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It’s been a while, I think, since Howard Chaykin did a Batman story, and this one-shot is a refreshing romp that he seems to have had a lot of fun with. In some ways it looks back to when Batman himself was more fun, even though he states in the opening captions, “Lest you get the wrong idea, let me reassure you there are no circumstances that I can imagine under which what I do could ever be described as fun.” Now, what I see there is a very clever ploy by Chaykin the writer to put the idea into the reader’s head that perhaps Batman DOES have fun sometimes.
Certainly the other two principals in the book seem to be having fun: Catwoman, and the costumed villain The Cavalier, a classic theatrical type that Chaykin both writes and draws well. While the pursuit of Cavalier is the main action, a back story about corruption and embezzling at Wayne Enterprises is equally entertaining, and allows Chaykin to play with corporate satire and office politics in the humorous but worldly-wise way he does so well. Of course the two stories are entangled, just as the three principals are. It’s all a terrific read, and both the writing and the art are excellent. Heartily recommended!