Batman: Rebirth #1

by Kalem Lalonde on June 01, 2016

Writers: Tom King & Scott Snyder 
Artist: Mikel Janin 

When the departure of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo was announced, it seemed nearly impossible for anyone to successfully follow them up. Following the footsteps of a character-defining run is no easy task but DC hit gold when the hired Tom King to pen the new series. King has slowly become one of the best writers in comics and seemed like a natural choice to take over this beloved book. King is one of the only writers in comics who never disappoints and Batman: Rebirth #1 continues that trend. If this is a taste of what’s to come, we may be looking at another classic Batman run on the level of Snyder and Capullo. Batman: Rebirth #1 is a great start to what will likely be an incredible run.

Unlike Superman: Rebirth #1, this comic is structured perfectly as a launching point for this new version of Batman while not forgetting that it isn’t a #1 to a new series. King and Snyder make this issue a one-in-done story that aims to set-up Batman’s new sidekick and explore the craziness of Batman. This is an effective way of setting up Batman’s new series as we only get glimpses into the sort of character work that Tom King will be doing with Batman. King seems to be exploring the question of how crazy Batman is and how that relates to his villains. It’s a fascinating question that King is using beautiful dialogue and imagery to explore in this issue.  

Calendar Man has always been a bit of a goofy villain to me. He came across as that fun kind of cheesy villain that did not need to be taken seriously. King and Snyder obliterate that view of the character here. Their work with him is quite simple, yet it puts a haunting new spin on the character. Now, I see him as a creepy horror villain with really unique and chilling abilities. This is a testament to the ideas at play in Batman: Rebirth #1. A character who barely got any pages made the issue incredibly memorable and breathed new life into a villain I had previously dismissed as silly.

Just like Tom King, Mikel Janin has been gaining a lot of attention over the last year for his artistic prowess. Janin blew me away with his stunning issue of Superman and continues to support the argument that he may be the best rising artist in comics. King relies on visuals to communicate the darkness of his comics, making him very reliant on the strength of the artist. Janin perfectly captures the darkness of this book and perfectly brings King’s haunting images to the page. Batman: Rebirth #1 is a beautifully rendered issue chock full of great action, haunting imagery and one incredible looking rendition of Batman.

Tom King is a writing force of nature and Batman: Rebirth #1 shows why. His blending of imagery, character work and darkness make for some of the most interesting writing in comics. Teaming him up with Scott Snyder only resulted in a fantastic way to set-up the new writer’s upcoming story and get everyone excited for where King will take Batman. Mikel Janin shows once again why he is one of the best artistic talents of the year in this brilliantly pencilled issue that greatly captures the essence of the writing. We’re looking at something special with Batman’s new series. 

Our Score:


A Look Inside