We are talking about some of the books have been hitting the shelves recently, and spend some time looking at the rather big things happening for the Batman books. Be warned spoilers inside.
Both this issue and last month’s issues of Avenging Spider-Man have been good books unto themselves. #17 dealing with all of the children in the Fantastic Four (or whatever that group is now, I have no idea what is going on with FF right now) was a return to a bit of the more lighthearted issues that really got me hooked on this book.
However, #18 has Spider-Man teaming up Thor. There are some interesting moments and a good story, but on the whole it’s really hard to like a book when your main character is an Asshole. I just can’t get behind the Superior Spider-Man. I miss Peter Parker, not this “Peter Parker.”
Superior wouldn’t be so bad if there was someone to knock this arrogant prick down a peg, but there really isn’t anybody out there who will stand up to him and call him out for his behavior. Although this is the only book I’m reading with him in it so maybe there is more to him that I am missing. To be honest, I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be reading this one, it’s on the bubble for me. More books like #17 and I’ll stick around, more like #18 and I’m done.
You have been warned, it’s going to get spoilery.
I was surprised not by them killing Damian in Batman Inc. #8, but rather that all the other Bat books seem to be acknowledging it and using this space as a way to focus on dealing with the loss. When before Batman Inc seemed to be outside of the current continuity and was still carrying over the story from before the New 52.
Death is a natural part of comics, whenever writers seem to get stuck in a corner or want to “shake things up” they kill off a major character. It’s been done a thousand times before and it’s going to keep happening as long as those books keep selling. Most of the time the characters are back within a year, sometimes 6 months. It’s written away as a clone, a character from another universe, magic or some other comics nonsense.
However this time around it feels a bit different. All the other Bat books are spending time to mourn and the writer, Grant Morrison has stated that it’s his wish to make the death permanent. We’ll see if DC agrees to that or not. Grant Morrison in his interview with Kevin Smith on the incredible Fatman on Batman podcast said that he created the character and the character’s fate has always been to die. Originally it was going to happen in 4 issues, but that got changed.
Personally I’m hoping that he does stay dead. It’s not that I disliked the character but rather I’d rather not have this death waved away with magic handwavium. For once I’d like a death in comics to really matter and mean something, not just be the big way to cap off whatever event comic crossover is happening this month.
I haven’t yet read Batman & Robin #18, I’ve heard that this is one of the best of the Requiem books.
Batman #18 is a really good “filler” issue. Much like the issue that followed the Court of Owls storyline, this issue revolves around Harper and her brother Cullen. Harper is a great character. Part of me would love to have her be recruited as the next Robin, but the more realistic part of me wants to hear to stay the way she is. Just that friend on the outside who can understand Batman without wanting anything more from him.
I would love to see a new Robin be brought into the fold, maybe make this a return for a character like Stephanie Brown or other forgotten character that has been left by the wayside for the New 52. They have some time to plan out what they want to do since Batman is going a bit back in time with the next few issues for a “Year Zero” event.