Scott Snyder‘s All-Star Batman has continuously been the strongest Bat-book for DC Rebirth. Despite being the only Batman comic not double-shipping, ASB shines brightest in a time where fans are being spoiled with great Dark Knight drama every week. Issue #9 sees the “Ends Of The Earth” arc conclude in elaborate Batman fashion.
***Spoilers Lie Ahead***
After a few issues of Batman touring through the rogues that Snyder had not yet utilized, he finds himself in the final stage of a sinister plot. Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, and Mad Hatter were all complex bumps in the road leading Batman to one of his greatest foes, Ra’s Al Ghul. Batman must defuse the villain’s intricate scheme to downsize the world’s population.
The issue unfolds like the final act of a heist movie. With the master plan unfolding flawlessly, Ra’s Al Ghul reveals all his cards to his nemesis detective. As Batman has seemingly been defeated and killed, the book pulls a reverse deconstruction. The one thing heist movies don’t ever have in them is Batman and Ra’s sees why.
In dramatic, and equally elaborate, fashion the “Great Detective” uses everything Ra’s threw at him to make him think he’d won. There’s a lot to follow and absorb in this issue to fully follow how our hero emerged victorious. Snyder makes what could have been a bitter pill, easily digestible.
All-Star Batman #9 is one of the best examples of Bruce always being ahead of the game, in recent memory. Not only is Batman pulling the wool over Ra’s Al Ghul’s eyes, but the reader as well. Minor details, such as the dialogue with Alfred, add layers to the misdirection which results in a satisfying finale.
Scott Snyder’s frequent artistic companion, Jock, lends a major helping hand in keeping this from being an overload of information. His heavy lines and dark designs play perfectly once again. Jock’s interpretation of classic Batman rogues have been a major highlight of this arc. There’s not a single panel wasted in this brilliantly crafted comic book.
The back-up story concludes “The Cursed Wheel,” a Duke Thomas tale. An underrated character from Snyder’s Batman (New 52) run, Duke is getting some loose ends tied up. This finale sets up the narrative to be featured for the character in the upcoming Dark Days event.
What did you think of Ends Of The Earth? Which All-Star Batman artist has been your favorite so far? Let us know in the comments below!