‘Batman: The Knight‘ issue one kicks off a ten-part series where we get a new NEW origin for Bruce Wayne’s journey into becoming the Dark Knight. This time, writing duties are handled by Chip Zdarsky with artwork by Carmine Di Giandomenico.
Bruce Wayne discusses his anger with therapist Dr. Hugo Strange. He recounts beating up a bully at his prep school and his butler Alfred Pennyworth throwing away all the books in the Wayne Manor library to “rebuild” it with knowledge. We are introduced to Bruce’s high school girlfriend Dana who is constantly tired and encourages Bruce to look past his anger. Meanwhile, Bruce is having nightmares where he sees a knight standing before him.
While Batman’s origins have been explored on multiple occasions, there have been four main stories in the comics. Detective Comics #33, The Untold Legend of Batman, Year One, and Zero Year are probably the most popular depending on who you are talking to (and that’s not including film and TV). Rebirth and Metal seemed to maintain Zero Year… until now.
The artwork is fine. Giandomenico is a very talented artist, so no shade in that regard, but I do not feel that it was standout like Bob Kane (obviously), Greg Capullo, and David Mazzucchelli all tried to at least make the origin seem unique to that particular story. This one feels like it could slide right into any part.
As for the story, it explores things that I did not really need to know about. In early stories, Bruce set out his journey before high school, accumulating knowledge along the way. No longer. We get to see high school Wayne and hear about his privilege. BORING. I also did not need a connection to a future Batman villain for it to work.
Now there were some good things. I liked the stuff with Alfred and it was nice to see a posh version combined with the fatherly version. Also, I think Bruce’s personality was correct and Dana was an interesting character to introduce.
That being said, there was just nothing unique or original about it. The story borrowed from Gotham and Batman Begins with a little bit of this and that, playing it safe. It just goes to show you that DC Comics has lost all sense of originality when it comes to their biggest characters. Fans like me did not need a new NEW Batman origin. The only reason I liked Zero Year was that Scott Snyder is such a dynamite writer who was willing to take risks with the story while honoring the past. “The Knight” does not, but I will give it a chance.
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 reviews for Chasing Demons and the final issue of Transformers: Wreckers – Tread and Circuits. Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe for more posts like this one.
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