Back once again this week to take a look at the latest issue of DC’s Detective Comics, and another part in the “Shadows of the Bat” storyline. As always it’s written by Mariko Tamaki with art currently handled by Amancay Nahuelpan, and of course Matthew Rosenberg and Fernando Blanco on the backup story. We’re a stone’s throw away from the end of this story, so time to see how the penultimate issue fares.
SPOILERS Ahead Detective Comics #1057!
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Things are starting to fall into place, and plotwise things are slowing down. The climax has reached its peak now that Batman has made his triumphant return (after spending time out of town due to events happening in his main book these past few months), and all that’s left is the final confrontation with the remaining villains of Arkham Tower. Scarecrow has now taken this role. Arkham game type of way, who has taken the Psycho Pirate’s Medusa Mask in the confusion and plans to use it in support of his own fear gimmick. While the focus on Scarecrow all of the sudden does feel a bit out of left field, I don’t really mind it that much. It makes sense for him to seize the opportunity, and it gives the story an ending, since Wear and the Psycho Pirate have been dealt with. Really though, it seems it’s mostly there to get the mask away from the Psycho Pirate, so Nakano’s wife Koyuki can grab and wield it herself for the cliffhanger. The strongest aspect of this issue’s plot is of course, seeing Batman back and taking control of the whole affair. His presence in the story, as I stated last time, is immediately reassuring. It serves as a way to bring an end to the chaos that has been going on.
The characterization is solid with Batman and Koyuki still getting the majority of it. A few bones are thrown to Huntress and Psycho Pirate as well, but they’re not really the focus (though the balance of it all is well done, and still appreciated). Koyuki is now the main focus. He has a somewhat supportive relationship with Psycho Pirate and even takes control of his mask (and her fears) at the end. I like that, between this issue and the last, it shows a good mini-character arc for somebody who’d been nothing more than a bit player up until this point.
Rosenberg and Blanco have shifted the focus to the Batman timeline once more. It is now being set in the present day. It seemingly gives us the ultimate conclusion to what the previous issues have been building to: Nero Xix’s relationships with the various rogues of Gotham coming to fruition in a play against Batman. As I’ve said in previous reviews, I’ve really enjoyed this extended villain origin story. Taking a brand new character and developing them throughout Batman’s history like this has been a fun creative endeavor, and I think for the most part it’s been pulled off very well.
It is also well done. Nahuelpan continues to do a great job closing the story with strong panel layouts. Blanco has done a great job with the backups too all throughout, and that hasn’t changed here. He’s really shown a good range going all the way from Batman’s early years up to the world of the modern DCU, and pulled it all off effectively.
Overall, it was a satisfying penultimate issue to this lengthy event. It’s been full of twists and turns, and even near the end we still have a little bit of mystery and intrigue left to go. The character writing is as solid as ever. The artwork has been consistent quality throughout. I suppose we’ll be getting all the remaining questions answered and seeing this story wrapped up, same Bat-time, same Bat-comic, next week.
‘Detective Comics’ #1057 review
Detective Comics #1057
This is a good transition to the last issue of this long story.
Art is solid and constant
Wrap up your work quickly
Scarecrow feels a little lost in the crowd.
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