Nightwing #61 – Dan Jurgens, Writer; Ronan Cliquet, Artist; Nick Filardi, Colorist
Ray – 6/10
Ray: Dan Jurgens is really trying his best on this title, but there just isn’t all that much to work with in a book that no longer features its main character in any recognizable way and tries to get us invested in a bunch of Scott Lobdell’s OCs.
To Jurgens’ credit, he’s added some interesting shades to Sapienza, Hutch, and the Edwards siblings as they try to fill in for Nightwing, but the overall plot is too basic to give this series the impression of doing anything but keeping time for the next big development. “Ric” Grayson is now working with the Nightwings in and they’ve spent the last three issues dealing with the plot of a massive fire monster rampaging through Bludhaven. It was clear it was tied to the story of Hutch’s old partner, who was shot on a ride-along and has been comatose ever since. At first, the series made us think it might be his vengeful daughter pulling the monster’s strings, but last issue’s cliffhanger made the truth clear.
The problem is, we never actually got to know this old cop, and his daughter was a rather one-note character. So Nightwing #61 is mostly just Ric and the various Nightwings throwing themselves at a monster and failing to stop it. Despite this, Jurgens actually sticks the landing very well. The last third of the issue is understated, a story about saying goodbye to someone who’s been gone for a long time in many ways.
The Edwards siblings don’t do much for me – Colleen is a reckless cowboy cop who seems to like police brutality, and her brother’s one character trait is “gets beat up”. Sap and Hutch, though, have some promise. They remind me a bit of classic buddy-cop teams from the 80s. The ongoing problem, though, is that Ric remains a shadow of the great character he used to be. If DC was determined to take Nightwing off the table, they might have been better off going with the good ol’ coma.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.