Batman: Urban Legends #7 focuses this week on “Sagas from the futures of Batman Beyond, Future State, Batman 666, and DC One Million.” That’s a lot of futures, which explains the 66 pages that make up this extra-sized issue. From the series that has brought us some of the best Batman stories of the year, how does this seventh issue stack up?
As it turns out, it stacks up very nicely. This issue opens with a Batman Beyond story by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly, and Max Dunbar that adds to the legacy of the character and promises a bright future for him. Don’t miss the AIPT Comics podcast with Lanzing and Kelly who talked about the making of this issue and what they aimed to do. If you love this character, I guarantee you will love what they’re doing here. Not only does it show they respect and know this character, but they are also willing to take big chances.
The biggest change involves Bruce Wayne, who doesn’t have much of a chance in this story. His death isn’t that big of a spoiler as it’s on the first page, but it’s what he tells Terry that is a mind-blowing experience. It’s a twist on Bruce Wayne you won’t see coming, but also will hate because you’ll wish you thought of it first. It’s a clever secret, especially for this older version of Bruce. The story involves an unknown villain that is also clever that puts Terry in a bad situation. For much of the story, he’s trying to figure out who killed Bruce and there’s a satisfying way Terry goes about taking them out.
Dunbar draws the heck out of this issue with some heartfelt moments for Bruce as he speaks to Terry in his last moments. Neo Gotham looks fantastic, with cool purples by color artist Sebastian Cheng and smartly placed glows from city lights. Terry looks great as Batman here and you’ll be reminded on every page why this version of Batman has endured for so long.
Letters by Aditya Bidikar are also excellent. There’s another clever idea used with lettering in gutters that gives the villain a personality thanks to Bidikar’s lettering. Bidikar continues to show why they are one of the best letterers in the business, from good emphasis throughout the story to well-placed word balloons.
The next story features Batman 666 by Tim Seeley and Juan Ferreyra that is badass as all heck. This story involves a few twists, but the standout elements for most will be the impeccable colors and art by Ferreyra. There isn’t a comics artist that delivers such a cool painterly style that stretches space as well as Ferreyra. Cool effects like the ro-bat — a Batman bot — casting light on Batman adds atmosphere you don’t normally see.
Next is a Huntress story by Guillaume Singelin that features a grungy Gotham, not unlike something in a cyberpunk story. The coloring is reminiscent of James Stokoe’s work with an earthy hue that bleeds into a panel. This story is one long chase sequence that is breakneck and fun.
Wrapping up the book is a story set on Pluto: the prison Planet in the 853rd century. Kenny Porter writes with Baldemar Rivas on art offering new takes on classic villains and classic Batman attire. It’s super futuristic and it’s fun to pinpoint the references made. There are some new Batman designs that will give fans plenty of joy.
Is there any superhero that suits the futuristic spin as well as Batman? This book answers that question with four great Batman stories that play in sandboxes already created, but bring in new and clever ideas. If you’ve come to worship futuristic Batman, Batman: Urban Legends #7 is a cathedral of great ideas, visuals, and brilliant delights.
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