You know what sucks? Detective Comics #987 is Bryan Hill’s last issue on the series (for now).
You know what doesn’t suck? The conclusion to this explosive/excellent arc.
First Read Reactions
- Good lord. The murder and terrorization of sympathetic extras has started early.
- The Markovian black market doesn’t mess around when it comes to quality products.
- “Is your husband really inside that sword?”
- How come mercenaries always want to kill so badly? You’d think they’d prefer just getting paid without have to clean up a potentially career ending crime scene would be good enough.
- “Take ’em.”
- Ugh…I really want to hate the “I have to take this guy alone” trope, but it can still be kind of badass when it’s done right.
- Nothing hurts worse than a trojan horse full of trauma.
- “You were just a kid. It wasn’t your fault.”
- Solid eye pun/murder.
To be honest, I liked the fight scene from last issue better. Still, this one we get here to close out the story arc was pretty darn good. What’s really fun, though, is watching Black Lightning be a full fledged badass leading his team of Bat Kids/Outsiders (with a special appearance by Katana)–especially with Miguel Mendonca on art duties. Not only do his pencils look great, but they’re aided by some really good paneling tricks.
Also as I mentioned in the First Read Reactions, I’m normally not a fan of “I need to do this alone” moments, but the one we see here is pretty cool. You could argue that Batman’s plan to take down Karma feels a little contrived, but considering the way the new villain had been set up, it was really the only way he could be defeated in one-on-one combat.
If there’s anything disappointing about this conclusion, it’s that it feels like some great things were set up that might not get the attention we’d hope for with Hill coming off the book. While the ending all but guarantees Markovian blackmarket thread is continuing, let’s hope that this isn’t the last we see of Karma for a while. He’s not only a fantastically threatening villain, but also a walking reminder of one of Batman’s fully realized shortcomings as a superhero.
Oh yeah, and let’s get Hill and Medonca back on Batman sooner than later. You don’t need a special helmet to predict that it would be a good/well-received decision.
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