Review: BATMAN: CURSE OF THE WHITE KNIGHT #7

Review: BATMAN: CURSE OF THE WHITE KNIGHT #7

[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

 

Writer: Sean Murphy

Artist: Sean Murphy

Letters: AndWorld Design

Colors: Matt Hollingsworth  

 

Reviewed by: Carl Bryan

 

Summary

“…I never considered that I wasn’t a Wayne to begin with…” – Bruce Wayne

Bruce Wayne and Batman have come undone. Powerless after learning the truth behind his family’s name and legacy, Bruce prepares to shed all of his secrets and make one final appeal to the people of Gotham as Azrael takes control of the city.
 
Sean Murphy matches what Bendis did to Superman…revealing to the world that Bruce Wayne is Batman in Murphy’s  “Bat Universe”!  And we won’t even go into a Bruce Wayne and Harley Quinn romance.  Where’s Selina in this world?

This is the seventh installment of Batman: Curse of the White Knight!

Positives

Sean Murphy continues to take the recipes of prior Batman canon and offers his unusual and thorough take on Bruce Wayne and his origin.  The only thing that even matches up to this type of environment is the old What If… series with Marvel. 

Murphy continues to “one-up” everyone in both his art and his writing.  Who pulls an origin switch that goes deeper than that one night in an alley in Gotham?  

Who even thinks to  “Two-Face” the Joker with movie alter-ego Jack Napier?  Murphy gave us two Harleys as well!   And then he gives up the entire Wayne fortune to Gotham City and reveals that Bruce Wayne is Batman?  Murphy continues to run rough-shod through his Bat Universe!

A pretty tough Harley continues to inspire us all in that she delivers an inspiring “get over yourself” speech to Bruce asking him if he really even trusts Gotham….all the while feeding the twins.  Harley is a mom-extraordinaire!  And in this universe….Murphy’s Universe….we can believe that Bruce and Harley may be able to make it.

Let’s hope Bruce had an off shore account or two because sending those two twins to Gotham University is going to be expensive!

The despair in in Azrael’s battle against his cancer… sometimes an artist just needs pictures and not words.

Even though we are all dealing with Alfred’s demise in the regular canon, he’s here…. and he’s teaching Bruce.  We all needed that Mr. Murphy.  We all needed that!

And that exchange between Dick and Bruce…. I will not spoil it here,but Murphy is challenging canon here.  And there seems to  be a foreshadowing of some finality here.  I thought the Joker would be the one to draw Batman’s ire in this manner, but Azrael has tapped a vein. 

But what would be different in the Murphy verse.  Just when you expect “normalcy” or formula Batman story telling would take place, it doesn’t.  Hope fans can handle it!

Positives (Artwork)

Murphy draws an awesome “messy drug cabinet”.  Who can fight crime with this type of drug cabinet?  Murphy captures a frenetic Azrael.  Minimal dialogue and let the art tell the story.  Sometimes less is more.

The touching exchanges between Bruce and Harley…. and the sweat on Barbara Gordon’s brow as she rehabs her body after Bane broke her.

 

Negatives

None…. Murphy writes and draws with surprise.  I’m used to the Easter Eggs a bit, and appreciate his tilting the canon on its edge.  My only wish is that he would take on Superman, Wonder Woman, and other JLA members in future stories as that would make all of DC stand on its head.

Verdict

White Knight should be on your shelf!  It’s a must read to get you into this series that Sean Murphy is painting for his readers.  This issue shakes it down to the core a bit.  Again, no purposeful spoilers here, but the last few pages are there to throw more gas on the fire that Murphy has lit!

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Carl Bryan

Doc B is a college physical education instructor that has coached numerous sports on the rec, club, and collegiate level. He has a wonderful wife, two awesome kids, and remembers when Kryptonite came in a lot of different forms. He also has learned not to utter "Mxyzptlk" backwards!