Sean Murphy continues his DC Comics Black Label series ‘Batman: Curse of the White Knight,’ which retells the story of Bruce Wayne and his family’s real legacy in Gotham City.
Following the events of its predecessor, Batman has revealed his identity to Commissioner Gordon and the rest of the GTO, the unit founded by Jack Napier, to earn back their trust. Gotham is still trying to understand what happened after the Joker’s return while Harley Quinn is pregnant with his child. The elite in Gotham recruit Jean Paul Valley to become a vigilante they can control and he goes on a rampage in Gotham, killing many rogues and consistently challenging Batman for dominance. Meanwhile, Batman visits a mysterious priest named Jason Blood, who reveals that the Waynes carry a dark secret about their family history.
Like the first series, Batman: White Knight, it truly shows Sean Murphy and Klaus Janson’s skills as artists. The background artwork, the character designs, and even the subtle clues put in the illustrations shows just how much talent both of them have when it comes to the world of comic books and particularly Batman.
Also like the first series, this story truly lacks in the story development department. There is this new theme in DC Comics where they want to smear the reputation of Batman and the Wayne Family more broadly. You can see it in recent issues and this story ramps the story up by trying to hide it as “realism.” Instead, you are left scratching your head wondering why a childhood legend’s reputation is being needlessly smeared. It shows a lack of creativity and demonstrates that a new era has begun for the Batman.
Why do I say that? It is not just Black Label and Elseworlds pushing this narrative. Tom King’s run on the main title, his appearances in such crossover as “Heroes In Crisis,” and the direction Zack Snyder took the character in film signals that Batman is no longer a hero. He’s a self-righteous rich boy who is taking his frustrations out on the world, not a man who had a terrible wrong done to him and chose to protect others from that same fate. It is sad and disappointing to read from the talented group of people working at DC Comics.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below. Tell me if there is a comic book, movie, or novel you would like me to review. While you are at it, check out my graphic novel reviews of X-Men Legacy: Collision and Lonestar: Soul of the Soldier. Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe for more posts like this one.