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Review: Detective Comics #969
“Fall Of The Batmen” Part One.
Writer: James Tynion IV
Art: Joe Bennett, Sal Regla, Jason Wright and Sal Cipriano
Review by Steve J. Ray New issue, new story arc, and an all-new art team. Detective Comics#969 is fresh as a daisy! The first chapter of ‘Fall Of The Batmen’ does, however, contain the Detective Comics staple ingredient… all round excellence.
This issue sees the villains of Gotham City unite, as a direct response to Batman’s Gotham Knights. There are some vintage 90s baddies in the mix, which really put a nostalgic smile on my face. James Tynion IV also brings back another character from this era, in Gotham’s new Mayor.
The villains part isn’t really a spoiler, as the alternate cover on this page shows. DC’s preview pages reveal the new Mayor, so I’ll let you form your own opinions when you see who it is.
Mr. Tynion is a master at shining a spotlight on characters from his – and my – era of Batman. It’s brilliant when cast members that have been gone for a while, but were never forgotten, come back to our favorite comics.
Keep Your Friends Close…
We know, after almost a year and a half’s worth of issues, that this title delivers top-notch storytelling. The writing is consistently excellent, and the art has always matched it. Detective Comics, since the DC Rebirth, has featured the talents of such excellent visionaries as Álvaro Martínez, Raül Fernandez, Carmen Carnero, Eddy Barrows, and Marcio Takara.
I don’t recall seeing the work of Joe Bennett and Sal Regla before, but based on their art on Part One of ‘Fall Of The Batmen’, I sure would like to see more! Their work is crisp and very expressive. This issue has a very high ‘Talking heads’ quotient, but rather than lazily photo-statting the same faces, with small changes of expression, these gents have drawn and inked a new panel for every line of dialogue. Great, great work. The page featuring the reunion between Tim Drake and Steph Brown is a delight. It’s not included here, so you’ll need to buy the issue to see it. You’ll be glad that you did.
The color art from Jason Wright this issue is terrific. Sometimes comics characters can look like barbie dolls, or fake tan addicts. There are a lot of faces in this book, and each one has a natural, human, skin-tone. Jason’s use of light; on character’s costumes, clothes and technology, and his thoughtful application of highlights is also very good indeed.
Lest we forget, Legend Of The Letters, Sal Cipriano is also on top form. From his scrolling captions at the bottom of the TV, to his “Knock, knock, knock” at Steph’s door, right down to Killer Moth’s digestive issues and all that dialogue, he doesn’t skip a beat. The man is a master of his craft.
Batman’s Gotham Knights are under threat, not just from a reunited Victim Syndicate, but from Gotham’s own government. The title of this new arc isn’t just a throwback to the story that started the Detective Comics DC Rebirth run, it’s an ominous portent of what may be coming. The entire plan is coming together, as the 1.000th issue of Detective Comics creeps ever closer.
Images Courtesy Of DC Entertainment
(This review was originally published on the Dark Knight News website on November 24th 2017)
FINALLY! Well readers, Spoiler season has begun. Wizards teased us so heavily on the 19th with Vona's Hunger, but now we've finally seen the first of what Rivals of Ixalan has to offer. River Darter is, I think, intended for Draft, along the same lineage as Audacious Infiltrator. Thrashing Brontodon is also very good in Limited, being able to pop Pious Interdictions or Ixalan's Bindings, but may even see sideboard play in Dinosaur decks in Constructed to remove Cast Out, God Pharaoh's Gift or Gearhulks.
Article by Scott Hamilton I was recommended the good Professor whilst trawling around Spotify looking for new artists to listen to. I spend a lot of time travelling to and from work each day, so I’m always looking for something new and different to listen to. This splendid chap certainly ended up ticking all of my geek boxes. Professor Elemental is based in Brighton and trades in a very English take on Hip-Hop called Chap-Hop. The only way I can describe him is a polite Eminem, raised by the Monty Python team in a comic written by Jules Verne and illustrated by Jack Kirby. It’s certainly a niche market.
The Professor character, a geeky explorer / inventor who loves to experiment and go on adventures with his orangutan butler Geoffrey, was originally intended for just one album (“Rebel Without Applause” released in 2009) and takes what can only be described as a very English take on a style normally associated with the USA. In fact, his first breakthrough was with the single “Cup of Brow…
Rob Lane provides the bottom end in Ryan Hamilton and the Traitors. Onstage he’s a blur of hair,
throwing shapes with his trusty bass like a full on rock star. Away from the
band, he heads up his own project Straight
To Video, a mix of rock/punk music which draws influence from eighties
culture in general, as well as creating some cool merchandise to go along with
the music. Rob was cool enough to chat to us recently about
music, the eighties and being a geek.
Scott Hamilton: Would
you like to tell us a bit about yourself Rob? Rob Lane: Hey
Scott.... Thanks so much for reaching out! So, I guess I start with introducing
myself.... my name's Rob Lane... a bass player from the East Midlands /
Nottingham / Derby area. I've been actively playing with various bands for the
best part of 20 years. For over ten years I was the bassist for Nottingham
Power Pop Rockers TEENAGE CASKET COMPANY...
we had a pretty good run from 2003 through to November of last year, …