Book Review: Batman, Volume 8: Cold Days

Batman, Volume 8: Cold DaysBatman, Volume 8: Cold Days by Tom King

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In Cold Days, Bruce Wayne gets jury duty on a case where Mr. Freeze is being tried on evidence produced by Batman. Bruce becomes the only hold out on a guilty verdict based on a theory that Freeze was set up that has no evidence to support it.

Tom King delivers what every Batman fan wants: three issues full of Bruce Wayne on jury duty. We essentially get an idea of the over-the-top amount of self-doubt that's hit Bruce after Selena left him standing at the aisle.

The final issue includes a long conversation in which Bruce makes his case for not believing in Batman's evidence because Batman's not God. This monologue was touched off by Bruce asking a woman wearing a chain if she was wearing a cross under her shirt. Good thing it wasn't a dogtag to honor a fallen soldier or the whole monologue wouldn't work.

There's something to the monologue because a lot of writers who treat Batman like he's a God and not just writers of Batman, but writers of other books who can't stop themselves from fanboying about Batman even to the detriment of the story and characters to be writing. It's a good idea to remind readers of Batman's humanity.

However, there's something silly about applying this to religion and further the overwrought reaction to the break up. Sometimes Bruce sounds like, "My engagement was broken, therefore Batman is not God."

Next up is the one-shot story where Nightwing shows up in Gotham to team up with Batman and just be a friend. This is a nice celebration of Dick and Bruce's relationship and my favorite part of the book.

That leads into Beast of Burden where a hired killer shoots Dick and Batman sets out to hunt him down. You have Batman getting tough, finding his man, and having a solid fight scene. You also have some gratuitous patricide because Tom King. The story ends with Batman doing something that is not consistent with his character.

Overall, this book is just not for me. The art is very good, and I think Tom King is a good writer in general, but I don't like his conception of Batman as overdone indie comic psychodrama and self-analysis with a few fight scenes and gratuitious acts of cruelty and murder to keep the hoi polloi reading. At this point, I've lost confidence that he's going to land the book somewhere good, so I'm done with this series.

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Published on June 05, 2019 23:44 Tags: batman, tom-king
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Christians and Superheroes

Adam Graham
I'm a Christian who writes superhero fiction (some parody and some serious.)

On this blog, we'll take a look at:

1) Superhero stories
2) Issues of faith in relation to Superhero stories
3) Writing Superhe
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