Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Detective Comics #956 Review

This is the End?

Written by: James Tynion IV
Art by: Marcio Takara, Marcello Maiolo and Sal Cipriano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: May 10, 2017

Well, this is the final issue of the League of Shadows and while I can't say it was horrible, I also can't say I loved every bit of it either.  I do love Cassandra Cain and am glad she's gotten some attention here, even if it lead to a final fight between her and her mother.  What am I talking about?  I love that BECAUSE it lead to a final fight between her and her mother, Lady Shiva!  Of course, the whole Detective Squad is with her after last issue's cliffhanger and while I don't think we will find out how they all go dressed, I do expect some good, old fashioned ass kicking.  So, does the League of Shadows arc end on a high note?  Let's find out...

The issue opens where we left off last issue...under Gotham City with the Detective Squad facing off against Lady Shiva.  They do team up against her, but for some reason, it never feels like it.  The dialogue is pretty focused on Shiva, Cass and Batman with Clayface, Kate, Luke and Azrael leaving the battle quickly and conveniently.

I did like the interaction between Cassandra and Shiva enough, but it really is just a continuation of what we've seen throughout this whole arc.  I wish I could say that the Batman/Shiva stuff was better, but Tynion seems to have lost his grip on Bat dialogue. "You're making false equivalencies"???  

While this is going on, we look into what Jacob and Ulysses are up to and as they let their nano-swarm loose, I could only think, "When will Jacob see Kate and call it off?"  Seriously, this whole plot line was so forced that it came off as a laughable.

Actually, the whole issue was just a forced conclusion to a lackluster arc.  Cassandra gets to stand up to her Mother and prove she is a hero, Jacob sees Kate and forces Ulysses to stop the nano-swarm (surprise) and Ra's shows up to...Okay, if I told you what he does, it would spoil everything.  Just trust me when I say that what he does ends it all in a most unsatisfying way.  After all is said and done, not much happened to change the overall situation and Batman being okay with it is just another misstep by Tynion.

Okay, I thought that this whole League of Shadows story went on to long, but that doesn't mean that Tynion should end it by just ending it.  Really, after the characters get to say their two cents, it just ends.  I felt ripped off or at least duped that I invested the time into a story that was all setup with little to no payoff.  

I haven't liked Marcio Takara's art in this entire arc and while this issue didn't make me an instant fan, it wasn't the biggest problem.  Still, the big battle between Shiva and Cassandra was more confusing than it needed to be and some big moments fell flat in part because of the muddy art. 

Bits and Pieces:

After such a long setup, this issue was just disappointing.  The story and art were both sub par and instead of getting me excited, just had me wishing I hadn't invested the time I did with the other five issues.  If you have been reading, I'm sure you'll finish the arc, but I may have to reevaluate if I want to continue on from here.



  1. Wow is that a legit 5 or a f-u 5? 😂

  2. With apologies to Monty Python...

    Dancing Mike: Have you in fact got a story here at all?
    James Tynion IV: Yessir.
    Dancing Mike: Really?
    James Tynion IV: No. Not really, sir.
    Dancing Mike: You haven't.
    James Tynion IV: No sir. Not a scrap. I was deliberately wasting your time, sir.
    Dancing Mike: Well I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to shoot you.
    James Tynion IV: Right-o, sir.
    (Dancing Mike takes out a gun and shoots James Tynion IV)
    Dancing Mike: What a *senseless* waste of human life.

  3. It's alll about the magic Jim, Batman magic.