Sunday, June 27, 2010

Batman: Manbat Review

Batman: Manbat
DC Comics
Softcover Trade Paperback
160 pages
ISBN 9781563893209

Contributors: Jamie Delano and John Bolton

Reprints: Batman: Manbat #1-3 (of 3)

Synopsis: Marilyn Munro is a guerilla reporter for activist group "Video Witness" on a mission to expose Edencorp's corrupt animal testing.  She and partner Mac break into a facility in Northern Arizona bearing witness to horrific genetic experiments on helpless animals.  During the break-in Marilyn boosts a vial and subsequently becomes stranded in the desert after crash-landing her hyperlite.  She stumbles upon the lair of Kirk Langstrom, the Manbat and his family of half-bat/half-humans. 

Batman is called in to get the vial back before a deadly, man-made plague is released to destroy civilization.  The problem is Kirk Langstrom has been trying to create a new species of bat-people to inherit the Earth and the arrival of a plague to wipe out humanity is most fortuitous. 

Pros: Great story by Delano with a unique vision of Batman and Manbat, very nice painted artwork by Bolton

Cons: Art was a bit inconsistent at times

Mike Tells It Straight: I think Delano originally wrote a "continuity" Batman/Manbat tale, but his Batman was just different enough to prompt an Elseworlds label.  Batman does a few things which don't sit well with the reader 1) consorting with corporate and government officials who are obviously corrupt (granted it's to prevent the release of a plague) and 2) he kills someone in the story.  Despite that Delano's portrayal of Batman was really amusing along with Marilyn the environmentalist.  I loved how Delano painted them both as hypocrites by the end of the tale.  This book was enjoyable and probably the best Manbat story out there (that I've read).

TO BUY and Recommendations: