We arrive at the penultimate instalment of “The War of Jokes and Riddles,” and I have to admit that it has been a bit of a letdown so far. Though there’s been some spectacular moments during this epic saga, the creative team stretch the narrative a little too thin at times. This remains true as we enter this latest chapter, with the overall development feeling rather sparse. Building off last issue’s interlude, the creative team fashion an intriguing set of events, that sees Batman working alongside Riddler in an attempt to bring a swift conclusion to this war.
Despite not always winning me over with this latest story arc, Tom King continues to deliver an impressive run on the Dark Knight. Keeping the spotlight firmly on our hero’s greatest villains, the talent does an excellent job of building tension between Joker and Riddler. Not only is it evident that they both want to kill one another, but it has gotten to the point that they’re forgetting the reason behind this war (the right to kill Batman). The narration during this also feels a lot tighter, with Bruce’s recollection of events and the involvement of Selina bringing an engaging dynamic to proceedings.
Once again it is the visual side of this product that impresses most. Giving us some beautifully detailed panels that flow smoothly from start to finish, Mikel Janín makes it easy to fall in love with this world. Whether it’s the emotionless expression of Joker or the glee of Riddler, the talent captures the tone of this book perfectly. The dynamic interactions and bold action also proves eye catching, with the presence of Batman being as enthralling as ever. Factor into this the vibrant colours of June Chung and I honestly can’t find anything to fault this book visually.
Batman #31 is a solid continuation to “The War of Jokes and Riddles.” Despite the overall development feeling rather sparse, the creative team still manage to build plenty of excitement leading into the finale. The way that these events play off the recent interlude also helps to bring a sense of relevance, with Kite-Man’s involvement surprisingly appealing.
(7.5 / 10)