Batman Beyond #43 – Dan Jurgens, Writer; Sean Chen, Penciller; Sean Parsons, Inker; Chris Sotomayor, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Ray: Dan Jurgens continues to excel on this title, bringing in elements from both the original Batman Beyond cartoon and from modern comics. When we last left off, Damian Wayne – now the head of a reformed League of Assassins – had been mortally wounded by his own men and fled to Gotham with his pet Goliath, right into the path of a restored Terry McGinnis, who was dealing with the mental effects of his recent brainwashing and trauma. This issue kicks off with a dramatic fight scene as an airborne Terry fights off hundreds of assassins with the help of the giant mutant bat, before retreating to the new “Bat-suite” where Bruce has a healing bath waiting for Damian created from the Lazarus Pit formula. It’s a risky idea – and sure enough, it restores Damian physically, but also leaves him dealing with the effects of the madness and causes him to turn on the man he thinks replaced him.
My main quibble with this issue is that Damian here isn’t drawn appropriately – he should be in his fifties here, if Bruce is in his eighties, but he looks thirties at most. Maybe he’s been taking frequent dips in his own Lazarus pit? But his characterization here is strong, stronger than it usually is in the main timeline lately. The best parts of this issue come in the smaller moments, as Matt bonds with Goliath and Dick and Barbara work together to help Elianna achieve her dream of becoming a new Gotham heroine – complete with a top-secret Bat-suit that was originally designed for Barbara. The mysterious Mr. Zero, the main villain of this arc, is still essentially a cipher with a massive, deadly, grandiose plan. But he serves as a decent plot device to keep this story rolling and force Damian and Terry into an uneasy alliance. This title has nicely combined multiple eras of the characters into a pretty compelling read.
To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.
GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.