Tying into his other blockbuster stories of 2008 FINAL CRISIS and BATMAN, "The Resurrection of Ra's al Ghul," the legendary Grant Morrison confronts readers with the unthinkable...the death of The Dark Knight. The troubled life of Bruce Wayne seems to spin out of control when his relationship with the mysterious Jezebel Jet deepens. Soon, Bruce Wayne drops out completely, having seemingly become the victim of mental illness, and abandons his Batman identity for a life on the streets of Gotham City. Capitalizing on the fall of their greatest foe, the Club of Villains begin a crime spree through the streets of Gotham that threatens to bring the city to its knees. Collects BATMAN #676-683.
Batman is pushed past the edge of sanity in this spectacular story that mixes icy mind games and passionate outbursts. A club of criminal masterminds, the Black Glove, has an elaborate plot to make Bruce Wayne/Batman self-destruct by convincing him that all his friends and lovers have betrayed him and that his most trusted memories are false. As clever in their scheming as the villains are, however, they have no idea how thorough Batman has been in planning ways to protect his obsessions; consequently, the action is fractured between scenes of what is really happening, what might be happening, what probably isn't happening, etc. This premise gives scriptwriter Morrison and principal artist Daniel a chance to review key episodes and images from the Caped Crime Fighter's long career including, of course, numerous encounters with the Joker, who's too chaotic to be happy in any organization like the Black Glove, but who struts through the action wielding sardonic humor and two straight razors. Whether Batman winds up (or ever was) totally sane is unresolved, but he's a fascinating protagonist in this sweeping, emotionally draining saga.
Trippy but still brilliantly done
This is obviously a love-it-or-leave-it book among fans. I personally love it. Grade: A+