Batman: Death by Design

A Batman graphic novel reviewed in The New York Review of Books? Yes, when it's by acclaimed dust-jacked designer Chip Kidd and artist Dave Taylor.

Martin Filler writes a review which had me clicking the buy button on Batman: Death by Design as soon as I finished the last sentence. The book features a character named Kem Roomhaus ("an affected, narcissistic creep, but he's also a genius" is how none other than Batman describes him) who is a not-so-veiled riff on controversial architect Rem Koolhaas. In the eyes of Filler, "the megalomaniacal Dutchman drawn by Taylor bears less of a resemblance to the Nosferatu lookalike Koolhaas than to a somewhat chubbier Daniel Libeskind (minus his industrial-strength eyeglass frames.)".

Filler does such a good job decoding all the historical inspirations for characters and places in the book that the first comment on the review is from Chip Kidd himself (or at least I presume it's him, who knows):

Wow, Mr. Fller. I am truly humbled. You totally got everything, the first reviewer to do so. Thank you so, so much. Chip K