As far as DC Comics characters go, my favorite is easily Nightwing. I followed the Rebirth series through several creative teams before I dropped off, but I decided to give it another shot this week. Since I was last keeping up Dick Grayson has lost all his memories, started going by Ric, and isn’t using any of his old codenames while heroing. So, how is this new era for the character? Is Nightwing #62 good?
What’s it about?
According to the official synopsis:
After the epic conclusion to the Burnback saga, it’s clear that while he may have forgotten his past, Ric Grayson’s innate skills and instincts as a team leader elevate Team Nightwing to a new level. But what does that mean for the Blüdhaven PD, and what does that mean for a man who is looking to live a life without the baggage of his past to hold him down? Ric seeks comfort in Bea’s arms, but may find answers in another’s Talons as we dive headlong into the Year of the Villain!
Plus, Lex Luthor delivers the Court of Owls the means to own what they covet most: Ric Grayson.
Check out our preview here.
Art-wise, this issue is solid, if pretty much just what you’d expect from an average superhero comic. The best aspect of Ronan Cliquet’s work here is probably the characters’ facial expressions. There are a number of great shots of Dick — or rather, Ric — grinning that really capture his joyous, relaxed side. I also appreciate that he works Ric’s acrobatic talents into the action and shots of him leaping across buildings. The actual flow of motion can get a bit stilted at times, but it’s still good to see the hero’s unique skills on display. As far as cons go, characters often look unnaturally stiff, especially while standing up. The amount of detail in the line-work can also be quite minimal. There’s a notable lack of texture to the issue, especially in the backgrounds. As far as the coloring goes Nick Filardi does a decent job, especially with regards to adding more depth to characters’ faces. The lettering by AndWorld Design is clean with no major hiccups, although the font choice doesn’t feel fully cohesive with the rest of the visuals.
Writing-wise, this issue is similarly middle of the road. I enjoyed reading it, and overall I think Dan Jurgens’s narration works well. As someone who hadn’t read the title in a while, this was a near-perfect jumping on point. All the exposition about Ric losing his memory and acclimating to his new life comes straight from his own thoughts and dialogue, providing insight into his own feelings rather than focusing on his allies’ emotional turmoil about his amnesia. This choice is a great one as it hits on what’s truly interesting about the plot: Ric’s still himself, and why should he waste time lamenting about memories he doesn’t have or people he effectively doesn’t know? The pacing throughout the issue is also well-handled, and we get brief glimpses at the new figures in Ric’s life as well.
Unfortunately, while the concepts here are intriguing, the actual execution isn’t particularly enthralling. All the stuff about Ric’s grasp on what’s happened to him is cool, but boy does it get repeated over and over again. By the time the issue ended I realized that neither Ric nor any other character had grown or shifted in any meaningful way. The main plot development is a throwaway scene on the last page of two villains meeting to discuss teaming up. It feels very stale and does nothing to create excitement going into the next issue. There’s also a drone following Ric around throughout the entire issue that he never manages to see, which requires immense suspension of disbelief given how large it is and how close it frequently gets to him.
Is it good?
All in all, Nightwing #62 is a decent comic. It acts as a good crash course on the character’s current status quo, highlighting some intriguing implications of his amnesia. Unfortunately, there’s no actual character development and the artwork can be stiff and rather lacking in texture. I’m curious to see where things go from here, but I’m not clamoring excitedly in extreme anticipation.
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