Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Detective Comics #1068 Review

Written by: Ram V
Art by: Ivan Reis, Rafael Albuquerque, Danny Miki
Colors by: Dave Stewart
Letters by: Ariana Maher
Cover art by: Evan Cagle
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: January24, 2023

Detective Comics #1068 finds Batman tracking down the kidnapped citizens of Gotham as part of the Orgham family's bid to take over the city. Will Batman survive the Orgham assassins and the Azmer, or will he receive help from an unlikely source?

Is It Good?

File Detective Comics #1068 under "things happen." That's about it. Things happen. It's unclear if those things are headed anywhere or what they mean, so all you can do is absorb the happenings and go about your day.

When last we left Gotham, the Orgham family orchestrated a surgically precise land grab and set the purchased city blocks ablaze at the same time to (presumably) accelerate the eviction process. Now, we learn the evicted citizens are rounded up and taken to a substation where they're infected with Azmer to become part of a blossoming Orgham army. Meanwhile, Batman arrives to save the day, but he gets a face full of Azmer for his trouble.

Okay, that sounds like a lot's going on, but the central down point is that those events feel wholly directionless. We don't know what the Orgham's are doing or why, we don't know what Azmer is, and Batman is constantly playing catch up by reacting to the Orghams rather than putting on his detective thinking cap and figuring out the plan to stop it at its source.

Between the fights and fires, a healthy dose of their issue is focused on Two-Face and his internal struggle against Azmer. Somehow, Two-Face can overcome Azmer by "tethering" it to Two-Face instead of Harvey Dent without explaining how that works when Azmer is a physical substance... or something.

Reis, Albuquerque, and Miki turn in a visual feast with excellent character designs and panel compositions. Bonus points for nailing a spot-on werewolf design.

I usually don't talk about the backups, but there is a backup that may or may not be connected to what's happening. Si Spurrier focuses on a side character (not in the main book) and borrows heavily from Dan Watters's Gotham City mini-series from last year. Spurrier's narrative structure and flow are incomprehensible, and Dani's Frank Miller-inspired art is an acquired taste. Still, there may be a nugget or two of information pertinent to Ram V's main plot.

About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.

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Bits and Pieces:

Detective Comics #1068 is a collection of things happening and potentially interesting ideas. Still, the plot moves at a snail's pace, and there needs to be a clear direction or motivation for the villains.


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