By Chris Tresson
I wasn’t a big fan of the last arc of this series. It just didn’t feel like a Batman comic to me. I don’t think anyone here at Comic Bastards really enjoyed it but it’s a new year, a new arc, and a new artist for All-Star Batman. Issue six beings an arc which will involve Mr. Freeze and hopefully no terrible quips or puns. Here we go.
Upon reading this issue, I feel it’s a lot closer to what I’m used to seeing from Scott Snyder. He does bang on a bit here and there but otherwise, it’s a good start to the arc. It’s a lot more serious than the previous issues of this series that I read and I like that. I like my Batman serious. Snyder also brings a lot of intelligence back to his writing with this issue, the lack of it so far in All-Star Batman is what made me decide to stop reading it… That and the terrible art in the last arc. Jesus.
The art in this one is by Jock and even from the first page, you can tell it’s going to be two-hundred percent better than anything within the pages of the first arc. I really like this first part of the story and the art’s what made it for me. A lot of it seems empty (because of snow/ice) at points but Colorist Matt Hollingsworth plays a massive part in making the book look awesome even when it does. He works so well with Jock on the art when they work together, they’re just one of those great combinations who work well in modern comics. Letterer Steve Wands really stood out for me with the lettering in this issue, too. I like the choice of the pink text in the caption boxes in the issue, it makes the pages pop and stand out against the icy backdrop of the story.
Overall, it’s a very nice looking book. My only real issue would be that there are a lot of caption boxes and the amount of text does take away from the art a bit for me. The use of boxless captions on the light backgrounds and on the dark patches of ink is a good choice. I liked that. Use that more.
I didn’t know what the hell was going on in the back-up story, because I skipped out on the last two issues of the last arc, but the art was nice here, too. I’m not saying the art in the back-ups that Declan Shalvey drew weren’t nice but I can’t really comment on the back up story as I only read a couple of parts. Nice to see Francesco Francavilla drawing Batman in any book to be honest, so it has that going for it.
If you decided to skip the beginning of this series or dropped it early in the series, now might be the time to jump back on board with All-Star Batman… because I think for this art, even if the story goes downhill from here, it’ll at least look nice doing it. I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes. And it feels weird saying that about this series.
All-Star Batman #6
Writer: Scott Snyder
Artists: Jock, Francesco Francavilla
Colorist: Matt Hollingsworth
Publisher: DC Comics