DC This Week Roundup – Rough Edges

Comic Books DC This Week
Punchline: The Gotham Game #4 cover, via DC Comics.

Punchline: The Gotham Game #4 – Tini Howard/Blake Howard, Writers; Max Raynor, Artist; Luis Guerrero, Colorist

Ray – 7.5/10

Ray: Tini Howard has essentially taken over the Gotham underworld, with runs on Catwoman, this violent crime thriller, and an upcoming Harley Quinn run. This title is still the weak link overall thanks to a lack of a compelling lead, but this issue steps things up a bit with Bluebird and Cullen taking larger roles. Cullen is being held hostage by Punchline thanks to his ex-boyfriend Bluff joining up with him, while Punchline plans to make her move against the city. Black Mask—still wearing a makeshift mask thanks to Catwoman—has assembled a gang of old-school mobsters to drive Punchline out, setting up a violent showdown of criminals vs. chaos agents. The action comes fast and furious this issue, with betrayals being pretty clearly telegraphed throughout. This isn’t a bad comic, but it’s one that mostly seems to exist to pick up on loose ends from Catwoman right now. Punchline almost feels ancillary to it.

Batman Gotham Knights: Gilded City #4 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Batman: Gotham Knights – Gilded City #4 – Evan Narcisse, Writer; Abel, Artist; John, Colorist

Ray – 8.5/10

Ray: This series continues to punch above its weight as a video game tie-in, mostly thanks to its most intriguing original character—the Runaway. This character, potentially Gotham’s first vigilante during the days of the Underground Railroad, has found himself up against the Court of Owls and now has cut a devil’s bargain with the immortal Vandal Savage. Savage is on the trail of the shard that gave him his immortality, and he believes it lies with one of Gotham’s most prominent families. The Runaway breaks into their bases, and takes the opportunity to right some social wrongs in dramatic fashion. By contrast, the present-day segments mostly have the Bat-family running after clues in the strange FOMO plague, with Jason Todd heading abroad to investigate a country that will be familiar to Bat-fans. The whole thing comes together into a strong whole, but I’m hoping Narcisse gets to expand on the Runaway in the future.

Sgt. Rock vs. the Army of the Dead #5 cover, via DC Comics.

DC Horror Presents Sgt. Rock vs. the Army of the Dead #5 – Bruce Campbell, Writer; Eduardo Risso, Artist; Kristian Rossi, Colorist

Ray – 8/10

Ray: One of the most interesting things about this series is that, despite its title, it actually seems to be more interested in being a war comic than a horror comic. The location of Hitler’s bunker has been found, and Easy Company is ready to make its move. Much of this comic is about building tension with the prep for an invasion, and there are some great scenes with Rock and his unit. The zombies—or really, they’re more Frankenstein’s monsters than anything—continue to be used sparingly, and when they are used they’re joined by a pair of more famous monsters—Hitler and Eva Braun, now transformed themselves. This seems to be turning into a strange alternate history for the end of the Second World War, which I think seems just insane enough to work as a story. It’s a fun comic, and judged as Bruce Campbell’s first comic work, it’s definitely impressive. Now to see how he brings it home next issue.

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

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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