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Batman #614

Posted: Monday, May 5, 2003
By: Josh Stone



ďHush Pt. SevenĒ

Writer: Jeph Loeb
Artists: Jim Lee (P); Scott Williams (I)

Publisher: DC Comics

Plot:
In this action packed issue Batman kicks Jokerís you know what up and down a dark alley. Thatís about all. Well, besides Selina, Harley Quinn and Jim Gordon stepping in here and there. Batman believes The Joker has killed another person he cares about and goes off the deep end. Batman reminisces about all the terrible things that Joker has done to the people he cares about, and he is ready to kill him until Gordon talks him out of it. He makes Batman see the line that he vowed never to cross, and Batman leaves the Joker in a pool of his own silly blood.

Comments:
This is one heavily narrated comic book, but itís so good. There is only a select handful of writers who can make a story good using mostly narration, and Jeph Loeb is one of them. His storytelling is so well crafted that even in an issue with hardly any dialogue, the narration pulls it through with the reader barely noticing. It was like reading a novel, thatís how vivid the narration was. Even without the art you could feel what the character felt inside, the violent paroxysm that Batman feels upon seeing his greatest foe. Itís a common belief that a good comic book should have plenty of dialogue and plenty of action, since Loeb broke the first part of the rule, he more then makes up for it with the second part.

There is no way I could do this review without talking about Jim Lee, I thought I would try it, but it wasnít working. Iíve never been a big fan of Jim Lee, which is pretty much blasphemy amongst my generation of comic fans. That is, Iíve never been a fan until now. When I first found out that the story arc was constructed so that Lee got a chance to draw just about every character, I thought it was pretty forthcoming of DC to boost Leeís ego in such a manner. It was as though they were flaunting him around, like a kid who has a better toy then his friends. Now, I say, exploit him like there is no tomorrow. Lee drew the scariest, most twisted version of The Joker that Iíve ever seen, and I want to see more. I mean, there really isnít much more of the female characters you can see, or itíd be an entirely different kind of story. Regardless, Lee has finally won me over.

The entire ďHushĒ story arc thus far has been great. Just when you think you know whatís going on, Loeb turns it around on you. I feel close enough to all of you to say this, I have no idea where this one is heading, if you do, good job. Iím just wondering how many more characters Loeb can fit into this story, if you needed more proof that Jeph Loeb is a good writer, then here it is. I mean think about how hard it must be to come up with a story while knowing you have to incorporate as many DC characters as possible for Jim Lee. Yet, not only does he come up with a story, he comes up with a really good story.

Final Word:
I donít think I really need to tell you to read it, Iím sure most of you have read it a couple times now. But the heading does say Final Word, so I guess Iíll do it. Go pick up this book, itís good. (Talk about an understatement). In all seriousness though, besides Detective Comics, Batman is the best ďBatĒ title out right now for a reason, and that reason is; cauliflower.



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