The Batman Who Laughs #2 Review

by Hussein Wasiti on January 16, 2019

Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Jock
Colouring by David Baron
Lettering by Sal Cipriano
The greatest strength of this series, aside from the reunion of Scott Snyder and Jock, is that combines all of Snyder's storytelling sensibilities that he has accrued over the years into one package. This feels like an extension of his Batman run, but it has these cosmic ideas bubbling underneath that give it a different flavour, and with Jock managing to keep it as grounded as ever despite these cosmic bubblings, it may be Snyder's best work in years.
The roughness and clarity of Jock's sequential work is something I've always admired about the artist. There's not much "pretty" about his work in a traditional sense and that contributes to the edge present in all of his work; it's honest and brutal, and rough around the edges. When Batman fights the Batman Who Laughs in a brief sequence, Batman isn't moving as gracefully as one might expect. There's a weight to his moves, a strength that he implements and Snyder also suggests with his word balloons. The synchrosity of this team is pretty extraordinary. David Baron's stark and dramatic colouring complements Jock's edge very well.
Snyder is always building the mystique and the horror of the Batman Who Laughs, and I've always found him to be an interesting and sometimes quite scary character given his potential for destruction, but it's in this issue that Snyder finally reveals what kind of threat he is to Batman. He isn't just a physical threat, matching Batman's moves, forcing the detective to come up with entirely new fighting styles in order to even stand a chance with the maniac. He's even more menacing as a mental threat, as he can truly get into Batman's head like no other villain ever has before. On a dime, the Batman Who Laughs can recall the smallest of details and feelings that relate to the murder of his parents, which is famously one of Batman's soft spots. His growth as a villain has been interesting to watch unfold and I think Snyder will only add more to the strength of the character.
There was a transition or two within scenes that didn't feel entirely well-done, mostly since they were done through the dialogue rather than being laid out on the page, most notably the scene between Gordon and Bullock.
Despite this, Snyder and Jock have crafted another solid issue, and have amped up the threat of the titular villain. The art is amazing and this is already one of the best books DC is currently publishing. Check this out with confidence.

Our Score:


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