Tag Archives: james t. tynion iv

Review: Detective Comics #981

James Tynion concludes his run on Detective Comics with smiling, hugs, and the simple refrain that maybe one should take things one day at a time instead of coming up with complex algorithms and plans for the future. His first artistic collaborators on the series, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, and Adriano Lucas, return for Detective #981 and provide chilling double page spreads of possible futures and more solid ones of the present of the Bat-family. The Brother Eye/Ulysses Armstrong/future Tim Drake plot is resolved fairly quickly so that Tynion, Barrows, and Ferreira can dig deeper into the characters’ emotions and relationships and tease out the different paths that the members of Batman and Batwoman’s hero training squad follows.

Probably the most unexpected hug is the first one between Tim Drake, who has been possessed by Brother Eye technology, and Batwoman as they realize that finding a perfect algorithm to fight crime involves pushing away friends and family and giving into one’s darker nature. It’s not punching or gadgets that brings Tim back to his real self (I love how Sal Cipriano gradually “de-Brothers” his word balloons.), but Stephanie Brown’s voice on the other end telling him she loves him no matter if he’s Red Robin, a future autocratic Batman, or just Tim Drake the college student. The split screens between her and ruthlessly manipulative and pragmatic Ulysses Armstrong represents the warring side of his psyche as Tim wants to efficiently prevent crime in Gotham City and elsewhere, but the human cost is too great. Batwoman experiences almost the same thing in a potent vision of the future where she is hunting down Batman for the government and is content to let him go, but because Bruce is dying of radiation from Brother Eye, she executes a mercy killing. Even if it’s a potential future timeline, Lucas uses a full color palette and Barrows uses tighter knit panels to show the tears on Kate’s face as she puts down an aging Bruce, who has realized that Bat-symbol is a powerful force for good, but it’s not one that needs to be eternal. It’s a direct refutation to the machine set up by Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy back in 2014’s Detective Comics #27 where Batman set up a way for a Batman (and Alfred) to exist in every era perpetually.

Detective Comics #981 is all about being able to love your family members, but also knowing when they need to go down their own path. Especially in the early part of Tynion’s run, Batman, Batwoman, and Red Robin have all been about control with strict training protocols and focus on efficiency and results at the expense of emotions, which caused Stephanie Brown to leave the team, poor Cassandra Cain to be estranged, and Clayface to die. The second half of this comic sets this all to rights with honest conversations, smiling, hugs, and yes, breaking up the proverbial band. Kate and Bruce share drinks at a fancy restaurant where their parents used to “parley”, and Bruce admits that the fact that she’s one of his only living relatives is why their relationship is so frustrating. Also, Kate talks about starting to figure out where she fits in this world of vigilantes and high tech paramilitarism as more of a solo act like she was back when J.H. Williams was writing her comics. But everything isn’t all sunshine and rainbows because this is a book predominantly set in Gotham City so, of course, Jake Kane is listening on their entire conversation. Kate might wear the Batman symbol and have respect for Batman and her other cousin Bruce, but she doesn’t answer to him.

Even if she isn’t technically the “star” of Detective Comics #981, the short scene with Cassandra Cain and Barbara Gordon is definitely the most heartfelt as Cass moves from Wayne Manor to a room in Leslie Thompkins’ clinic where she can be a student and young woman and not just a crime fighter. In contrast with her completely face and form obscuring Orphan costume, Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira draw Cass and her surroundings as open and dynamic before slowly pivoting to this issue’s saddest moment. At the clinic, she isn’t her codename, and Barbara Gordon is “Babs”, not Batgirl. Even though the glimpse of Cassandra picking up her pre-Flashpoint mantle as Batgirl in the previous issue was glorious, it is good to see her learning how to speak and function in society as a human being and not just as a human weapon and nicely caps off the arc that James Tynion has set up for her throughout Batman and Robin Eternal and Detective Comics.

Although it features alternate timelines, crazy future tech, and of course, masked vigilantes who wear a flying rodent on their costumes, Detective Comics #981, and by extension James Tynion’s whole 47 issue run on Detective Comics, has been a family drama with Batwoman playing the badass aunt and Tim Drake as the son, who wants to please his father and also wants to do his own thing. It ends with Batman going into action alone while his surrogate family members forge a path of their own. Sure, Tim and Stephanie are investigating alternate timelines and not going to college, but Batman trusts and loves them enough to let them strike out on their own. Batman fighting crime in Gotham City is a constant, but there is room for change in that constant.

Story: James Tynion IV Pencils: Eddy Barrows
Inks: Eber Ferreira Colors: Adriano Lucas Letters: Sal Cipriano
Story: 9.5 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.8 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Justice League: No Justice #3

It’s Wednesday which means it’s new comic book day with new releases hitting shelves, both physical and digital, all across the world. This week we’ve got the third issue of No Justice!

Justice League: No Justice #3 is by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Riley Rossmo, Marcus To, Hi-Fi, AndWorld Design, Andrea Shea, Rebecca Taylor, and Marie Javins.

Get your copy in comic shops today. To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon/Kindle/comiXology or TFAW

 

 

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Preview: Detective Comics #981

Detective Comics #981

(W) James Tynion IV (A) Eber Ferreira (A/CA) Eddy Barrows
In Shops: May 23, 2018
SRP: $2.99

“Batmen Eternal” finale! This is it – the unbelievable conclusion of James Tynion IV’s Batman epic! It’s the last stand of the Gotham Knights, fighting a monster they helped inspire… and a destiny they won’t accept! What will become of the greatest crime-fighting team Gotham City ever saw?

Preview: Justice League: No Justice #3

Justice League: No Justice #3

(W) Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson (A) Riley Rossmo, Marcus To (A/CA) Francis Manapul
In Shops: May 23, 2018
SRP: $3.99

Starfire makes a crushing discovery, Beast Boy uncovers a shocking betrayal, and Cyborg and Wonder Woman are forced to make decisions that will have devastating repercussions for all four teams… and potentially for those they left behind on Earth.

Review: Dark Days the Road to Metal

It’s Wednesday which means it’s new comic book day with new releases hitting shelves, both physical and digital, all across the world. This week we’ve got the collection that gets you caught up for Metal!

Dark Days the Road to Metal features Dark Days: The Forge #1, Dark Days: The Casting #1, Final Crisis #6-7, Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #1, Batman #38-39, and Nightwing #17 by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Jim Lee, Andy Kubert, John Romita, Jr., Scott Williams, Klaus Janson, Danny Miki, Alex SInclair, Jeremiah Skipper, Steve Wands, Grant Morrison, Doug Mahnke, J.G. Jones, Carlos Pacheco, Marco Rudy, Christian Alamy, Jesus Merino, Tom Nguyen, Drew Geraci, Norm Rapmund, Rodney Ramos, Walden Wong, Pete Pantazis, Tony Avina, Rob Clark, Jr., Travis Lanham, Chris Sprouse, Karl Story, Guy Major, Jared K. Fletcher, Brad Anderson, Greg Capullo, FCO Placencia, Tim Seeley, Javier Fernandez, Chris Sotomayor, Carlos M. Mangual, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Adriano Lucas, Marilyn Patrizia, and Rian Hughes.

Get your copy in comic shops today and book stores May 22. To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon/Kindle/comiXology or TFAW

 

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: The Immortal Men #2

“The End of Forever” part two! Following the destruction of their base of operations, the Immortal Men find themselves on the defensive! Their only hope rests with an emerging metahuman named Caden Park—but the evil Conquest has gotten to Caden first! Will the remaining few battle-ravaged Immortal Men be able to rescue their young would-be savior? And what connection do Caden’s tactile telepathic abilities have to the survival of humanity?

In The Immortal Men #2, things escalate for Caden as he runs from both his would-be protectors and the ones who want him dead. There’s a certain Terminator aspect in that way and it’s a trope that we’ve seen before. Storytellers James Tynion IV and Ryan Benjamin give us something a little different as he also uses this issue to explain the various characters and world a little more. Through the details of action or just outright dialogue, we learn more about each character, their powers, and whats’ going on. And, it’s packed with a lot of action through it all.

The art by Benjamin, inker Richard Friend, and colorist David Baron amplifies the action and really creates a frenetic pacing through the issue. As stated above it all also helps us be introduced to the various characters as we learn more about their powers and origins. Letterer Carlos M. Mangual is also important as some of the lettering actual creates a better understanding of who and what these characters are. Some have a specific style that creates greater depth and understanding of who they are. Through all of that action, the cast grows with more members of the House of Conquest. There is a sense of familiarity to characters that have come before whether on purpose or not, we’ll see. Some of the comic has a very 90s feel about it all.

The second issue sets a crazy pace as we’re introduced to more of this world and characters. There’s a lot packed in here and though the first two issues feel decompressed, they are also entertaining in what’s presented.

Story: James Tynion IV, Ryan Benjamin
Ink: Richard Friend Color: David Baron Letterer: Carlos M. Mangual
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Justice League: No Justice #1

Justice League: No Justice #1 is the kick off to the four-issue miniseries spinning out of Dark Nights: Metal. After Brainiac systematically takes down all of Earth’s super-teams, the last thing the League expects is for him to ask for their help! Without their aid, his home planet and the universe are both doomed!

Dark Nights: Metal opened up a world(s) of possibility of the DC Universe not only introducing the “Dark Universe” but also cracking the Source Wall allowing even greater concepts to leak in to the DCU. It’s a shake up the DC Universe as it has mainly been known for its multiverse but now can also explore the unknowns beyond the Source Wall. Our first introduction to what awaits is four beings comprised of the universe’s major energies – Mystery, Wonder, Wisdom, and Entropy. They sustain their life force by devouring planets. Yes, this is Marvel’s Galactus meets Marvel’s Celestials and a further embrace of the concepts begun by the legendary Jack Kirby. And the issue feels very “Marvel” in that way, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. We’ve seen from Dark Nights that DC can bridge multiple things (in that case the New 52 and Rebirth) and in this case the overall package is Marvel’s Kirby meets DC’s Kirby for something new.

Written by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Joshua Williamson the issue’s strength is the characters themselves and the pairings we’ll be seeing throughout the series. The heroes are forced to work with the villains and already there’s some moments that are entertaining and solid. A scene with Lex Luthor and Martian Manhunter particularly stands out as to what I hope to see more of as well as Starro being Starro. That aspect is all solid.

Where the issue overall lags is that much of it is write by numbers and a bit predictable. There’s the expected fights and then team ups, battle that didn’t need to happen, and just general clashes. Where the comic shines is the small details of interactions and where it deviates from expectations (and even then it’s a few particular details as opposed to the overall act. Brainiac’s fate is the example of that).

Artist Francis Manapul, with color by Hi-Fi, and lettering by AndWorld Design, create a visual treat. The art brings Manapul’s strengths and gives it all a cosmic twist. There’s some interesting designs and the flow of the comic is great, especially since so much is packed in. Each character looks solid, the page layouts are interesting, the comic is more visually engaging than it is storywise. The colors pop in a way using a day-glow like palette of purples, pinks, blues, and greens. Colorwise the comic is very unique. The lettering too helps add some emotional punch and at times helps deliver the punchline itself.

The comic isn’t bad in any way and very much reminds me of a summer popcorn blockbuster. There’s great concepts that just need a little something more to make them stand out as unique instead of riffs of something we’ve seen before. It’s the interaction of characters as well as the fantastic art that’s the driver here. The fact we know we’ll be getting new Justice League books and teams (and who is on what team) that also diminishes some of the storytelling. It feels like it has a job of getting us to the next chapter instead of getting us excited about the next chapter. Justice League: No Justice so far feels like the bridge from Dark Nights: Metal to a new era of the Justice League. Like the Source Wall itself, leaving what lies beyond to the imagination is some times the fun part.

Story: Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Joshua Williamson
Art: Francis Manapul Color: Hi-Fi Lettering: AndWorld Design
Story: 7.0 Art: 8.3 Overall: 7.35 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: The Immortal Men #2

The Immortal Men #2

(W) James Tynion IV (A) Ryan Benjamin (CA) Jim Lee, Scott Williams
In Shops: May 09, 2018
SRP: $2.99

“THE END OF FOREVER” part two! Following the destruction of their base of operations, the Immortal Men find themselves on the defensive! Their only hope rests with an emerging metahuman named Caden Park-but the evil Conquest has gotten to Caden first! Will the remaining few battle-ravaged Immortal Men be able to rescue their young would-be savior? And what connection do Caden’s tactile telepathic abilities have to the survival of humanity?

Preview: Detective Comics #980

Detective Comics #980

(W) James Tynion IV (A) Scot Eaton, Wayne Faucher (CA) Raul Fernandez, Alvaro Martinez
In Shops: May 09, 2018
SRP: $2.99

“Batmen Eternal” part five! The worst possible future for Gotham City has been locked into place, and there’s nothing Batman can do to stop it… until Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain catch a glimpse of something they never would have thought possible!

Preview: DC Nation #0

DC Nation #0

(W) Tom King, Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Brian Michael Bendis (A) Clay Mann, José Luis García-López (A/CA) Jorge Jimenez
In Shops: May 02, 2018
SRP: $0.25

These stories will appear only in this comic book and will not be reprinted in another comic book before each series’ collected editions. Only the first printing of this issue will have a cover price of $0.25. This issue will ship with four covers.

Just in time for Free Comic Book Day, this special comic priced at just $0.25 US features three brand-new stories from a lineup of superstar talent-and each tale serves as a prelude to some of the biggest DC events of 2018!

First, find out how The Joker reacts when he discovers Catwoman has turned her back on crime and plans to marry his archnemesis. Can the Clown Prince of Crime stand to see Batman happy? Writer Tom King and artist Clay Mann set up the events that lead to BATMAN #50!

Then, DARK NIGHTS: METAL shook the DC Universe to its deepest foundations-now it’s time to rejoin legendary writer Scott Snyder, along with all-star artist Jorge Jimenez and co-writers James Tynion IV and Joshua Williamson, for the prelude to JUSTICE LEAGUE: NO JUSTICE! Discover what universe-shattering mysteries have emerged from the most wondrous and chaotic corners of the cosmos to hunt the Justice League in DC’s summer blockbuster event!
And get your first glimpse at Superman’s new world in this exclusive preview of the upcoming six-issue miniseries MAN OF STEEL, written by Brian Michael Bendis with art by José Luis García-López. With Truth, Justice and the American Way all under attack, both Superman and Clark Kent find there’s never been a more important time to stand up for what they believe in.

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