Well, there is plenty of ultra-violence and even a little gore-porn but I didn’t really get anything prolific from Millar & McNiven’s Nemesis. It was fun to read at the time but I came away from the book not really caring. In terms of art and writing, it’s crafted as well as any Big 2 comic out there. It has consistent character voice, smart panel and page layout and tells what should be an interesting story: Batman as the ultimate villain & main character of a comic. But other than that, it’s does nothing more for villain or even protagonist exploration than what Millar accomplished in Wanted.
Published by Icon, Marvel’s creator-owned imprint, Nemesis could very well have been part of their mainstream Marvel universe. The only real difference between this title and any other Marvel comics out there is that the creator had what seems like more room to get crazy and write about really extreme situations with no consequences and no lasting impact on the core universe characters. Not that there really is any lasting consequences in The Big 2. However, the interesting thing about having no limits is: Millar and McNiven didn’t really produce anything phenomenal.
Let’s step back here for a second. As I said, the writing and art of Nemesis are top-notch in terms of craft. But I learned nothing from having read the book – even as a writer, I can’t say that it made me think anything new about my medium of choice. In many ways, this book is just an extension of what Millar did in Wanted. Except that because Wanted was told form the perspective of the protagonist who happened to be a villain, the reader got to see what it might be like to live as that kind of bad-ass. With Nemesis though, it just felt like Millar and McNiven were creating a Marvel comic with gun-flash and blood-splatter that they hoped was headed straight to the big-screen like so many other Big 2 titles.