Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Detective Comics #1061 Review


I Wanna Be Sedated

Writer: Mariko Tamaki, Nadia Shammas, Sina Grace
Artist: Ivan Reis, David Lapham, Danny Miki
Cover Price: $5.99
Release Date: June 28, 2022

Mariko Tamaki's run on Detective Comics is over, and like her previous runs on Wonder Woman and X-23, I wasn't a fan!  I am not saying she is a lousy writer; she is an Eisner winner, for crying out loud, and her Supergirl Being Super was fantastic.   I also enjoyed the heck out of her Double-Trouble stuff at Marvel.  However, in my opinion, her writing style does not fit big superhero comics; unfortunately, some characters are big superheroes.  It never felt like she got a good grip on Batman during this run, and she even seemed to conspire against him at times.  Tamaki's Batman wasn't very good at being Batman, and while she focused a bit more on Bruce Wayne, he wasn't much better.  We have this last issue to get through, and then Ram V will start his run.  So, how was this finale?  Let's find out...

I'd love to give a clear and concise recap of what this Seven story has been all about, but I don't have the patience or space to try.  It started with Rebel Riddler Radio, criminals who weren't criminals, bomb threats, oh my.  It seemed that The Riddler might be mind controlling people over the Gotham airwaves, but since Batman never even brought that up (a big problem there), it was apparent Tamaki's thoughts, and plots were elsewhere.  We did get an awkward date with Bruce Wayne and Deb Donovan's daughter, Judge Caroline, and then the surprise guest star, Talia Al-Ghul, showed up with a few days to thrill.  Gathering all these things together would undoubtedly take a lot of thread and an equal amount of tin foil, but here we are.

Detective Comics #1061 opens with Talia and Edward discussing some of the recent happenings, but finding out that Talia used Riddler to get at Darby Turner to "Destabilize the Upper Crust" is not the sort of out-of-nowhere twist I was hoping we'd get.  Why would Talia care about any of this with what's been happening in her life recently?!?  Does Tamaki think Talia lives in Gotham and cares about random influencers in the city?  I know I don't!!!

We go to Arkham Tower, where Dr. Chase Meridian runs a sus group therapy session.  She has gathered patients who have gotten away with a crime in the past so they can open up and heal together.  It's odd because they are all surprised about this, yet Chase says they accepted the invitation for a reason.  Maybe the reason was free snacks.  We then get a roll call of crimes, some worse than others, but nothing hits because we barely know these people, if we even know them at all.  I was confused and did roll my eyes when Tamaki tried to tie it into Dr. Wear and her awful Arkham Tower story.  It ends with Caroline not wanting to share, which gets us back to the present.

Batman couldn't stop Caroline from being a murderer in the last issue (Note: he isn't a great Batman in this book), and here she disappears in a puff of smoke right under his nose (see previous note), leaving one of Riddler's envelopes.  As Batman roughs up The Riddler, Tamaki tries to explain her convoluted story in narration boxes, but it makes little sense.

Then things get even wonkier as Batman receives a call he thinks is from Caroline, but might be from the Riddler, who is still just a few feet away from him - the call is coming from within the panel, Batman!!!  Batman and Cass go off and save Dr. Meridian and Caroline, which is a good thing.   But then Caroline convolutes the story more with her confession - she used to have insomnia, tossing and turning like a murderer with a guilty conscience.  However, now that she's an actual murderer, she'll be able to sleep tonight!  WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON IN THIS BOOK?!?!?!

I know I said that Batman saved Caroline, but as usual, Tamaki can't give the Dark Knight a win, and he drops her into the bay, and it looks like she is dead, even though the police never found a body.  Way to go, Batman!  At this point, all this nonsense is just laughable, so when Talia and Bruce end the issue by talking even more nonsense, I shook my head, closed the book, and thought of doing a Deb Donovan and getting shit-faced to forget all of this. 

I'll start with the positives.  The art was pretty good.  That's it, though, because everything else sucked.  I didn't mention it, but I think that Dr. Meridian was one of the bad gals here.  Batman says it, but there isn't any follow-up on it, so who knows.  However, if she was bad, that's just another fuck up on Batman's long list since it was his word that got her involved in the Tower in the first place.  Way to go, Batman.  Way to go, Mariko Tamaki

(I had every intention of reviewing the finale of Sina Grace's Gotham Girl story here, but I just have to put this book down.  I did read it and didn't like it.  That's the review.)

Bits and Pieces:

Detective Comics #1061 ends Mariko Tamaki's run on Detective Comics with a convoluted story that lacked setup and ends with a mystery - the mystery of who thought this was good enough to print?!?  The art was good, but nothing is saving this or the other forgetful stories we've had over the past year and a half.  



  1. I laughed reading your review, you're like I was when I was reading Nightwing and Son of Kal-El by Taylor. It really was a funny review, thanks. Yeah, the story is all over the place but it wasn't that bad, I'd maybe rate it with a 6. Combined with that atrocious Sina Grace story which is a clear 1, yeah, your rating is spot on. And I say that as someone who really thinks Tamaki is, indeed, a lousy writer.

  2. Thank God, we're getting Ram V soon. I just hope that they give Wonder Woman better writers too. The writing team there has been unmitigated garbage for more than a year now.

    1. Hopefully all that happens after Dark Crisis - though it would be nice right now with Wonder Woman!!!