Published on December 14th, 2018 | by Mark McKechnie

The Batman Who Laughs #1 Review

The Batman Who Laughs #1 Review Mark McKechnie

Summary: This is a very interesting story with one hell of a twist at the end.


Fantastic job!

The Laughing House Part One

This new six issue mini-series spins out of the finale of the Metal event.  The Batman Who Laughs has appeared very sporadically since then, but makes his return in a big way in this issue.  The issue starts quickly and never really slows down.

The Cover

The Batman Who Laughs #1 features two covers: a standard cover and a variant.  The standard cover by Jock, features The Batman Who Laughs peering around a corner.  He looks like a creature out of a horror film and the cover is very dark.  Colour wise it is mostly black, red, and shadow.  Towards the bottom of the screen in a creepy lettering style he is uttering “Miss me?”

The variant cover is done by Greg Capullo and FCO Placencia, and is far plainer.  It features the spiked head piece worn by The Batman Who Laughs against a black background, with a bloody smile below.  The head piece has a single splatter of blood, and blood is also dripping from the bloody smile.  Both covers foreshadow a creepy little series, and based on the titular character, the fate of the world will likely be at stake.

The Art

The art in this book is done by Jock, with colouring by David Baron.  The book is done in a grittier and darker style, which I find is a good fit for Gotham.  Batman looks darker, even with the grey and blue suit.  He just looks dark in this book.  Bright colours are generally more associated with villains, with the Joker being very bright, and the red lips of The Batman Who Laughs.  The art creates a great atmosphere, and adds an element of hopelessness and decay that seems to permeate all of Gotham.

The Story

Scott Snyder gets this mini-series off and running with a bang.  The book is definitely a dark one, and it will be very interesting to see what becomes of Batman in the aftermath.

The book begins with Batman chasing a truck pulling a house on a trailer.  He’s after what the crooks are smuggling within the house.  After dispatching the thieves, he discovers a coffin, and within it the body of Bruce Wayne.  Upon investigation they discover it was a Bruce Wayne from another world, one that retired and lived a happy married life.  It’s at this point Bruce realizes that The Batman Who Laughs has returned.

The story then shifts to Arkham Asylum, and a Batman armed to the teeth with guns and kills his way to the cell of the Joker.  This heavily armed Batman opens the Joker’s cell, and the Joker just looks at him and smiles, questioning if Batman is finally going to kill him.  Gun toting Batman just turns away, utters “No” and leaves the cell.  This is where The Batman Who Laughs finally makes his appearance and declares that he is there to kill the Joker.  The Joker pleads for his life before The Batman Who Laughs buries a scythe in his face.

The issue ends with a shocking confrontation between the Joker and Batman that no one will see coming.

The Conclusion

This is a really interesting start to what feels like a Batman horror story.  The Batman Who Laughs is one of the scarier villains in the Batman universe, despite being new to the scene.  The book is well written and looks to be exploring some new ground.  The art as well does a fantastic job of enhancing and complementing the story.  This is going to be a really interesting series!

This is a very interesting story with one hell of a twist at the end.  The ending takes it over the top and will leave you hanging until next month! 5 out of 5 stars!

About the Author'

Long time fan of comic books and geek culture.

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