06 March 2015

Batman: The Court Of Owls

I've never really been a comic book reader. I never had a comic-related influence in my childhood so the closest I came was the odd copy of Beano or Whizzer & Chips. The only REAL comic book series I vaguely remember reading was Return of the Jedi, but don't recall much about it.

With the interest in the Batman Miniatures Game, a perfect opportunity presented itself to redress the balance and investigate this gaping hole in my upbringing. But where to start?

I randomly went onto Amazon and ordered Dark Knight Returns (the Frank Miller classic) and Batman: Earth One as I like the idea of a re-imagining. Eagerly looking where to go next I saw that Steve at Bleaseworld had read my mind and done a Batman reading material post.

Soon after I ordered the Court of Owls and have been glued to it for the last fortnight. Wow.

The story starts off with Batman fighting ALL our favourite villains at the same time in some kind of Arkham breakout, ably supported by The Joker (?? what??). That doesn't last too long and the main story begins and the mystery surrounding the Court of Owls is slowly revealed.

Very quickly Batman meets the Court's assassin – The Talon – and almighty dust ups ensue. However, the Court want to break Batman completely and psychological torture is the order of the day – at times quite graphic and horrifying.

This is a stunning book. The artwork is jaw-dropping and full of movement and action. The story is riveting and at one point the pages are upside down to add to the distress and mental anguish being displayed. As with all opening acts the story sets up book 2 perfectly and I can't wait to get stuck in.

For anyone getting into the Batman Miniatures Game, or indeed looking for something to read, I can't recommend this book enough. I've really enjoyed the story so far and the artwork is inspiring. Hopefully some of it will translate to the tabletop!

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