As you might have seen on my recent post, Liam got me Volume 1 of the Black & White Batman graphic novels for my birthday. The volume is made up of a series of short stories by different writers and artists, all designed in black and white. Taking away the colour from a comic is a really powerful thing – look at The Walking Dead. In this instance, it definitely draws attention to each artist’s unique style.
Batman Black & White Volume 1 Comic Review
Throughout the volume there is definitely a mix of great stories, and those that I personally found to not really have any effect. I think in most cases this may be due to the length. A short story can be incredibly powerful, for instance the shortest story I know is ‘Knock’ by Fredric Brown:
“The last man on Earth sat alone in a room. There was a knock on the door…”
Highlights in Black And White Volume 1 include Perpetual Morning, Two Of A Kind, In Dreams and An Innocent Guy. These were the contributions which for me, managed to create a story that was more engaging than some of the others.
Strangely, these stories have some of the most ‘generic’ artwork – whereas Neil Gaiman’s Black & White World has some of the best (the Joker looks incredible). I’ll definitely be looking to find more stuff illustrated by the artist Simon Bisley. The story just didn’t do it for me – I understand it, and it is succinct but I just didn’t enjoy it as much as others.
As each ‘section’ is so short, you’d think I’d whizz through it. But after a couple of stories, I tended to put the graphic novel down and go back to it later, even if I was really enjoying the stories I was reading.
Batman Black & White Volume 1 is a fairly thick volume, chock full of different tales to tell. Even if like me there are a few that you don’t enjoy as much, there will be at least a couple that you will appreciate.
Have you read this volume? What did you think?