From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Batman is pushed past the edge of sanity in this spectacular story that mixes icy mind games and passionate outbursts. A club of criminal masterminds, the Black Glove, has an elaborate plot to make Bruce Wayne/Batman self-destruct by convincing him that all his friends and lovers have betrayed him and that his most trusted memories are false. As clever in their scheming as the villains are, however, they have no idea how thorough Batman has been in planning ways to protect his obsessions; consequently, the action is fractured between scenes of what is really happening, what might be happening, what probably isn't happening, etc. This premise gives scriptwriter Morrison and principal artist Daniel a chance to review key episodes and images from the Caped Crime Fighter's long career—including, of course, numerous encounters with the Joker, who's too chaotic to be happy in any organization like the Black Glove, but who struts through the action wielding sardonic humor and two straight razors. Whether Batman winds up (or ever was) totally sane is unresolved, but he's a fascinating protagonist in this sweeping, emotionally draining saga. (Feb.)
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Having largely abandoned the outré projects (e.g., Doom Patrol, The Invisibles) that made his reputation for chronicling DC’s big superheros, Morrison here gives us the caper that puts the lid over the Caped Crusader. Dr. Simon Hurt, leader of the international criminal associates known as the Black Glove, has devised an elaborate psychological trap for Batman. The scheme succeeds in breaking Batman’s sanity, long established as being dangerously fragile, and leading him to adopt a psychotically violent persona, the Batman of Zur-En-Arrh, who squares off in Arkham Asylum against Dr. Hurt’s new ally, the Joker. Batman’s delusions are likely to be as confusing to readers as they are to him. Morrison uses elements from seven decades’ worth of disparate and contradictory versions of the character, and only the most dedicated fans will recognize most of them. Tony Daniel’s art grounds the complex proceedings with clarity and verve. Batman’s apparent demise at the saga’s end leads into an arc in which various would-be successors vie for the right to wear his cowl. --Gordon Flagg