Batman #641 Review

Reviewer: Tim Sheridan
Story Title: Family Reunion: Conclusion

Script: Judd Winick
Pencils: Dough Mahnke
Inks: Tom Nguyen
Colors: Alex Sinclair
Letters: Nick J Nap
Asst Editor: Brandon Montclare
Editor: Bob Shreck
Publisher: DC Comics

So this is what we’ve been waiting for. Many months ago, we were first introduced to the Red Hood in an elaborate fight scene between him and Batman. The fight ended and the Hood took off his mask, Batman looked surprised, and…..nothing. For months, we’ve seen a long flashback sequence, during which we have seen the face of the Hood. We all know it’s Jason Todd. But we finally get to see Batman’s reaction to the whole thing. Which like I’ve said, is what we’ve been waiting for.

For Batman to come face to face (literally) with his greatest failure is a great moment. I know I’ve metioned before just how powerful it is to see Batman scared or confused. This is a guy who is the most in control person, knowing every aspect of every situation. So when he is taken by surprise and is put into a situation he can’t control, it’s something to behold. And this is one of those moments.

This issue is not fantastic. It’s not inspiring, and it’s not going to change the medium. It’s not even the best issue of this team’s run on the book. All it is, is cool. Plain and simple. This issue is about the story, and it’s about the cool moments.

When Jason takes his mask off, it’s a moment a big moment in Batman-lore. This story has been getting a lot of press for bringing back a dead character. But regardless if you’re a fan or not of the story, it’s intriguing. It’s getting people to talk about the book again, and hey, that’s what the editors are going for. But Winick seems to be going for more than pure shock value. I have a feeling that this is going to tie in with the bigger DCU picture down the road. And Winick teased this story 18 months ago on his first run on the book. This is not something out of nowhere.

The art here is, as always, great. Mahnke, tells the story, without any unnecessary stylistic flourishes. He’s allowing the story time and space to breathe.

I’ve been a fan of Jason Todd as a dead man for a while, but now that he’s back, I can’t wait to see what he does next.

The only bad thing about this issue is the text on the cover. “It’s Overtime!”?? What does that even mean? DC, you’re better than this.