Written by Tom King
Art by Lee Weeks
Colors by Elizabeth Breitweiser
Letters by Clayton Cowles
The worlds of Batman and Bruce Wayne collide openly in this issue and the issue itself presents one of the more interesting aspects of being a superhero and having a secret identity. Bruce Wayne reports to the courthouse so that he can perform his civic duty; jury duty. While the concept of Bruce Wayne sitting on a jury has its humor, it presents an interesting study in both the concept and execution of justice in Gotham City, especially when the reader is introduced to the defendant; Victor Fries.
What makes the issue equally entertaining is not only is “Batman” sitting on the jury of a defendant he brought in and having to pass judgement on evidence that he collected, but when the jury itself is sequestered, it seriously puts a damper on the Dark Knight’s ability to patrol the city. A concept not lost on Commissioner Gordon when he realizes that he’s talking to another Batman. After the emotional heaviness of the previous issue, it’s good that this one gets back to the business of Batman. Fortunately, it doesn’t completely gloss over what happened and there is a pretty intense moment where Bruce’s emotional state is showcased.
Tom King does a great job of bringing the focus back to Batman and more specifically, the advantages and disadvantages of Batman’s place in the pursuit of justice. There are a lot of big concepts being introduced in this issue and they are handled in a way that gives an intriguing contrast between the two worlds of Batman. King has begun another intriguing arc with a really good mystery that challenges the reader. One of the things that I enjoyed as well was that the events of the previous arc are still relevant to Batman’s mental state and that those close to him are wondering about it as well.
The art by Lee Weeks is complimentary to the gritty tone of this story. There are some absolutely brilliant camera angles that Weeks uses to convey emotion in this issue and some amazingly detailed close-ups that convey so much from Bruce to Freeze and even Gordon. There’s even an air of mystery to the brutality depicted in some of the scenes. It left me wondering what I was really seeing and forcing me to go back and investigate.