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DC Reveals New Details for DC Festival of Heroes: The Asian Superhero Celebration

DC Festival of Heroes: The Asian Superhero Celebration, is an incredible anthology spotlighting DC’s past, present and even future Asian superheroes, featuring some of the most dynamic Asian storytellers in and out of comics. Featuring an incredible cover by the team of DC Publisher and Chief Creative Officer Jim Lee, and colorist Alex Sinclair, this anthology includes a foreword by activist and CNN and WSJ Online contributor Jeff Yang, a selection of tribute pinups of DC’s Asian superheroes, plus an awesome variant cover featuring Cassandra Cain by artist Stanley “Artgerm” Lau.

A New Hero: Monkey Prince!
DC Festival of Heroes will treat readers to the first appearance of an all-new character, the Monkey Prince. Debuting in a story written by award-winning writer Gene Luen Yang (Superman Smashes the Klan, Batman/Superman, New Super-Man) with art by Bernard Chang (Teen Titans, Batman Beyond), Monkey Prince is inspired by the Monkey King, legendary hero of Chinese mythology and the classic tale Journey to the West. In Yang and Chang’s original 12-page story, “The Monkey Prince Hates Superheroes,” Monkey Prince battles and teams up with Shazam to defeat both the evil Dr. Sivana and a Chinese deer demon spirit! To further celebrate this new superhero, the anthology will receive a special Monkey Prince 1 in 25 variant cover by Bernard Chang (check local comic book stores for availability).

Additional stories include:
“Masks” – Ram V, writer of CatwomanJustice League Dark, and The Swamp Thing, teams up with Audrey Mok, the artist of Sera and the Royal Stars, to tell a story featuring Jade Nguyen, a.k.a. Cheshire. Tying into V’s Catwoman run, Selina Kyle’s protégé Shoes has visions of being rescued as a child by Cheshire. Shoes takes these visions as a sign, donning a mask, taking the name “Cheshire Cat,” and asking Selina Kyle to train her. But is Catwoman ready to take on a sidekick?

“Sounds” – Detective Comics writer and Eisner Award winner Mariko Tamaki (Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass) and artist Marcus To team up to tell a story featuring Cassandra Cain, a.k.a. Batgirl. Batgirl struggles to understand words, but with her ability to read body language and uncanny fighting skills, she really doesn’t have to…until she meets someone and wishes that she had the right words—ANY words—to say to them!

“What’s in the Box?” – Cassandra Cain steps into the spotlight once more, but this time with Colin Wilkes, a.k.a. Abuse (who first appeared in Detective Comics #947, October 2008), courtesy of words and art by Dustin Nguyen. Abuse finds Batgirl sitting by a bridge, upset by a comment made by Damian Wayne.

“Dress Code” – Green Lantern Tai Pham makes his first comic book debut in this story by Green Lantern: Legacy writer Minh Lê with artist Trung Le Nguyen. Green Lantern is fighting with Arkillo, and the villain taunts him for his costume “looking like a dress.” This reminds Tai of a memory with his dead grandmother who he inherited his powers from.

“Festival of Heroes” – In a story by writer Amy Chu and artist Marcio Takara influenced by current headlines, Katana, Cyborg, and Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes) are asked to safeguard an Asian American and Pacific Islander community celebration against potential violence from a white supremacist group. But the heroes are quickly reminded that you don’t need capes, masks, or even special abilities to be a hero.

“Hawke & Kong” – Writer Greg Pak and artist Sumit Kumar team up on a story spotlighting the return of onetime Green Arrow Connor Hawke and Kong Kenan, also known as New Super-Man. Connor and Kenan need to do some quick thinking when a gift for Connor’s Korean aunt gets damaged in a battle with a dragon!

“Special Delivery” – Master of None writer Aniz Ansari makes his comic book debut with artist Sami Basri in this story featuring Robin (Damian Wayne). As Robin ponders about his heritage, he slowly discovers that something about this pizza place seems off…

“Kawaii Kalamity!” – Shadow of the Batgirl writer Sarah Kuhn and illustrator Victoria Ying (Diana: Princess of the Amazons) tell a story about Red Arrow’s reluctance of enjoying “kawaii” things because of people’s general assumptions of what she likes simply based on her Japanese heritage.

“Family Dinner” – Amazon juggernaut Grace Choi has to meet her girlfriend Anissa Pierce’s dad for dinner. But when your girlfriend is Thunder, that means meeting the parents is that much more stressful because her father is Black Lightning!

“Perceptible” – The Good Asian duo of Pornsak Pichetshote (writer) and Alexandre Tefenkgi (artist) tell a tale featuring The Atom (Ryan Choi) trying to defeat a microscopic robot sent from the future…to save our reality as we know it!

This 100-page commemorative anthology is a great way to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, awesome storytelling, and DC’s Super Heroes when it arrives in comic book stores and on participating digital platforms on Tuesday, May 11, 2021.

Infinite Frontier Expands Into a Six-Issue Miniseries

Future State offered a glimpse of the near and far futures of DC‘s heroes and villains, But, what’s next and the CURRENT status of the DC Universe? That question was partially answered in today’s Infinite Frontier #0 which sets the stage for new stories, mysteries, and surprises.

As a result of Dark Nights: Death Metal, everything was put back where it belonged in the DC Multiverse… everything! All the damage from all the Crises was undone, and heroes long thought gone returned from whatever exile they had been in.

Infinite Frontier #0 is just the beginning!

DC has announced Infinite Frontier, a six-issue miniseries by Joshua Williamson and Xermanico. It features covers by Mitch Gerads and begins June 22. Get ready to explore more of DC’s rapidly expanding Multiverse!

In this summer event, Alan Scott, the Green Lantern from the Justice Society of America, has noticed some of his allies are still missing in action, and he’s determined to find them. There are others, though, that would rather remain hidden than explain themselves, like Roy Harper, a.k.a. Arsenal, a man who should be dead now is not. Plus, what does all this mean for the DCU’s place in the Multiverse? On opposite sides of a dimensional divide, both Barry Allen and President Superman ponder this question. Not to mention the Darkseid of it all! Or a team of Multiversal heroes called Justice Incarnate!

This brand-new event from DC has one foot in the past, but both eyes looking forward to a future that they hope will remain as bright as it seems!

Infinite Frontier #0 art by John Timms and Alex Sinclair
Interior artwork from Infinite Frontier #0 by John Timms and Alex Sinclair

Review: Crime Syndicate #1

Crime Syndicate #1

Crime Syndicate #1 takes us to Earth-3 where “evil” version of our known superheroes rule. The issue is an interesting one presenting the group it would seem before they’ve come together and instead giving us a tease of each. Some of it works and some of it doesn’t with an issue that’s a bit choppy in quality.

Written by Andy Schmidt, the comic re-introduces us to the various members. It has them plant their flags in their own ways. All of the members are horrible individuals in their own special way. This isn’t a team or “heroes” to be rooting for, Schmidt nails that aspect down. But, the tone of the comic still feels a bit “light’ for such evil individuals. There’s a pulp vibe to it in some ways with a dose of humor thrown in which feels a bit off.

Schmidt has some fun with that “pulp” aspect though referencing comics that don’t exist and haven’t happened. It delivers a wink a nod to the history all of these characters have.

But, what’s odd is that this feels a bit of an echo to the Justice League relaunch with the New 52 bringing the team together. There’s both history and newness to it all. It doesn’t pack the punch when it the Crime Syndicate was revealed years ago as to the evil that lurked in the DC Universe and sparked “Trinity War”.

The art by Kieran McKeown is ok but doesn’t quite fit the tone of the characters. With ink by Dexter Vines, color by Steve Oliff, and lettering by Rob Leigh there’s a bit of a classic feel to the art. It matches the comedic aspects of the comic but the style doesn’t quite match that “evil” and “dark” aspect of the team I was expecting. The art is a bit to bright and light to fit well with these characters.

Schmidt is also joined by Bryan Hitch, Alex Sinclair, and Leigh in an origin story for Ultraman. The back-up story is more of what I was expecting with the main story. It’s a bit darker in tone and shows more of the torture and twisted nature of these characters. Juxtaposed with the main story, the tone issues are more apparent.

Crime Syndicate #1 is a bit too much of a fresh start with an unexpected tone that doesn’t quite fit. These were brutally evil characters who were always plotting. Here we’re presented with more goofy mirror images of heroes we know. There’s potential for the series as it goes on with more interactions but as is, the comic is a bit choppy in its presentation getting them to that point.

Story: Andy Schmidt Art: Kieran McKeown, Bryan Hitch
Ink: Dexter Vines Color: Steve Oliff, Alex Sinclair Letterer: Rob Leigh
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read


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Review: Infinite Frontier #0

Infinite Frontier #0

Dark Knights: Death Metal is over and we’ve seen a possible future timeline in “Future State”. Now, DC begins to chart its path with the first crumbs teased in Infinite Frontier #0. The issue serves as a guide as to the various series and status-quo that awaits them. With a new omniverse to explore, anything is possible and the comic does its job to remind us of that.

The comic’s story is delivered in a narrative driven by two characters as our guide. It’s a spin on the classic Christmas Carol and It’s a Wonderful Life. Wonder Woman believes a threat is looming and wants to witness the state of things before making a major decision about her role in the DC Universe.

With Wonder Woman and Spectre as our guide, we’re taken on a tour of the characters highlighting the comics to come. The Justice League, Batman, Wonder Girl, Alan Scott, Teen Titans Academy, Superman, Green Arrow and Black Canary, Star Girl, Green Lanterns, and the Flash all get a moment to show off where things stand. All of it is good and interesting though few of what’s presented really excites. It feels like an extended teaser and preview. It takes its concept as a guidebook almost too seriously. The comic feels a bit more like the extension of the ending of Dark Knights: Death Metal where we saw many of these ideas initially teased.

Infinite Frontier #0 credits

But, what’s intriguing is what’s presented and doesn’t have a comic attached to them. Infinite Frontier #0 teases more than what’s already announced giving hope as to what we’ll see in July and beyond. There’s also teases through artwork of the various series DC teased at the recent ComicsPro. It’s interesting in that way that the stories feel less like the exciting first 15 minutes before the credits to get you pumped. Instead, the stories are a bit dry and more to lay out where things stand with the concepts thrown out being the hooks. The action isn’t the hook, the ideas are.

The art of the comic is solid. Each segment flows into the next and with a few exceptions, the styles work well together. There are some fantastic spreads with Wonder Woman as she talks to Spectre about what she’s witnessing. There’s a few panels and pages that’ll leave you lingering to stare at. The colors really pop on pages delivering a sense of energy that really fits the new status of the DC Universe.

Infinite Frontier #0 isn’t bad but it doesn’t quite excite. By the end of the issue I found myself more excited about concepts than the comics themselves. Very few of the segments left me wanting to immediately find out what happens next. Instead, it the comic feels like a short ashcan, teasing what’s to come with a few pages and back material to fill things out. It shows what’s to come but it never quite puts things over. Instead, it nails its role as a guide, a way to browse what DC has to offer.

Story: Brian Michael Bendis, James Tynion IV, Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, Joëlle Jones, Tim Sheridan, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Joshua Williamson, Geoff Johns, Geoffrey Thorne
Art: David Marquez, Jorge Jimeez, Alitha Martinez, Mark Morales, Joëlle Jones, Stephen Byrne, Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, Jamal Igle, Alex Maleev, Todd Nauck, Dexter Soy, Howard Porter, John Romita, Jr., Klaus Janson
Color: Tamra Bonvillain, Tomeu Morey, Emilio Lopez, Jordie Bellaire, Stephen Byrne, Alejandro Sanchez, Hi-Fi, Alex Sinclair, Brad Anderson
Letterer: Troy Peteri
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Review: Dark Nights: Death Metal #7

Dark Nights: Death Metal #7

And this is it, the end of Dark Nights: Death Metal and the launch of a new DC Universe. The “Crisis Event” by a different name wraps up with Dark Nights: Death Metal #7 launching into a new era where anything can happen. The results, like much of the event, are a mixed bag.

Written by Scott Snyder, the series sees one final clash between the heroes and villains of the DC Universe taking a stand against the Darkest Knight. It’s an issue filled with grand ideas and grand visuals as Wonder Woman is front and center in the battle. Snyder makes things interesting by having unexpected characters make unexpected sacrifices. It keeps readers on their toes as to what might happen next and by who.

There’s some interesting concepts about the creation of the DC Universe thrown in and the various boundaries that have existed. In a meta sense the discussion of these boundaries is the most interesting aspect. It feels like a stance as to what has hampered the various eras of DC Comics. A limitation of worlds or multiverses or worlds is all brought up. In the end though, all of it is made cannon and an infinite number of possibilities is left on the table. What’s now possible is the real lasting impact and what’s hinted at to come is the most intriguing. Dark Nights: Death Metal #7 feels like the end to a messy attempt to right the ship. DC has stated in the past they’ve wanted continuity to not matter as much and the ability to tell whatever stories they’ve wanted. Dark Nights: Death Metal creates a clearer slate to do so. It took them a while but they’re finally really there with a best of all worlds scenario.

The art of the comic is over the top as expected. Greg Capullo handles most of the duties with Jonathan Glapion inking, FCO Plascencia on color and Tom Napolitano on lettering. Yanick Paquette and Bryan Hitch also provide pencils and inks while Nathan Fairbairn and Alex Sinclair also provide colors. The art is as it has been. There’s some very solid moments worth of the big screen and other moments that just feel off. The art itself feels a bit more “death metal” than previous issues as character die or battle it out in spectacular ways but overall there’s little images that feel iconic. For such a big event, the story and art come off as a bit forgettable. What they lead to is the bigger aspect. There’s a missing of that “it” moment.

While I can’t quite recommend Dark Nights: Death Metal #7 I also can’t quite say you can skip it either. It’s a curiosity more than anything else. It’s the end to an era and leading into what’s next shaking up the status-quo for DC Comics. If you’re interested in seeing how that comes about, it’s worth checking out. If not, then this is one you can pass on.

Story: Scott Snyder Art: Greg Capullo, Yanick Paquette, Bryan Hitch Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Ink: Jonathan Glapion, Yanick Paquette, Bryan Hitch Color: FCO Plascencia, Nathan Fairbairn, Alex Sinclair
Story: 6.5 Art: 7.0 Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Review: Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint #1

Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint

DC Comics’ Tales From the Dark Multiverse have been fun, twisted takes on infamous storylines. Some entries have been better than others. Overall, it’s been interesting to see where creators take a known story and what they can do with the premise. Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint has Bryan Hitch writing and providing pencils for the world-changing event.

In this version of Flashpoint, Barry Allen doesn’t regain his powers. This leaves the Reverse-Flash to roam this world and do with as he pleases. Hitch takes things to interesting places using the over-sized issue as best he can. Like so many previous one-shots, this is a story that could easily have been a mini-series on its own. A lot is packed into the issue. While it doesn’t deliver a punch, it does entertain, especially for those that have read the original.

While Hitch as a writer and artist can be hit or miss for me, Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint is a solid entry into that world. There’s a logical progression that Hitch takes things as we see Eobard Thawne take advantage of the situation. But, more importantly, we get a debate about the “hope” that Barry Allen represents. Barry’s “hope” created Flashpoint and Thawne points out that hope was actually selfishness. That gets juxtaposed with this version of Batman which is Thomas Wayne who lost his son Bruce in the alley and his wife breakdown after. There’s something interesting and tragic about it all as we know the damage Barry did and wonder if Thawne and Thomas will repeat his mistakes. We also get to see more of what drives Thawne and he finds a new opponent in Wayne.

Hitch’s art is solid as well. While he doesn’t quite bring the motion that so many others do on the Flash, there’s a great use of Thawne’s movement in the art. There’s also the “doom” of Flashpoint without causing the comic to be a downer. This is a drab, depressing world, but Hitch doesn’t drag the comic down by focusing too much in that. The colors of Alex Sinclair and Jeremiah Skipper instead give us oranges, reds, and yellows, that create a mood without the comic itself being moody.

Tales From the Dark Multiverse: Flashpoint does a solid job of revisiting Flashpoint and taking it in a logical direction that’s not just annihilation and war. There’s an intriguing idea behind what Bryan Hitch has created and where the story leaves it. It also creates some intriguing possibilities for the future and Thawne’s character. Like so many of the other “Tales From”, this is a “dark” world I wouldn’t mind revisiting and hope we get to see more of it.

Story: Bryan Hitch Art: Bryan Hitch
Ink: Andrew Currie, Scott Hanna Color: Alex Sinclair, Jeremiah Skipper Letterer: Rob Leigh
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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It’s the Bat and the Cat in Batman/Catwoman #1 in December

After lots of anticipation, DC has announced that Batman/Catwoman #1 arrives December 1 from Tom King, Clay Mann, Tomeu Morey, and Clayton Cowles.

The series is told across three separate timelines and continues King’s story from his run on Batman.

Gotham City. Today. Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle have rekindled their long-running, on-again, off-again relationship. Believing all obstacles are removed from their path, they once again begin operating as a duo in their secret lives: Batman and Catwoman working together to fight crime.

There’s the past, when The Bat and The Cat first fell in love. Did they meet on the street? Or was it on a boat? Rooftops, ramparts and gargoyles, and over 80 years of fans that have read their comics, are their only witnesses.

There’s the distant future, where after a long and happy marriage Bruce Wayne has passed away. Selina Kyle decides to settle an old score without having to worry about the Batman objecting. Catwoman is serving a very cold dish: Revenge.

The series is also the hotly wanted debut of Andrea Beaumont, a.k.a. Phantasm to the DC Universe. Beaumont’s return questions how each character operates in their costume and personal lives and threatens Bruce and Selina’s future.

But what about the Joker? He robber Batman and Catwoman of their wedding. Any change in the Dark Night’s life will be result in more chaos from the Clown Prince of Crime.

Batman/Catwoman, by Tom King, Clay Mann, Tomeu Morey, and Clayton Cowles, edited by Jamie S. Rich and Brittany Holzherr, will launch a 12-issue run on December 1, 2020, with a cover by Mann and Morey and a variant cover by Jim Lee, Scott Williams, and Alex Sinclair with a main cover by Travis Charest. New issues will ship monthly with a skip month planned for a Batman/Catwoman Special in June 2021, and the series will carry DC’s Black Label content descriptor, indicating content appropriate for readers ages 17+.

ComiXology Delivers Seven New Digital Comics Including DC’s HBO MAX Comics for Free

ComiXology has seven new comics for you to check out today including three free tie-in comics by DC for HBO MAX. They’re free, might as well check them out!

Here’s all of the comics in one handy spot or check out each of them below!

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #1

Written by Ivan Cohen
Pencils Scot Eaton
Inks Wayne Faucher
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Jim Lee, Alex Sinclair
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To the Max: Hector – When a schoolteacher finds a mysterious device, it sends him flying into an incredible outer-space rescue mission.

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #1

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #2

Written by Ivan Cohen
Pencils Hendry Prasetya
Inks Mark Morales
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Jorge Jimenez, Alejandro Sanchez
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To the Max: Brian – A scuba instructor is transformed into a superhero who must save innocent people from a deadly storm in Singapore.

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #2

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #3

Written by Ivan Cohen
Pencils Laura Braga
Inks Laura Braga
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Amanda Conner, Paul Mounts
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To the Max: Olivia – A down-on-her-luck standup comic is all that stands between her audience and gun-toting criminals who plan to rob a Las Vegas casino.

HBO MAX Digital Comic (2020) #3

Infinity 8 Vol. 7: All for Nothing

Written by Boulet, Lewis Trondheim
Art by Boulet
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Part Seven in the eight-part pulp sci-fi epic INFINITY 8, this new arc introduces us to Douglas, an average alien with modest dreams and regular problems who has been visited by a strange robot for most of his life, constantly offering him an odd talisman without explanation. Now, years later, that talisman is about to be the key to deciphering the origin of the massive galactic graveyard surrounding the stranded cruise-ship, Infinity 8! Answers unfold at last! Includes bonus production art not featured in the single issues.

Infinity 8 Vol. 7: All for Nothing

Orphans Vol. 3 #8: War Pigs

Written by Roberto Recchioni
Art by Davide Gianfelice
Cover by Massimo Carnevale
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As crowd control and martial law become a priority task, team leader Jonas is forced to make a tough decision for his squad, one that could lead to the end of them all…

Orphans Vol. 3 #8: War Pigs

Streamliner #4: Bye-bye Lisa Dora

Written by Fane
Art by Fane
Cover by Fane
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Race day looms near, and the qualifiers weed out the weak and slow. Billy Joe has his hands full enough just keeping the huge crowd of participants in line, but that’s before national broadcast television shows up to make this the biggest spectacle since the Superbowl…

Streamliner #4: Bye-bye Lisa Dora

Superman: Man of Tomorrow #7

Written by Dave Wielgosz
Pencils Miguel Mendonca, Yasmine Putri
Inks Miguel Mendonca, Yasmine Putri
Colored by David Baron, Yasmine Putri
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Story 1 – Jimmy Olsen quits the Daily Planet and joins up with a new hero in Metropolis, Soar. But Superman’s not quite sure the ViewTube superhero’s intentions are good. Story 2 – Superman’s in need of training to better control his powers and protect humanity, but will Wioska, a former member of Darkseid’s army on Apokolips, give him the best guidance? 

Superman: Man of Tomorrow #7

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DC Releases a First Look at Superman #23

If I was Superman, I’d probably be asking myself, “Wonder if I should have rethought this whole revealing my secret identity thing?” Many folks in Big Blue’s world are still worried that he’s been tricked into destroying his own privacy. Having to go toe-to-toe with Mongul probably isn’t helping things, either.

In Superman #23 (on sale July 7) the Man of Steel will be dealing with a new villain, one steeped in magic and mysticism. And any Superman fan knows that he doesn’t have the greatest relationship with the old hocus-pocus. But Fate will step in to lend a hand – Dr. Fate, that is. This issue will also see some appearances from other denizens of the DCU’s more shadowy corners, including John Constantine, Madame Xanadu, Swamp Thing, and Detective Chimp.

Here’s your first look at the John Timms cover and some interiors from Superman #23 by Kevin Maguire and Alex Sinclair. Superman #23 is written by Brian Michael Bendis, with additional art by John Timms and letters by Dave Sharpe.

On sale beginning Tuesday, July 7 at all open and operating comic book stores and participating digital retailers.

Preview: Batman: Gotham Nights #7

Batman: Gotham Nights #7

Unplanned Obsolescence” by Mark Russell, Ryan Benjamin, Richard Friend, Alex Sinclair, and Troy Peteri
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When Batman’s old nemesis Killer Moth is shot dead in an everyday burglary, the World’s Greatest Detective knows there must be more to the story. After all, this is one of Batman’s earliest foes, and if there’s anything Batman learned from those early fights, it’s that you always need a backup plan!

Batman: Gotham Nights #7
Almost American
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