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Single Page Batman Origin Story

Batman JSA Origin


I’ve been catching up on some back issues lately one of which was “Justice Society of America” #50 by Marc Guggenheim. Guggenheim has had a pretty good run with the JSA book and I have to say the extra sized anniversary issue was pretty exceptional. It stays in continuity with the current story arc and manages to throw in the inspiration stories behind the current (standard) members of the Justice League of America. One of which is, of course, Batman.


The above panels were illustrated by George Perez, Scott Koblish with color by Hi-Fi. I was taken by the interpretation of the young Bruce Wayne. Most often we see him as a boy or a grown man. It’s pretty rare we see him as a late teen or adolescent. He has the tousled hair of a contemporary American youth and he looks to be one part Tim Drake or Dick Grayson. The face is heavy with perspiration and covered with nicks and cuts. Perhaps he had a mishap with a well or some subterranean cave.


The panels are crossed with shadows and tinted with blue to affect that gothic look and is reminiscent of Edgar Allen Poe’s, “The Raven” as the bat sits atop the bust of Thomas Wayne*.


Guggenheim doesn’t create new ground here but the whole feel to these few panels come across as very fresh. Did anyone else pick up this issue? What are your thoughts on Guggenheim’s, Perez’s and the rest interpretation?


Posted by Dave Healey


*In “The Raven” the bird sat atop a bust of Pallas.

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