Batman: The Black Mirror was my favorite comic story of 2011.
I won’t lie; I was kind of mad at DC Comics for taking Bruce out of the Batman suit and replacing him with Dick Grayson. But I understood why they did it, and I enjoyed Grant Morrisson’s Return of Bruce Wayne, Batman and Robin, and Batman, Incorporated. But if you had told me that a Dick Grayson-as-Batman story was going to be not just the best Batman comic, but the best superhero comic all year, I’d have probably thought you were crazy. But Scott Snyder, Jock, and Francesco Francavilla all delivered.
This book is marvelous. Snyder took everything that made Batman a good character—the detective work, the action, the intrigue, and even Gotham’s history—and added a bit of horror to the mix. Then, he cranked the entire concoction to 11. I loved this arc so much, when I went to C2E2 in March, I waited and waited for Scott Snyder to sign my comics just so I could compliment him on how great his story was, and tell him how I couldn’t wait for the next issues to be released.
I could gush about the writing for hours, but the art is just as attributable to the success as anything else. In what ended up being a happy accident, two different artists alternated penciling duties on this book, with Jock beginning the arc, then Francavilla taking over when the spotlight shifted from Batman to Jim Gordon. The two artists’ styles were so different, but they worked so well together. Just look at these different pages:
If you’re a fan of Batman, comics, superheroes, horror, detectives, or really just a fan of good reads, pick up this book in hardcover, or track down the individual issues. It’s fantastic.