Writer: Tom King
Artist: Clay Mann
Inks: Clay Mann & Seth Mann
Colors: Jordie Bellaire
Letters: Clayton Cowles
Getting engaged is supposed to be one of the happiest moments in your life, an event that you want to share with all of your friends and family. You should want to proclaim your love to everyone and hope that your friends want to share in your joy. This is how it is supposed to be, unless you are the World’s Finest superheroes who apparently have a very hard time sharing their feelings and reaching out to one another when the world is not on the brink of destruction. This awkwardness is the basis for Batman #36, which is yet another gem from Tom King who is crafting one of the best Batman runs in history.
Ever since the New 52 & DC Rebirth it’s been difficult to pinpoint the relationship/friendship Batman and Superman have had. I’m not even 100% which Superman this is anymore nor do I care. What I do know is that the friendship between Batman and Superman is not as clearly defined as it once was and Tom King is playing with that in Batman #36 as both Batman and Superman are avoiding reaching out to one another to discuss the upcoming nuptials. The beauty of the issue is the characterization of the four principal players, Batman, Superman, Catwoman, and Lois and the two heroes inabilities to express their emotions and feelings to one another while the woman of their lives push them to having a more open and honest relationship with their friend. I found myself smiling more then once at the confusion both Lois and Selina had at how Batman and Superman have no trouble saving the world together but neither can pick up the phone and call one another when something important is happening in their personal, non-cape lives. King’s genius then shows itself as he juxtaposed the comic with Lois and Clark working on a story and Batman and Catwoman working a case. The book then analyzes the World’s Finest relationship, both from the heroes themselves but also their significant other. We also find out that Batman and Superman each is intimidated by the other and their feelings on what makes the other hero great. It’s a beautiful sequence and makes me want King to write a World’s Finest comic in the future.
Batman #36 is a wonderful read. Tom King has a great grasp of not only Batman but also Superman and splitting the story between the two works perfectly. The dialogue is dead on and Clay Mann’s art is dynamic and emotional and a nice fit for this storyline. As the story builds and the two stories converge leads to one of the more enjoyable and comedic panels I’ve read in some time. Batman #36 is another excellent comic in Tom King’s Batman run and well worth the read and in my opinion a definite Buy. If you’re not reading Tom King’s Batman then you need to jump on board as you are missing out on a tremendous comic.