Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Powerful Pages - Batman: Gothic by Grant Morrison and Klaus Janson (1990)

Powerful Pages - Batman: Gothic by Grant Morrison and Klaus Janson (1990)

When it comes to dark and brooding, Batman sets the bar.  With this particularly grim tale, writer Grant Morrison ups the ante with a major influx of twisted horror, while Klaus Janson offers some of his best work, using shadows and angles to supreme effect.  The tale benefits from a ghastly original villain who is a bit more sinister than any of the caped crusader's typical foes, and this fiend proves to be far more formidable as well.  Of particular note were a handful of eerie dream sequences that were quite literally the stuff of nightmares and several expertly choreographed confrontations.  This was a top-notch affair from top to bottom, with impeccable plotting and an inventive yarn with numerous twists and turns pairing nicely with sensational artwork and brilliant lettering.  While I've never seen it placed among top-tier outings featuring Gotham's dogged defender, I found it to be one of his most memorable storylines.  Perhaps this is because most fanboys are more comfortable with a gentler tone and a familiar adversary.  One thing is certain, those who enjoy horror comics may find Batman: Gothic to be right up their alley.  While I have always enjoyed the touch of the macabre that is woven into the very fabric of Batman's legacy, this may be the first graphic novel featuring the character I have encountered where a touch of the macabre just wasn't enough for the artists toiling behind the curtain.  Batman: Gothic is a horror story through and through, and it is plotted and illustrated to sinister perfection.

Final Grade: A

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