Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Detective Comics #5 Review
The first story arc of Tony S. Daniel's Detective Comics run did a good job of bringing a good, quality story for new readers to jump in. Intriguing, dark, and it's Batman. Doll Maker could have used a little work, and really the only thing we care about is what's up with ol' Joker, but it gave us a solid tale of mystery and suspense. The new arc begins with this issue, with a classic foe as the villain. While not as impressive as the debut issue of the first arc, it's still a pretty solid start.
It begins with a bunch of Joker protesters chanting for Batman's death. Meanwhile, Batman runs into a 'Joker' who manages to evade him. The plot deepens when Bruce's girlfriend seems to have a secret agenda. This is being watched by the crime lord known as Penguin....
I've always considered Penguin to be a lame villain. Batman's version of Spider-Man's Vulture. Recently Vulture got a major revamp, updating from 'lame' to actually 'cool.' I had a strange feeling that same would happen here, and it did. The Penguin looks to be a meancing force here. He's only appeared in one page so far, and he already looks to be more of a threat and more fun to read than Doll Maker. Oh, and is it me, or is this Penguin thing similar to what happened with Vulture three issues ago in Amazing Spider-Man? Penguin has some flunkies similar to that of Vulture's, and their personalities seem to match. Not saying anything's copied, it's just interesting.
Batman still carries the book with those thought boxes. The whole Joker protest was interesting and really makes you think how corrupt Gotham is, or as Batman put it, "Hellhole." Interesting predicament is with Bruce's girlfriend. It looks like she's going to have a generic plot twist that we've all seen in past Batman stories. (He can never truly win with the ladies, can he?) Then there's this mysterious Joker supporter who shows up, kills some guys, then manages to evade Batman. Impressive, so I look forward to seeing what's up with that. A crime to this issue however, is how short it is. We get a pretty long Catwoman backup story, it's not clear if the ending pertains to that series or this series, probably this series. I don't mind backup stories, but the main story was too short, while the backup was too long.
Once again, the art is great. I say this every time, so I don't think it's necessary to keep mentioning it every time. But, as a longtime reviewer, gotta keep mentioning it every issue. Pretty good cover, showcasing Batman and Penguin. The Penguin has never looked more menacing. (I'd like to see this guy have a chat with Vulture over at Amazing Spider-Man, it would be priceless.)
Overall, a solid start to the new arc. Not as great as the previous debut issue, but a solid one. Penguin is back, and has never looked more cool. Detective Comics is a series you'll want to be reading if you like Batman and mystery.