Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Batman #73 Review and *SPOILERS*

On The Range

Written By: Tom King
Art By: Mikel Janin, Jordie Bellaire
Letters By: Clayton Cowles
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 19, 2019

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Needless to say, I was not too pleased with the latest issue of Batman. Have a “catch-up” issue in the middle of a story that we’ve all been reading for 70+ issues is absolutely horrible. Not to mention the fact that I haven’t been too pleased with this current story arc to begin with. This book needs to do some serious leg work in order to get me back on board with it. Unfortunately, that isn’t exactly Tom King’s style. However, it is always better to remain positive when it comes to these things. That way, an issue can come out and surprise you and reinvigorate your enjoyment of the series as a whole. At least, that’s what I’m hoping happens with this new issue but we won’t really know for sure until we jump in and see what this week’s Batman has in store for us.
I’m pleased to report that this issue has things that we can actually talk about and summarize this time. We start with Bruce who is knocked out cold. He is being tied to a horse by someone who then mounts the horse and begins riding into the desert. It is none other than Thomas Wayne and his outfit looks like a combination of the Flashpoint Bat-suit with the Apocalypse Batman suit from the film Justice League. As they begin to ride off, there is a coffin being dragged behind them. They eventually stop for camp and when Thomas awakes he sees that they are not alone anymore. Ninjas who claim to be the “Death of the Desert” have found them and even help Thomas up. It doesn’t take long for a fight to commence though as Thomas Wayne is able to dispatch the five assassins rather quickly. All the while, Thomas sings “Home on the Range” to himself.

Thomas continues his song as he rides further into the desert and eventually makes camp once again. This night though, Bruce wakes up and immediately screams for Bane. Thomas tries to calm him down but Bruce tries to fight back. However, in his weakened state Thomas is able to handle Bruce very easily. He tells Bruce that he lost but that it is okay. It is time to rebuild himself and show everyone how strong he really is. The two embrace. In the morning, Thomas explains to Bruce that he repaired his spine as much as he could but Bruce should still be the one on the horse to avoid unneeded stress. Bruce asks where they are and Thomas tells him that they are near Khadym. Bruce doesn’t recognize the name but Thomas says he will once he regains his mental faculties. When Bruce asks about the coffin, Thomas assures him that he will figure that out in the future as well.

The two travel and eventually make camp again for the night. Bruce takes this time to confront his father. He helped Bane, hurt Alfred, and did nothing as Bane beat Bruce down. Instead of giving answers, Thomas asks Bruce if he wants to hit him. Bruce says that he does which brings a smile to Thomas’ face. The next morning, Bruce wakes to his father singing “Home on the Range” and he looks around to see more defeated assassins. Bruce questions why he didn’t hear them as the two continue their journey. During this time Bruce realizes that they are going to Khadym because Ra’s keeps the Nain Pit there. Bruce then realizes that the coffin they are dragging is his mother’s. Thomas tells him that they’ve earned some rest and a right to go home, but when they do, they’re returning as a family. Thomas gives Bruce his cowl and says that it’s time to release Bruce of his pain once and for all. This is where the issue leaves us.

I’m not really sure how to feel about this issue. We get some kind of clarity on Thomas Wayne’s motives but they just invite more questions. If this was what he was after, why didn’t he just go to Bruce instead of Bane? You could argue that Bruce wouldn’t have let him but in this issue, we see that Thomas is better than Bruce, at least during this issue, so he could have won the fight without Bane. I’m very confused. I also have no idea why Thomas is singing “Home on the Range”. I get that it’s a song about home and being at peace but there must certainly be other songs like that. A song about simple living doesn’t seem to fit the richest man in the world. I’m glad we are finally getting more from this book but there are still so many storylines that we have dropped in order to get here. I’m willing to give this book a chance and see where this will go but it still has me very wary of the whole thing.

Bits and Pieces:

We actually get story progression in this issue which is a welcome change to the Batman book. That being said, a lot of it makes you scratch your head and wonder where King is going with this whole thing. I’m willing to give it the benefit of the doubt for now because I am interested in seeing where this book goes from here but its got a short leash.



  1. Thank God DC is cutting King's run short. I feel like I've been given some time off my sentence for good behavior. This issue literally makes zero sense. At this point, I don't even know why I'm still subscribing to Batman. It's gone from fan fiction (Poison Ivy takes over the world!) to some sort of a fever dream.

    1. I am having my own fever dream, that's for sure!

  2. Okay Batman's big thing was always that he was a hero without powers. Just a man and his vow. So how is it he once again has his back broken and yet he is perfectly fine? Breaks do not heal that fast. I know his dad is a doctor but still spinal injuries do not heal over night no matter who fixes them. Come on !!! If you going to have him be just a non powered human then put a little reality into his healing. At least the first time around he was in a wheel chair for a while and was magically healed. I liked the ending. But really daddy Bat's helped break him. There should have been more anger. Would have like more dialogue between the Bat's and less singing.

    1. that back is a tricky thing, right??!! Heals that fast and then Thomas Wayne just straps him across a horse and heads to the desert! BTW, Ban also broke it back in I Am Suicide and that was healed by punching a wall and resetting it!!!