Ray: This is one of only a few issues released this week, and due to a minor delay it gets a surprisingly big spotlight. It deserves it, as this is one of the most dramatic and epic issues of the run as Batman finally faces off against Arzen Orgham and his deadliest assassins. As Gotham rallies to celebrate the opening of Orgham Tower, the Orghams have unleashed a series of attacks against the city timed to exactly the deadliest moment. Nightwing and Cassandra Cain patrol the city, but it’s not long before it comes clear that artificially enhanced super-monsters are roaming the city, and a series of bombs have been planted to turn the celebration into a killing field.
There are some great, tense battle scenes in this issue, but one of the best moments in the story is when Jim Gordon confronts Renee Montoya. We’ve seen Montoya step into the role of Commissioner, and she’s determined to carve a different path—less reliant on the Bats. But it’s also seemed clear that she’s desperate to prove herself, and that’s made her stubborn. Jim calls that out, but it’s not enough to get GCPD support. As the Bats desperately try to stop the attack, Batman descends into a twisted world set up by the Orghams, as he finally comes face to face with his adversary in person. He’s faced with a terrible choice—and makes it, in quick fashion, in a way only Batman could, as we leave off with a shocking cliffhanger.
The backup sees a major change in creative team, as Dan Watters and Stefano Raffaele step into the limelight for a tale that reveals Arzen’s origins. We saw his father’s murder at the hands of Ra’s Al Ghul, and the now-heir-in-waiting soon continues his training. But he becomes obsessed with a tree of his father’s that seems to be dying, doing everything he can to revive it—even if it means stripping the ground around it bare. It’s a fascinating tale that shows how a wounded child becomes a terrible villain—and it somehow makes him even scarier.
To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.
GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.
This post was last modified on May 28, 2023 5:45 pm
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