Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Gotham Academy Second Semester #9 Review and **SPOILERS**

Partnering With Two-Face

Story: Brenden Fletcher, Becky Cloonan & Karl Kerschl 
Script: Brenden Fletcher 
Pencils: Adam Archer & MSASSYK 
Inks: Sandra Hope & MSASSYK 
Colors: MSASSYK 
Breakdowns: Rob Haynes 
Letters: Steve Wands 
Cover: Karl Kerschl 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: May 10, 2017


This will be our last arc together
Words will only make us cry
This will be our last arc together
There’s no better wayyyyyyy
We can say goodbye

Explain It!

Here we are folks, the last days of school at Gotham Academy, and Olive Silverlock is going out in a blaze of glory. Thank you! Thank you! That’s my review, folks! Have a great night!

No, seriously, Olive is all possessed by the spirit of Amity Arkham, getting revenge on the descendants of the families that burned her to death almost four hundred years ago. First stop: Two-Face’s house, or rather where he used to live back when he was Harvey Dent, District Attorney. It was placed in a trust, a helpful firefighter explains to Olive, so he could assume the role of a Gotham City supervillain. Olive thanks her kindly by burning the shit out of her hands and takes off on a bus. The next day at the Academy, all of Olive’s friends piss and moan about Olive having fled to Gotham City to burn it down, and after Kyle leaves the Detective Club, they start getting down to ghost hunting. The odd thing about Kyle leaving the club is that he’s Maps’ brother, and says their parents are outside waiting to take him home. So what’s Maps going to do now that the semester’s over? Walk home?
That night, Maps, Pomeline and Colton go back to that barrow that held the Book of Gotham and the freaky altar to search for clues to…I dunno, bust Amity Arkham and put her in a ghost trap? Really, I’m not sure what the end game is here. Seems the best way to help Olive directly is to go find her and subdue her until something can be figured out. It’s already been a day, for crying out loud, who knows what damage Olive could have caused in that time? Why, she’s over at Two-Face’s old crib, luring him in with her ghostly creepiness and threatening to burn the other half of his face off! Meanwhile these dopes are stumbling around some bug-infested catacombs looking for Scooby Snacks or whatever. The Terrible Trio from Silver Age Batman walks through the scene and it all turns out to be moot because the kids scamper out of their dank well and decide to go to Ms. MacPherson’s office to talk some more. Would you little jerks do something useful already???
Back in Gotham City, Olive sees Two-Face’s condition, and questions the efficacy of burning someone that is already half burn victim. Two-Face takes this opportunity to charm her and explain that hey, he happens to want the same thing she does, except for wildly different reasons. I mean, I suppose revenge is a component of Two-Face’s desire to destroy Gotham City’s first families, but he more wants to control everything, after Olive’s burned much of it to cinders of course. He puts her on the trail of the Cobblepots, a family Amity Arkham remembers well—and now will cook into Penguin cutlets! Man, I really should have cut out after that “blaze of glory” comment.
The only way I can really deal with this comic book is that I know it is ending after this arc. Otherwise, I would be annoyed to the max. I hate the way the characters are behaving, I don’t feel compelled by Amity’s motivation and I don’t understand Olive’s power set. She can make enough heat to be felt through a firefighter’s gloves, and burn down a house, but you can also stand right next to the flames she creates like they’re lovely credenzas and bookshelves. And what was she doing the whole day between when Kyle left the Detective Club and the rest of them examined the spooky altar that night? This comic book is junk, saved only by some exemplary artwork by a very talented team, that is simply not worth the effort.

Bits and Pieces:

The explosive last arc of Gotham Academy Second Semester begins with a weak "baf!," as some familiar characters are reintroduced to virtually no effect, and most of the cast talks a lot. I hope this flickering flame will eventually burn bright and hot--and briefly.


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