Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Detective Comics #989 Review


Electric Bills

Writer: James Robinson
Artist: Stephen Segovia, Ivan Plascencia, and Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 26, 2018


I really liked the first issue of James Robinson's run on Detective.  It felt different and while some thought a little too much so when it came to Jim Gordon and Batman's interaction, I had no problems with it at all.  In fact, I thought Robinson did the best job of showing two characters coming out of the recent problems that both have faced than any other book so far.  We are past that now and move into this issue where I am looking forward to some more detective work and unraveling the mystery that Batman has uncovered.  Is it any good?  Let's find out...



We start in the Batcave with Batman and Alfred going over some evidence.  Nice!  I do love the amount of detective work Robinson has brought with him.  I'm sure some will have issues with the interaction here, but while I don't, I also think that the scene itself felt a little forced to get us on our way and nail down the "two-fer" nature of this story.

We then head off to the Firefly(s) hideout and get an extended scene that explains where Ted Carson's head is at.  I get that Robinson is trying to give us a more fleshed out version of a kind of joke villain here, but it goes on a bit too long and the mention of Kite Man really seems to play his hand a bit.  The idea of an army of Fireflies sounds pretty cool though.

We head off for a little more Gordon/Batman interaction and it continues what we got from the last issue so whether you like it or not may depend on how you felt two weeks ago.  Robinson focuses a bit more on Gordon than others have since Rebirth and if you look at it from his angle, I think you may like it more.  Just in this book, we are only months since Gotham declared "hunting season" on Bats so seeing Gordon remind Batman of certain things does not feel off to me.  The Billy Joel reference was way off, though!

After they talk evidence, Batman heads off to pay Ted and Bridgit and visit.  There is a cool enough fight where we see Batman has come better prepared, but it ends quickly and with a very abrupt transition to the next scene which continues the dual nature of this story and finally gets us where I've been waiting for us to go.

Yep, the cliffhanger shows us the real villain here and while just the reveal makes some of what we've already got make more sense, it continues the feeling that things might be a bit forced.  Also, in a story pushed as Batman versus this villain (I don't want to spoil too much), it took longer to get to him than I imagined it would.

I didn't like this issue as much as the last one.  We still get stuff that I liked...detective work, some good fights, and interactions, but the pacing was off a bit and it made a large portion of the issue feel padded out.  I am looking forward to the next issue after the cliffhanger but just wasn't that into what we were getting in the here and now.

I did continue to like the art a whole lot.  Stephen Segovia does a great job making this book look great and the color work by Ivan Plascencia was really good, especially in the Firefly scenes.

Bits and Pieces:

This issue was a bit of a let down for me after enjoying the last issue so much, but there are still things to like here.  Batman continues to do actual detective work and interact with some close allies and it all looks great.  However, the story felt a bit padded out to keep the big reveal for the cliffhanger.  I'm still into James Robinson's story, just not as much as I was going in.

6.9/10

1 comment:

Atom from Longbox Junk said...

I really like that Batman is being a detective in "Detective Comics", and as far as I'm concerned, more interaction with Gordon is definitely a good thing, since the Big G is practically ignored over in Batman. Now that the Bat-Team has self-destructed, this title is stepping up to be the superior Batman book in a big way!

One other thing I'm not sure if anyone has mentioned or noticed, but I am LOVING the new matte paper on DC books! It really makes the art look fantastic.