Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Detective Comics #971 Review


Written by: James Tynion IV
Art by: Miguel Mendonca, Diana Eger, Jason Wright, and Sal Cipriano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: December 27, 2017

I haven't been the biggest Detective Comics fan lately and it's mainly James Tynion's insistence on using villains from earlier in the run like the Victim Syndicate.  I didn't like them then and I am pretty sure there is nothing that's going to change my mind now.  They just aren't interesting and having them return just makes it feel like this book is stuck in neutral.  I wish I could say that I could at least hang my hat on the return of Tim Drake, but again...not interesting.  Of course, there is a chance that this issue turns everything around for me.  Well, does it?  Let's find out...

The issue starts with a young reporter entering Arkham Asylum to interview the Victim Syndicate and it's less about finding out their demands than reminding us all of the members of the group.  After all this time, I still can't remember all of their names and I'm left wondering if it's because I'm a dummy or these villains are just not that good.  I'm guessing it's a little from column A  and a little from column B.

Back at the Belfry, we are reminded of what the First Victim demanded from Batman and Spoiler lets Batman and Tim know what is really going on.  Believe me, knowing might be half the battle, but it's still boring as hell.

We continue with Tim's plan to get Colony's assistance exposed, but that has to be put on hold so the team can save Clayface.  Well, actually, after a call from the Commissioner, it looks like Batman is going to have to do it alone.  Before Batman gets to Arkham, however, we take a peek at Clayface and that's when it's revealed just what's at stake here.  If you are a fan of Clayface the hero, this bit sets up some pretty good tension going forward.

When Batman arrives at Arkham (alone), Gordon is there seemingly quoting Mr. Glass (“It’s because of the kids") before Bats heads inside and sets up what should be the biggest, most awesome fight of all-time!  Unfortunately, after seeing the rest of the Team trying to figure out the what's what with the protesters, we head back to Arkham...and the fight is over.  WHAT???????  WHY??????????

The issue ends by showing that fighting wasn't part of the Victim Syndicate's least not fighting them.  I won't ruin the cliffhanger, but if you've been paying a little bit of attention, you will be able to figure out who Batman has to square up against.

Okay, the issue ends with a badass looking cliffhanger and while it breaks my heart where it all seems to be going, it's been set up since...well, almost since Rebirth started.  I'm glad I liked the ending because everything up until it was boring the hell out of me.  I still hate the Victim Syndicate and Tynion doesn't seem to be able to figure out anything for the Detective Squad to do, but at least we got a good dose of Batman this week.  I really liked Miguel Mendonca's art, but that and the cliffhanger still can't convince me this is a book I'd recommend.  Maybe next issue.

Bits and Pieces:

Detective Comics continues and this issue gets to a cliffhanger that I've dreaded for a while now and that was easily the highlight.  This book feels like it's running in place and while James Tynion continues to push the Victim Syndicate, he's not making them interesting enough for me to care.  Miguel Mendonca's art was really good, but pretty art doesn't always make a good issue.



  1. Whats up jim!! Just caught up to reading detective comics and i gotta say, my heart's gonna break if clayface's gonna be bad again. After everything. I feel kinda sad though, but i guess its gonna happen eventually. I guess its inevitable. I just dont like tynion's victim syndicate, theyre boring, even before. I hope cassandra makes it in time to talk some sense to him. On to a different note, somehow i have mixed feelings of spoiler going back in the team. I mean im happy i get to see her again but, i feel that everything's different now. Im not as happy as i was all the way back in rebirth than now, with her rejoining just because tim's back. Seems kinda mushy. Anyway, rock on weirdscience dudes!!

    1. Poor Clayface! I hope that Cass does talk some sense into him. The Victim Syndicate is the worst and I feel the same way you do about Spoiler!