Sunday, December 31, 2017

Review: The War of Jokes and Riddles by Tom King & Mikel Janín

Title: The War of Jokes and Riddles
Series: Batman, Volume III TPB #4
Authors: Tom King, Mikel Janín
Format: egalley
Pub. Date: December 19th 2017
Source: DC Comics

Book Description:

Early in Batman’s career, the Joker and the Riddler would seemingly be natural allies. But each man determined that he and he alone must be the one to kill the Bat...and either would sooner burn down Gotham than be beaten to the punch line.

Untold until now, one of the darkest chapters in Batman’s history sees all of Gotham’s villains choosing sides in a battle of wits that soon turns into a full-blown war—complete with civilian casualties. In the War of Jokes and Riddles, only one side can claim victory...but the scars it leaves will shape Batman’s future as he makes the most important decision of his life.

From the critically acclaimed, best-selling creative team of Tom King (GRAYSON, The Vision) and Mikel Janin (JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK), the epic graphic tale BATMAN: THE WAR OF JOKES AND RIDDLES has quickly embedded itself as one of the great stories in the Dark Knight’s mythology. Collects issues #25-32.



I wasn't sure exactly what to expect from this book. I'm what I'd like to think of as a casual Batman fan- I know characters, I've read some comic books, and seen some movies. But I'm a far stretch from an expert, and I definitely haven't even scratched the surface of all the Batman comics out there. But when I see there's The Joker involved, sign me up. I was left blown away.

This book is so well done. It's dark, emotionally driven, and intense. It shows the psychotic, cold calculating Joker that tends to get lost in the folds of comic book franchises becoming part of more mainstream pop culture. It was gritty and there were so many moments that were both tragic and fascinating.

The artwork reflects the writing, with darker schemes and great detail. They match the writing perfectly, and carry out this fantastic story telling.

It's not a perfect collection- there are some plot points that seemed jarringly out of place, or that didn't quite seem to work. But by and large, this is a book worth reading. I can't really say how it compares to other Batman stories, as I'd quickly be out Batman-ed by other readers. But I can say that I personally really enjoyed it, and will definitely be looking for more of this particular arc.

I received a copy in exchange for my honest review. Thanks, DC!


  1. I just have to say I'm super jealous, I wish I had a copy! I'd love to have a deeper look into the Joker's darker side.