Review: Batman: The Brave & The Bold #10

Batman: The Brave & The Bold #10
Writers: Karl Kerschl, Delilah S. Dawson, Matt Harding, Torunn Grønbekk, Dan Watters
Artists: Karl Kerschl, Serg Acuña, George Kambadais, Mike Henderson, Tom Derenick, Ricardo López Ortiz
Color Artists: Msassyk, Matt Herms, Adam Guzowski, Lee Loughridge
Letterers: Steve Wands, Dave Sharpe, Troy Peteri
Review by Davydh Tidey

Batman: The Brave & The Bold #10 brings us new stories, new outlooks, and new characters to love! A big thank you to James Attias for filling in for me last month, I had a plane to catch and a rant to go on.

Now… let me at ‘em! 

Champagne

Returning the Gotham Academy and bringing back its eclectic menagerie to comics pages, “Mothers’ Day” brings us a Man-Bat story like no other! It also features the blue and grey Batsuit, which is, and will always be, pretty neat. 

Gotham Academy scribe Karl Kerschlhandles both the writing and art duties for this story and he does a great job. Already having a ton of experience with these characters has definitely worked in his favor, bringing the characters back into Batman’s world feels seamless and natural. Maps is a great character, and after her recent appearances in Kelly Thompson and Leonardo Romero’s Birds of Prey, I’m definitely keen to learn more! 

The coloring by Msassyk works really real for the tone of the story, and switches between lighthearted and whimsical to dark and dingy at the drop of a hat. Excellent stuff. 

Poison

Speaking of characters being thrust back into the spotlight, Artemis is back in “The Poison Within!” The last time we saw her (aside from a brief cameo in Tom King and Daniel Sampere’s Wonder Woman) was in the Trial of the Amazons book, and we didn’t get too much personal face time with her, so… a story all about her? Sign me up! 

Delilah S. Dawson does a great job of letting us into the wandering Amazon’s mind, giving us an honest, scathing introspective on what her life has become and how she feels about her sisters. It really feels like we get to a make-or-break point with her in her own mind, before the drama strikes.

Serg Acuña, George Kambadais, and Matt Herms’ art and colors are stunning. The contrast between the desert and the oasis she finds is stark, and really aids the idea of the duality in her mind about her life. The coloring evokes the likes of Tula Lotay while being a bit more traditional comics artwork in its approach. I really enjoyed the visuals in this story. 

Protein

How do you face a threat that’s no one but everyone? A faceless member of the proletariat, a physical representation of the hoi polloi? They are everywhere and nowhere. They are the people. They are Nameless.

Welp. Guess that’s the Signal’s problem! 

Matt Harding brings a fairly unusual story to the table here. The fight between the hero and villain doesn’t actually matter; it’s the message being sent that counts. There’s no way to fight that and Harding conveys this in dramatic fashion, evoking scenes from The Dark Knight Returns in a particularly clever way.

Mike Henderson and Adam Guzowski fill their roles well, with dynamic action scenes and the dramatic final confrontation being expertly conveyed. You’ll see what I mean by the DKR reference immediately.

Black Coffee

Being editor-in-chief of the Daily Planet isn’t easy, and  God knows Perry White didn’t think so. Now Lois Lane has stepped into his shoes it’s become a whole other game! “The Game” brings us intrigue, drama, and good old-fashioned reporting. 

Torunn Grønbekk’s writing has seriously impressed me over the last few years. I’ve enjoyed pretty much everything I’ve read from her, from co-writing Valkyrie: Jane Foster with Al Ewing, all the way up to the newest Carnage solo book. This story’s no different. Intrigue is being built into a genuinely clever, inventive plot that I’ve not seen before… and I’ve read a lot of comics! So, if I haven’t seen it before, it immediately gets my vote! 

Tom Derenick and Lee Loughridge bring the vision to life, taking the absent reporter’s story and turning it into an easy-to-understand journey through a deep-dive investigation. I need more of this story immediately! 

Cheeseburger

Remember the firestorm that went up on the internet when Bruce Wayne ate a cheeseburger with a knife and fork? Well, Dan Watters and Ricardo López Ortiz are here to set that particular record straight, with added Clayface! 

This is a fun little story about a typical night for the Batman. “The Cheeseburger” brings all the unrealistic expectations of Batman and his insane workout regime crashing down into a relatable pile by reinforcing a simple truth about humanity; sometimes, nothing will do except a damn cheeseburger. 

Dan Watters has always been a brilliant writer, and stories like this prove it. Relatability’s an important part of any story, and 9 times out of 10, Batman doesn’t have any. This shows the audience that Bruce Wayne can be, and definitely is relatable. Thanks for all you do, Dan! (I loved The Six Fingers #1! )

Ricardo López Ortiz gives the story a manga-esque feel, which really works with the tone they’re trying to convey. I’m in love with the Batsuit design in this as well, as it looks really cobbled together and visually interesting, very cool! 

Conclusion

A new suite of stories, some newer characters to enjoy, and some old classics to revisit! Batman: The Brave & The Bold #10 really has it all.

Keep ‘em coming DC, keep ‘em coming. 

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment


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