Title: Batman: The Merciless (2017-) #1
Words: Peter J. Tomasi
Art: Francis Manapul
Letters: Tom Napolitano
Publication Date: October 25, 2017
Publisher’s Summary: As the events of DARK NIGHTS: METAL rock the DC Universe, the creatures of the Dark Multiverse stand ready to invade our world! How can even the World’s Greatest Heroes stop a horde of deadly beings that appear to be powerful, nightmare versions of familiar figures?
There isn’t a whole lot going on here that differs from previous Dark Multiverse stories. We meet a new Bad-Bat, find out why they turned to the Darkside, and catch a glimpse of them causing amuck in the present day. If the other batmen origin stories have worked for you, then this one will too. One main difference found in Batman: The Merciless #1 is its ending; the issue closes with one hell of a bang that really adds clarity to the current state of things.
Batman: The Merciless #1 is a very balanced comic that, despite three, or so, pages of what I would consider to be ‘heavy’ on dialogue, the issue moves quickly and is paced well. Peter Tomasi does a fine job writing a heavy-hearted war-hungry Bruce Wayne, in addition to reminding readers of what is going on while we read about the rising of these Dark Knights.
Batman: The Merciless #1 is a visually impressive book thanks to Francis Manapul’s stunning artwork. The tone, or feel, of this book is stark and apocalyptic, which, again, works well to stress the severity of the situation and remind readers of what’s at stake. Practically every panel in this issue works toward the epic depiction of the impending extinction of man—in this universe at least.
The Bottom Line:
Batman: The Merciless #1 doesn’t differ all that much from the other Bad-Bat Dark Multiverse origin stories; it gives readers a brief look into the life of one of the strongest and most sinister batmen yet, and while doing so, reminds readers of what’s at stake in the main Dark Nights: Metal storyline, as well as just how bad the situation really is.