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The Shadow Knows, But He Ain’t Telling

Batman and The Shadow are reunited at last

On the surface, it’s a match made in vigilante heaven. The two greatest crimefighters of the 20th century–Batman and The Shadow–have both stricken fear in the hearts of their adversaries for more than 75 years. Both have solved more mysteries than Scotland Yard and the Gotham Police Department combined.

But when they initially meet in Batman The Shadow #1, it’s not as bats of a feather, rather as enemies. The two come to blows almost immediately. Mostly because it looks as though The Shadow, who supposedly died of cancer in the 1960s, has returned to Gotham City to kill one of his descendants. Coincidently, the deceased also bears the name Lamont Cranston, just like The Shadow.

Unraveling the Lamont Cranston Mystery

Batman auteur Scott Snyder teams with Steve Orlando to provide the compelling mystery. Neither is a stranger to the Dark Knight. And their fascination with the character continues. However, this time they are tying Bruce Wayne’s grandfather, Patrick, into some kind of relationship with Cranston. And the writing pair give Shadow fans something to enjoy as well. Batman interrogates Cranston’s known associates–all of whom are well past their crime-fighting prime.

Artist Riley Rossmo is a great choice to draw this six-part limited series. Interestingly, he gives Batman a more rooted feeling, while The Shadow is more ethereal. The result is a combination of Jim Lee and Paul Pope pencils, which is a welcome addition to the Caped Crusader’s looks.

If they’re anything like the premiere issue, the next five installments should be must-haves. Like Batman yells at The Shadow after their first fight, “Bats live in the shadows.”

SEE WHAT HAPPENS WITH THE DUO GOES AFTER THE STAG AND PRE-ORDER BATMAN THE SHADOW #2

Batman The Shadow #1, DC Comics and Dynamite, Released April 26, 2017, Written by Scott Snyder and Steve Orlando, Pencils by Riley Rossmo, Colors by Ivan Plascencia, Lettering by Clem Robins; $3.99.

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Written by Tom Smithyman

Tom Smithyman is a newspaperman turned marketing executive. A comic book enthusiast since the 70s, he tries to keep up with these alternate realities while juggling a professional career, family, community theater roles and passion for travel. Connect with him @tsmithyman and linkedin.com/in/tomsmithyman/