Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Nightwing #71 Review

All Alone in the Moonlight

Writer: Dan Jurgens
Artist: Ronan Cliquet, Travis Moore
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 10, 2020

What does DC Comics plan on doing with Dick Grayson.  I think we can all agree that this "Ric" thing has gone on way too long, right?  I  figured it would last a couple of months, and we'd get the proper Nightwing back, and all would be well.  Boy, was I wrong! Two years later and Ric is still hanging around like that college buddy on the couch, and we all hate that guy too!  But wait, Joker ended the last issue finding the Memory Crystal, so there is hope after all.  Listen, I know it's Joker, but I'll take anything new out of this mess of a book.  So, do we finally see a little light at the end of the tunnel?  Let's find out...

The issue opens with Ric and Bea hanging at the Prodigal Bar when a siren goes off in the distance, and Ric springs into action.  This is the sort of thing that drives me nuts.  DC has saddled us with this Ric thing, but we never get anything interesting.  We are continually seeing Ric being Nightwing without actually being Nightwing, all the while trying to remember being Nightwing.  It happens again this issue as he fights his old nemesis, Tusk.

I'm sure if I asked for a show of hands from all Tusk fans out there, I wouldn't see a lot of hands.  Poor Tusk!  Guess what?  I am a bit of a Tusk fan, and we talk about him on the podcast more then we should.  Why is that?  Because the guy has more lives than a cat, it seems.  He has died and come back to life twice now in this continuity!  Somebody get ahold of Killer Croc and let him know, since Tusk's death in Gotham City Monsters about eight months ago, was his "now it's personal" moment.  I know that most people won't care, but Dan Jurgens and his editors should.

Nightwing #71 Review - Are We Being Ric Rolled?

Tusk is only here to distract Ric anyway, and after Grayson realizes that, and we quickly see that Sapienza might be taking a stairway to heaven (or a highway to hell), we get to the meat and cheese of the issue.  The Joker is in the Prodigal Bar, and he knows everybody's name!

The issue ends with Bea striking out (at least she went down swinging) and the Joker getting things in place for a little war that he has planned against Batman.  When things get interesting, though, we hit the cliffhanger that is more, "Why can't we see more now," than, "I can't wait to see more later."  Dan Jurgens has been doing that a lot since taking over this book, and I am getting tired of it.  A good cliffhanger is cool, but it can't be the only thing interesting in an entire issue.

I think you can guess how I felt about this issue.  I was bored.  That's not good in any comic, but when the Joker is boring, you know that the story has nothing going for it.  I liked the art even though I hate the decision to make Dick look so different facially than he should because he's Ric - he's starting to look a bit like Steve Nash. Still, the story is just going through the motions, and the only difference is we're now drifting listlessly over to the Joker War.  The Court of the Owls mind whammy replaced with a Joker one.  I do have a sneaking suspicion that we will get Dick back at issue #75, and it can't come soon enough!

Bits and Pieces:

Ric Grayson can't remember his past, and I'm starting to forget when I liked this book.  Dan Jurgens is in a stalling pattern as we head to the Joker War, and while that may end with every Nightwing fan's dream, it's been a two-year slog getting here.  The Joker's appearance didn't wow me, and nothing much happens in this issue until the cliffhanger.  I liked Ronan Cliquet's art, but can't find many reasons not to skip this issue.


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