Batman: Detective Comics #1023 – Peter J. Tomasi, Writer; Brad Walker, Penciller; Andrew Hennessy, Inker; Brad Anderson, Colorist
Ray – 8/10
Ray: The countdown to Joker War has begun, and in the coming months just about every title in the Bat-line will be tying into the upcoming siege of Gotham. The Two-Face plotline takes a backseat this issue, with the opening focusing on Joker as he breaks into the Court of Owls’ old headquarters and starts wrecking the place. Soon enough he manages to wake up the deranged Lincoln March, the original main villain of the Court of Owls plotline. His arrival in this plotline sort of comes out of nowhere, and makes Joker War feel like a much bigger storyline—the character has been associated with some of Gotham’s biggest crossovers and events for the last ten years. By the time we get back to Two-Face, it’s a little hard to get interested in a small-scale plotline with such a huge one hanging around the corner. Thankfully, the last act has some surprises.
Batman spends much of the issue running around trying to get information out of various villains, including Hugo Strange and Mad Hatter. By the time Batman finally tracks down Two-Face, the villain’s managed to steal the Rookie Bat-suit—made famous by Jim Gordon in the “Super-Heavy” storyline by Snyder and Capullo. That gives this story a sort of all-star feel, with many different elements being tossed in for a random appearance before the bigger event. The problem is, they come and go so quickly without leaving a proper impact. This is a fast-paced issue that delivers in action, and artist Brad Walker is a great choice to illustrate the various fights. But it’s felt like this title has been playing second fiddle to the main narrative in the Bat-verse for a while, and it doesn’t seem like that’s going to change as it becomes a tie-in for the next few months.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.