Review: Batman: Urban Legends #1

Batman: Urban Legends #1
Writers: Chip Zdarsky, Stephanie Phillips, Brandon Thomas, and Matthew Rosenberg
Artists: Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Marcus To, Laura Braga, Max Dunbar, and Ryan Benjamin
Color Artists: Adriano Lucas, Ivan Plascencia, Luis Guerrero, and Antonio Fabela
Letterers: Becca Carey, Deron Bennett, Steve Wands, and Saida Temofonte
Review by Carl Bryan
Warning – Small spoilers follow
The Dark Knight may be the biggest name in Gotham City, but there are lots of other heroes-and villains-who will get a turn to shine in Batman: Urban Legends #1, a brand-new monthly series tying into the biggest events in Gotham City.
The series begins with these can’t-miss tales:
  • Superstar writer Chip Zdarsky enters the world of Gotham City with celebrated Detective Comics and DC Future State
  • Robin Eternal artist Eddy Barrows joins in for a six-part story chronicling Red Hood’s investigation of a new drug sweeping through Gotham. It’s a night that will change his life forever-and put him in Batman’s crosshairs.
  • Writer of the DC Future State “Grifters” story, Matthew Rosenberg, picks up where he left off, continuing from the pages of Batman #101!
  • Superstar artist Ryan Benjamin joins the team, as we learn why Cole Cash is in Gotham in a tale that hints at what Halo might be… and we also get Batman vs. Grifter-round two!
  • New Harley Quinn writer Stephanie Phillips and DC Future State: The Next Batman artist Laura Braga join forces for a Harley tale set just before the launch of her new series. Harley’s determined to sort out her history with Poison Ivy-but first, she has to find her!
  • Coming off the DC Future State “Outsiders” tale, writer Brandon Thomas begins a three-part saga reuniting Black Lightning, Katana, and Metamorpho. But this reunion quickly turns into a confrontation with a figure from Katana’s past, in a story drawn by fan-favorite artist Max Dunbar (Champions, Dungeons and Dragons, Judge Dredd)

What we have needed…

Gotham City is teeming with stories, as Batman’s legend has grown beyond just Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson. The addition of many Robins through the years, and now with Future State, yet another new Batman.

It’s time for many more stories to be anchored by a further drilling into existing story lines

Red Hood… many layers to this former Robin

Red Hood has his following… never has that been more evident in the recent Three Jokers saga, so it’s only fitting that he be included here, in a tale of investigation about a street drug that is sure to be linked to the Clown Prince of Crime himself.

Red Hood is a hero/anti-hero on the edge, so there’s lots to live up to here. Arguably the biggest let down in Bruce’s career is not saving Jason Todd (can we really give Bruce the blame for that one, though?) and once returning from the dead, who can blame him for being bent on revenge, and experiencing alienation?

Grifter Too… But Where’s Ghost Maker?

I get it. Grifter has nosed his way into Gotham as a hired bodyguard, however, his skill set lacks a bit in his becoming anything other than a nuisance to those around him, including Bruce.

I love the Grifter character from Image, but I don’t want him softened in a DC world. If that route is open from Image, I really want another Spawn/Dark Knight comic to emerge.

Finally, if Grifter gets to play, then I want Ghost-Maker in the fray as well. You can’t give Bruce another crime fighter ally, or funding stream, without making him a part of this book.

A Playground for Villains, Robins, and Filling in the Blanks

Batman: Urban Legends #1 is akin to the special comics from my childhood. Remember the huge anthologiess, that contained story upon story of those associated with your favorite character? Batman Family used to do that for me.  Now Urban Legends will fill the void that’s been missing.

Pick this up, as it will be one of your favorite playgrounds for some time to come!

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment

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