Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham

Batman: The Doom That Came To GothamBatman: The Doom That Came To Gotham by Mike Mignola
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I found this mashup of DC’s iconic superhero Batman with the equally iconic Lovecraft mythos to be absolutely charming, and in many ways everything Alan Moore’s failed NEONOMICON should have been. Mignola and co-author Richard Pace do a great job of fitting Batman and his various supporting characters — mostly villains — into a narrative of horror and cosmic dread. For me, half the fun of these types of books is in spotting the analogs, and so my heart went pitter-pat at the inclusion of so many recognizable characters in new forms: Oswald Cobblepot (brilliantly linked to the giant penguins of “At the Mountains of Madness”), Mr. Freeze, Man-Bat (yes!), Poison Ivy, Two-Face (in a fantastic and very apropos re-interpretation), the Green Arrow, a wide variety of Robins, and many more.

Unfortunately, I found the story detrimentally rushed in places. I wonder if four issues instead of three would have given Mignola and Pace a chance to better pace the story and explore its themes. Troy Nixey’s art is good and surprisingly Mignola-like, but not always clear. There were a few panels where I couldn’t quite tell what was going on, which left me frustrated. But overall, I enjoyed this graphic novel very much. Frankly, I’d love to read more mashups like this. At this point, I find them more interesting than the straightforward “canon” stories.

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