Batman #98 (Review)

Sep 1, 2020

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Batman #98
DC Comics

Words by James Tynion IV|
Art by Jorge Jimenz 
Color by Tomeu Morey
Letters by Clayton Cowles

The battle we all have been waiting for since she was first teased in issue #89. Harley Quinn goes toe to toe against Punchline. With the fate of Gotham on the line, does Harley stand a chance or is Punchline going to kill two bats with one stone?

This issue’s main draw is the battle between Punchline and Harley. With many moving parts, having this battle take place where it did was important. Not only does it give Batman a chance to heal and face his demons but we got a good all out brawl. Many of the past fight sequences are over within a few panels, so having their brawl play out over multiple panels, allows for the story to have an intermission. This breaks allows the readers to get reacquainted and recap what happened in the past issues. 

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The way Tynion IV uses this issue as a recap is clever and ingenious. Harley and Punchline are the main focal point, which distracts the reader but the main plot development is with the other characters. By not being upfront with the recap, Tynion IV shows his growth and understanding of the story and world he is creating.

With the story getting back on track, the art continues to showcase Jimenz’s skill. Surprisingly the features that stand out is his character’s expression. With many moving parts, it shows the growth that he has developed while figuring out what needs the focus. With how the issues are set up, this was a truly great example of understanding the story and how to keep driving it forward. 

Batman #98 is a great lead up to issue #100. With many different parts now moving together holistically, it doesn’t feel like a jumbled mess. When Punchline’s hype was at its peak the story was suffering, and was very evident with all aspects. The past few issues have started to rectify those missteps and is showing how great the story truly is and how it was buried under mediocrity.

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