Batman #121 Review

Writer: Joshua Williamson

Art: Jorge Molina, Mikel Janín, Tomeu Morey, and Clayton Cowles

Publisher: DC Comics


Release Date: March 1st, 2022

The brutal ending to the “Abyss” arc concludes as Lex’s master plan for BATMAN INC. is uncovered. Let’s dive into BATMAN #121 by Joshua Williamson, Jorge Molina, and Mikel Janín as an old friend returns to help BATMAN from the evil clutches of Abyss and a new ally potentially joins the BATMAN INC. fold!

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Readers get the dubious switch-a-roo that actually, in this case, deflates the story Williamson was building up quite a bit as BATMAN #121 culminates. Bat-fans, I left BATMAN #120 wondering how the Dark Knight would escape the conundrum he was stuck in only for Williamson to rip the story right out from under the reader with a simple Code Phrase. Granted, in Williamson’s defense, he tries to use the last couple of pages to Scooby-Doo the story together. And, it does somewhat jive. However, the angle his story takes just doesn’t land with the command and power it appeared to from the beginning.

Moreover, other small elements of the story get quickly glossed over in order to wrap this mini-narrative rendezvous from Williamson. For example, BATMAN’S blindness gets explained away rather quickly as well as how the Dark Knight was able to fight so well while being blind in the first place. Random tech lights from Lex were used without explanation and Abyss purposefully restores BATMAN’S blindness… but for what objective?

Additionally, Abyss’ backstory and his eventual departure from the story are also brushed away with ease. In essence, for a comic that was set up so well with such structure and explanation, the ending just crashes down on the reader’s lap without warning or rationale. After the last issue, BATMAN #121 felt like it should have been the middle of this story. But alas, it was its conclusion.


Jorge Molina and Mikel Janín do an absolutely remarkable job this week. As usual, these two flourish when providing the comic with a steady balance of tone, clean inks, and linework. Additionally, Tomeu Morey’s colors add to the crisp display with vibrant coloring by day and cool colors by night. Moreover, the almost neon flashlights pop off the page adding an extra dimension to BATMAN #121 that one can only witness with this creative team. Plus, the realism that Molina and Janín provide the issue is just uncanny. BATMAN’S suit legitimately looks like it’s made of leather and not just shading and color. There is texture, depth, and movement which ultimately bring this issue of BATMAN to life. Still, this creative team continues to excel the most with the expressions and emotions evoked by the characters involved.


Ultimately, Williamson’s BATMAN run was mainly to get BATMAN out of Gotham during the effects of DETECTIVE COMICS. And now that the Arkham Tower angle has pushed towards its new direction, BATMAN can come back and prepare for the SHADOW WAR. Readers, BATMAN #121 just shows that sticking the landing could be one of the most important aspects of a story, even more so than the setup, themes, and character beats. I was finally digging BATMAN again only to find BATMAN #121 rapidly concluding with open-ended story beats and abrupt narrative flips to explain away plot threads that seemed substantial. Luckily, Jorge Molina and Mikel Janín continue their dynamic expertise making BATMAN #121 something to revere. That said, my disappointment for this issue won’t deter my interest in the BATMAN series moving forward or the upcoming SHADOW WAR. Let me know what you think, have a great week, and God Bless!


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