see what Snyder has in store for Batman next, however I will say this: I think there's a dangerously thin line that Snyder is riding at this point of his stories being way too focused on 'dark, scary and disturbing'. The stories are excellent, but too much of the same thing for too long might come out to bite Snyder and Batman. It seems like the next arc with the Joker is going to have a very similar tone and atmosphere, and I hope Snyder really nails it, because the minute he slips up, a lot of readers are going to claim that they're sick of 'same old thing'. I'm not calling for the dark and gritty feel of Gotham to change, and Snyder is clearly an amazing writer, but a part of me is longing to see what other tools he has in his literary toolbox that he can use to tell a Batman story of a different kind.

2 Comments
Posted by JonesDeini

Still think this was a great issue but agree with the criticisms you raise. I know it's a superhero comic, so yeah, suspension of disbelief and all that but the fight was a bit much. Batman's world is more grounded than that of his peers and this issue pushes it a bit for me. The choreography and constant narration during it was over the top and descended Thomas into typical serial villain territory. When he did something similar with James Gordon Jr. it played out a lot better and it helped that he was a bit tongue and cheek about it by having Babs point it out to him. Here he plays it straight and it falls a bit flat.

Posted by spider-man 2996

Great review. I felt a bit let down with this issue after having been looking forward to it so much but none the less it was a great story.

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