Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Nightwing #41 Review

Smells Like High Tide

Written by: Sam Humphries
Art by: Bernard Chang, Jamal Campbell, Marcelo Maiolo and Carlos M. Mangual
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 21, 2018

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I just can't get into this story without fully understanding the Judge and going into this issue, I don't!  I know his origin since we saw it a couple issues back, but being transformed by the sea???  His powers may be hypnotism or mind control or something else???  He can see the corruption in people's souls???  And to make it worse, what the hell are those casino chips really doing???  I don't Know!!!!  Do we finally find out something?  Let's see...
We open the issue with Guppy and for once, we get a guy who really got what he wanted...respect.  Yea, he kind of misses his father, King Sturgeon, and he is in jail for his murder, but all the other pieces of shit behind bars thinks he's the tops!

We go back 24 hours to get back to last issue's cliffhanger and if you listen to our podcast, Eric called it.  The whole blow up the casino and kill Nightwing deal is ruined because of Dick's bike.  Yep, the motorcycle in the elevator trick comes through again as Dick grabs the casino owner (a piece of shit himself!), drives right out of the whatever and however high a room he's in and grabs ahold of a crane with his Escrimas (with a convenient rope connecting them), holds onto his bike with his supple thighs with the guy balancing on it as well.  Okay, I've recently seen Catwoman take out three Speedsters but this takes the cake.  Did Sam Humphries forget that days earlier Dick got shot in the shoulder?!?!?

After interrupting a date (which kind of seemed like it was supposed to be funny, but didn't come off right), Nightwing stops the Judge in his tracks which leads to a showdown.  I am not really counting, but this seems like the 73rd time this has happened.

After promising to stop killing and go back to the Sea, Svoboda jumps back into the book and shoots the Judge.  Yep, she's still good, I just wish this story was.  It's just a flesh wound and the Judge still yammers on about the Sea and offers Dick peace and happiness if he would just allow him to go back to whatever the hell he does under the waves.

Of course, Dick is not going to let the Judge just swim away again and catches him, yells "You're Washed Up!" (Seriously!) and then it seems like they locked him up in prison "probably forever".  The issue ends seeing everyone affected by the Judge (well, at least those still alive) begin the rest of their lives, the Justice Tree saved (by Wayne money of course!!!!) and Dick putting Kid Delicious and Helen through that patented Grayson Cross-Fit workout we've all heard so much about.  Wait a sec, with the Casinos back in action, why does Helen need Dick's help anymore?  Nobody will be trying out for the hockey team now, right?!?  Complete.  Utter.  Nonsense!

Well, it's over and we never found out what the Judge's real powers were and with the wonky way they were thrown around in this story, I don't think we ever will.  I guess that and the talk of transformation and the sea and the corruption in man was supposed to be left behind with the happy ending where everything worked out in the end.  Like the casinos now fully back in business even though it wasn't the Judge who was the problem that got them shut down, but the corruption, murder, and nonsense that was going on before this whole story started.  That's just one of the many forced bits in this story that are waved off so we can go plant trees around the world and possibly sing songs together.

Bernard Chang and Jamal Campbell's art is so good in this issue that it makes me mad it was wasted so much.  Sometimes the art can do some of the heavy lifting, but this would be like having to hold up a motorcycle with your legs while hanging from a crane...oh wait...crap!

Bits and Pieces:

This was such a forced ending to the Judge and his time in Bludhaven, but why would you expect any different.  Sam Humphries never even told us what the Judge's real powers were and the whole "transformed by the Sea" nonsense didn't get me on board before and so how could it here.  The art was great as usual, but this whole arc has been a complete waste of time and money and I'm glad we can finally move on.


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