Reviews: Death Of The Family

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Unfortunately misguided
Death of the Family was a really hyped storyline, coming off the really exciting Court of Owls arc that had preceded it. Since it actually came out opinions about it have been mixed to say the least.

Despite the comic having its heart in the right place, with Capullo and his inker absolutely killing it when it comes to the artwork, the comic kind of falls flat in most other departments.

Firstly, as many people have complained, the comic is doing nothing but retreading the same dynamic Joker and Batman have had for several years now, bringing nothing really new or interesting to the table. It's arguably even worse here because Snyder made a lot of the subtext very explicit, robbing the story of any kind of subtlety.

A lot of that has to do with the Joker's characterization specifically. He prattles on and on and pretty much explains what the story is trying to do (with the whole king in a court with him being a jester thing), and not only that, but this Joker just further reinforces how stale and one-note he has become. There's nothing truly humorous and unpredictable about him anymore, he's just a vehicle for edge and for the writers to try and one-up the Killing Joke but completely failing to do so because they fall into all the traps writers before them have fallen into. He's overused and dull right now, and honestly needs a big rest and preferably some kind of re-invention when he comes back.

Maybe if you haven't read any of the several Joker stories before this you could enjoy this, and it WAS kind of fun to read all the same. Sometimes a story can be really fun and engaging despite treading familiar ground (like the rest of Snyder's run actually), but the Joker's characterization is so stagnant right now that it really brings the book down.
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