Monday, May 09, 2011
Batman: Gotham After Midnight, by Steve Niles & Kelley Jones
(pb - graphic novel; 2008)
"Gotham City after dark is a dangerous place.
"Gotham City after Midnight is Hell on Earth.
"There's a new kind of madman loose in Gotham and he's out to steal the city's heart. The monstrosity named Midnight is convinced he's doing Batman's job, only better than Batman ever could.
"As the city descends into madness, it's Batman's duty to stop Midnight, but the newcomer has manipulated an exceptionally unstable Joker, a giant Clayface and others into destroying the Dark Knight for him!
"Can Batman restore peace to a city that's growing colder and more heartless by the minute? Or have the people forsaken their patron protector to live in the shadow of Midnight's perpetual terror?
"Masters of the macabre Steve Niles (30 Days of Night, Simon Dark) and Kelley Jones (Batman and Dracula: Red Rain) bring you a heart-stopping mystery beating within the darkest corners of Gotham City."
This efficacious blend of computer-style art, 1930s pulp and 1970s EC/Creepy-style gothic-schlock atmosphere may appeal to afficionados of the aforementioned elements.
Between Niles' off-beat, quick-moving, horror-veracious writing and Jones' equally off-beat, Creepy-recalling stylings, this is a fun, cheesy-villainous, fresh take on Batman, one that's familiar enough to not alienate longtime Batman traditionalists, and different enough to be its own metropolis-of-darkness beast.
Worth owning, this.
(Quick note: if you're a fan of Jones' artwork, check out his 1997-1998 comic book mini-series and one-shots, The Hammer, which simultaneously, over the course of countless re-reads, sent chills down my spine and made me laugh. . . Inconveniently, the 9-single issue comics that comprise these four stories haven't been anthologized into a single graphic novel.)
This is the first-ever issue of The Hammer: