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‘Batman Annual #5’ (review)

Written by James Tynion IV
Art by James Stokoe
Published by DC Comics

 

So far, I have not really enjoyed James Tynion’s run on the main Batman title. So, I opened this book with a hint of absolute dread. It did have something in it though that I was looking forward to. That is the art of James Stokoe. I like Stokoe and was looking forward to his artwork at the very least in this annual.

Stokoe’s artwork does not disappoint. It definitely brings up the story a few notches.

The story starts with an interesting retelling of Batman’s origin through Leslie Thompkins’s eyes. We get to see her deal with a criminal. And then someone named Big Henry’s comes to her rescue.

That is when we see Clownhunter watching the proceedings.

Clownhunter eventually breaks into Leslie’s place. He is wounded and he tells Leslie that Batman told him to seek her out if he needed help. He says, “I want to make sense.”

And that is when we flash back to this origin in an abrupt fashion.

We start off by seeing Clownhunter playing video games. He fights with his mother. He goes to help his parents at their restaurant as punishment.

And then, obviously, the place is destroyed by the Joker and the Clownhunter’s parents are killed.

The rest of the book deals with the ramifications of this.

The story is pretty standard. Honestly, Stokoe’s art really is special (especially the coloring) and it elevates everything to make this worthwhile. Tynion is smart here by not trying to get too crazy with his script and to let the artwork do it’s thing.

All in all, this is a fine annual that, while not original, is solid. Worth a look.

RATING: A-

 

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