This is the fourth in the series of one shots detailing the origins of the Dark Multiverse Batmen, while not as strong as The Murder Machine, I did find it to be better than The Red Death.
Jason Fabok and Brad Anderson do the honours again. I like this one as much as The Red Death, as the colour scheme plays well with the Batman/Aquaman merger, and it gives a great view of the titular character. The octopus arms in the background are a nice touch too, and all the reaching hands at the bottom of the scene make me wonder if they are undead minions of some sort, or just victims of this particular Batman.
Philip Tan and Tyler Kirkham do the duties on pencils for this issue, and though I am unfamiliar with any previous work that they’ve done, I do like their work here. The issue feels like it takes place in water that has been corrupted, much like the main character is a corruption of Batman. Everything looks waterlogged, and even the hair is drawn as though it is floating underwater. This book continues the trend of me not being disappointed by the visuals accompanying the story.
This tale is written by Dan Abnett, and again, I am unfamiliar with any of his previous work, but like what he’s done here. The story begins with The Drowned arriving in the main DC universe and approaching a town called Amnesty Bay, which I’m assuming is tied to the Aquaman character. We then see the beginnings of a battle between her and Aquaman. The story quickly shifts gears and goes into the history of The Drowned, a female version of Batman named Bryce Wayne. She, like the others is motivated by loss, and after the forces of Atlantis had sunk Gotham between the waves, she alters herself to take the fight to the Atlanteans, and eradicates all of them to ‘save’ her world.She is then visited by The Batman Who Laughs, and he directs her to the Primary DC Universe. She, like the others, make quick work of their merged counterpart, and Aquaman is only saved when a mysterious light whisks him away from certain doom.
This again is a good addition to the series, and I am thankful for a great cover to draw me in. I still haven’t picked up Dawnbreaker just because I really didn’t like the look of the cover. I also really enjoyed the gender flip, and how they explained it away in a sentence, namely that the genders of characters between these two universes are flipped. It doesn’t matter which gender Batman is, the character is downright frightening when turned to evil.