Review: Batman ’89 #3
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Sam Hamm
Artist: Joe Quinones
Colors: Leonardo Ito
Letters: Clayton Cowles
Reviewed by: Carl Bryan
Listen…I’m a cop. You can talk straight to me. What are his chances?
Batman ’89 #3 – Step back into the Gotham of Tim Burton’s seminal classic Batman movies! Batman ’89 brings in screenwriter Sam Hamm (Batman, Batman Returns) and artist Joe Quinones (Dial H for Hero) to pull on a number of threads left dangling by the prolific director.
As the fire rages at Royal Auto, Harvey Dent lies trapped inside, unconscious and in danger. Can Bruce Wayne get to Harvey in time, or will the district attorney leave burned, in more ways than one?
Issue #3 of this six-issue special doesn’t disappoint as you can almost hear Billy Dee Williams’ voice as Sam Hamm writes a great script and Joe Quinones takes the baton from Tim Burton’s Batman films and raises it to new levels.
The story stems in a repeated theme of tragedy in a minority neighborhood and a local hero tries to make things right. I cannot tell you how glad I am that Billy Dee Williams’ character of Harvey Dent is being celebrated at the forefront of these issues. It is almost that a wrong is being made right as we did crave to see this character more in the cinema. However, to see Williams’ portrayal through Hamm’s script and Quinones’ pencils is wonderful!
Bruce is correct in trying to avoid the spotlight, but he arguably cannot get out of the way of himself.
Bruce is albeit a rookie in some ways in this world, and his wealth is viewed as both eccentric and arguably not welcome in Harvey’s neighborhood. Hamm places Bruce in a fish out of water atmosphere that Batman is not used to regardless of the year.
Quinones’ lens continues to impress as his renderings are a total homage to the time era and the movies that Burton gave us once upon a time. I am trying to see who his muse is for Barbara Gordon’s look as she was not in the films.
This is a real story. No superpowers. Just a man who wants to make a difference…a man who is driven.. and we are talking about Harvey Dent. Is it tragic? Yes. Does it resonate in today’s world? Yes. Quinones and Hamm take the 1989 Burton background and flip the script in making the story so topical. It’s got an 89 vibe with a 2021 feel. That’s hard to do, but this team achieved it!
Is there more landscape to explore in this new/old cinematic Batman landscape? It feels like there is as some of the themes resonate from 1989 to 2021. Do I want to see more…yes? The only negative is the cover numbers…they are ticking down…3 of 6. Sigh.
I already want the remaining issues! Sam Hamm and Joe Quinones hit all the right notes. Clayton Cowles letters like the pro he is and Leonardo Ito splashes that 80’s vibe across the pages that we so wanted! You are drinking in Catwoman making her appearances and in this issue…it’s rare to see Batman. That’s the uniqueness of this storytelling. The cinema hid Batman until specific parts of the movie. Quinones and company do the very same thing and it works!