Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Detective Comics #963 Review

Anarchy in the Gotham

Written by: James Tynion IV and Chris Sabela
Art by: Carmen Carnero, Ulises Arreola, Kelly Fitzpatrick and Sal Cipriano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: August 23, 2017

Last issue of Detective ended with Batman finding out that Tim Drake is indeed alive.  Instead of looking into that more, however, we get a Chris Sabela penned issue (with Story input from James Tynion) that features Stephanie Brown.  That's cool.  I love Stephanie...just not in this book, especially recently.  So, does this issue change my mind and get me back to loving gal in purple?  Let's find out...

The issue starts off with a Steph and Tim Drake flashback and I am guessing it's supposed to tug at the heartstrings after last issue's cliffhanger, but it falls a bit flat.  One of the problems is the art (is that Tim?), but the other is it doesn't bring anything new to the table.  I can forgive a bit of recap in my books, but this isn't even's just a boring scene.

In the present, we see Spoiler heading into Monster Town to meet up with Anarchy and while I was hoping never to be reminded of "Night of the Monster Men" again, at least we are getting something new.  The problem is, it's not good.

After a too long scene with Argus guards, Steph meets up with Anarchy and while she begs him to see his face, she uses his name enough to get the point that Sabela desperately wants the reader to know this is Lonnie Machin.  Before Lonnie can show his face (and Steph conveniently covers hers), an Argus attack squad shows up and they mean business.

Meanwhile, Clayface is checking out the nearby sewers for Monsters and I can't be the only one to wonder why this is suddenly going on.  It leads to Basil going back to Dr. October's lab and a bit of a continuation of her helping him out with his...Clayface problem.  Either she is going to cure him of his affliction or Clayface will lose his mind and revert back to bad guy Basil...I think we can all guess which it will be.

Back with Steph and Lonnie, the fight with the goons ends, Anarchy tags some rubble and shows off his sexy face.  I can only guess this is the beginning of a relationship that will cause issues when Tim returns, but in the meantime, she goes off with Lonnie...while Batman looks on.

We get a little recap of the "tunnels were three feet too small" story before the issue ends with Anarchy spinning a yarn about chicken pox parties and showing Steph that anarchy equals camping out...or in.

After the action and big reveal of the Intelligence arc, I can understand slowing things down a bit...but this is just not good.  It's boring, often times confusing and took away my excitement for this book.  This book has been up and down in it's Rebirth run and this is one of those down moments.

I didn't like Carmen Carnero's art when the book started, but by the end, it was pretty good.  It's not detailed enough for me to gush over it, but it didn't take anything away from the story in it's own right and the character models were good.

Bits and Pieces:

Chris Sabella jumps on the book for a Spoiler/Anarchy story that didn't impress.  Not enough happened to get excited about and the art, while decent, wasn't enough to pick up the slack.  I love Spoiler...just not in this book anymore.



  1. Stephane Brown is flat out the most boring character in this book, yet after every arc, we check in on her for some unknown reason.

  2. I've always found Spoiler to be a pretty marginal character, but DC won't give up on her for some reason. She was a better story catalyst when she was dead.

  3. Why can't Tynion just let this Spoiler crap go.