Gotham Central Volume 4 – The Quick and the Dead.
There is nothing worse than reading a book you really like and then not finding the words to write a simple post about it. If you’ve read my other post on Gotham Central consider this to be more of the same praise. For anyone too lazy to click that link, this is a great street level cop drama set squarely in the real word aspect of Gotham but on the peripheries of Batman’s fight for justice. It captures the core aspects of Gotham, the darkness, the ugliness, and the general complacency that you won’t be able to make sense of the horrible crimes that happen there on a regular basis. It’s not a place where the cops just deal with fender benders and other more dangerous situations, it’s about the cops who show up when The Joker decides to start sniping politicians or poison the city’s water supply.
In this chapter there’s a crossover with one of The Rogues from the Flash family and a couple of Keystone cops. I haven’t read any Flash comics so I have no idea what their history is or how prescient those police officers are in the Flash mythos. While there is a lot of theme crime happening there is also Officer Montoya’s life trying to knit itself back together, which is the right amount of human reality to offset the rest of the action. It’s a great book that is worth every moment you spend with it.
And the only thing I can add to my thoughts on the art is that while a totally different style from the animated series, they do capture the same basic concept of having a city that is dark. The amount of black ink used to set mood and tell the story ensures you know everything you need to know about Gotham City.