Written by: James Tynion IV
Art by: Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Adriano Lucas, and Marilyn Patrizio
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: June 22, 2016
Detective Comics was one of my biggest surprises of Rebirth so far. I knew it was going to be fun, but the whole team concept really clicked with me, plus...it was so damn fun. The Rebirth #1 left me wanting more of just about everything and was the first book that made me glad about the twice a month shipping schedule. So, did the first proper issue of James Tynion's run continue impressing me with it's fun team concept and did someone give Clayface a zipline? The answer is both yes an no. Let me explain...
The issue opens up with a crazy scene that really would have played off better if this wasn't a comic book and the reader didn't know better. Still, an army of Jokers attacking a team of young heroes (and Clayface) was really cool. It also shows some cracks in the armor and that the team is not fully functioning as a team just yet. I'm not talking about what happens in the "Mud Room", but the bickering that happens after.
I want to stop and mention how cool it is that Tim Drake used Clayface's "special abilities" to devise their training room, but also how awesome it was to see Clayface inside it all as his old self. As an added bonus, Tynion even set me straight about why Clayface doesn't go around as Basil Karlo anymore and gives him a bit of a solution.
Back to the team, Batwoman completely undresses each and every one of them to show them how NOT ready they are to head out for some crime fighting. They all disagree, but I like that it all makes sense and isn't too over the top. We also get to see their base, "The Belfry" and it is cool as hell!
Batwoman continues by telling Tim Drake that if has a problem with how things are going, he should take it up with Batman. He does just that and while he complains, Batman takes him to visit the bedside of Jean-Paul Valley. Dr. Leslie Tompkins is helping Azrael (in-between throwing insults at Batman) and against her wishes, Azrael wakes up and gives the villains of the story a name...Colony.
Afterwards, Red Robin and Batman have a rooftop chat and I hope that everyone likes it as much as I did. Tim asks Batman a simple question,,,"Why did you bring me into this?" The answer lays to rest a lot of what has been bothering me about the Red Robin character since the beginning of the New 52. While he didn't consider himself a Robin, Batman always did and if you ever wanted to see Batman open up to the kid who discovered his secret identity, read this issue.
If you wanted to see Tim get close to Stephanie Brown, then you really should read this issue! Tynion uses the two as a sounding board for each other and we learn more about "The Letter" Tim got in the Rebirth #1. It's an Ivy League Genius Grant and Tim is struggling on if he should even tell Batman about it. Please!!! Batman knows everything, he has to know about this, right???
The issue continues with Kate going to see her Father and the conversation turns towards the Kanes and the Waynes and then Batman versus Batwoman. While it seems that Rebirth has given everyone insight into Batman's secret identity and I am not a fan of the Colonel at this point, I like that everyone has an ear to bend when they need it and that leads to a more personal character development than just training sessions with the team.
The issue ends with Batman going out for a nighttime drive and after Alfred hints at yet another cool character moment, Batman can stop looking for the bad guys because it looks like they already found him!
James Tynion does a great job of setting up the characters and their relationships with each other this issue. Sure, I want to see more training and ass kicking, but as my past reading of comics has taught me, if you care about the characters, everything else falls into place. I care about these characters.
I also care about Eddy Barrows art. He may not get a ton of over the top action to deal with (except the first couple of pages which were awesome), but his character models are top notch. I really like the larger than life way that he draws all the characters.
Bits and Pieces:
Detective Comics continues being one of my favorite Rebirth books. While I want to see a lot more training with the team, I appreciate the character work James Tynion is giving us with nearly all of the team. The story and art compliment each other well and the issue ended with a huge step towards figuring out who the bad guys are...or just beating the crap out of them. Either way, I'll be back in two weeks to find out.