Sunday, August 8, 2010

Batman Odyssey #2 (of 12)

I'm still not sure what to make of the Neal Adams maxi-series, Batman Odyssey.

Of course, it's great to see Adams back at work on the Dark Knight - his artwork is as fresh and energized as ever, with incredible layouts, tons of detail and an amazing "real world" feel to each panel.

It's the story that I'm not quite sure about. It takes us into two flashback stories for Batman - one set right after he first dons his costume (which was equipped with pistols), and one that takes place soon after the first Robin swung into action.

Each story centers around a lot of gunplay, as Batman tells the story about the first two times he was shot.

The second story (a scene from it is the source of the cover art) gives us a truly over-the-top scene in which Batman is caught in an intense hail of gunfire. It's one of those moments where the story becomes very hard to believe, because no armor could protect a human body from destruction in that kind of situation - so if Adams is trying for realism - and that seems to be the point here - he's kind of defeating his purpose here (although he does provide some well-crafted comic book-type explanations along the way).

The story also spends a surprising amount of time explaining why a hydrogen-powered engine won't blow up if you shoot it.

But these are minor complaints, and there's still plenty of time in this series to shed light on these events.

Frankly, I'm just delighted to see Adams back at work again - he's always been one of my favorite artists and comics creators, and his work is an automatic "buy" for me.

But I'm looking forward to some clarification on the story here.

Grade: B+

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