Thursday, May 31, 2012

Batman Annual #1- Review

Mr. Freeze's chilling new story

The origins and motivations of Mr. Freeze are brought to new light in Scott Snyder’s Batman Annual #1. Victor Fries has had a very tough life. He lost his mother at a young age, his wife fell ill and was frozen in order to preserve her, and he was mutated into a man of living cold. But if there’s one thing we didn’t know about Victor, it’s that he hasn’t been telling us the whole truth.

Snyder has become famous in the comic book industry for revamping The Dark Knight and making all of the characters in Batman’s corner of the DC Universe fuller and richer. This annual issue was co-written by James Tynion IV, and not only changes some of the origins of Mr. Freeze, but it also puts a bold new spin on his relationship with Nora and his involvement with the Court of Owls. Snyder and Tynion took some real risks making these changes, but each risk paid off, right up to the very last chilling page.

Jason Fabok’s artwork is really striking in this issue. He had a take on Mr. Freeze that was both classic and modern at the same time. It’s a blending that tends to work really well in comics when it comes to iconic characters. You want them to be recognizable, but you also want them to fit in the modern world and have a personal touch.

A big question that many people have asked me is whether or not you have to read the entire “Night of the Owls” event in order to understand it. The answer is simple – no. You can pick this up and run with it without having read any of the other issues of Batman or the Bat-Family books. It does tie-in to the Owls story, but it also stands on its own enough to be enjoyed without any prior knowledge.

This was another great annual issue in the New 52 by DC Comics. That being said, I did enjoy the Animal Man annual slightly better. But at the end of the day they were both worth the $4.99 price tag.

RATING: 7.5/10

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