So, it is Wednesday, so naturally I went to Heroes Beacon, and have returned to tell you all about…
Regarding what I said last week, I’m still looking over which books I’ll be continuing to buy into next year and which ones I won’t. Pretty sure I’m dropping The Movement, for reasons I gave before, and POSSIBLY Supergirl, since apparently they’re going to be turning her Red Lantern, possibly permanently. Haven’t committed completely to a decision on that one. Either way, though, that change isn’t coming for a while, so the book is still in the safe zone. Two books I can safely say I WON’T be dropping anytime soon (unless something REALLY dumb happens, and I’ll get to that later) are the two I bought today. So, let’s take a look at ’em, starting with Batman #26.
So, apparently Lucius‘ heel turn at the end of last issue was actually a fake-out. He’d actually injected Bruce with a vaccine for Doctor Death‘s serum. The two start to make their escape, after Bruce blows Death down a chamber with the force of a jet aircraft (See Edna? It happens whether you wear capes or not, lol), but apparently even that’s not to beat the guy, who comes back and nearly shatters Bruce Wayne‘s skull. Thankfully, James Gordon is on the scene and says, and I love this quote, “Step away from the billionaire and put your claws in the air”. However, after tending to Bruce’s head, something I think they should do more often, Bruce doesn’t seem too happy to be saved by Gordon and isn’t willing to share info. And here’s the return of my one problem with this part of Zero Year: Jim Gordon. Apparently, in this interpretation, he and his partner took pay-offs for protection, and Jim himself has some kind of secret involving the Crime Alley shooting. Depending on how this goes, this may just screw the idea of Gordon, in that he is supposed to be the one cop in Gotham you cannot buy off and cannot be corrupted. Between this and Batgirl: Wanted, which is thankfully over, I get the feeling that DC is just crapping all over poor Jim Gordon. At this point, I don’t even blame Scott Snyder or Gail Simone for this anymore, this HAS to be higher-ups in DC doing this crap. That said, while I didn’t buy Batgirl #26, I did READ it, and thankfully Gail kind of salvaged him a bit in that book, and I expect Scott will find a way around this too. Otherwise, rest of this comic is frigging great, Doctor Death makes a great villain for the second arc of Zero Year, and we keep flashing back to a death chamber in the Middle East where I’m assuming Bruce, prior to returning to Gotham City, is locked up, and I know this ties in somehow, I just have no clue as to how. lol
Nightwing #26 was awesome. Remember the psychotic mimic woman from earlier, around the time when Nightwing first came to Chicago? Well, she’s stealing anti-psychotics. Frankly, I don’t know why doctors aren’t forcing her to take anti-psychotics, but she’s stealing them illegally, so Nightwing tries to stop her. Oh, and she’s calling herself Marionette now. Thing about her is, as an expert mimic, she’s able to replicate Nightwing’s acrobatics with freaking ease, meaning the best advantage in Dick’s arsenal is being used against him, and any plans he has to use his acrobatic skill against this enemy is out the window. That’s a great match-up! That’s a great scenario to put him in! So, let’s screw that up by having the Mad Hatter show up and reveal that he made Marionette who she is. Okay, to be fair, it’s not a for certain screw-up, provided that Mad Hatter sticks to the background and have Marionette be the one who takes Dick on directly. Otherwise, moving Nightwing out of Gotham makes no sense if they aren’t going to have him build his own rogues gallery of non-Gotham villains. Oh, and apparently we’ve just decided to forget all about how Mad Hatter fridged that one love interest of Bruce’s that nobody cared about until she was HORRIFICALLY MURDERED? Yeah, those were good times. Ugh. Sorry, if it seems like I’m crapping on this book, I’m really not. I just disagree with the decision to bring in Mad Hatter, especially so soon after THAT arc in Batman: The Dark Knight. The rest of the book is awesome, and I REALLY hope it’s sticking around, despite rumours we’ve all been hearing regarding Nightwing.
That’s it for this week. Check in week to see my looks at Adjectiveless X-Men, Batman and Two Face, Red Sonja, and more. Ja né!
- 10 Crazy & Obvious Theories About the Batman Eternal Teaser (comicbooked.com)
- RUMOR: Dick Grayson (Nightwing) To Appear In BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN (comicbookmovie.com)
- ‘Batman: Zero Year’: Scott Snyder talks Doctor Death, previews 26 (herocomplex.latimes.com)
- This Week’s Essential Comics: 12/09/13 (comicvine.com)
- Scott Snyder Teases new Bat-Character (comicvine.com)
- Should ‘Batman vs. Superman’ Include Dick Grayson’s Nightwing? (screenrant.com)
- Nightwing joins the growing DC TV universe of Arrow (io9.com)
- COMICS: BATMAN #28 Becomes BATMAN #29 & Harper Row Is NIGHTWING? (comicbookmovie.com)
- Adam Driver Addresses the Rumors He Might Be Nightwing in BATMAN vs. SUPERMAN (collider.com)
- Exclusive: BATMAN #26 Preview (nerdist.com)
What I Bought This Past Week – The DC Books (Batman #25, Batman/Superman #5, Batman and Robin #25, Harley Quinn #0) (WARNING – SPOILERS)
So, I’ve been to Heroes’ Beacon the past couple of Wednesdays, so I guess it’s time to talk about…
…And since I bought a LOT the past couple of weeks, I thought I’d split it up between DC and Marvel/Dynamite. So, let’s start the DC books with Batman #25.
Well first off, the Zero Year Batmobile is a frakking hot rod. AWESOME! 😀 Second, before we get to Riddler, apparently we got a Doctor Death/Poison Ivy arc, which is pretty cool. I like the fact that Zero Year has three phases, the first being the Red Hood Gang, second being Death and Ivy, third being Riddler. Also, apparently there’s something the military digs up in Nigeria that’s supposed to be important to all of this. Got a little bit of a problem with Bruce Wayne and Jim Gordon being antagonistic towards each other because of something that happened over the murder of Bruce’s parents. Just feels unnecessary. Also, Lucius Fox does a heel turn at the end, I’m going to assume he’s being brainwashed or it isn’t really him, considering how trusted an ally he is to Batman later on. And finally, nice little back-up involving Harper Row and her brother, talking about everyone that’s helping in the blackout (Batman, Superman, Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Barbara Gordon, John Stewart, Barry Allen, and the rest). Overall, a great issue, albeit one that kinda feels a bit disconnected from all these tie-ins, considering we only hear about the storm coming in the main story, while the tie-ins and the Harper back-up are about the different characters surviving it.
Oh, Snapple…Sorry, guys. Hang on a sec…
…There we go. Yeah, as you can tell, Batman/Superman #5 was a little weird to read, because it was utilizing a different style where you have to turn the comic on its side for the entire book. In other words, Linkara‘s nightmare taken form. XD There was a moment where Superman is able to tell that, and I quote, “In Metropolis, New York City, all up and down the eastern seaboard, the average human heart rate just increased by about three percent”. And I was like “…He can hear that???” and then I had to slap myself and go “Of course he can, you idiot, he’s Superman”. I was a tiny bit offended (not a lot, just a little) by the gamers playing Toymaster’s game not being able to tell that something wasn’t normal, and how when it’s revealed to them that they’ve been actually interacting with the real world, they think it’s just some meta story-within-a-story. C’mon, I know Jimmy Olsen is one of the players, but even HE isn’t THAT stupid. But I will give it a pass for the freaking horrifying reveal at the end: Mongul hacked the game so he can turn online gamers into his own personal army, since they spend billions of hours playing first person shooters and war simulators. THAT is actually kinda scary, and the fact that Mongul is doing it makes it all the more horrifying.
Batman and Robin #25…Okay, before I get to the review, I gotta address something. Remember how it was becoming ever-so-clear that Carrie Kelley would become Robin? Well, guess what? No sign of her for a few issues now. The apparent connection that was suggested in the solicit for this issue to what’s going on with Two-Face and Erin McKillen? Not here. And now there seems to be a lot of hints and suggestions that Damian might actually be coming back. So…what the crap is going on? Was Carrie Kelley just dropped in favour of bringing Damian back? Is this maybe just misdirection to just throw us off? And when is this book gonna go back to being titled Batman and Robin instead of Batman and Whoever-The-Frig-Else-Is-In-This-Book?
But yeah, getting back to Batman and Two-Face, it’s fine. The new revised origins for Two-Face are given a bit more development, and I do like the symbolism involved, that Harvey took away Erin’s better half, so she did the same to him. I also really like the return of Matches Malone. There is one panel in the book I have to just shake my head and laugh at, though. Not for being bad, because it isn’t, but because…well, you’ll see.
Wow. Subtle, guys. Really. lol
Harley Quinn #0…Y’know what, I don’t know if I’ll be picking up the series to follow it or not, but I will say this: This one issue is worth every penny you pay for it. In fact, for what I paid for it, I almost feel like I was ripping THEM off. This is the funniest comic I have ever read. And before you ask, no, I haven’t read Deadpool. Considered it a couple of times, may end up doing it in the future, but not as of this moment in time. If you don’t know, and I don’t know why you wouldn’t if you’re into comics, this issue is all about Harley Quinn wanting her own comic, and she’s breaking the fourth wall and talking to Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti as they write the book, talking about the different artists and basically judging which ones she likes best. They even make jabs at themselves and the different artists, so you know they were fully embracing the silliness and not taking themselves too seriously. Favourite moment was probably seeing Harley in her classic costume and drawn by Bruce Timm. The point where I had to put the book down for a second because I was laughing too hard was when they made the remark about Jim Lee’s quarterly royalty payments. XD Seriously, if you like Harley Quinn, or you just like comics that are funny and random as all hell, PICK THIS BOOK UP. I cannot recommend it any further, you guys.
Anyway, that’s it for the DC books I bought lately. Check back in later to learn all about the Marvel and Dynamite books I got in the past couple of Wednesdays. Ja né!
- 23 Absurdly Lame Things That Happened To Superman, Batman, And Robin (buzzfeed.com)
- Here’s a Preview of Harley Quinn #0 (slyparadox.org)
- Review: Batman Black and White #3 (readrant.wordpress.com)
- LOST’s Terry O’Quinn up for Lex Luthor in BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN? (geektyrant.com)
- Are You Ready For Batman to Come to Fox? (cabletv.com)
- DC Comic fans watch out, Harley Quinn is getting here own comic book (fandemonium365.wordpress.com)
- Exclusive Q&A with Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Conner (kindlepost.com)
- Geek Out (jmelby74.wordpress.com)
- Comic Book Question of the Week Results: Favorite Batman Story (comicvine.com)
- Adam Driver may play Robin in Batman vs. Superman (dnaindia.com)
So, I went to Heroes’ Beacon today, and you know what that means. It’s time to look at…
Only one comic this week, so let’s get right to it. Here is Talon #12.
So, remember how last issue ended with both Casey Washington and Sebastian Clark seemingly dead? Well, guess what? Both alive and…well, not quite well, but doing alright. Following the assault from Felix Harmon, Casey has lost an eye and had to have her right arm amputated. However, she’s good friends with Morgan Freeman, I-I mean Lucius Fox, who vouches for her to Bruce Wayne and Batman (remember, in the comics, he doesn’t know they’re one and the same…even though he REALLY should) and lets her hide out in the lab for as long as she needs. And while I feel like I should be giving James Tynion a hard time for doing this to the female lead in this comic, I really can’t since, as we see in this issue, she’s still being awesome and witty despite her losses, talking about having to practise being a lefty and trading snarky comments with Fox as they get to work designing a prosthetic for her. Her only concern is the well-being of her daughter, and possibly getting some punches in on Harmon when they find him. Seriously, Casey NEEDS to become either the new Oracle, or a new heroine version of Cyborgirl. She’s just too damned awesome.
In the meantime, however, there’s a bit of a problem, which Calvin Rose and Batman learn upon investigating the Court’s hideout and sending Robats to Bane’s island: The Court of Owls has gone back into hiding, Harmon has officially gone rogue, and Bane and his entire island have disappeared, though readers of Forever Evil: Arkham War can learn what he’s up to. However, Batman and the currently beating himself up Calvin Rose have to get their priorities straight: They need to find Sarah and rescue her from the Court of Owls. Batman hands over what information he has on the Court to Calvin, to fill in any blanks he might have and give him some clues on where to find them, since his experience with them probably trumps his own. However, Batman isn’t completely sold on a good Talon, and makes it clear he has a cryo-tube in Blackgate ready for after Calvin has located Felix Harmon. Granted, kinda untrusting and paranoid of Batman, but to be fair, look at what happened to him a year ago at the hands of the Court of Owls and their Talons. Plus, while I love Calvin, he hasn’t done much to prove himself a good ally to Batman to keep loose.
Throughout the comic, we learn more about where Felix Harmon comes from, how he was brought into the Court of Owls, and how he earned the name ‘The Gotham Butcher’. By the end of the comic, we see that his great atrocity was that he murdered 17 people in one night and set an orphanage on fire. In the present, he returns there to hide out while planning his next move, only to find someone there waiting for him: Sebastian Clark. I kinda have to tilt my head at this, since we last saw him on the boat with Bane getting the frak punched outta his face, but regardless, he’s done some reading from The Secret History of the Court of Owls on Harmon. It seems that Clark, having had all of his plans torn apart and any sense left in his brain punched out by Bane, has come up with a much more simple plan of revenge against the Court, Calvin Rose, Casey Washington, Batman, and everyone else that’s crossed both him and Harmon: They’re going to kill Gotham City!
This issue was pretty good, setting the stage for the next couple of issues as Clark and Harmon get ready for the killing spree to end all killing sprees. If I have a complaint against it, it’s that it feels like it skipped a few details. Why is Batman instantly willing to work with Calvin Rose, even for the short-term? How did Clark get back to Gotham, seemingly so fast? How did the Court of Owls relocate so quickly? How did Casey go from being in danger of dying to just losing an arm and an eye? I feel like there’s an entire issue worth of stuff that was glossed over to get us to this point. Still, I guess we can attribute Casey’s survival to the money and resources available to Batman and Lucius Fox, and the Court disappearing because…well, because they’re the Court. The only remaining thing I feel the need to point out is that, even IF Calvin is put in cryo-stasis, it won’t be permanent, since we clearly see him on the cover of Batman: Detective Comics #27. Still, a good issue nonetheless, and I suspect the next couple to bring conclusion to the current arc in a powerful way.
- COMICS: The Caped Crusader Teams With Calvin Rose In First Look At TALON #12 (comicbookmovie.com)
- Batman: The Retrospective (nerdswole.wordpress.com)
- Forever Evil Event: Batman 23.4 (Bane) (comicbooked.com)
- Batman and Robin 23.2: Court of Owls (retcon-punch.com)
- COMICS: Stephanie Brown To Return As ‘Spoiler’ In BATMAN: ETERNAL (comicbookmovie.com)
- Batman villians (scifisicko.wordpress.com)
- DC announces new comic book for Batman’s 75th anniversary (2andahalfnerds.com)
- Forever Evil: Arkham War #1 Review (rtgomer.com)
- Stephanie Brown is Back in Business! (spandexandcapes.wordpress.com)
- NYCC 2013: Scott Snyder details ‘Batman: Zero Year,’ ‘Eternal’ (herocomplex.latimes.com)
So as you’ve probably noticed by now, I’ve been talkin’ a lot about Batwing lately. I haven’t bought the 20th issue yet, but I imagine I will if I find myself with a slight bit of extra pocket change when I’m near the comic shop. Mostly, I’m waiting until I’ve dropped a couple other books, which I mentioned I’d be doing, but I’m also waiting to see if these changes and better writing will stay consistent as time goes by.
So what is it about the new Batwing that I really like? Well, I think it’s mainly on account of Luke Fox pretty much being Terry McGinnis. No, really, he’s essentially African-American Terry, not just in how the new Batwing suit is very similar to the Batman Beyond costume, but in the way he acts, how Bruce is monitoring him while he’s in the field, and the witty chemistry between the two.
And frankly, anything a person could do to remind me of Batman Beyond is a good thing, which is part of the reason I REALLY liked Bryan Q. Miller‘s run on Batgirl, but with this, if I wasn’t trying to be smart with my money and how many comics I buy a week, this would be on my pull list in a snap. And I don’t know if Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray are both just big fans of Batman Beyond, or if they actually did work with the show, but either way, not complaining with what we’ve got.
In addition to all that, I do like how they’ve staged this, that Luke is doing this behind his dad’s back and that Lucius Fox is not happy with his son’s choices in life. It creates an interesting situation, and you’re left wondering how long he can possibly work for Batman Incorporated and not have his father find out. Plus, the idea that Luke is a highly intelligent mixed martial artist gives him cred as someone you’d want as a solo operative.
Anyway, that’s my two cents on the subject. If the writing continues to be good on it, expect me to start picking it up soon. Ja né!
- Batwing #20 (comicvine.com)
- BATWING #20 Review (analogaddiction.org)
- Interview: Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti On A Whole New ‘Batwing’ (geek-news.mtv.com)
…Yeah, I don’t have a bit this week, so let’s just show the damned banner. lol
No, I didn’t get Batman and Robin #18 this week, since it STILL has not been sent to the shop I get comics at. And no, I didn’t get Detective Comics #900 either, since they apparently over-ordered Earth 2 and under-ordered Detective Comics, and the ones they got were sent to people who had pre-ordered them. However, I did get a couple of comics this week: One being the ever awesometastic Earth 2, and the other being pretty much a purchase out of “I gotta know what happens”, so let’s start off there with Batwing #19.
Like with Batwoman, I should probably explain the character of Batwing for those unfamiliar. David Zavimbe is a cop in a fictional city in the Democratic Republic of the Congo who was made a member of Batman Incorporated, becoming the Batman of Africa. He’s fought corrupt cops, the Court of Owls, the forces of Leviathan, and more. However, with this issue, after the death of his friend, the escalating corruption of the police department he works for, and many a harsh battle, David decides to hang it up as Batwing, though it’s hinted that he may not be so much out of the fight altogether and may be aiding Batman Incorporated in other ways. Instead, the position is to be given to a mixed martial arts fighter and M.I.T. graduate that has wanted Batman’s attention for years, Lucius Fox‘s son Luke. Along with it comes the AWESOME new Batwing suit, or as I call it, the Iron Bat suit. It comes with a retractable cape, bulletproofing, interior skin that monitors vital signs and produces medical repair capabilities, and can create the illusion of invisibility (has to stay still though). It is the safest and smartest Batsuit ever built, even more than Batman’s. The new Batwing could be the toughest player in the group’s roster, and with a whole new team taking over the book, the future looks bright for this title.
Earth 2. Y’know, I could go over the details of the plot, but…either not much happened, or I don’t care nearly as much as who showed up: Doctor Fate, Mister Miracle, and Big fucking Barda! In fact, that’s what I’m calling Big Barda from now on, Big fucking Barda. Now unfortunately, she and Mister Miracle only appear on one page together, but it looks so badass that I don’t even care. Also, we see what Steppenwolf and Fury have been up to as of late. Otherwise, the rest is Wotan explaining his backstory, Flash distracting the monster guarding the helm, and Khalid accepting his destiny and becoming Doctor Fate. Sorry, no Green Lantern and Hawkgirl this time, though I’m hoping that once Wotan is taken care of, all the heroes (plus the new Batman appearing soon) will get together to form the JSA.
So that’s the two comics I got. Didn’t get the two I most wanted, but I can’t say as I’m disappointed by what I DID get in the slightest. Next week, we return to Gotham with Batman, Batgirl, and Batman and Ro-…sorry, Batman and Red Robin. Ja né!
So I just got back home from FINALLY seeing The Dark Knight Rises, and my immediate thoughts are that it was a good movie, definitely worth paying money for, but at the same time I will say that The Dark Knight is just a little bit better. It does work as the final chapter of the story that Christopher Nolan was telling with these movies, though, and while it’s not perfect, it’s still pretty damned good. My only issue is with the ending if it does in fact prove to be the absolute end to this story, but I’ll get to that at the end.
First off, let’s talk about Bane. This character works so well as the villain for the final chapter of this trilogy, as someone who can match wits as well as fighting prowess with Batman. I still prefer Heath Ledger’s Joker in The Dark Knight from a psychological standpoint, but then I wasn’t expecting to find him to be the better villain, so no let downs there. The only issue I have with him is that his voice is kinda weird, and what the hell is it with these movies and their love of funny voices? I will say that I am VERY glad they didn’t give him the Batman & Robin movie treatment, but at the same time, we later find out he actually is hired help for someone, but we’ll get to that.
I hear that a few people aren’t that thrilled with Anne Hathaway as Catwoman, I thought she worked great. Yes, she is very much self-centred, but she also does show to care for Bruce Wayne/Batman, which is shown when she comes back to save him and help save Gotham in the end. And yeah, she has no issue with killing bad guys, but then again, Catwoman always did tend to blur the line between hero and villain, so not so shocked she does so here.
John Blake, or rather Robin John Blake…I have only one issue with this character: the fact that his story is confined to this one movie. If we do get a spin-off with him, as a lot of people are speculating, that would erase my issue. My only concern is what they’ll call him, be it Nightwing, Batman, hell even Batman Beyond. I REALLY hope they don’t call him Robin, though, since that’s his actual name and would be confusing if that were his name AND his alias.
Miranda Tate…Can’t say as I’m too shocked it turned out she was Talia al Ghul all along. I actually kinda figured that Marion Cotillard was a misdirection for people that guessed it. Sadly, that’s a problem, that a lot of people knew going in, because that was supposed to be the big twist, that she was the real mastermind behind it all. The problem is that it’s revealed halfway through the third act and then she dies not long after. Personally, I would have saved it for the VERY end, right after the credits, that she’s in a headquarters for the League of Shadows and walks in, revealing her status and then could be a villain for Robin John Blake, again assuming we get a spin-off. Plus, that way Bane stays the main villain for this movie.
Alfred is kinda hard to make a judgement on for this movie. On the one hand, it is believable for him to finally have had enough to the point where he tells Bruce the truth about Rachel and then leaves, but at the same time I kept expecting him to come back, and he never does except at Bruce’s funeral at the end, but we’ll get to that later. I will say that he once again proves to be wise and inserts some occasional humour here and there…though part of me kinda wonders what would happen if he ever came across a scenario where he didn’t have a speech or anything prepared. lol
Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox is always so much fun to watch, and the same is true here. And frankly, that should come as no surprise at all. Not to mention the fact that Morgan Freeman adds class to anything he’s cast in. That’s really all there is to say there.
Commissioner Gordon once again works well in this movie, this time as someone who is trying hard to keep the streets clean while also being haunted by the choice he made at the end of The Dark Knight. Of course, the problem with that is that the truth is revealed and it’s pretty much spelled out for anyone that didn’t already know it themselves that the lie was a bad mistake, which is really the only flaw to The Dark Knight. Also, I gotta side with Linkara on this, why the hell does anybody in Gotham believe Bane when he reads Gordon’s confessional regarding Harvey Dent and Batman’s innocence?
And finally, we come to the Batman himself, and I’m just gonna ask this one question: Why in the hell did Bruce Wayne lock himself up in his mansion?! Hell, deciding to retire as Batman after what happened in The Dark Knight actually makes more sense than that, but hiding in Wayne Manor just because the clean energy thingy failed? It makes no sense! Plus, he heals a broken back over a 5 month period, and then crawls his way out of a giant hole in the ground with no harness, and then somehow manages to get back into Gotham despite the bridges being blown up and the city being sealed off as a No Man’s Land, and then proceeds to do his Batman voice even growlier, even when by then several of the people he works with knows who he is. He saves the day by flying the bomb out to sea, apparently blowing up with it, only for the viewers to learn he fixed the aircraft’s auto-pilot beforehand and ejected out so he could go live with Catwoman somewhere in secret while Gotham believes he’s dead and Robin John Blake is left with the Batcave…Umm, not a great exit, Bats…
Don’t get me wrong, this is still a good movie. The problem is that it’s one of those movies where the secondary characters are easier to relate to, are better written, better portrayed, more believable, or just more likeable than the protagonist. Batman’s ultimate decision to fake his death and leave Gotham to a new protector seems so at odds with the character that I know. Now if he were to come back in the spin-off-I-hope-to-happen as a mentor to Robin John Blake, that could work, because we’ve seen it work in Batman Beyond. But if the story is left like this, it’ll make Batman’s journey seem kinda…odd.
But anyway, those are my thoughts. Leave your thoughts, but please don’t get into an argument with each other in the comments section. Ja ne!