[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Written by: Geoff Johns
Illustrated by: Gary Frank
With the new Rorschach in Arkham Asylum after Batman left him there, he remembers a time before he ever donned the mask. He remembers when his father, who was a psychiatrist, tried to help the original Rorschach even when the rest of the world seemed to be crumbling down around them.
Veidt’s big hoax soon changed the world and he found himself in a mental institute much like the original Rorschach. It’s there he met a friend that helped him become the new Rorschach in order for him to exact revenge on Veidt.
But today he finds himself in Arkham with a doctor trying to learn more about him.
This issue really gives more insight to who the new Rorschach is and why he does what he does. Geoff Johns does a great job of showing the connection between this Rorschach and the original while maneuvering through flashbacks and the present to show the new Rorschach’s life experience.
As a fan of many artists, I can’t imagine a better artist than Gary Frank on this book. Each frame is significant and full of detail while the characters detailed expressions leave little doubt as to what they are feeling, even without any word balloons.
I really don’t have any negatives on this issue other than the one that has haunted me since this series began. This new Rorschach is a great character, but he isn’t Rorschach. I can only hope by the end we aren’t expected to think he is. I can see him taking his own name and becoming a great character in his own right, or perhaps as a sidekick to the real Rorschach. But when we start going around and just switching characters alter egos, it takes away from what made those characters great in the first place. Bruce Wayne is Batman because no one else can really do what he does. He isn’t just a mask. I feel the same way about Rorschach and his unwavering mission.
Another great issue in the series and one that really gives us our first look at the new Rorschach’s history. It connects the original Watchmen in a thoughtful way that really makes us feel for the character. The team of Johns and Frank is one of the best out there and they are giving us perhaps their best work yet.