I never thought I’d say this, but give me more Kite Man…???…Well, maybe I shouldn’t go that far. Is Tom King playing mind games with us? Is his Batman book really an elaborate Andy Kaufman-esque put on? “The Ballad of Kite Man” sequel is here and once again it is tangential to the main (not at all good) plot of the “War of Jokes and Riddles”.
What is this all about?
“THE BALLAD OF KITE MAN” part two! In our second “War of Jokes and Riddles” interlude, it’s the making of a super-villain! He’s been pushed by Batman to snitch on The Joker, and cajoled by The Joker to betray Batman—now, the flunky who would be Kite Man finally snaps. He’s lost everything, and a life of crime is the only way to go.
This is the most depressing comic book I’ve ever read. It may be a dark comedy, but the last panels are heartbreaking. As a father and a plain ol’ dude I legitimately felt bad for Chuck Brown by the end of this story.
So, is this even a Batman book? Surely if you take a moment to fast scan from beginning to end, you would see way more Kite Man than Batman. Hell yeah Kite is the character who’s sad thoughts we read and whose struggles we witness as he goes from loser to total reject.
This is the second half of Kite Man’s interlude and only has a slight bit to do with the main arc’s “war “. I can safely say this is the best Kite Man comic ever written and YOU thought it was supposed to be a Batman title, WRONG!
What happens in this issue that matters to the story is that Batman is on Team Riddler. Then he goes about kicking Joker’s lackeys butts all over Gotham. Kite Man seems to be trying to fight the good fight, but unfortunately he’s no match for Batman or anybody else for that matter. We end with Joker’s side in ruins and Kite Man being interrogated as the last person loyal to the clown.
As a Batman comic this isn’t what I’d read or recommend, but as a piece of tragic comedy it’s very good. The art by Clay Mann is wonderful and the colors perfectly match the tone of this work.
That’s all folks! What if we all just pluck to the two Kite Man issues out of this arc, dump the WOJAR, and move on? How weird is that? It is a big disappointment to me that Joker and Riddler are both so annoying in this arc and a character as “nobody” as Kite Man is this interesting.
Reviewed by: Jeff Daily
Written by: Tom King
Art by: Clay Mann, Seth Mann, Jordie Bellaire, and Clayton Cowles
Published by: DC Comics
Release Date: September 6, 2017