Obviously DC can’t make every character into a totally new bad-ass version of themselves. This is actually a good thing. With the Riddler taking center stage for his villain’s month spotlight, we don’t get a brand new version of the Riddler, instead we get the Nygma readers remember but with writers who know how to play up the strengths that made the character one of DC’s best.
Scott Snyder and Ray Fawkes brilliantly open with a foundation of riddles that readers solve as Edward Nygma lays siege to Wayne Tower. There’s such a concise dichotomy between the Riddler’s idiosyncrasies and his more primal human urges which the story splashes in beautifully from cover to cover. Snyder has given every nemesis of Batman a twisted persona but he’s managed to make every single one of them unique, which is amazing considering the size of the library of characters in the bat universe. The writers manage to juggle standalone story with Forever Evil and Zero Year without making it feel cluttered and unappealing. By the end this road map of riddles spells out one awesome revenge quest.
Artist Jeremy Haun’s sequential work is so in tune for a story told through the lens of the Riddler. His line work is smooth and the page layouts feel as meticulous as one of Nygma’s riddles, you’d think the character had actually drawn it himself. Combine that with solid color work by John Rausch and you get one great package. This is definitely one of the best drawn Riddler stories since Hush.
Batman 23.2 is one of the best examples of what most of the villain’s month books should be; a great balance between stand alone story and part of a larger whole story either in the regular series or DC Universe.
8 out of 10! Fantastic! This trip through Nygma’s psyche is one fans won’t want to miss.