Batman: Terror
by Doug Muench, Paul Gulacy (DC Comics, 2003)

The cast of Prey returns a decade later in Terror with the same creative team -- writer Doug Muench and artist Paul Gulacy -- at the helm.

His body was never found, of course, but mad psychiatrist Hugo Strange fell to his certain death at Prey's conclusion. And, of course, Strange returned to torment the Batman once more. His obsession with proving himself Batman's intellectual superior remains constant, as does his desire to prove that Batman and Bruce Wayne are one and the same. He also still has a fetish for cowl-and-lingerie-clad mannequins.

New this time is his allegiance with the fear-mongering Scarecrow, Jonathan Crane, and Crane's tenuous arrangement -- read: blackmail -- with the sultry Catwoman. Set early in Batman's career, the story includes a smidge of that early Bat/Cat sexual tension.

The story is packed with murder and revenge, betrayal and psychological twists, not to mention a classic comic-book deathtrap. It's not groundbreaking Batman -- the story itself is a little old hat -- but it's entertaining all the same.

Except for the mannequin. She's creepy.

review by
Tom Knapp

21 March 2009

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