COMICSCENE REVIEW: BATMAN 89 Issue #1

DC are really mining the Nostalgia Pit with this one, giving us new material based around (no surprise) much lauded Batman movie from 1989. So we have a black Harvey Dent who isn’t two face yet and sort of looks like Billy Dee Williams, and a Bruce Wayne that sort of looks like Michael Keaton. Hmmm… I don’t think Dc wanted to spend extra on likeness rights.

Interestingly, it’s written by Sam Hamm, the guy who wrote the original movie plus the story for Batman Returns, so at least he knows what he’s doing, right? Then again, he also wrote Monkeybone, so this could go either way!

Set after Batman Returns, though with no sign of Catwoman at this point, Batman 89 sees Gotham overrun with criminals and street vigilantes, with Harvey Dent determined to bring down Batman and James Gordon, followed by bringing order to the city. Piece of cake, eh? Hamm’s script rattles along nicely, and the combination of Joe Quinone’s art and Leonardo Ito’s dark colouring does a great job of making you feel you’re back in that world. I have no idea what direction this is going to take, but for a first issue it’s a wonderful start that makes good use of the nostalgia factor to draw you in, but keeps you there with solid storytelling.

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