With two arcs of All-Star in the books, Snyder turns his focus over to Alfred Pennyworth for the third arc. With a mystery that hearkens back to his younger years in the current day.
Alfred is one of the strongest characters in the Batman universe that isn’t named Bruce Wayne. Having quite the checkered past, just like Bruce himself. So seeing a story that digs into his past is always a welcome tale in my book. With this first issue, we see flashbacks of his past, which sets up the mysterious final page reveal. While Hush is the villain here, it is short lived with others revealed later on.
Alfred has an opening monologue in this issue, talking about Bruce and how absurd he is. Along the way, he calls Bruce his son several times, an aspect that I think gets overlooked in the Batman lore. Alfred has always been there and has raised Bruce as if he were his own son. Willing and ready to do anything for him, through the craziest times. While Bruce’s father is dead, he has always had a father in Alfred.
Snyder weaves this first issue with Alfred’s past that now ties into the current mystery Bruce is chasing after. Showing parallels between Bruce and Alfred in their younger years. Using flashbacks that could have easily been mistaken for Bruce, if not for the final pages reveal. Setting us up for the mystery that will take us even further into Alfred’s past and possibly bringing some baggage out of it.
Albuquerque’s astonishing work is on full display here. With his past additions being in the backup issues, we now get to see him shine. Known for doing pencils and inks via an ink wash technique, it really makes for some stunning pages. Paired with Bellaire’s colors this art team is just as good as the rest of the talent that has been seen on the pages of All-Star Batman. That’s part of the fun here, we get to see so many visual styles on this title taking a tour of the best artists DC has to offer.
All-Star Batman #10 serves as a solid starting point for the new arc, setting up a mystery that drives into Alfred’s past. Snyder once again has me hooked on the story and I cannot wait to see where this one takes us.
Reviewed by Tim Montoya
All-Star Batman #10
Written by Scott Snyder
Art by: Rafael Albuquerque, Jordie Bellaire, Steve Wands
Published by DC
Release Date: May 10th, 2017