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'Batman' #116 is a feast for the eyes
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‘Batman’ #116 is a feast for the eyes

Batman vs. Peacekeeper-01, who ya got?

The penultimate issue of Fear State is out this week and it features Batman teaming up with Miracle Molly to thwart Scarecrow. Batman #116 is a race against time, as Poison Ivy plots to bring all of Gotham down and Peacekeeper-01 continues to be a threat. Also in this issue, Becky Cloonan, Michael Conrad, and Jorge Corona’s Batgirls backup story reaches the midway point!

This issue opens in Eden, Poison Ivy’s lair, and the magistrate aims to take her out, but his goons are surprised to find Ghost-Maker waiting to kick their butts. This issue’s main story is entirely drawn by Jorge Jimenez who does not disappoint, starting with Ghost-Maker slicing up the baddies in this opening scene, and delivering quite a full-page spread of Poison Ivy losing her cool as she starts to tear Gotham down from below.

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This scene ends up bookending the story with most of the action taking place between Batman, Miracle Molly, and Scarecrow. They’re all in the sewers of Gotham as Scarecrow’s fear bomb is about to go off. This scene features a few standoffs, a showdown between Batman and Peacekeeper-01, and impressive art. Jimenez makes Peacekeeper-01 look impressive, from his speed to his ability to come ever so close to taking out Batman. Not to be undone, Batman has his moments too and looks slick as hell exploding Batarangs lodged in Peacekeeper-01’s shoulder.

Tomeu Morey adds a lot to the art with his colors, especially in the aforementioned explosions that create an impressive look as the source of light on the characters in the scene. Poison Ivy looks practically alien with the color choices, which helps define her as inhuman and monstrous, making it believable she’d want to kill millions in Gotham. One full-page spread of a full-body shot of Batman features tons of little details brought into a new light thanks to the colors. From graffiti on the wall to the colors of a city subway map, or the shading in all the tiles, or the subtle purple on Batman’s cowl from a light source, they all add to the realism of the moment.

DC Preview: Batman Vol 3 #116

The level of detail in this book is downright absurd.
Credit: DC Comics

Meanwhile, Scarecrow looks incredible but gets a costume change as he must think quickly before the trigger to the fear bomb is lost. Jimenez makes Scarecrow look quite ordinary and almost pathetic without his mask, which helps remind the reader he’s just a guy in a costume. Meanwhile, Peacekeeper-01 and Batman are legit godlike in their stature and look.

There are two full-page splashes, one showing Peacekeeper-01 standing tall ready to fight, and one with Batman doing the same. They’re having a bit of a standoff. It’s a cool moment to let the characters take a beat, set up the fight as it’s all come to this, and let the reader soak in these two titans. While impressively done, one can argue this story slows to a crawl due to the posturing of the characters and the fights taking place. It looks great, don’t get me wrong, but all told the events of this story take place over minutes and move the plot forward very little.

The backup continues its strong start as it turns a bad day for two of the Batgirls into a horrible one. Themes involving the magistrate’s way of using excessive force are on full display, and these characters are soon fleeing explosions and near death. These characters were always vigilantes, but they couldn’t be more vigilantes after this story.

The art by Corona is downright insane at times; from the impossible angles of Cassie’s cape to the layered details of the city, there’s a lot to soak in. Colors by Sarah Stern enhance contrast, like the purple of Batgirl’s cape or the green, misty air hanging over city streets. There’s an incredible page featuring magistrate soldiers taking shots at the clock tower and the colors help distinguish smoke and fire very well. A near full-page splash of the Batgirls fleeing an explosion plays with the light off their capes, and also adds depth to the smoke and fire they’re jumping away from.

Batman #116 is a feast for the eyes, and an exciting comic due to its backup and some exciting action-packed moments. The main story moves the story forward very little, but it does bring us closer to the end of Fear State in the slickest looking book of the week.

'Batman' #116 is a feast for the eyes
‘Batman’ #116 is a feast for the eyes
Batman #116
Batman #116 is a feast for the eyes, and an exciting comic due to its backup and some exciting action-packed moments. The main story moves the story forward very little, but it does bring us closer to the end of Fear State in the slickest looking book of the week.
Reader Rating1 Vote
9
Jimenez dazzles with impressive art on every page
Cool to see Batman face off against Peacekeeper-01!
The backup is a visual delight as well with the situation for our heroes growing even grimmer
The main story moves things forward very little, focusing more on action and fight scenes
9
Great

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