A direct follow up
to Red Hood and the Outlaws #9, and tangentially connected to Night
of the Owls, the first Batman annual presents a spotlight on Mr.
Freeze. In his retconned origin, Bruce Wayne is Fries' worst enemy,
not Batman, and the love he has always professed for Nora Fries
hides an ugly and disturbing truth; indeed, Victor Fries has always
been a damaged individual.
Somebody at DC needs
to immediately sign up an exclusivity contract with Fabok and
Steigerwald, and then put them in a high-profile title. The art in
this annual is fantastic; from the exquisite pencils to the
impeccable coloring, the story is a visual delight. The subtle
effect on Freeze's helmet is a nice, eye-catching touch. Night of
the Owls is used only as bait to attract the readers' attention;
however, it is fortunate that "First Snow" does not disappoint and
is very well executed. A must have.