Adapted from the Batman comic Knightfall story-arc this is a dark and feintly disturbing outing for the Caped Crusader and his friends.
Batman is slowly weakened and ultimately confined to a wheelchair after battling the dangerous inmates of Arkham Asylum who have been released by Bane “a villain of superhuman strength, cunning and evil.” With Bruce Wayne out of commission who will don the mantle of Batman and defeat Bane?
Unless you’re steeped in Batman lore this release needs some work on the part of the listener in the very early stages when, for example, there’s a scene which discuses the various people to have served as sidekick Robin which may confuse some listeners for whom Robin is always Dick Grayson.
That said the story is far more coherent and satisfying than many of the recent films with the cast containing a number of excellent performances which provide each of the villains a clearly identifiable voice. Bob Sessions’ portrayal of Batman/Bruce Wayne exudes class and sophistication and the inclusion of Michael Gough as Alfred gives the production a subtle link to the films.
The sound effects do an excellent job of depicting a hustling and busy city while Mark Russell’s music effectively conveys both the darkness of Gotham and the epic scale of the story.
The cover notes reveal that this is a specially restored and re-edited version of the story and the third disc contains a number of original and unrestored sequences including the original opening sequence which is far more dramatic in the special edition.
Batman: Knightfall can be pre-ordered from BBCShop.com.