Originally released in 2002-2003 as part of the Batman monthly series, Hush is a 12-issue set of comics involving many of Gotham’s notorious villains, yet there’s a mysterious new mastermind that’s pulling the strings. Who is doing this and why? Along the way, things get really complicated between The Dark Knight and Catwoman, and a visit to Metropolis goes awry in unexpected ways.
Having now read three volumes of the current Detective Comics series of Batman comics, Hush feels much more in line with what the modern comics are aiming for (and falling consistently short of). There are still a myriad of enemies that flow in and out of each issue, yet it all makes sense within the context of the greater narrative. Batman continues to act as the narrator throughout, coming through particularly strong during his flashback scenes with his childhood friend Tommy. Every issue has something of its own to make it stand out from the rest while pushing the plot forward. In particular, the issue where Batman has to square off against Superman is my favourite of the bunch.
Legendary artist Jim Lee handles the pencil duties here and his work is phenomenal. He brings every panel to life with so much detail throughout. The writing is strong on its own, but having this caliber of art behind it makes the overall package so much stronger. There are many individual panels here that I’d love to get in poster format for my man cave.
Hush hits all the right notes until the very last issue. The story builds up all of this tension and suspense but then the resolution of this conflict just falls flat in terms of how it ends and how the ending is handled. I don’t think it’s enough to take away from all of awesome moments it does have, but they were so close to closing out an incredible run that it’s a bit disappointing that it ends the way it does.
Coming off of a sub-par New 52 Detective Comics run, Batman: Hush serves as a reminder for how great The Dark Knight can be at his best. Widely available now in graphic novel form, I urge anyone with an interest in the adventures of Bruce Wayne to pick this up. Even if the ending falls short of the expectations it sets for itself, the moments along the way make it more than worthwhile.