About two years ago I was getting extremely excited for the long awaited sequel to Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins, The Dark Knight. Shortly after the DVD release of Begins and the comic collection that accompanied the special edition, I looked at graphic novels in a different light. They were a medium which could supply me with darker and more satisfying Batman tales which would in turn hold me over until my viewing of Dark Knight. What started as an interest, soon turned into the beginning of a passion. I began with Frank Miller's Year One and Jeph Loeb's The Long Halloween & Dark Victory novels but most recently, I acquired the Loeb/Lee collaboration, Hush.
Hush changed things dramatically in the Batman universe. It brings together some of Batman's most notorious villains in Joker, Poison Ivy, Killer Croc and Riddler. It also brings an unlikely ally, Catwoman into the fold as well as a cameo by the man of steel himself, Superman. I won't spoil a lot other than that Batman manages to involve himself in a relationship and a major nemesis is turned to the side of justice, abandoning their evil past.
Jim Lee's art is spectacular and Jeph Loeb's writing is top notch, as usual. However, Lee's work manages to outshine Loeb's writing as Loeb did not manage to create a story that belongs in the same league as Halloween with Hush. This is not really a terrible thing, it's just hard to recreate perfection. While Hush has a spectacular ending that I did not see coming, it seemed very anticlimactic.
In the end, Hush is certainly a memorable piece of Batman history and deserves even the most casual of graphic novel reader's attention. Do yourself a favor and check it out but only if you have read Jeph Loeb's previous work first.