Batman #48 Review

Posted June 7, 2018 by Chad Waller in Comic Books

Written By: Tom King

Art By: Mikel Janin

Published By: DC

I’ve had this ongoing joke/deeply-rooted hope that for Batman’s wedding, The Joker would be his best man. Now I’m not saying that’s going to happen, but the Joker does ask, and it’s made me very happy. Because let’s face it, the Joker is the closest thing to a friend Batman has that isn’t work related. They share a hobby, ya know? I guess that hobby does involve work now that I think about it, but still, Batman’s relationship to the maniac clown is thicker than his relationship to Superman, who is not a maniac clown. Shame.

There are two very fun things to talk about with Batman #48. The first one is that Batman doesn’t talk, and the second is that it’s some of the most gruesome black comedy I’ve seen in a comic since Negative Space. Let’s hit point one first.

I like Batman in theory, but in practice sometimes he bothers me. Typically that’s when he opens his mouth. He’s great as the silent type, not passing judgement or doing a Shadow the Hedgehog impersonation, but when he talks, I find that he can get grating. He takes himself too seriously. It’s why Lego Batman works so well; it’s a big straight goof on a character that’s so serious he turns goofy. This Rebirth run of Batman has been fairly hit/miss with that, and the best issues are usually the ones where Batman takes a back seat or his fiance makes fun of him for talking.

Here, he has exactly one line. The Joker does the rest of the talking, which leads me to my second point.

This is my favorite rendition of the Joker put to comics. Tom King does everything right with him, making him scary, funny, chaotic, and really, really funny. I won’t promise the humor will be everyone’s cup of tea, but the Joker turns murder into the punchline of jokes that had me laughing pretty hard. The dude has some serious comedic timing. Mother issues, too. I wonder if he likes Danzig.

Janin sells the jokes just as much as King’s writing. The facial expressions are perfect, and the character’s movement is very janky and awkward, like he doesn’t know what he’s doing just as much as Batman doesn’t know what he’s doing. It’s good stuff.

Now, I could complain that the joker is pretty one-note in that his joke is the same premise over and over, but since Batman really hates murder, I never found it getting old. I could also complain about the cliffhanger ending, and I suppose I will. It’s lame. We all know [redacted for spoilers] isn’t going to [redacted for spoilers]. I wish comics would stop doing this.

Batman #48 is a great issue. It’s dark and strange and funny as hell, and Tom King writes an excellent Joker. I’m stoked for #49.

About the Author

Chad Waller

Chad Waller is the cofounder of Dual Wield Software, a two-man video game company that just published The Land of Glass on Steam. You should check it out! You can follow him on Twitter @DualWieldSoft and find his company page on Facebook with a quick search.