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COMIC REVIEW: BATMAN #661

Author: Bill Ramey
Sunday, January 7, 2007

FROM DC COMICS: "The creative team of writer John Ostrander and artist Tom Mandrake continues the 4-part tale of Grotesk! As a blizzard tightens its hold on Gotham, the monstrous Grotesk engineers a bloody confrontation between the forces of Perun and Johnny Kareoke — with Batman caught in between! The lovely Dr. Amina Franklin holds the key to the mystery, but her silence may seal her fate."

BATMAN‘s “GROTESK” story arch by John Ostrander and Tom Mandrake continues in issue #661.

If you haven’t read any of my previous reviews of “GROTESK,” I like it...a lot. In fact, it reminds me more of a story one would find in DETECTIVE (which is my favorite Bat-title) rather than BATMAN. Anyway…

The purpose of this issue (part 3 of the storyline) is to tie everything together and provide a lead-in to the finale in #662. All parties involved -- The Russian mob, Johnny Karaoke, Grotesk, and The Dark Knight -- finally collide. Johnny K. and the Russians are after this I-Gore device thing which Grotesk possesses, and The Batman -- originally on the trail of just Grotesk -- is sort of caught in the middle.

We finally learn the identity of Grotesk (which has been pretty obvious -- I think), although we won’t find out everything until next issue as it's suggested that Dr. Amina will finally spill the beans. And I believe that she’ll confide in Bruce Wayne (he once “dated” her) not The Batman -- or so it looks to be headed that way.

At any rate, if you’ve yet to read the previous two issues of BATMAN which feature parts one and two of “GROTESK,” you’re missing out. I’d recommend that you skip all four issues and wait for the eventual trade paperback. On the other hand, if you are like me and have been reading this from the get-go, you’re eagerly waiting for #662 to see how it all pans out.

And finally, I've got to say something about the art. I'll admit that I've become a fan of Tom Mandrake’s Batman work! Very dark and certainly contemporary, but it possesses a touch of “70s Batman” as well.

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

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