Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Batman #44 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Scott Snyder, Brian Azzarello
Art By: Jock, Lee Loughridge
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 9, 2015


Much Ado About Nothing


*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Let's head back into Gotham and see what's going down with Mr. Bloom in this very odd issue.  Previously we saw how Bruce Wayne survived the cave collapse from the finale of End Game due to the abundance of dionesium in the area and how it remapped his brain, creating a man who never was Batman.  Yeah, it's kind of weird because in my mind that would leave him little more than a man-child who wouldn't even be able to care for himself, but he comes off as a pretty regular guy just trying to get his life together by helping the less fortunate.  We got that and Jim Gordon's Batman trying to hunt down the super power drug dealer Mr. Bloom and apparently this baddie is more than he seems when he possibly kills Penguin after turning into a Slender Man monster.  Yeah, it's all pretty odd and even though I'm sure we'd all love to see where we go from there.......... Too bad, because we're going back to a post Zero Year Gotham.  Let's check it out and see if we can get excited for this new villain.

Explain It!:
As I said, we begin this story in a post Zero Year world where Batman is still trying to get it together to become the Batman we all know and love and the city continues to try and get back to some semblance of it's former self after the Riddler attack.  Outside of the city limits, Batman finds the body of a fifteen year old boy and the hunt is on for his killer.  Batman connects the boy from his place of residence to The Penguin, who is trying to take over gangs in that area and I immediately realize that this feels nothing like a Batman book, but more of a Detective Comics story.  It's like a damn relay race as we move from person to person to get the full account of what went down, but there isn't much fun involved.  


The whole story boils down to the murdered kid named Peter Duggio who wants to save his family's bodega and since his father became ill after the events of Zero Year and the gang: The Four Fives have taken over the area, Peter goes to the Penguin for a business proposition.  Penguin and the Four Fives don't get along so Peter offers to run Penguin's merchandise through the bodega........ only thing is Penguin then gives it over to the Four Fives as a peace offering.  During the story it's a bunch of back and forth in the timeline where we eventually see that first Peter went to Bruce Wayne for help, since Bruce was redoing the whole neighborhood, but when that didn't work Peter went to the Penguin, who then fucked him over.  With Peter seeing no other options, he then went to Mr. Bloom in a back alley garden and acquired a super powered concoction.  This led to Peter taking on the Four Fives single handedly, but even his new found strength couldn't stop them from setting his family's business on fire....... if that wasn't bad enough, when a cop arrived on scene, he shoots Peter and him not wanting a black mark on his record, he simply left the scene.  Can you guess what happened next?........ Absolutely not because it's fucking out there.  Peter then grew giant bat wings and flew away until his serum wore and he fell to his death........... What the hell does this have to do with Mr. Bloom except that he was there for one panel?


In the end, Batman realizes that while he can't find someone behind this murder, there are a lot of people who need to pay for the things that they do in Gotham....... Bruce Wayne included and Batman decides to pull a Doobie Brothers and begin taking it to the streets by talking to some of the kids in the area of Peter's burnt down bodega........... The End.  


That's it for this issue of Batman and after having such a huge cliffhanger last month, it's so freaking disappointing to come into this issue where absolutely nothing happens.  I mean, we could have at least delved into the origin of Mr. Bloom a little, but all we get is a murder mystery where a kid happened to take his serum five years ago and died........ and I guess Batman never caught him or even thought about him again.  It's just so odd.  We're in the thick of things with Jim Gordon being Batman and we take a breath to deal with the actual Batman and learn nothing new about our story.......which like I said before feels more like a Detective Comics issue.......which went unused until Snyder needed a filler story and rewrote it for his own means.  Jock's art while really stunning in shots where Batman is contemplating the evidence and the things he's read in the newspapers, doesn't really work for the rest of the issue.  I found myself struggling to understand what exactly was going on and that's never a good sign.  So all in all, this is an issue that doesn't need to be read and is complete filler while masquerading as part of the story arc.

Bits and Pieces:

This really feels like a refurbished Detective Comics story and while some might say that isn't a bad thing, it really upheaves us from our current story line and offers us nothing for what we've been dealing with..... you know, except having Mr. Bloom in one panel of a story that takes place five years ago.  It's just a real letdown after having such a great cliffhanger last month and not dealing with any of the aspects to that story here.  

4/10
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50 comments:

  1. Everyone else gives a 10/10, Weird Science a 4. What a surprise...

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    1. I don't know who you are and I'm not sure what you are getting at. I am guessing you either think Eric gave the book a low score for shock value or to be different, but my guess (wait for it), is that he didn't like the issue. It seems like you have been reading our reviews and so would also realize that we do what we do for fun. We don't get paid, we aren't becoming famous...we like writing honest reviews for people. It doesn't benefit us at all to "shock" people or go against the norm. If we don't like an issue we give it a bad score. There is a chance we will talk about it on our podcast and I'll like it more than Eric, but neither of us lie or score for any underhanded reason.

      I'm sorry to rant at you, but it is starting to piss me off when an honest review (from that person at least) gets ripped only because it isn't Pinatas and RC Cola like "all the rest".

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    2. Jim,
      i think this guy just doesn't like to see anyone else stray from the herd of sheeple that swill up Snyder's drivel as if it truly deserved these 10/10 scores!
      Snyder must be a master at charming the simple minded into believing he is the greatest comic writer of our time!
      Personally I find it to be little more than half assed fan fiction!! NOT worth a 10/10 by any means!

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    3. he's got a right to his own opinion...I just wish he gave us one. Plus, you are 100 % right.

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    4. Jim Werner, it's not a review, it's clickbait when people see an absurd score on comicbookroundup and therefore he gets traffic for his site. Having your own opinion is fine. But a 4/10 should be unreadable, close to offensive. His review pretty much says "this is a decent but not original story" all the words imply a 6-7/10ish rating, lower than normal but a fair and honest review. Then he slaps on a 4 instead and waits for the clicks to flow in.

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    5. Jim if you think this is about him being honest and not simply him trying to be intentionally controversial for business reasons you really are naïve.

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    6. Do you realize that I'm the other guy who started the site with Eric, not just some observer? If Eric was doing that, I would know and call him out on it.

      Business reasons????? What business? We don't have adds on the site or podcast, in fact, we pay for the books we review, podcast host, ect...

      Finally, people come to our website because we are honest and don't cowtow to the creators...even if it means giving a book everone loves a bad review.

      Btw,

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    7. This review did not get any more or less views than normal

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    8. the drivel sucking sheeple have spoken!!!!

      "any one who doesn't suck up Scott Snyder's crappy writing like a dog drinking from the toilet is just trying to be controversial, and must really be naïve?"

      hey! i love some comics that may not be other people's cup of tea, but i'm not going to bad mouth just because they don't like what i like!
      i WILL bad mouth condescending jackasses that treat their opinions as if it were fact!!

      i enjoy this site because they aren't afraid of independent thinking!

      Jim, Eric, keep up the great work!

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  2. The way Mr. Bloom's origin plays out in here is by showing how he could come to exist. At this point in time in Gotham, rich people aren't helping, the cops aren't helping, gangsters aren't helping and not even the mob is helping.Thus, when an ordinary person needs to reach out for help; they can only find it from Bloom. The structures, good and bad, have failed the city and it's only when Batman realizes this that begins to provide another alternative for people. If you need help go to Batman; thus Mr. Bloom disappears, because there is no more need for him. Conversely, when Batman dies, the old structures that failed before are all that remain and thus the is a need for Bloom once more.

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    1. I can understand what you're saying but it seems like a real stretch since Batman's been around a year and he's never heard of someone getting dealt super powers before and apparently never looks into it again. It just doesn't feel like our current Batman story to me and what that has to do with Mr. Bloom giving ghosts from Jim Gordon's past super powers.

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    2. Well Eric,I think there's answer to both of your qualms. First of all, although Batman has been operating in Gotham for some time he is still not used to it (and this is mentioned in both narration and by the gangsters he fights.) In fact, if you check out the list of villains that he has faced before, there is no Joker among them so this story happens pre-Joker. Second of all, because this story is a specific point of time we don't know if Batman looks into Bloom. I think it's safe to assume that he does, but he fails to find him. Finally, the reason why this story fits in with Gordon's story is, because it sets up Bloom as Gordon's opposite. Just like Joker is the chaos to Batman's order; here we find out that Bloom is what happens when structures fail and as we all know Commissioner Gordon has always placed in his faith in those structures.

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    3. That is a very well thought out and articulate point and I dig everything you're giving me, but this issue just doesn't jive with me from where we left off last month. It's very jarring and will come off really odd in trade. Also, the structure of Gotham has been destroyed over and over again and Batman has been broken, killed/sent back in time, so just saying that this new character was just waiting around to be Jim's foil is just too convenient for me.

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    4. I agree 100% that it may come off as jarring given the current storyline. That said, in terms of structures failing, I don't mean physical failures; like Riddler blowing up buildings, but systematic failures. I.e. The police precinct in this issue still exists, it just isn't helping the kid. Also, More than, waiting around for Jim, Bloom has been waiting for Batman to be gone to take advantage of the failures of society. I mean Bruce has died before, but he always had a replacement that operated outside of the law (that I know about; who knows if JPV existed in the New 52.)

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    5. Yeah, I totally went the Jean Paul Valley route in my head, but since I can remember the city has failed everyone with corruption and violence and even though Gotham is a hotbed for vigilante action, it always becomes worse. I get the whole background to the story and what it's trying to say, it just doesn't feel like a part of this story line to me and the going around from this person to that person just became tedious.

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  3. Yeah, don't bend to society Eric, you guys are honest about what you read and give scores that are reflective of a reader, not a typical comic book reviewer like comic vine or newsarama where nothing is below 7/10 especially if it's an indie book or a popular book

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  4. Hey im with you guys i dont always agree with your reviews..(well i usually do not the point) i still read them anyways. I think if this issue didnt come in the thick of Jim being batman and us seeing mutant bloom id have liked it better, its a one shot thats just sort of out of place...but since i don't want to be a conformist its a 4.5 dammit

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    1. screw it Mike, me and you are going 3.5! (I still haven't read it though)

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    2. This issue was a 0.1

      I had to read it a out loud in a funny voice just to get through it all the way due to complete boredom!

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  5. Your review is spot on Shae! That makes you cool and smart like me, someone who actually gets it. But wait, what if I had loved this issue. Would you then be dumb and stupid, someone who can't even comprehend what is happening in the story. Weird Science keeps it real, sorry if it stings sometimes.

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  6. The fact is that this is a fill-in issue--and for a fill-in issue, it's really well-done. But if you were digging the Mr. Bloom story and wanted more, well you can't hurry Bloom, you just have to wait...

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  7. perish forbid a DC superhero comic took a moment out of all the numbing bombast to be topical, moving, and different.

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    1. Different??? I know that the Robutt-Batman (Jim Gordon) issues are technically part of Endgame but they don't feel like Endgame to me. Those issues feel very different, heck Batman is a freaking robutt. So if you are saying that Batman #44 is different from the last 3 issues, yes it is. But Batman #44 is not very different from the rest of the Endgame storyline and I was really enjoying the change to the Batman books.

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    2. I'm sorry if my view on the book is not to your liking, but to me it just doesn't jive with the main story that we're dealing with and even if it was being "topical", why interrupt a story arc just for that?

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    3. The writers wanted an excuse to bring back BATMAN and to show some of Blooms backstory. However I was digging the new Batman and where it was going. We all know that BATMAN will be back one day but they just couldn't wait could they. I guess all of the BATMAN homers that hate the new Batman are very happy with this issue. By the way, what was up with the peacock getting its head chopped off??

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    4. Hey Jarrod...It's awful enough for someone to be a troll on a site, but a fellow reviewer doing it...that is just a dick move to the nth degree. It's a shame because I like your site and your reviews and never would have pegged you as someone who would stoop so low. I mean, Eric and myself are douchebags, but even we have standards. I guess that's how you guys roll at DR.

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    5. I think we all know the real troll is the dude who gave this a 4 with nothing in his actual written review indicating it deserved that...

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    6. I'm pretty sure my paragraph before "Bits and Pieces" stated pretty well why I gave this issue a 4/10

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    7. You asked why interrupt a story. In some cases the artist needs a little extra time to draw all the books. These days it takes the average artist 4 to 6 weeks to do a whole issue to the standard of a book like Batman. This Batman team has often used this one off books to give that break time to Capullo necessary for him to come with the consistent and exceptional work he has been known for.
      This was done with Zero Year with issue 28. This issue was certainly same kind of thing, even with Scott Snyder selecting one of his major collaborators, jock, to do this issue.

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    8. You asked why interrupt a story. In some cases the artist needs a little extra time to draw all the books. These days it takes the average artist 4 to 6 weeks to do a whole issue to the standard of a book like Batman. This Batman team has often used this one off books to give that break time to Capullo necessary for him to come with the consistent and exceptional work he has been known for.
      This was done with Zero Year with issue 28. This issue was certainly same kind of thing, even with Scott Snyder selecting one of his major collaborators, jock, to do this issue.

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    9. You are absolutely correct. After all this talk, I was more upset that the issue wasn't the mr. Bloom origin story that the solicit suggested:

      "Its the origin of new villain Mr. Bloom! In a tale from Bruce Waynes past, Batman must investigate a vicious crime in the shadowy area of Gotham City known as the Narrows."

      That would have fit so well with the ongoing story.

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  8. 13 reviews on comicbookroundup.com right now for Batman #44. This guy gives it a 4 out of 10. The lowest of the remaining reviews is 8.5. Average of those 12 reviews is 9.675.

    You have a right to an opinion, but I have a right to call it stupid. It was a great issue.

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    1. Kyle, a thousand people can like it and that doesn't give any weight on what the next person in line thinks. It's cool that you liked it, but again, you come off as a petty person by calling Eric's opinion "stupid". I usually don't even comment on posts like yours since people like you are fueled by the negativity, but I just don't get what you are after.

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    2. "people like you are fueled by the negativity" you know the entire point of this review is to be overly negative to get a rise out of people and thus gain traffic right?

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    3. It's that or he is just a brutal reviewer. I'd like to give him the benefit of the doubt and at least assume this horrible review was intentionally horrible...

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    4. He's being honest. I share his thoughts on this issue by the way. Sorry if you disagree but you're allowed to have an opinion. And I'm not going to preach to you that we are right, like you seem to be doing. Bottom line is that this issue didn't move us at all. I'm guessing that you loved this issue.

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  9. I think what you're all trying to say is DRAW FASTER, GREG CAPULLO!!! :whip crack:

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  10. Honestly people were reacting as if Scott Snyder will be unable to write batman anymore just because Eric , One reviewer in a see of 100 reviewers showing him with 8.5 and above,didn't feel that it was a very good issue am gave him a low score

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  11. Wow this is still ongoing ah well look i shopped around a few websites before i found these guys who i like how they review honest/funny its fine to disagree but people are getting way out of hand if you really think Eric did that bad of a job and should be burned in the 9th circle of hell for it..then probably should just pop over to another site, remember kids its okey to disagree and discuss its not okey to flip out and have a tantrum

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    1. Well said Mike and thanks. Maybe we can all get past this...Eric is very sensitive and fragile...a 6'5" 32 year old boy who gets nervous every time he sees a comment pop up on the site. This really did put him in a mini funk all week.

      Though, we are going to talk a bit about it on the podcast this week because we can't ever let a dead dog lie.

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    2. Hey now; Eric might give all of us nightmares; but he also gives us dreams.

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  12. giving this issue a score of 4 was very generous!!!

    i'd say it wasn't worth more that a 1 (due to it being just a big load of patronizing happy horse crap!)

    and this issue really made Batman look like an idiot once again running around blind and clueless, just like he was in Batman Eternal.

    mark it zero Dude! next round.

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  13. This is the greatest comment section ever. EVER!!!

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    1. Oh no!..... We've moved past commenting on this issue. Let's leave Batman #44 in the past where it belongs.

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