Written by Michael Green and Mike Johnson
Art by Rafael Albuquerque
I'm not a regular reader of Superman/Batman and have only really read a handful of issues, two of which were the mini JLA'ers arc that Rafael Albuquerque pencilled about a year ago. The nostolgia of those two issue combined with my missing Albuquerque's artwork since Blue Beetle ended prompted me to test the waters on this book now that he is coming on as the ongoing artist with this issue.
I was not disappointed, to say the least, as this was just a plain, old fashioned fun read, from start to finish. Albuquerque's art is easily the highlight of the issue. He's clearly improved since Blue Beetle and it shows in the expressiveness and storytelling abilities on display here. His renditions of Joker and Zsasz here are dark and twisted as hell and yet perfect all at the same time, capturing the essence of both characters.
However, the issue isn't completely perfect. The plot of the book is a fairly generic with the main story revolving around a riot at Arkham, Batman being busy somewhere else and, thus, Supergirl and Robin, have to step up to stop it. It's all framed with the two sidekicks reminiscing about their meeting at a coffeeshop, but, in the end, we've seen riots at Arkham a million times, so nothing new there.
While it does use a cliched Batman plot, the riot does show off the differences between Supergirl and Robin through their reactions and the characterization was spot on. I'd actually consider buying this book if it just followed the adventures of Supergirl and Robin if they wanted to take it in that direction. The riot also provided a nice visual treat as Albuquerque got to draw a who's who of Batman's rogues gallery, so I'm not going to complain too much about it.
Verdict - Check It. Tempted to bump this up to Must Read status, but it's basically out of continuity and a little weak on plot. I'm also biased towards Albuquerque's art. However, despite not being an absolute Must Read book, I highly recommend giving this issue a shot. Just a fun read with some beautiful visuals.