Way back in ye olden times, DC launched the “All-Star” line of comics. The thought behind this is that you would take your all-star creators, match them up with your most recognizable characters, and just let them create. It was a wonderful idea. The All-Star line gave us Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly doing one of the greatest Superman stories ever. However, it also gave us a Batman “series” by Frank Miller and Jim Lee that is remembered more for its delays and incomplete status, and Batman referring to himself as the “god damn” Batman, than any actual story lines in the book. Of course, it was essentially a Robin origin, but there was a beautiful 4-page spread of the batcave.
After All-Star Batman and Robin’s fade into the same incomplete obscurity that also claimed Image United, the All-Star line never continued. But now, it’s a new day, yes it is. All-Star Batman is back with Scott Snyder and John Romita, Jr. And I must say, I have a good feeling about this. We know Scott Snyder isn’t going to just stop writing. The man has been doing phenomenal Batman stories since before Flashpoint. And I don’t think John Romita, Jr. is going to stop drawing anytime soon. So, odds are in our favor that this All-Star Batman will actually see a resolution.
But also, it seems like this book may actually exist in mainline continuity. It’s definitely reflecting the events shortly after Rebirth. Duke Thomas is by Batman’s side as his sidekick/trainee. (I’m behind on Rebirth, so I don’t know what they’re calling Duke’s hero.)
I won’t go into too much details about the story itself. This issue boils down to Batman is trying to get Tw0-Face to some house, because he things it will help bring Harvey Dent back to the surface. No one actually thinks it will work, after Two-Face launched some type of acid rain attack on Gotham. I don’t know how. The how is not important. What’s important is just that it happened. So, no one really thinks that there is any portion of Harvey Dent left to save, except Batman.
Batman is transporting Two-Face by batplane, when he’s informed that Two-Face has promised a fortune to anyone that frees him. Shortly thereafter, the plane is shot down. Apparently by Alfred. But he’s really sorry about it, if that’s of any consolation. Firefly, Killer Moth, and Black Spider show up, but Batman easily handle them. Some townspeople then try to claim the reward, but Batman easily escapes them, recaptures Two-Face, and continues the trip in a semi he steals.
There’s also a backup story focused on Duke, and his training. There’s not really a lot to say on it, so I may revisit it at the conclusion. Or when something major happens.
All in all, I do think it was a nice start to the series. The issue itself isn’t anything spectacular, but it has me wanting to read the next issue. The premise and actors have been introduced. Some surprises have been shown, but there are still many questions to be answered. The chief among them is, what the hell, Alfred? But having Scott Snyder’s Batman stuff for years now, there is a trust that not only will we get answers to questions that we have, but there will be even more questions and answers presented in later chapters.