Batman: Full Circle
Written By Mike W. Barr
Penciled By Alan Davis
Inks By Mark Farmer
Colors By Tom Ziuko
So yeah, if you dress up in spandex and fight crime pretty much things do run full circle. Oh so the title of the tale I’m righting a rant about. This one shot is a follow up to Batman Year Two by Mike W. Barr and thankfully he’s bringing Alan Davis as the artist with him. Good thing too, because I was totally tired of looking at those funky ass lines that Todd McFarlane “drew.” So I guess this could really be called Batman Year Three or two and a half or something. Shit, the Batman editor’s don’t even know how old this guy is, so I’m pretty much just throwing my hands up and going along with this whole thing.
This story has Robin in it, you know the original Dick Grayson one. Batman and Robin foil a drug bust, bust since Robin is still pretty new to this whole fighting in tights gig he gets a bullet hole blown right through his cape. Batman can’t have that. He just got this kid so he grounds Robin from going out as Robin for the time being. So naturally Robin starts to boo hoo about it. But Batman has his foot down. I guess it’s no super tight green shorts for Dick Grayson. Bummer.
So The Reaper is back in Gotham and he’s cutting up hookers. All the reporters in Gotham know that Rachel Caspian’s father, Judson (Still a stupid ass name.) was the Reaper and wonder if he’s back from the dead. But Bats ain’t buying the story, he knows that the real Reaper is dead and gone. He’s got the back issues to prove it. I know, cause I do too.
Rachael flees the nunnery or convent. I can never tell which one. Rachael goes to see Leslie Tompkins, which bring Bruce Wayne running. Bruce tells her he’ll get to the bottom of this new Reaper. But what would a DC comics One shot be without an origin story. The new Reaper is really Joe Chill Jr. He saw what went down in the final issue of Batman Year Two and thinks that Batman could have saved his father instead of letting his old man bite the big one. So he want’s revenge. Which I just found out isn’t the name of just a show on ABC. And hey, let’s make this tale a family affair. Joe Chill Jr. has a son, and he’s a little scamp that ran away from home to be like his dad. A deadbeat? It’s never said, but I can pretty much guess that.
The new Reaper, who’s Joe Chill Jr. goes after Rachel and that brings Batman. They fight but the Reaper gets the upper hand while Batman was trying to get Rachel to safety. Oh, that Bats. He’s such a stand up guy. So now the whole Chill family is getting into the “Let’s kill the Dark Knight” thing. Makes sense. I mean, it makes sense if your last name is Chill. Joe’s sister Marcia is in on the game , too.
So Joe Chill Jr. goes to Rachel nunnery and hits re dial on her phone, giving away that she’s staying with Leslie. Simple way to track someone. I’ll have to steal that idea. So, The Reaper kicks the crap out of Leslie and kidnaps Rachel. Once Batman founds out you can pretty much figure out that he’s pissed off. So Batman gets a note that’s been left behind to lead him to the new constructed Wayne Tower in the middle of downtown Gotham. Batman walks into a trap and get tied to a giant pillar with a noose around his neck and acid all around the pillar. Boy, it sounds like someone has been watching way too much Batman ‘66.
Robin disobeys Batman, (doesn’t he always?) and goes out to save Batman. He feels it in his gut. I think it might be gas, but hey, I’m not doctor. Well not until I print out this PH.D I went to the same school as Dr. Doom. Robin shows up and he and the “Reaper” fight it out but he’s no match for the Reaper. But Batman flips off the pillar and then uses his feet to push off the pillar to avoid the acid and attack the Reaper. And it’s own! Batman beats down the Reaper, he knocks the Reaper so hard that he almost falls into the acid. Robin’s all about letting him fall. But Batman doesn’t kill. Geez, where’s the Punisher and Frank Miller when you need them. Batman catches Joe Chill Jr. Just then Joe Chill III runs out. Batman just lets Joe Chill Jr. go to jail and if his son wants a piece of him, Batman wants to come see him in twenty years if he want’s to settle the score. Uhm, Okay. The story was bit weak but boy do I love me some Alan Davis and the crisp lines of Mark Farmer made this a run story with smooth storytelling and bold lines. My thumbs are up!