Batman #61 Review - W...T...F... is going on?
Batman #61 is the weirdest single issue I've read in a long time. Not because it was particularly hard to follow, but because of the choices made by Tom King and the creative team.
Issue #60 ended on the cliffhanger of Alfred being knocked out and Penguin being kidnapped presumably by Bane's henchmen. Rather than continue that story we get an odd detour.
Batman is investigating the murder of "Bruce Waynes" parents. To answer the obvious question, no this isn't an Elseworlds story. The kid isn't really Bruce Wayne. Batman shakes down some guys and eventually runs down the alleged murderer. The comic ends on another cliffhanger that I definitely didn't see coming.
My biggest problem with the issue is that if you're new to this story you'll be totally lost. If you started reading at issue #60, this issue will be confusing and totally out of left-field. The twist is revealed in the end but there should have been a better recap.
The way the story is presented is that this rich kid shares the same name, likeness, and lineage as Batman. This is cleared up but the end but getting there would be completely jarring to new readers. What the hell is going on with Penguin and Alfred? How the hell did we jump from that story to this one?
The issue isn't bad but nothing really stood out at all outside of the twist ending. That includes the art and main cover. The linework is clean throughout the issue, particularly the faces. The colors throughout the comic are also gorgeous this is a credit to Tamra Bonvillain. I don't have any gripes with the art, but the issue isn't action-heavy so most of the pages while interesting to read and look at, feel bland. The variant cover is fantastic and I wish it was the one I purchased from my comic shop. Overall the issue just an odd detour that is totally disconnected from the previous 3 issues.