“If You Think Being Blindfolded Intimidates Me…” (Batman #14 WITHOUT Spoilers)

NOTE: Yes, this is basically a copypasta of the post with spoilers, found here. If you don’t care about spoilers (like a bad nerd) or you’ve already read Batman #14 (like a good nerd), check out that post.

With that massive cliffhanger at the end of Batman #13, I’ve been more than a bit concerned for the past month. I mean, I had no doubt in my mind that Batman would bust out of the acid vat that Harley locked him in, so I didn’t fret over that at all. And I know Alfred is somewhat of a bad-ass, not as much as in Geoff Johns’ Batman: Earth One, but he can do minor surgeries and hold his own, then calm down with a nice Fernet Branca. Regardless, Batman can barely hold his own against The Joker (something he admits in this month’s Batman #14), so how is Alfred supposed to do it?

Alfred’s life is still in the balance, and other members of the Bat-Family are not too far behind! Batman #14 reveals parts of Joker’s dark, twisted plan to disassemble Batman’s group of vigilantes in the most heinous ways possible. In this issue alone, we see discover Alfred’s cruel fate, see Gordon and Nightwing in danger at the hands of the Joker, and bare witness to the first post-Flashpoint clash of Gotham’s Goliath of Good and it’s Harlequin of Hatred.

While Batman #14 doesn’t have the same kind of looming cliffhanger as its predecessor did, it still shows the depth with which Joker can stab into Batman’s heart, prying back pieces and rendering him almost helpless as he begins enacting his horrible plans. Can Batman stop Joker before he kills someone in the Family? Is it already too late for Alfred?

Well, you’ll just have to pick this one up to see. (OR head over to the spoiler-filled post. But I guarantee it’s not as good as the comic itself.)

Overall, I truly can’t say enough good about Scott Snyder’s and Greg Capullo’s creation. I loved the tangle with the Court of Owls last year, and the new Joker story is already surpassing that. The demented dialogue and story turns Snyder creates are truly some of the best and darkest Batman has ever seen, and Capullo’s art continues to impress me. I mean, the man’s mind spawned what may be the greatest single panel of a comic since the infamous “Captain America punches the HEIL out of Hitler” splash page.

I sincerely yelled “THE STEREO LOOKS LIKE THE JOKER! EVERYONE’S F**KED!” when I saw this panel. I was in the backroom at work. Seriously. It didn’t go over well.

Capullo has quickly become one of my favorite comic artists, and when paired with Snyder’s sharp, twisted writing, Batman is the one title that I could never cut from my list, regardless of how very little money I’d have on a given Wednesday. That’s right:

I’d do illegal things to buy Batman every month.

Hopefully it’ll never come to that. If I started stealing or selling drugs to get cash for comics, it’s likely Batman himself would stop me. On second thought, maybe it would be worth it to meet Batman…

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6 thoughts on ““If You Think Being Blindfolded Intimidates Me…” (Batman #14 WITHOUT Spoilers)

  1. Nightwing is one of the greatest comic book characters ever.
    2 weeks ago I went to a comics convention. While I was doing the line at the DC stand, I saw Before Watchmen: The Minutemen # 1 on the shelf near to the cash desk, so I picked it up and gave it a look. I was so lucky to bump into it: it had an old fashioned style that immediately talked to my heart.
    At that stand I also bought the TP of Snyder’s Swamp Thing, because I had read only good things about it. Last week I read it: it’s so wonderful, I can’t believe I hadn’t tried it before. Yes, I had read a lot of enthusiastic reviews, but they never persuaded me to buy it before, because I was thinking “It’s a fantasy comic book, it’s set in a marshland, how could I enjoy something like this? That’s not my cup of tea, it would be a waste of money.” How stupid I was. It’s true, I don’t usually read things like this, but Swamp Thing is a real gem.
    Also, I was lucky to read it as a TP. Each issue is so strictly linked to each other that you have to read them in a single session, to understand the plot properly.
    I always like when a superhero faces mobsters instead of freaks, because those clashes are less predictable.
    When a superhero meets a freak, he seizes him by the scruff of his neck, he gives him some punches, and then he takes him to Arkham Asylum, or a similar place.
    When a superhero meets a mobster, things are not so simple. The hero is forced to use his mind instead of his brute force,if he wants to beat the villain. Also, the hero must have hugely developed detective skills to make him go to prison, because mobsters perfectly know how to cover their tracks.
    What I wrote about mobsters and freaks doesn’t count when Joker is on the stage. He’s a freak, that’s true, but when he appears he provokes a “bull in a china shop” effect that delights me every single time. From the previews I saw, Snyder is making the“bull in a china shop” effect stronger than ever.

    • I agree with you about “Swamp Thing”. The writing is absolutely fantastic, the best “Swamp Thing” has seen since Alan Moore. Snyder’s writing is so tight and crisp that it does sometimes benefit from a thorough reading in one or two shorts sittings. I didn’t start reading Snyder’s “Swamp Thing” until just a few months ago, so I had the chance to read issues #0-12 in one sitting. Such a fantastic title, definitely one of my must-buys now.

      As for the Joker, he has always had that “bull in a china shop” feel, especially in Nolan’s films (the Nolan-verse, if you will), but Snyder is pushing him one step farther. It almost seems like Joker has a solid plan to dismantle the Family, and while it will send most of those involved into a wild, damaging spiral, it really does seem like Joker has his stuff together. While he can’t control the chaos, he can control the catalyst.

      It’s like a bull running into the shop and stepping on the owners foot, causing the owner to thrash about wildly, ruining his own shop.

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