Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Batman #76 Review and *SPOILERS*

Strictly Off Limits

Written By: Tom King
Art By: Tony S. Daniel, Sandu Florea, Norm Rapmund Tomeu Morey
Letters By: Clayton Cowles
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: August 7, 2019

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

We are back with Batman and we got what was, in my opinion, a turning point for this series in the previous issue. This series continues to struggle with a lot of things however, the previous issue was exactly what I wanted from a storyline like this. It was the perfect beginning to the arc. That being said, if you don’t stick the landing, all the lead up was for nothing. This book needs some new life to be breathed into it. This book has divided fans a lot but if this arc is amazing, all of this will have been worth it. That is a big “if” though. I’m also hoping that the few inconsistencies that we have seen in the previous issue are resolved before we get too deep into this storyline. Let’s stop talking about the book and instead, let’s just jump right into it.

We start off with a quick scene in which we see Catwoman in Paris before we cut to Gotham. Captain Atom is there facing off with Gotham Girl. He monologues a little bit to reveal to the audience what is currently going on with Gotham City in the storyline. Gotham Girl demands that he leaves and a fight begins quickly with Gotham Girl getting the upper hand. We cut to a couple of Batman’s villains who seem to be running from someone. We see the Tweedledum twins, Scarecrow, and Kite Man running away. One of the twins gets shot before he can get away and the other gets a bullet in the arm. It is then revealed that the one chasing them is Thomas Wayne and he is wielding a large firearm. We cut to the battle between Gotham Girl and Captain Atom and it is all still in Gotham Girl’s favor. As the villains try to escape, Kite Man reveals that there is too much weight for his getaway. Scarecrow uses his fear toxin to make the Tweedledum twin to let go, allowing the two of them to escape. Having defeated Captain Atom, Gotham Girl tries to bring him in before being told to eject him from the city limits, which she does.

We cut to Catwoman who sneaks back into her hideout and we see Bruce Wayne, bandaged up and unconscious on the couch. Back in Gotham, Scarecrow and Kite Man discuss their options. Kite Man seems rather distressed. Obviously, Scarecrow gets excited by this. We cut to the hospital where we see Captain Atom is recovering from his battle. He reports what happened to Damien Wayne. He tells him that not only was he beaten, but he was arrested for trying to intervene in Gotham. We cut to Selina Kyle who reveals a painting that she has just stolen. She waxes poetic about the painting for a little while before we cut back to Kite Man’s lair. He starts to think of a plan before the window is broken into and a batarang is planted in his chest. Thomas Wayne breaks through and faces off with Scarecrow.

We then cut to Damien Wayne on a roof talking with Tim Drake. They talk and argue about what they should do about the situation in Gotham. Obviously Damien wants to go in and take out their enemies but Tim Drake reminds him that if any member of the Bat Family is caught in Gotham, Bane will kill Alfred. We cut back to Selina who talks with Bruce a little before we realize that Bruce is in some sort of coma and Selina has been taking care of him and stealing art in order to pay for his treatment. Finally, we cut back to Thomas Wayne and Gotham Girl who are watching over the city at night and all is quiet now that they have taken over. This is where the issue leaves us.

So… I don’t want to say that this issue is bad because I didn’t dislike any part of it. Each scene gave us new information about where our characters are at during this time (even though there are some burning questions that STILL AREN’T BEING ANSWERED). The three scenes are good enough but none of them pull the story forward. These are all things that had basically been set up in the previous issue and this issue just expanded upon them. It feels super lazy and extremely redundant. I don’t know if it is because of the positive attitude that I had going into this issue but I didn’t dislike it. However, even I have to admit that nothing about this issue is consequential. If my suspicions are correct, we could skip this issue entirely and still have a great understanding of where the story is during the next issue. There is never something you want in a comic. Overall, this wasn’t bad and the are was AMAZING but I don’t think there’s much substance to this issue.

Bits and Pieces

Tom King gives us a glorified filler issue where we reinforce the ideas that the reader already knew about. If you read the issue before this, you have a pretty solid idea of everything that is happening in this issue. It’s redundant and lazy. However, the scenes that we do get aren’t bad by any means. They are simply inconsequential at the current moment. Perhaps the future will show that these scenes mattered, but we don’t give an issue credit for what MIGHT happen.



  1. Your review tiptoes nicely around just how bad this issue actually is, but I give you credit for being honest enough to give it a 5.5 score. There are major, gaping plot holes in Batman. There have been since the beginning, but as King's run winds down they are noticeably widening to the point that reading the "story" has become an exercise in trying to guess what's actually going on. Why haven't the Bat-Family started planning a rescue mission for Alfred yet? Where are the Justice League? How is Flashpoint Batman in the mainstream DCU? Why can Gotham Girl use her powers at will without draining her life force now? I could go on and on. So thank you for a good review, but isn't it time to stop tiptoeing around the truth of the extreme downhill slide of Batman into extremely lazy "because I said so" writing? This issue wasn't a filler issue. This is what we get now.

    1. LOL...Dan leaves that for me and Eric on the podcast!

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