Comic Review: DC Rebirth Batman Volume 5

Bruce Wayne got engaged to Selina Kyle.  The two have a long history, a good deal in common even if they fight on opposite sides of the law, and, well, the two get along very well.

But at some point, they need to tell their friends.  And that happens in Volume 5 of the current Batman series subtitled Rules of Engagement.

Here’s the thing:  this volume seems to be played mostly for character growth and a lot of laughs.  The volume is divided into a three part story where Bruce and Selina go on a mission in the desert that involves seeing one Talia al-Ghul, AKA Bruce’s ex (he disagrees with that label) while the Robins sit at home and learn about the engagement from Alfred, leading to some nice conversations between original Robin Dick Grayson and current Robin Damien Wayne.  After that, there’s a two parter involving Bruce and Selina going on a double-date with Superman and Lois Lane to a county fair.  Finally there’s an annual detailing an early encounter between the Bat and the Cat (drawn by veteran comics artist Lee Weeks) and then a story set in the far future showing the pair as an elderly couple.

Writer Tom King has a really good grasp on Batman as a character, and his Catwoman is right up there.  Various conversations happen in this volume between other characters discuss their feelings on other characters, such as Catwoman talking about the kind of man Batman is to Talia, or Superman and Batman more or less saying the same things about each other to their respective mates.  And heck, we see Lois Lane and Selina Kyle make nice, all while keeping the tone and tenor of both the individual characters and the respective couples steady.  And it was actually alternately funny and touching while still keeping everyone more or less in character.  Just the fact both Lois and Selina are respectively urging Clark and Bruce to call the other is a fine crosscutting between the pairs, as both men make excuses not to call their superhero BFFs.  9 out of 10 arguments on where the happy couple met.

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