Comic Vine Review


The Black Bat #3 Review


Intros are over. Time for the Black Bat to start leaving his mark.

The Good

The latest issue of THE BLACK BAT reads a lot like a procedural cop drama, if the cops were all too foulmouthed for prime-time TV, and also scared out of their wits over how powerless they are in a city overrun by dangerous mobsters and a vigilante that steps in to do the job they can't. All of the real detective work is done by a guy in a mask with a penchant for leaving messages and a talent for landing in the sight of someone's gun.

Buccellato was born to write hard-boiled vigilantes. The tone is spot-on, and everyone's voice is just right, from the questionably-motivated-but-helpful Carol to the Scarface-quoting thug to Silk, the sometimes-clean junkie with just enough information to be dangerous. The Black Bat himself continues to be rough around the edges; a hero with a bit of dirt on the surface. If Robin Hood robbed from the rich and kept a little off the top for some wheels, he'd be in good company with Tony Quinn.

The art on this book continues to be pitch-perfect for the story. It's boldly-inked, and has a little bit of an old-school feel, and the colors are dirty and desaturated -- exactly right for a grimy, crime-riddled city and its cops and mobsters.

The Bad

I love a good snarky hint about how the city is in the toilet, but I think I'd be okay not reading the phrase "explosive bowel movement" in future issues. (I also solemnly vow never to use that phrase in a review again.)

The Verdict

THE BLACK BAT might be a pulp revival, but it's appropriately modern despite the old-school grit. An enjoyably interesting cast of characters and a consistent underlying threat keep things moving forward, and the Black Bat is a flawed but honest hero who's easy to like. We're teed up for heavy action in the next issue, and I'm sticking around to see what happens with that bomb.

Edited by Provehito

I've heard Valiant has been throwing off really good stuff lately, so I'm considering picking this up alongside XO Manowar.

Hopefully a gritty vigilante story that can be pretty good.

Posted by That60sGuy

@provehito: Black Bat is by Dynamite not Valiant. But Valiant are putting out some of the best stuff out there right now. I'd recommend X-O Manowar that just started a new story arc.

Posted by Catsnlynne

I really like Black Bat.

Posted by Bull_iod

I have bee really enjoying this series so far. Have high hopes for the future

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Black Bat is great,I'm gonna have to make cuts to my pull so I'm considering dumping The Shadow for this as it's just better

Posted by Arkhamc1tizen

Might get some Black Bat.