Batman Year One: Ra's Al Ghul Paperback – 24 Feb 2006
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About the Author
Devin Grayson is the regular writer of Nightwing, featuring Dick Grayson, the original Robin, and new series Matador which pits a jaded cop against a viscious serial-killer. Paul Gulacy has over twenty years experience drawing comics, with work appearing in Eerie, Superman: Action Comics and Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is as brainless a book as the zombies that appear in the story and makes no sense whatsoever as a Batman story or as a companion to any of the Nolan films. It's both poorly conceived and written and is a complete bore to read despite its short page count. For readers looking to find out more about the mysterious Ra's Al-Ghul, try "Birth of the Demon" instead and ignore this strange aberration of the Batman mythos.
Gulacy, inked well by Jimmy Palmiotti, is the artist here. His work is absolutely splendid. If I was just reviewing the art, this would be a five-star review.
Unfortunately, the story stinks more than a dead mouse that's been stuck behind a radiator for a fortnight. It's hard to say which is the story's most dominant attribute - its tedium, its senselessness, or its incoherence. Oh, and as other reviewers have noted, the "Year One" in the book's title doesn't seem to have any bearing on the proceedings whatsoever.
The history of American mainstream comics is largely characterised by terrible stories told by means of outstanding artwork which they simply don't merit. This book is a particularly vivid and painful example of such, and should be avoided by anyone except completist Gulacy fans and hairy-handed Batman obsessives who long since lost any sense of perspective. Five star art, zero star writing.
Death is being slowly reversed and people are re-composing. All of the Bad guys come after Batman and we are asked the question - how much worse off would the world be if people didn't die. Sort of forcing Batman to agree that sometimes death is a good thing.
it ends predictably - i won't spoil that bit but we are left with no resolution of the guys up and walking around as zombies. you see absolutely nothing about that after Batman solves he problem.
Ok for the collection but again i'd say low on the priority list.
Rather than a straightforward retelling of Ra's early origins, we have Batman taking on a case that leads him back to certain key moments in the life of possibly his most brilliant and deadly foe. I actually kind of like that idea; it's more ingenuitive and interesting than just copying and pasting other "year one" formats.
However, though the narrative voice (a letter written by Ra's before he died) does guide us through his philosophy and world-view very well, and is wonderfully and evocatively written, by the end of the book i felt a little short-changed on the Ra's front. We basically get two flashbacks (good ones, important ones) to Ra's past life and then the rest of the story is Bats doing what he does best. Now, that's fine, but not what i was expecting when i picked the book up, and in terms of seeing behind the scenes of Ra's personality, well, that doesn't really happen on a grand scale. We get told he's brilliant, ancient, ruthless and get a few momentary insights of this. That's fine as far as it goes, but i already knew that. I never doubted it. I would rather have found out why it was the case than just have it reiterated again.
I liked it. It's good stuff, and any batman fan will enjoy the story, i think. I did. It just might not be quite the story they were expecting, is all.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Got this as a nostalgic gift for my older brother, went down great, anyone who liked batman/comics will like this. Tells the story behind parts of the film Batman Begins.Published on 27 Dec. 2012 by StephenM
Like my title the story wasn't so good but the graphic and the colours was awesome. I think that its ok to buy this comic...Published on 12 May 2011 by akoz
First of all, you will notice that the other reviews for this book are all for Batman Year One: Ra's Al Ghul and NOT for Batman:War Crimes! Read morePublished on 29 Nov. 2010 by Mr. S. W. Steel
I enjoyed the way they brought you back to Ra's journey through his letter. This showed a genuine touch that Ra's feelings towards the detective where genuine. Read morePublished on 25 Oct. 2010 by Eros
a well drawn title, but doesn't have any of the realism aspects you would expect from a title piggybacking on the 'year one' novel by frank miller. Read morePublished on 11 Jan. 2010 by Mr. E. Finn
The "Year One" title puts one in mind of the works of Frank Miller and Chuck Dixon, with their superlative "Batman", "Robin" and "Batgirl" contributions. Read morePublished on 22 April 2007 by Badger-of-Chemistry