Batman vs. Ra’s Al Ghul #2 – Neal Adams, Writer/Artist
Ray – 4/10
Ray: Neal Adams’ comics exist in their own odd world, and that’s definitely the case for this new series, up to and including Batman vs. Ra’s Al Ghul #2. While a little less absurdist than his past minis, it still features the bizarre character interactions and strange plot twists he’s become known for.
After last issue’s disaster in Gotham that allowed Ra’s Al Ghul to form a pact with the police, Bruce Wayne returns to the manor – while Ra’s meets with a mysterious sorceress to form a deadly deal of their own. The fruits of that deal become clear when it’s revealed they have Bruce in their custody. Later at the mansion, Bruce and his three sons have lunch, only for an argument to erupt when it turns out that Dick and Jason are the only ones who remember that Bruce is Batman. Bruce doesn’t even remember that there’s a Batcave under their house, and Damian becomes belligerent when his brothers try to push it. I’m also not sure why all the Robins sound like 1950s greasers.
Dick and Jason are essentially kicked out of the mansion – and are promptly abducted by Man-Bat and his wife…She-Bat? The title only refers to her as “Francine”, despite her being in Bat-form for most of the issue. This is an odd take on the pair of villains/antiheroes, as they seem to be totally intelligent in Bat-form with no real fear of losing control. They even have their own family lair and they want to help the boys wake Bruce and Damian up.
The conclusion to this issue is suitably strange, involving a robot Alfred and a surprise appearance by Ra’s – who ends the issue accidentally strangling Man-Bat and triggering the beast inside. The plot makes more sense than some previous minis, but it’s just a bizarre sideshow of a comic where everyone spends most of the issue yelling at each other and neither the heroes or the villains seem smart enough to be in this line of work.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.