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DC Comics The New 52, Batman Zero Year and Team Changes

Posted by Jordan on 24th June 2013

For quite some time I have been wanting to write a blog post about the ‘dream team’ for the DC Comics ‘New 52′ Batman series. A lot of the time all the credit goes to the writer and penciller with little thought for the others involved.

The artwork of Greg Capullo is what first encouraged me to start reading again and once I did, the sheer brilliance of Scott Snyders’ writing dug it’s talons in and I was hooked – the perfect combination of beautifully balanced story and art.

As months went by and the latest issue was delivered I noticed something about the artwork… it wasn’t just the artwork put down by Capullo that I liked, it was everything, the ideas and layout, the lighting, the inking and the colours, everything went together so beautifully and so seamlessly.

FCO Plascencia’s colours are truly amazing. Greg Capullo once said that FCO isn’t a ‘colorist’ but a ‘color artist’ and he was spot on. There’s a scene in Batman #16 with the burning horse where you can almost smell the smoke in the air!

Batman Fco Colouring

Now, as I mentioned, I had been planning for a long time to write about the ‘dream team’ which in my eyes was Scott Snyder (writer), Greg Capullo (pencils), FCO Plascencia (colour) and Jonathan Glapion (inks).

Unfortunately in my procrastination to write the post, things have changed and whilst most may deem it to be a minor change, it is one that I am struggling to get used to. Jonathan Glapion has been replaced as inker by Danny Miki and whilst Miki is still an excellent inker, I personally preferred the work of Glapion as I feel his lines represented the work of Capullo more accurately.

Batman Glapion Inks

The main reason is the detail in Glapion’s inking – he keeps the lines thin and detail and shading lines look natural (see above). From what I have seen in the past two issues inked by Miki, the shading is a little big unnatural and the line work is a bit heavy (see below).

Batman Miki Inks

Now to most people, this will be a minimal or near non-existent difference, but for me, it is doing two things; stripping away the dark and gritty feel making it more clean cut and steering it towards a more classic ‘comic book hero’ style and two, somewhat contrastingly, making me think of the Haunt comics.

I’ve also noticed a couple of instance where the shadowing is very heavy and also a bit ‘off’. I’m not sure where the light source is on the below image but the heavy shading on the face and limited shading on the bottom hand is causing confusion. The lines again also look a bit thick and uniform on the shading.

Batman Inks Miki

I’m going to carry on with the Zero Year story to see if the new inks grow on me, but for now, would like to say big ‘thank you’ to Jonathan Glapion for the amazing work he put into his work on the series and also best of luck.

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