Publisher: DC Comics
Written By: Tom King
Art By: Jason Fabok, Brad Anderson
Letters By: Daron Bennet
At the end of the DC Universe Rebirth Special DC put out last summer Batman found the Comedian’s bloody button from the Watchman buried in the wall of the Batcave. Now nearly a year later we start a crossover between Batman & The Flash to investigate the mysterious artifact with a four part crossover titled “The Button”.
The first part begins with the amnesiac Saturn Girl from the Legion of Superheroes in Arkham watching a hockey game on TV, this triggers something in her memory and she begins screaming about how Superman won’t come and the Legion will die. Meanwhile we cut out to Batman back at the Batcave and the titular button reacting to the Psycho Pirates mask sitting next to it. Bruce contacts Barry about this however The Flash is unable to speed over as he is currently in the middle of a battle with a group of robotic samurai but tells Batman he will be over in a minute. As soon as he ends the call Batman sees a swoosh thinking it is his friend however it turns out to be Eobard Thawne: The Reverse Flash, who taunts Batman by ripping up his letter that his father Thomas wrote for him during The Flashpoint and starts beating poor Bruce into the ground until he is unconscious and is able to steal the button from him. As soon as Thawne gets his hands on the button he is momentarily teleported away and reappears looking much worse for wear merely stating “I Saw God!” before collapsing and turning into a skeleton. The issue ends with Barry arriving at the Batcave finding an unconscious Bruce and a dead Thawne.
In terms of story the first part of The Button is near perfect, we see more of the staples that have made King so popular, nine panel page layouts, cryptic dialogue, social commentary, a nice cliffhanger ending and well paced action scenes make the issue one heck of a ride that would make The Watchmen themselves proud. The art by Jason Fabok complements the story perfectly and Fabok continues to be at the top of his game creating a truly tense and engaging atmosphere in near every page and panel, all of which are well complimented by Brad Anderson’s color work which give us bright and defined colors to help make the characters and surroundings really pop out on each page.
Overall Batman #21 is an excellent start to what may be one of the most important storylines since Rebirth began in June of 2016 and is a much have for any Batman &/or Flash fan.