OK, you had me at Scott Snyder, Giuseppe Camuncoli, Mark Morales and Dean White, DC.
All Star Batman #8 deals with Batman, the Hatter and is done in a way that always you to connect and feel the confusion that our hero is stuck in. There are some major cues from Snyder's A.D. at play here, as it truly does put the reader in a relatable psychological state.
Snyder not only pulled this feat off, but he basically wrote the blueprint on how to accomplish it.
Right from the opening sequence with Batman slowly coming into frame starting with his little Bathead, the tone for this issue is set. Our protagonist starts us off by describing his state of mind: "I call it the 'window moment' like standing at the window as the curtains open. And on this case, it's happening right now, Batman says on the very first page.
The art team on this issue clearly was on the same page as Snyder, because some of the panels in this issue are seriously mind-bending. The opening sequence is the aforementioned tone-setter but Camuncoli, who is a bonafide breakout star, just absolutely nails what this issue is trying to do especially with Batman's showdown with Batwoman, Red Hood and Nightwing.
The way Batman broke down each imposter's moves is reminiscent of "Cammo's" work on The Flash, as he hones in on what makes these characters these characters. Batman knows his people, he knows their moves and he knows that "my family knows how to ******* fight."
Not only does Scott Snyder make you feel Batman's psychological instability as the Mad Hatter gets inside his head, but as a reader I felt myself questioning what was happening and everything I have come to know and love about this character.
Snyder's first go-round with the Mad Hatter nails the scary, mysterious character as you're not ever really sure what's real until we see that "window moment" come into play for the second time. Even at his most flustered, Batman powers through and finds an end to his means.
Heavy spoiler alert for All Star Batman #8
Hatter has convinced Batman, momentarily, that upon their first meeting when Bruce Wayne first came home that he tagged him with a magical hat. This hat worked with the wearer's neurology to make the person see whatever superficial architecture he wanted on top of the world.
The creepy villain fools the reader into thinking that Batman has created this world of Jokers, Banes and supervillains on his own. Snyder accomplishes this impressive feat through the Hatter by comparing everything we know about Gotham and Batman to Alive in Wonderland.
"Pocket watches, rabbit holes. A jabberwocky. A Cheshire cat. A queen and king of hearts. A caterpillar ..."
Had me going for a bit, seriously.
On that note:
Comic Review: 10/10
You know how you get perfect scores from the Court of Nerds on comic reviews? You mess with their heads and make them think for a second that everything they have grown to believe was just a trick. In reading this issue, the reader will connect with Batman and Scott Snyder on a mental level that lets you feel what they feel when their heads aren't working like they want them too.
The Mad Hatter is done in a way that elevates him to an entirely new level of psychological supervillain status. Giuseppe Camuncoli, Mark Morales and Dean White are a perfect team for this issue as Camuncoli work on ASB 8 is reminiscent of his work on The Flash, as he hones in on what makes these characters these characters.
This book will make you feel things. Not necessarily emotions like happiness, anger or sadness, but confusion, anxiety and a feeling of not being in control. Also, Batman has Wolverine claw gadgets for a second (!).