Review – GCPD: The Blue Wall #1 – The New Class

Comic Books DC This Week
GCPD: The Blue Wall #1 variant cover, via DC Comics.

GCPD: The Blue Wall #1 – John Ridley, Writer; Stefano Raffaele, Artist; Brad Anderson, Colorist

Ray – 9/10

Ray: While the pacing on I Am Batman hasn’t always entirely worked for me, there’s no question that John Ridley is dedicated to tackling some tricky topics in comic books. That means this spin-off, focusing on Renee Montoya and a new crew of cops joining the GCPD, might be better suited to the talents of the Oscar-winning screenwriter. This isn’t a superhero book, and while it follows up on Montoya’s story in the current title, it actually has much more in common with the acclaimed early 2000s series Gotham Central—not least because it follows directly up on Montoya’s stories there. Renee is now police commissioner, but she’s still struggling—battling to keep her addiction under control, and trying to reunite with her semi-estranged brother, the one member of her family she’s still in contact with. And amid that, she has to lead one of the thorniest police departments in any major city.

Graduation day. Via DC Comics.

She gives a commencement speech to a trio of young officers—Samantha Park, Eric Wells, and Danny Ortega, all of whom begin their journeys as officers. Wells works as a parole officer, bonding with a parolee. He has the least screentime this issue, while Ortega is assigned to the tough beat of Tricorner and looks to prove himself—only to run smack into a racist boss. Then there’s Park, who seems to be set up as the star of the series. Only hours into her first patrol, she’s faced with a life-or-death situation where she’s in position to shoot a possibly innocent man. Making the right choice, she’s elevated by leadership into the bright new face of the GCPD—but she’s got a dark secret about the incident. This is a tense, gripping issue that’s almost a little overwhelmingly bleak at points. We’re able to get a lot deeper with Montoya than we are when she’s a guest star, and all three new officers are intriguing. Very promising start to a sequel-in-spirit to a modern classic.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

Liked it? Take a second to support GeekDad and GeekMom on Patreon!