Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday Book Review: Batwoman Elegy

Um, Wow! I got my copy of Batwoman: Elegy about two weeks ago and I've had a chance to read and re-read it over that time and I have to say I'm amazingly impressed. The book is an amazing collaboration by artist J.H. Williams III, colorist Dave Stewart and writer Greg Rucka.

I have to start with J.H. Williams art as it is the first thing that really draws you into the book. In my honest opinion this is the best work of Williams career and remember his career includes his mind bendingly great work on Promethea. I've never seen an artist and writer so in-sync in their work. Williams really goes beyond the 6 or 9 page panel and brings out some very stylish non traditional page layouts. These layouts really make the story pop. Additionally, there are things in the art that are required by the story in the grand tradition of show, don't tell. No worries if you miss the clues the first time around as you are going to want to read this book more than twice. Flashbacks are handled by Williams by flipping to different art style than the main narrative to give the reader a visual clue as to what is going on.

Colorist Dave Stewart does some great work bringing the world to life as well. Batwoman's costume with the bright red and Alice's outfit are stand outs.

Finally, Greg Rucka delivers a story that people have been waiting for these past four years. Rucka does a fantastic job of building up the Batwoman character giving her a credible backstory. You can really understand why she'd want to fight crime for a living after you discover some of the tragic events from her past. Rucka also brings in a number of supporting characters in order to fill out the book and develop a whole new world outside of the traditional Bat-Family.

Even if there were no dialog in this book I would rate it a buy for the incredible J.H. Williams art and Dave Stewart's colors but combined with the engaging story told by Greg Rucka it is a must buy!

Update: Just released news on the new Batwoman on-going series.

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