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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Old school Batman stories
This volume reprints issues #1-7 of the `New 52' Batman - Detective Comics series. This contains two stories, the four-part `Faces of Death', and a three-part `Russian Roulette'. This series appears to be set in an `earlier' period, as there is only Batman, with Alfred, Gordon and Bullock in the supporting cast, and no mention of any other Bat-family members, though that...
Published 15 months ago by No More Mr. Mice Guy

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Faces of boring
SPOILERS

The book is about as close to cookie-cutter Batman as you can get. It opens with Batman running across the Gotham skyline in pursuit of Joker. Cut to Arkham Asylum and Joker's in a straitjacket talking menacingly to doctors and then inevitably he escapes. Then Batman is after Penguin who's opened a new Iceberg Casino floating in Gotham Bay which leads...
Published on 19 July 2012 by Sam Quixote


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Faces of boring, 19 July 2012
By 
Sam Quixote - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
SPOILERS

The book is about as close to cookie-cutter Batman as you can get. It opens with Batman running across the Gotham skyline in pursuit of Joker. Cut to Arkham Asylum and Joker's in a straitjacket talking menacingly to doctors and then inevitably he escapes. Then Batman is after Penguin who's opened a new Iceberg Casino floating in Gotham Bay which leads to Penguin's arrest. The book's over. Ho hum.

Despite the inclusion of these stalwarts of Batman's rogues gallery, there are some more interesting villains thrown into the mix: Dollmaker is creepy with his collection of disfigured human dolls and the side story involving him removing Joker's face was intriguing but didn't go anywhere (probably to be explored in later volumes). There's also a weird kid called Olivia whose dead eyes were unnerving as she played on peoples' perceptions of what a pre-pubescent girl should behave like and came across as a psychopath in the early stages of development. But that's pretty much where the good parts of the book end.

The Joker storyline doesn't really go anywhere, it leads to the Dollmaker and then just peters out - presumably we'll find out what happens to Joker after his face was removed in another volume but it's still an unsatisfying plot thread. The Penguin storyline turns into a dull heist involving Snakeskin and Mayor Hady's foxy daughters. There's even a strange scene involving protestors doing a kind of Occupy Movement demonstration supporting the Joker(!).

I've read a few Tony Daniels Batman books he's scripted and drawn - "Battle for the Cowl", "Life After Death", "Eyes of the Beholder" - and like those books "Faces of Death" shows that his artistry far exceeds his writing ability. He can't seem to write an involving Batman book, it's all just surface texture propped up by his excellent artwork, it never delves deep into the characters' psyches.

"Faces of Death" looks good but doesn't have a solid storyline, it's just a mishmash of villains with Batman chasing after them to no real purpose. It's just a series of things that happen and they don't feel connected or that they're going anywhere new. Compared to Scott Snyder's "Court of Owls" with its combination of focused original storyline, taut writing and great art, and "Faces of Death" comes off as amateurish and sloppy. Here's hoping Daniels stays on as artist but is relieved of writing future titles. He just doesn't cut it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Old school Batman stories, 3 Jun 2013
By 
No More Mr. Mice Guy (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Batman Detective Comics Volume 1: Faces Of Death TP (Paperback)
This volume reprints issues #1-7 of the `New 52' Batman - Detective Comics series. This contains two stories, the four-part `Faces of Death', and a three-part `Russian Roulette'. This series appears to be set in an `earlier' period, as there is only Batman, with Alfred, Gordon and Bullock in the supporting cast, and no mention of any other Bat-family members, though that is not conclusive evidence. It is certainly not a `year one' scenario, as it is in the `New 52' Action Comics. `Faces of Death' is a blood-splattered grotesquery, the sort of thing we'd expect from Grant Morrison - although I have just remembered that the writer/artist on this book drew Morrison's blood-splattered grotesquerys, so he's entitled to draw his own; the second is a complicated heist / conspiracy story, which is tied back to the background characters of the first.

Spoiler Zone

"Faces of Death " is a Joker story, though the main protagonist is the Dollmaker and his family of surgically altered loonies, who's own father was killed by a young Jim Gordon, and he's back for revenge on Gordon, who is bait in a trap to capture Batman, who is to be auctioned off, as well as using his surgical skills to remove the Joker's face.

`Russian Roulette' involves a complicated scam to rob the vaults of the Penguin's floating casino, which is also a front for his banking services to the criminal fraternity. Bruce Wayne's current girlfriend, who happens to be an investigative journalist, goes undercover to investigate, just as a major robbery, involving a family member, is underway...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Faboulous!, 2 July 2014
By 
M. Paulo Bracais "Book master" (Fátima, Portugal) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Batman Detective Comics Volume 1: Faces Of Death TP (Paperback)
Very good story! Fantastic writer/artist! He transmit a powerfull "ambience" of Gotham and caracterize very well batman! Faboulous!
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4.0 out of 5 stars More than Face Value, 27 Feb 2014
I read a library copy of the paperback.
Other reviews say this title is not a patch on other Batman products out there in the new 52 and whilst that may well be true I found it more than satisfying enough.
I haven’t seriously collected Batman for many years but have dipped in and out every now and then for the big events etc.
The story arcs here are nothing particularly groundbreaking – except for the obvious development for the Joker in that one issue, - but this is a solid well crafted product.
I took from this that the new52 is not that far divorced from the previous continuity and yet it is still a fair jumping on point.
I would recommend this volume as an appetiser for any of the revamped Bat-titles that’s how I used it – but I warn you – it could open the floodgates!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre but still entertaining, 12 Dec 2013
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Sadly this is a bit of a run of the mill Batman story. It would have perhaps have faired better pre-new 52. However, as it stands this feels like an early 2000 bog standard filler run, not bad totally serviceable, but placed alongside the Court of Owls, and the successor to this story, Death of the Family, it seems so... 2 dimensional and just killing time until the real story turns up.

And that's ultimately the only real reason to read this, it serves as a precursor for the later joker story, setting up the shift in the character. But really, this is for completists only and should likely be avoided by all but the few who really want have the whole story, even the mediocre bits.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Really disappointing, dark knight? Dark tripe!, 20 Nov 2013
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It started out promisingly, the joker featured for a few pages and then he disappeared for the rest of the story. Enough intrigue kept me mildly interested but the scene where the penguin introduced some new adversaries seemed childish and ill conceived. No real cohesion to the tale and not a patch on the batman- court of owls story. Avoid this one, it's dull.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Fairly Average, 16 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Batman Detective Comics Volume 1: Faces Of Death TP (Paperback)
Well what can I say about this volume it's not the worst Batman story I've read but it's far from the best as well.

This volume is set somewhere in the time between the start of the new 52 and the court of the owls I think fairly early on in the timeline, after a brief Joker moment at the start (in there to set up the second major story ark in the main Batman) we get a new take on the Dollmaker with his extended family are fairly creepy but you don't ever feel they are any real threat to the Bat but the involvement of a young girl and Jim Gordon to the story does elevate it a lot but the story does seem to die with no real conclusion in place.

Then we get a story involving Bruce's girlfriend Charlotte Rivers and various criminals set around Penguin's new iceberg casino (with a brief interlude involving the son of a bat villain which was very random and out of place) frankly if you can work out the point of this story your a better person then I the word filler comes to mind when describing it.

So a mix of good and bad, it's just a shame the words detective comics on the front cover should be a pointer to quality but unfortunately this is the least of all the new 52 Batman titles not without it's moments but a real must do better all round.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed feelings, 24 Oct 2013
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Mr. K. L. Coxon (Durham, UK) - See all my reviews
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I was really getting into this book and felt like it was heading into exciting territory, however sadly it felt like it just petered out. Hopefully this is just the beginning and the next few books bring the story together, but at present I was a little disappointed after the initial excitement.
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3.0 out of 5 stars very mixed could be better, 4 Oct 2013
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This is Volume one of Batman Detective Comics and it is a very very mixed novel

their are two story arcs in this novel

the first one is the "Faces of Death" story line which is partially a Joker story but serves to introduce a new Villain Doll face and also set up a future Joker story arc

essentially this arc is fifty fifty the Joker chase scene is done well and is action packed but after that the dollmaker seems like a very bland Villain but has a lot of potential

the second story arc is the "Russian Roulette" story line which in my opinion is very uneven some parts are ultimately good but others let it down the idea of a bank type heist on the penguins casino/club/palace seems intriquing but it was just lacking a little something the stakes didint feel to high but it was a interesting story line none the less

in my opinion just a very mixed novel great art but just mixed
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2.0 out of 5 stars yeah... it's sort of meh, 26 Mar 2013
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I wasn't expecting Detective Comics to rise to the greatness of Batman or Batman and Robin, what with Batman's Night of the Owls storyline in full throttle and Peter Tomasi's great writing in Batman and Robin. However, I am still severely disappointed by a truly mediocre start to the New 52 with Detective Comics. The main story, revolves around a lame, pretty flat villain named the Dollmaker. It isn't a terrible read and has it's moments, but the back up story is atrocious. The art is down-right ugly and the writing is such a mess. It's a shame, because the premise was kind of cool: a plot to rob the Iceberg Casino on it's opening night full of double crosses, however it's let down so bad by Tony Daniel's dialogue that almost made me put the book down and never pick it up again.
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Batman Detective Comics Volume 1:  Faces Of Death TP
Batman Detective Comics Volume 1: Faces Of Death TP by Tony S. Daniel (Paperback - 16 April 2013)
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