Monday, January 23, 2017


While it's a bit uneven, silly and confusing at times (where the hell did the Bat-Blimp come from?), and doesn't flow as well as I would have liked, there are some really good ideas in this sequel to Zero Year - Secret City, which is Scott Snyder's take on the introduction of Batman to Gotham City. There's a nifty little Dark Knight Rises-style idea of Batman struggling to save a slightly dystopian Gotham taken over by The Riddler, all while in a soiled t-shirt, army pants, and cowl, riding a beat-up dirtbike.

While James Gordon was barely in the previous book, he has much more of a presence here, and Snyder has a great new take on his character, that might feel controversial to some. Not only is there a hint that Gordon's past as a cop might not be as straight and narrow and idealistic as you might think, there's also the idea that he and Bruce Wayne have a history dating back to the deaths of Bruce's parents, with Bruce growing up blaming him along with the other bent cops in the city for the violence that lead to his parent's deaths. It not only provides a past that Gordon has to overcome, but also a grudge that Bruce has to overcome as well. In Zero Year, Bruce is a cocky, angry 25-year-old who, throughout the two books, has to learn to put aside the anger, learn that the only way to really save the city is with the help of others, and become a true symbol of hope that Gotham needs.


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