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on 9 October 2004
This is very good- its proof that modern Batman titles are still worthy of being read, and this is the best since Jeph Loeb's Hush in 2002. Its a dark read(and I suggest younger readers to steer clear), but isn't QUITE up to standards with what we've come to expect from previous Batman stunners. Its a 6 part series, and given the shortness of single issues nowadays, you may feel slightly ripped off.
But if you've read all the essential Batman graphic novels (Hush, The Long Halloween, Year One, The Dark Knight Returns, Dark Victory and the Killing Joke), then you should read this. Wait for a paperback edition though, as you'll get your moneys worth.
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on 10 March 2006
I started reading this expecting great things, and although enjoyed the read overall,it falls a little short of the standard required for a great Batman story. The story was very dark in tone, though it probably warranted a 4 issue series, rather than 6, as it seems a little stetched at times. General characterisation was average, although new life was breathed into Killer Croc (looked like a gangster rapper!), and Scarface.As this was Brian Azzarello's first crack at the superhero genre, we'll forgive his slight technical shortcomings, though the tale does sometimes seem to be a noir story with Batman shoehorned in.
The art, by Eduardo Risso, suits the tone of the book perfectly, and owes a large debt to Frank Miller, with touches of Mike Mignola (the silhouette work especially), and David Mazzuchelli; not a criticism, but an observation. Sometimes a little overstylized, but in general very good.
Overall, a decent addition to the Batman canon, worth a read for fans of Batman, or the creators, but perhaps not all the general comics reading public.
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on 27 April 2013
I first read this 5 or 6 years ago and had subsequently forgotten the story - the one thing I remembered was that it wasn't that great. I read this again last week and found that I was right the first time - it really wasn't good at all - but that in just a week I'd forgotten most of the story. "Broken City" is just a really, really forgettable Batman book. I couldn't tell you specifically what it's about - something about a child witnessing the murder of his parents (just like Bruce!) which of course makes the case personal to Batman.

We run through a roster of Batman villains - Ventriloquist/Scarface, Killer Croc, Joker, Penguin, blah blah blah - who make faces, shoot guns, get interrogated by Bats and generally do what they usually do before they hustle off and Batman broods in shadows, monologuing some tedious nonsense about whatever. And then it's solved, somehow. The pages run out, so I guess Batman gets the person, solves the case. Ho hum, onto the next adventure.

Brian Azzarello teams up with his 100 bullets co-creator and artist Eduardo Risso who contributes maybe the best thing about the book which is the art. Even if in some scenes he makes Batman look super-beefy so he resembles Bane more than Batman, the art is what sticks out the most. The fearful white eyes in a totally shadowed face is a striking visual.

I wouldn't recommend this as a good Batman book, nor would I say this is even among Azzarello's best. He's done better work elsewhere for DC in "Joker" and "Lex Luthor: Man of Steel" both with artist Lee Bermejo. Azzarello and Risso would years later re-team to write a fantastic Batman story in DC's crappy Flashpoint Event where Batman's origins are reimagined - what if Bruce Wayne was killed by Joe Chill? Would there still be a Batman and Joker and what would Gotham be like? That Batman story was literally the only good thing about Flashpoint. Check out that instead of "Broken City" which is just plain dreariness from start to finish.
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on 29 June 2015
I've only ever read Risso and Azzarello together once before in Knight Of Vengeance; I liked their style but wanted a more complete story.

Here I got it.

Azzarello is a master of grimy city story, and Risso wears his Sin City influences on his sleeve. Here they craft the hard boiled Dark Knight story Frank Miller simply isn't good enough to write. The Batman of this story is flawed and human, but badass in a way that detectives in the vein of Philip Marlowe often are.

This is not a kid's Batman story though the cover might lead you to think so. I loved it
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on 28 June 2008
This is an excellent, noir Batman story. When Angel Lupo(A small time car dealer)"murders" his sister, Batman is hot on his trail to find out why.

The Graphic novel opens with Batman interrogating "Croc", which is one of the best scenes in the entire book. It also proves that this is a dark tale, and not for children. But then again, what Batman story is these days? There is blood and a loss of teeth in this scene- making Batman seem like Jack Bauer but in a cape and tights. Also, it features killer Croc who is one of the better characters in this book. He is a driving force in the story and also provides a punch bag for Batman.

I found the plot to be decent enough and also the exploration of Batmans character interesting. This was a good part of the story, that Batman was personally driven to solve the case because of the circumstances. They show you how Batman feels and what he sees when he goes to sleep in the morning. It really is an interesting turn from a comic which I would have thought would be plot-driven(It is, to a certain extent...). This great balance of plot and character importance is what raises this graphic novel above others.

Some decent fights are included as well- with plenty of blood and teeth flying out all over the place. Batman sure knows how to handle himself. So in conslusion, if you want an above average detective tale featuring the Dark Knight himself, give this a read.

P.S. There is a guest appearance at the end of this graphic novel. I'll give you a clue as to who it is... "WhY sO SerIouS?HEHEHEHEHAHAHAHAAHAH...." Hmmmmm, I wonder who that could be?!
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on 14 March 2012
I loved Brian Azzarello's storytelling and Eduardo Risso's artwork in 100 bullets so when i learned that they'd collaborated on a batman story i rushed to get myself a copy. As expected, the story is strong and the artwork is beautiful but when i'd finished it i couldn't help thinking that Risso's artwork is better suited to realistic situations and people rather than superheroes and that Azzarello was trying a little too hard. Well worth a read and definitely not a waste of money but lacking slightly.
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