DC Comics unleashes the Joker's maniacal fury in "Batman Volume 3: Death of the Family." It's frightening how they take the crazed Clown Prince of Crime and make him even nuttier than he was before the "New 52" reboot. The Joker had some loose screws before, but circumstances have pushed him even further over the abyss and the Dark Knight's family and friends are going to suffer for it.
"Batman Volume 3: Death of the Family" collects issues 13 through 17 of the monthly series. The Joker returns to Gotham City and is crazier than ever after having his face peeled off by the Dollmaker. Batman's arch-villain hatches his most diabolical plot to bring Batman to his knees, which involves the assistance of the prisoners and guards of Arkham Asylum and the deaths of the Caped Crusader's partners in crime-fighting.
Writers Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV take "Batman Volume 3: Death of the Family" to new heights of horror and suspense. They come up with fresh acts of violence and cruelty that make you wonder if they climbed a little too far into the head of the Joker. The climax of the story will have readers gasping and tenser than they've been since sitting through the dinner table sequences in the "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" movies.
Artists Greg Capullo captures every shocking written word Snyder and Tynion IV put down on paper. He has a unique penciling style that sets him apart from his counterparts. He's precise without copping the Jim Lee style other artists tend to mimic. The coloring adds a whole other dimension to Capullo's illustrations, making them vividly pop out of the book.
16 pages of bonus material are included for "Batman Volume 3: Death of the Family." They include 10 variant, con, and overlapping covers. There are also Joker character sketches, a cover sketch, an alternate color cover, and interior pencils featured.
"Batman Volume 3: Death of the Family" isn't the whole event in one graphic novel. However, it certainly is enough to get readers excited to pick up the other volumes to the story arc. It does stand alone quite well, though. Not only is it full of action and suspense, it leaves readers with something to think about.