DC Comics has been releasing one-shot specials all month introducing its superheroes to flagship Looney Tunes characters, and it’s been a fun, silly event that has produced comics that don’t take themselves too seriously as they reinterpret these Warner Bros. properties. The most highly anticipated of these books is this week’s Batman/Elmer Fudd Special #1, which features current Batman scribe Tom King teaming up with superhero comics legend Lee Weeks for a hard-boiled crime tale pitting the Dark Knight against the hunter with a severe speed impediment. Each one-shot features a story that puts the Looney Tunes character in the DC Universe and a back-up story that puts the superheroes in a cartoon world, and this week’s special opens with Elmer Fudd being thrown into the grit of Gotham City as he investigates the abduction and possible murder of his lover, Silver St. Cloud, by a killer with a rabbit gimmick.
Judging from this exclusive excerpt, Batman/Elmer Fudd is definitely exploring more fraught content than the previous one-shot, but King maintains a sense of humor throughout by having Elmer narrate the story with his speech impediment completely intact. It’s hard to take this story seriously when you hear Elmer Fudd’s voice narrating it, and that creates a wonderful contrast with the dramatic artwork from Weeks and colorist Lovern Kindzierski. There’s nothing funny about how Weeks presents the action, and he brings a chilling intensity to Elmer Fudd as he strolls into Bruce Wayne’s mansion and opens fire on the dapper host. Kindzierski’s muted palette keeps the eye focused on Week’s rich inking, and his coloring makes the story look like it’s from a past era of superhero comics. These are some gorgeous pages (just look at that shot of Batman swooping down on Elmer’s car), and Weeks would be a great addition to King’s Batman series if he wants to continue working on Gotham City after this one-shot.