Batman 1: The Court of Owls

batman volume 1 the court of owls cover greg capullo art
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Art: 9/10

One of the best of the New 52


Comic Info

Comic Name:  Batman (Volume 2)

Publisher:  DC Comics

Writer:  Scott Snyder

Artist:  Greg Capullo

# of Issues:  7

Release Date:   2012

batman #4 cover greg cappullo art owls

Batman (2) #4

Reprints Batman (2) #1-7 (November 2011-May 2012).  Batman once thought he was the darkest thing in the night in Gotham City, but now he learns he could be wrong.  For years he has searched for evidence of the existence of a secret cult called the Court of Owls, but after deciding to move Gotham City forward, the Court of Owls is coming for him.  Now Bruce Wayne is caught in a trap that ensnared his grandfather and may have deeper links to Batman and his allies.

Written by Scott Snyder and illustrated by Greg Capullo, Batman Volume 1:  The Court of Owls is part of the New 52 re-launch of DC Comics and has been one of the widely critically acclaimed series to come out of it.  The events in these issues lead up to the big crossover event The Night of the Owls which taps into other Batman family books like Birds of Prey, Nightwing, Batman and Robin, Batman:  The Dark Knight, Batwing, Batgirl, Catwoman, Detective Comics, Red Hood and the Outlaws, and even All-Star Western.

The story is kicked off by this storyline, and I have to admit that even though I’m not the biggest Batman fan, I really like this series.  Batman for me was always like Wolverine…too broody, dark, and “cool” to really be enjoyable, but when he was written well, it was really good.  Here Snyder manages to make Batman interesting to me again by giving him some weakness and mortality that I always feel is lacking from the character (another reason why Frank Miller’s Year One and The Dark Knight Returns also work).

batman #5 cover greg capullo art owls

Batman (2) #5

The Talons and the Court are pretty cool villains that are still developing in this story.  The final issue of the collection goes a bit more into the Talons and their origins but also have the shocking revelation about Nightwing’s tie.  The Court itself also is creepy and has a bit of a horror feel to them.  It seems a bit similar to Ra’s Al Ghul’s League of Assassins (especially how it was presented in Batman Begins).

It is also aided by great art by Greg Capullo’s art.  He has a real stylized version of Batman that works in the context of the story.  It feels like a bit of a blend of Mignola’s art (which I liked) and Frank Miller (also good).  He does a great job setting up the imagery of the owls and it works great with the story.

Batman 1:  The Court of Owls is maybe my favorite book of the New 52.  Snyder is establishing himself as one of the best “new” writers and both this comic and his New 52 Swamp Thing are great examples of why.  Highly recommend this for a fun, different look at the popular character.  Batman 1:  The Court of Owls is followed by Batman 2:  The City of Owls.

Related Links:

Batman 2:  The City of Owls

Batman 3:  Death of the Family

Batman 4:  Zero Year—Secret City

Batman 5:  Zero Year—Dark City


Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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