Peter J. Tomasi, writer
Doug Mahnke, pencils
Keith Champagne & Christain Alamy, inks
David Baron, colors
Rob Leigh, letters
In the previous issue, Batman confronts Mr. Freeze, attacks, which leads to an action-packed high-speed chase over a frozen lake bed. Mr. Freeze gets away; however, Batman rescues three women from Freeze’s hideout who were previously captured and frozen. This issue, Batman continues to assess and investigate the evidence he gathered during his previous encounter with Freeze. Meanwhile, Mr. Freeze helps his wife Nora make the transition back to full consciousness. She is shocked thinking that she was dead due to cancer. Mr. Freeze instructs her that he made a great sacrifice to keep her alive.
This story hinges on the dynamic between Nora and Mr. Freeze and the audience connecting with Mr. Freeze’s motives for keeping Nora alive. This part of the story is grounded in Mr. Freeze’s reality; that he couldn’t envision life without Nora and that’s why he went to the extreme of freezing her. The connection between the pair feels real but rushed. At the end of the issue Freeze and Nora are pictured breaking into Wayne enterprises together. It’s a hard sell for me. How could Nora be able to make an adjustment from being frozen and living in a tube to participating in an attack on a building?
The investigation work in the Batcave and later at Wayne enterprises is very interesting in it’s analysis of Freeze’s technology and builds heavily on the lore that Batman is DC’s greatest detective. The strength of this sequence to the methodical and careful approach Batman employs. It’s very interesting to see Batman uncover and peace together the evidence.
The art in this issue is solid. Visually, the half panel that pictures Nora and Freeze embracing once she’s fully awake, is the highlight of the issue. I struggled to differentiate Alred while he was wearing The Flash’ mask but it was funny and potentially layered, as The Flash is a good detective, as well.
This issue is another classic Batman investigation story. The twist involving Freeze, his advanced use of technology, and his connection to the larger Year of the Villain storyline is interesting. The connections to Nora’s past and her battle with cancer give the issue emotional depth. I recommend this book to fans of the classic Batman stories.