BATMAN ON FILM, since June 1998!

BOOK REVIEW

BATMAN: BLACK & WHITE, Vol. 3

Author: Bill Ramey
Friday, June 1, 2007

SYNOPSIS FROM DC COMICS:
"A new collection of classic Batman tales in black and white, featuring unique visions of the Dark Knight from such comics luminaries as Brian Azzarello, Darwyn Cooke, Judd Winick, Jill Thompson, Michael Wm. Kaluta and many more!"

BATMAN: BLACK AND WHITE has a concept that’s fairly easy to understand: Individual Batman short stories in which the art is, well, done in black and white. Got it? Cool.

Vol. 3 of this series was recently made available by the fine folks over at DC COMICS. If you’ve read the previous two volumes, then you pretty much know what you are getting. For those of you who did not, here’s the deal…

Featured writers include: Brian Azzarello, Darwyn Cooke, Geoff Johns, Mike Mignola, Julius Schwartz, and Judd Winick among others. Among the artists displaying their talents are: Darwyn Cooke, Dick Giordano, Jill Thompson, Mike Wieringo, While Portacio, and Denys Cowan to name a few.

Some of the stories could be considered “in continuity,” some are clearly not, while a few are sort of "out there," if you will. One will find "traditional" artwork as well as some, um, “different” stuff in this compilation.

Most of the stories I quite liked. There was one story in particular called “The Lesson” -- written by Julius Schwartz and Dan Rasper -- that I just adored. Trust me, if you are a Batman fan, you’ll dig this one immensely.

But I'm not going to lie to you, there were a few that had the “Meh Factor” going for me.

Now the question is do I recommend that you go out and buy BATMAN: BLACK AND WHITE, Vol. 3? If you are a collector of all things Bat, most definitely. If not, you may or may not find it worth your hard earned money. As for myself, I fall into that latter category, but I found it quite enjoyable and worth the $20 some-odd bucks I spent on it [And I bought the hardcover, FYI].

Unless you simply buy everything "Batman," I’d probably suggest that you should wait until the softcover edition is released and then definitely add it to your collection.

One "extra" that is included is a section (at the end of the book) displaying all of the BATMAN: BLACK AND WHITE statues that have been created by DC DIRECT. My faves include those by Alex Ross, Paul Pope, Tim Sale, Steve Rude (which has a very "1939-ish 'The Bat-Man' vibe" going), Jim Lee, and Matt Wagner. We've all seen those -- and they are tremendous -- but the cool part is that the concept art for each is included.

Bill Ramey, AKA "Jett," is the founder and editor in chief of
BATMAN ON FILM, BATMAN IN COMICS, and ON-FILM.NET.

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