Published on September 26th, 2017 | by Kevin Given0
Review: The Shadow/Batman #1
“It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key.” This is by far one of the greatest Batman cross-overs since The Batman/Hulk Crossover in the late ‘70’s. And I’ve only just read issue one! This issue starts in New York on New Year’s Eve. The Pyg is trying to control the masses with his Dollotron masks. Batman shows up, Robin (Damian Wayne) shows up and it’s a helluva ride!
Steve Orlando keeps us guessing throughout issue one. Just who is in control of those Dollotron masks? What appears to be a simple megalomaniac trying to take over the citizens of New York has far deeper implications. We don’t learn why Batman is in New York in this issue, but his arrival is timely. Robin’s presence is an equally unwanted surprise and the Shadow is only in this issue briefly, but his arrival is significant and shows a connection to the past. There’s plenty of action for the comic book fans but also a lot to think about for those of us who want methods to our madness. Great stuff.
Giovanni Timpano is the perfect artist to bring these two franchises together. The creator of Eclipse has already worked on the Shadow and if he hasn’t worked for DC on any Batman title yet (I don’t recall him on any off the top of my head) the creators of the Caped Crusader really need to bring him on board. His work is dark and his panels rich with shadows and he brings a certain menace to both Bruce Wayne and Kent Allard that greatly enhance Orlando’s story. Both the Batman splash and the Shadow splash alone make this issue worth the cover price. I loved his art and he’s fast becoming one of my favorites in the medium.
A great beginning to a legendary team up. I cannot say how surprised I was to learn that this cross-over was coming and that when I found out I was worried that they may not do both character’s justice, one would over-shadow (sorry) the other. But this is awesome! It should develop into a fantastic story. Why this team-up hasn’t happened before is beyond me. I always thought that a Batman/Shadow team up should take place in the ‘40’s when Batman was fresh and the Shadow was at his peak popularity. But boy was I wrong! The Damian Wayne Robin is the perfect anti-hero in this issue and he helps issue one come to a rousing conclusion! Could Damian really…well, no spoilers here, let’s just say that issue one ends with a calculating Damian Wayne doing the unthinkable to his father…To be continued. ***1/2 (9.7 rating)
The Shadow/Batman #1
Writer – Steve Orlando
Art – Giovanni Timpano
Colors – Flavio Dispenza
Letters – Taylor Esposito
Publisher – DC/Dynamite
Publication date – October 2017