Art by: Alessandro Vitti, Christian Duce and Ronan Cliquet
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: February 18, 2015
I don't like being tricked. I already know I'm a big dummy so when I get it shoved in my face over and over, it just makes me feel sad. Batman: Eternal makes me sad. If you have been reading this book then you will know what I mean. We have six issues left and we still don't know who is behind all the trouble. That's bad enough, but I'm starting to think that the writers are having fun at our expense. I can picture Scott Snyder on the phone with Ray Fawkes last week laughing, "Great job, now they think it's Ra's al Ghul. Ha, ha, ha!" Why must you kill me like this? Why?!? I don't think I will get that answered either, so let's get on with the review.
If you haven't been spoiled by my above attempt at humor, I'll finish the job here...Ra's al Ghul isn't behind anything except maybe a hospital curtain. You see, when Batman goes to find the Demon's Head, all he finds is a broken immortal still struggling to recover from their last epic meeting. Actually, he also finds Dr. Darkk and Lord Death Man.
While Dr. Darkk takes Batman through an induced look at "This Will Be Your Life", Lord Death Man is there just for the laughs. I love Lord Death Man and applaud anytime he shows up, but the meat of this part is the look at the future. Any fan of Batman will get a kick out of all the different versions of the Batman on display even if this part feels forced and unnecessary.
The other story line that Tim Seeley digs into is Selina Kyle's efforts to control the Gotham Underworld. She is trying to understand what the hell is going on in Gotham including some very unusual shipments coming into the City. She goes to her Father, but he has no information...at first. The issue ends with him getting the what's what and it points to some of Gotham's most colorful characters. It's an unusual cliffhanger, but I love the characters involved so I will reserve judgement until at least next week.
As a whole, this issue felt like a little recap (thanks to Ra's and Julia Pennyworth), a little setup and a bunch of filler. Readers of this book have to be used to this almost every time a different writer jumps back in, but it's getting to the point where we need to stop the nonsense and get down to brass tacks. That's not saying this issue is all bad, because that's far from the truth. Tim Seeley nails the characters and writes some kick ass dialogue this issue. Ra's al Ghul's speech to Batman about why he's not behind the troubles is simply awesome and Seely nails Lord Death Man. The Father-Daughter talk between Selina and the Lion was equally well done. I just wish it mattered more.
I was not a fan of the art in this issue mainly because of the amount of artists involved. Three artists in one book is never good and the inconsistencies and glaring transitions here just threw me out of the story.
Bits and Pieces:
This issue has some of the best dialogue this series has seen so far, but there isn't much else. We get no closer to finding out who is behind it all and with a handful of issue left, things better pick up quick. The art is a mixed bag and with three artists on board also has some awful transitions. The cliffhanger points to some fun next week, but I want more answers and less fun although both would be nice.