Saturday, November 2, 2013

Nightwing Annual #1 Review

Written by: Kyle Higgins
Art by: Jason Masters with Daniel Sampere and Vicente Cifuentes
Cover Price:  $4.99
Release Date: October 30, 2013

Reunited Cause It Feels So Good

Nightwing Annual #1 is the story of Dick Grayson and Barbara Gordon's relationship set against a murder mystery involving Firefly.  Yes, there are tie-ins with Batgirl: Wanted and Nightwing's adventures in Chicago, but these boil down to Barbara not wearing her usual costume and avoiding the GCPD and Dick mentioning Tony Zucco.  Things have always been complicated with Dick and Barbara and this annual does a good job of establishing their past relationship in the New 52 and giving a slight glimmer of hope for those readers wanting a future for the two.

Kyle Higgins can really write Nightwing and here he shows he has a firm grasp on Batgirl as well.  The interaction between the two is so good that you immediately sense the history between the two.  Everything flows so naturally that you not only wish for the two to be a couple, but also for DC to give us a team up book.  For now, neither seem to be in the cards but this issue gives us a little bit of hope.

Though I really enjoyed this annual, not all is peaches and herb.  The time frame the book takes place in is a bit sketchy.  It appears to happen in the current Batgirl and Nightwing continuity, but why and what is Nightwing packing up?  According to the last Nightwing issue, he is going to be sleeping on the couch for the near future, but yet he is packing a truck full of stuff to take back to Chicago.

Even worse is the introduction of Firefly into the New 52.  What a wasted opportunity.  How great would it be to have Firefly show up in Chicago to fight Nightwing in a Great Chicago Fire arc?  Instead we get a villain with a cliche story that is defeated all too easily.  Still, I like his look and hopefully he will be used to better effect later.

Speaking of looks, I do like the look of the book.  There are usually issues when there are three artists involved in one issue, but beside a little transition between them, I like it well enough.  Jason Masters is the main artist and his pages really shine.

Nightwing Annual #1 is a good issue for most and a really good one for Dick and Babs fans.  The introduction of Firefly was lackluster, but the book does a good job of establishing the two hero's complicated past in the New 52.  Though it's a stretch to think they will ever have a fairy tale ending, seeing them together for an issue brought a smile to my face.  I agree with Batgirl, this one is a...


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