“Here There Be Monsters”
Writers: Collin Kelly, Jackson Lanzing
Artist: Max Dunbar
Color Artist: Sebastian Cheng
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Review by Adam Ray
Batman Beyond: Neo-Gothic #2 builds on issue one and also adds far more of the original Batman myths and legends than we ever expected. This series has always given its readers and viewers a welcome, but unexpected, mix of vintage Dark Knight thrills, as well as a glimpse of what the Batman may become in a strange, yet grand future Gotham.
The explosive return of Killer Croc alongside the sudden image of the city’s darkest secret makes the title all the more rewarding to long-enfranchised readers.
It’s a logical but welcome surprise to see the return of Waylon Jones. His mutation has had many iterations in the comics, so this super-sized version of him makes for the ultimate sewer monster, one akin to Godzilla.
The way the story opens really sets the tone. The sinister narration from a new character makes the cosmic and futuristic look of the tale suddenly feel more storybook and classic, despite being brand-new.
There’s something about how the panels are arranged in this issue that makes it claustrophobic, like the tunnels and sewers that the story’s set in. Max Dunbar’s line art masterfully contrasts with Sebastian Cheng’s colors, as we get the drab browns and greys of the sewer broken up by the details of the action, plus one (expected and necessary) burst of color. At the same time, all the action on the “top side” is bright and dynamic.
Batman Beyond: Neo-Gothic #2 brings us intense action and a fascinating new character, all wrapped up in the same new but familiar look into a futuristic Gotham. The creative team has done wonders in telling a new Batman story with things that deeply excite readers who know the deepest secrets of DC comics.
Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment