Robin War 2

robin-war-2

Today, Spencer and Michael are discussing Robin War 2, originally released January 13, 2016.

Spencer: Have you ever watched or read something that you could tell was good, but something about it just didn’t work for you? Maybe there was just one small plot point that rang false, but the failure of that one moment led to the rest of the narrative collapsing around it? That’s the way I feel about Robin War 2. There’s quite a bit about this issue that I like, but there’s one flaw in its very premise that kinda ruins the entire event: writer Tom King never explains why the Court of Owls wants to reclaim Dick Grayson so badly. Continue reading

Batman Eternal 52

batman eternal 52Today, Spencer and Michael are discussing Batman Eternal 52, originally released April 1, 2015.

People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy and I can’t do that as Bruce Wayne. As a man, I’m flesh and blood, I can be ignored, I can be destroyed; but as a symbol… as a symbol I can be incorruptible, I can be everlasting.

Bruce Wayne, Batman Begins

Spencer: Throughout all of the many different storylines in Batman Eternal, one theme has steadily built under the title’s surface: the idea of Batman’s legacy. While it was never something addressed all that directly (at least until R’as al Ghul flat out asked “Is Batman eternal?” a few weeks ago), the creative bullpen has steadily been building up Batman’s team of allies and investigating just what effect Batman’s presence has had on Gotham City. With this massive weekly series finally coming to an end, Batman Eternal 52 aims to show exactly the power of that symbol on Batman’s chest, and it does so in spectacular fashion, pulling together nearly all the threads that have been cast throughout the last 52 issues into one show-stopping finale. Continue reading

Batman 12

Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Batman 12, originally released August 8th, 2012.

Patrick: Scott Snyder’s run on Batman has been fantastic. The 11-issue Court of Owls story-line is going to go down in history as one of the best Batman stories ever, and there are precious few titles in the New 52 that can claim the same level of quality. So, I approached this first post-Owls issue tentatively: would I discover that I was enamored with Snyder’s Owls, and not Snyder’s Batman? What we have in issue 12 is about as radical a departure as we could have asked for – the story is self-contained; the scope of the story is small; and Batman himself doesn’t make an appearance until page 14. But in this gear-shift, Snyder asserts that he’s in it for the long haul, and committed to delivering excellence in Batman, no matter what story he wants to tell in Gotham City.
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Batman 11

Alternating Currents: Batman 11, Drew and PatrickToday, Drew and Patrick are discussing Batman 11, originally released July 11th, 2012.

Drew: Comic books often rely on well-worn tropes. As do mystery novels. And action movies. This arc of Batman (like all great Batman stories) is essentially all three of these things, so a little soliloquizing from the villain in the final act isn’t just expected, it’s downright obligatory. Of course, Scott Snyder is not a writer content to simply rely on such tropes, and instead uses the opportunity to comment on that particular cliche, while simultaneously delivering a final act soliloquy that is better than any of those it is riffing on. It’s one of my favorite tricks of postmodernism (one that is rarely pulled off so well), and is only a microcosm of what Snyder has been doing with this whole arc. As the Court of Owls arc concludes, we’re left with a deconstruction of a Batman story that is among the best Batman stories ever told. Continue reading

Batman 10

Alternating Current: Batman 10, Drew and Patrick-NoOToday, Drew and Patrick are discussing Batman 10, originally released June 13th, 2012.

Drew: There’s a moment, right in the middle of this issue, that finds Bruce sitting in his robe, idly handling a pair of shell casings. How these clues fit into his current case isn’t apparent, but as the scene plays out, it slowly becomes clear that these were the casings of the bullets that killed Bruce’s parents. This kind of shocking, resonating reveal first introduced as something innocuous is a microcosm of writer Scott Snyder’s current run on Batman; a magic act he’s able to pull off time and time again, to impossibly greater and greater effect. This issue is an exemplar of that skill, cashing in on a set-up not just 10 issues, but 73 years in the making. Continue reading

Batman: The Dark Knight 9

Today, Shelby and Drew are discussing Batman: The Dark Knight 9, originally released May 23rd, 2012. This issue is part of the Night of the Owls crossover event. Click here for complete NotO coverage. 

Shelby:  I’m not a regular reader of Dark Knight; like Catwoman I just picked it up for our Night of the Owls coverage. My esteemed colleague Patrick told me that I didn’t need to bother reading issues 1-8 because a) Issue 9 is so insulated from the rest of the story it’s basically a one-off, and b) Issues 1-8 really are not very good. Since I don’t like people telling me what to do, I read all nine issues anyway, and Patrick was completely and totally right on both points.
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