Comic Review: Batman #17 (DC Comics)

Things are starting to heat up for Batman and that is in no reference to firefly (that would have been cool if he was in this issue actually). One by […]

Things are starting to heat up for Batman and that is in no reference to firefly (that would have been cool if he was in this issue actually).

One by one allies of the Batfamily as well as the Bat Family themselves are being attacked from the shadows as Bane and his army initiates their war against Batman. ln the midst this, Gotham Girl is finally getting treatment for the trauma that Psycho Pirate inflicted onto her. Her cure? Psycho Pirate. Will Gotham Girl be cured in time? Who will take the fall in the war between Batman and Bane, and what is Batman willing to do to end Bane’s attack on The Bat Family and Gotham?

Okay, there are some odd moments in this issue that kinda pulls the rug from underneath you in terms of expectations. After the stinger from last issue that implied that Nightwing, Red Hood and Robin ( Damian) were dead, hanging from the ceilings of the bat cave. The good thing is, they are the opposite of deceased. But it is odd in terms of how they are temporarily incapacitated because you’re unable to discern whether Bane actually did what he did to the wards of Batman. Most likely it’s that Bane actually did do the deed from the last issue’s cliffhanger. But, it allowed for a humorous scene when Batman leaves Superman to watch after them at the Fortress while he prepares for war with Bane, and oh does he.  

 This issue had its questionable moments in some cases, but Tom King works around those moments and does a good job with executing certain moments and plot. Although, admittedly, for some reason, this issue didn’t feel that engaging. Maybe it was just me. The book is not bad, it’s quite enjoyable, it’s just that there are moments that makes one wonder why certain things didn’t execute well at times. Although, there are some nice moments. The stinger at the end is much more acceptable that the baited one from last issue.

 There are some nice nods that Tom King makes in this book. While people have been saying that they think Tom King doesn’t like writing Batman, I think the opposite. In the issue prior, King implemented the batman inspired burger restaurant which was inspired by Waid/Ross’s  Planet Krypton restaurant scene from Kingdom Come. In this issue he gives nods to Bane co-creator Graham Nolan (may also be playing on the name as a nod to the Dark Knight film trilogy director Christopher Nolan) and homage to Dave McKean (who worked on the seminal story Arkham Asylum with Grant Morrison) by naming a street, and one of the asylums clock towers after him. There’s even a moment with Commissioner Gordon that is kind of a call back to Miller’s Year One. King sprinkles those little easter eggs of appreciation.

David Finch’s art is striking and stunning to look at as usual within this series. So there are no complaints about it within this issue. It’s consistent and doesn’t lack in any visual flair (which by the end of this issue, in which his art executes in terms of ‘flair’). Miki’s Inks do a commendable job of making Finch’s pencils bold and powerful and the same goes for Bellaire’s colors which meshes beautifully with Finches pencils (especially into the pages with Gordon).  Workman’s  Letters are visually in sync with the art providing the art to breathe and the narrative to be intact. This was a solid issue despite some questionable moments, but none the less it’s worth a read for this arc.

Anthony Andujar Jr.

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