Review: Batman #148

by Max Byrne
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“The Storm”
Writer: Chip Zdarsky
Artist: Jorge Jimenez
Color Artist: Tomeu Morey 
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Review by Max Byrne

Batman #148 is an issue that, after several months of our titular hero facing a seemingly endless succession of defeats and setbacks, feels like a joyous rising from the ashes. The best triumphs always come after tremendous adversity, and Chip Zdarsky has expertly plotted out a path to victory that feels earned… and then some!

By stacking the deck so vastly against the Dark Knight, the last few issues have made me question just how victory could be attained. There are no spoilers here, I’ll let everybody find out for themselves, but let’s say there’s a lot of strength in family!

This is an issue strewn with fist-pumping moments that will make even the hardest of hearts feel fuller. Relationships that were seemingly broken are repaired, family members are reunited, and the sense of unity practically leaps off the page.

This is no mere wall-to-wall slugfest, though. Yes, if you want fisticuffs galore then you will be extremely well served, but what Zdarsky does so well is layer the plot by jumping backward in time to frame the action in the present.

Batman’s a character who’s equally reliant on his mental gifts as his physical ones, and his well-laid plan to defeat Failsafe’s a heady combination of the two. This serves as the catalyst for a huge bait and switch involving a surprising member of the team that keeps the reader guessing right up until the final panels.

What we think we’ve just witnessed is completely thrown upside down by a fascinating jump back in time that underlines Batman’s tactical genius and his willingness to take calculated risks. The simplicity of his plan is evident yet very dangerous. Read and enjoy!

Despite the perceived victory of our heroes, there’s still a tangible sense of foreboding and menace of things on the horizon, as the nefarious Daniel Captio is defiant in defeat, hinting that the worst is yet to come. The Absolute Power event in July could even make this series of events seem like child’s play.

Captio’s been a superb adversary for Batman, both as a physical foe as well as a cerebral one, he’s a dangerous man indeed. His influence on Bruce during his formative years was there to be used as a weapon, and he certainly does that in this issue.

I’m running out of superlatives to describe the art of Jorge Jimenez. An extremely versatile artist, he has the ability like few others to combine a knack for depicting violence and bloodshed with smaller, more intimate character beats. For a prime example check out the panel depicting the long-awaited reunion between Bruce and Damian. Amidst the chaos, this meeting of father and son stands out and resonates with the reader. Of course, if you want haymaker punches, and characters being beaten to a bloody mess and thrown through walls, then Jorge has you covered there, too.


Batman #148 feels like the end of a chapter, and very much like the start of something new at the same time. When one foe’s bested, there are frequently more always waiting to take their place. The Bat Family’s seemingly back on the same page, but the rulebook is about to be torn up and some devastating new chapters will be added very soon.

9 out of 10

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment

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