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Batman: Arkham Asylum

A dark and disturbing Batman graphic novel written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Dave McKean.

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When you gaze long into the abyss....

  • Jul 7, 2010
  • by
Rating:
+5
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Well, crap.

I don't even know where to begin.

This book makes me feel intellectually inferior as a reader.

Poetic from start to finish, the metaphor, symbolism and allusion are deeper than I even have the brain capacity to comprehend without being reduced to a gibbering servile state in the wake of its dazzling splendiferous Awesome. It's like channeling Gaiman's "Eat my philosophical dust" and Moore's "More literary than literature" all at once.

But, okay. Arkham Asylum is dark. Very dark. It's more grisly and macabre than Hannibal Lecter would be if he painted himself black and ran off the cliff side screaming "BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD" whilest listening to Dimmu Borgir and Slayer simultaneously. Fucking awesome.

Like any work worth calling great, Arkham Asylum asks questions, goes places that haven't been gone before, and adds a new perspective to the canon. To say that it's "psychological" is so formidable an understatement it would make the world's humorless critic explode in a shower of cackling cacophony. If you happen to be, I don't know, a remotely healthy human being, you may find this subject matter unnerving or disturbing. If you happen to be squeamish and inflexible in your view of Batman (because, you know, superhero canon totally doesn't change every third book or so), then Arkham Asylum may be a bit much for you. But you should read it anyway, because you, mere mortal, are unworthy.

Yeah. That's all, friends.

Read well and prosper,

- Kriss
When you gaze long into the abyss....

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More Batman: Arkham Asylum (graphic... reviews
review by . June 01, 2012
A riveting, disturbing tale of the Dark Knight's darkest night
         To the dragon, Saint George was a monster.      Keeping hold of that old observation about perspective might help one navigate the hallucinatory maze that is the heart of Batman: Arkham Asylum, Grant Morrison's harrowing work that is one of the most powerful Batman stories in the character's more than 70 years. The narrative plunges us into a nightmarish asylum for the criminally insane that has literally been taken over by the inmates. …
Quick Tip by . June 19, 2010
crazy!
review by . March 26, 2009
First, there are two things anyone interested in purchasing or reading this title should know about it beforehand. One, that it is probably not for everyone's taste as it isn't your traditional Batman vs. the villain-of-the-week sort of story, but rather a darker, more disturbing kind of tale that focuses on a deep, complex exploration of madness, told alternately from three different points of view: that of Amadeus Arkham, founder of the asylum, that of Batman and his other persona, Bruce Wayne, …
review by . March 26, 2009
First, there are two things anyone interested in purchasing or reading this title should know about it beforehand. One, that it is probably not for everyone's taste as it isn't your traditional Batman vs. the villain-of-the-week sort of story, but rather a darker, more disturbing kind of tale that focuses on a deep, complex exploration of madness, told alternately from three different points of view: that of Amadeus Arkham, founder of the asylum, that of Batman and his other persona, Bruce Wayne, …
review by . July 19, 2008
For any beginning comic reader, and even more so for anyone else, "Arkham Asylum" is essential. Claimed by DC to be the best-selling graphic novel of all time, "Arkham Asylum" is deep, psychological, terrifying, and as dark as any comic I've ever read. Grant Morrison writes with an explorative and bleak psychology reminescent of Alan Moore -- but Moore's own darkly contemplative and psychological Batman work, 1988's "Batman: The Killing Joke," was never this ghastly. Thanks to Dave McKean's beautiful …
About the reviewer
Kriss Morton ()
Ranked #1076
Ardent tabletop role player, disciple of Metal, connoisseur of video games and student of life. I occasionally make my presence in this section of cyberspace meaningful by posting reviews of books, etc. … more
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About this book

Wiki

In this groundbreaking painted graphic novel, the inmates of Arkham Asylum have taken over Gotham's detention center for the criminally insane on April Fool's Day and demand Batman in exchange for their prisoners. Accepting their demented challenge, Batman is forced to live and endure the personal hells of the Joker, Scarecrow, Poison Ivy, Two-Face and many other of his sworn enemies in order to save the innocents and retake the prison. During his run through this absurd gauntlet, the Dark Knight Detective's own sanity is in jeopardy. This special anniversary edition hardcover also reproduces the original script with annotations by Morrison and editor Karen Berger.
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Details

ISBN-10: 1401204244
ISBN-13: 978-1401204242
Editor: Karen Berger
Author: Grant Morrison, Dave McKean
Genre: Superheroes, Dark Fantasy, Comics & Graphic Novels
Publisher: DC Comics
Date Published: October 1989
Format: Graphic Novel
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