The news worth speaking to at the moment, is the passing of Adam West. As sad as it makes me, it’s also great to see the legions of people showing their support. My Twitter and Facebook feeds have been full of remembrances, original art, etc honoring the late actor. For me, there’s a personal connection to this loss because it takes me back to my childhood, but I also know someone who actually has personal experiences with Adam West and the Batman television series. A former client, and now friend, is the daughter of Stanley Ralph Ross, so we had a nice phone call over the weekend about her memories as a little girl visiting the set. I can only imagine how I would’ve reacted visiting that set, but it’s nice to imagine moments through the stories she tells. At least West will live on forever. If you’re a parent, do a good thing and share the Batman ’66 television series with your kids. They deserve it.

Alright, on to business! For a collection of our opinions pertaining to last week’s releases, make sure you check out This Week In Comics: Nothing Interesting or Controversial Happened This Week At All. Seriously. This week’s releases are listed in order of what I’m most excited to read, to what I’m least excited to read. For each title, I’ll include the official solicitation, the talent credits, a random comment (or rant), and the Batman News team member that will be reviewing each book. After I’ve overshared my opinions, you’ll find notes pertaining to other DC Comics titles/ delayed releases, as well as our Graphic Novel Watch. And finally, we want to hear from you! What titles are you picking up? What do you hope to see? Etc. So, without further ado…

 

June 14th

 

Suicide Squad #19
“EARTHLINGS ON FIRE” finale! The saga of the Black Vault comes to an appropriately insane finale when General Zod breaks free of Amanda Waller’s control, lays waste to the Suicide Squad and prepares to welcome an army of Kryptonian conquerors from the twisted realm within the Black Vault. But help arrives from the least likely allies: the Eradicator and Cyborg-Superman!

Art by Sandu Florea and Tony S. Daniel
Cover by Sandu Florea and Tony S. Daniel
Variant cover by Whilce Portacio
Written by Rob Williams

Josh’s Stance: You know those gifs of people with wide eyes, drinking something (in this case, we’ll say coffee), as they prepare themselves for some serious $#!% to go down between two other people/ groups… That’s how feel about this issue. Give me some coffee!

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

 

 

Gotham Academy: Second Semester #10
“The Ballad of Olive Silverlock” part two! As everyone around him begins to lose faith in their quest, Kyle refuses to believe that all hope is lost. But which will be harder…leaving behind the friends he thought would never give up, or facing his true feelings for Olive?

Art by Adam Archer, Sandra Hope, and MSASSYK
Cover by Karl Kerschl
Written by Becky Cloonan, Karl Kerschl, and Brenden Fletcher

Josh’s Stance: I’m beginning to get extremely sad that Gotham Academy is being cancelled. Really. Freaking. Sad. I’m hoping that it will be one of those titles that is discovered after it’s fun by many, many people. I know I’ve already started gifting it to my nieces and nephews, and I plan to continue that trend. Let’s enjoy it while it while we have it!

Batman-News Critic: Jay

 

 

Red Hood & the Outlaws #11
“Who is Artemis?” finale! The Dark Trinity faces a bigger threat than ever before, with thousands of lives hanging in the balance! After Akila resurrects an army of Amazon warriors aimed at destroying an entire country, Artemis is given a choice—fulfill her destiny as the champion of Bana-Mighdall, or stand by her new allies, Red Hood and Bizarro?

Art by Dexter Soy
Cover by Kenneth Rocafort
Variant cover by Guillem March
Written by Scott Lobdell

Josh’s Stance: Who would’ve thought that roughly a year into Rebirth’s Red Hood & the Outlaws, I’d still be screaming, “Go get this book! Trust me! Give it a chance!” Also, Artemis’ arc feels like the perfect story since Wonder Woman is killing it in theaters at the moment. But seriously, these are some terrific stories that Lobdell is cranking out!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

 

Detective Comics #958
“Intelligence” part one! Azrael has found a new home in Gotham City…unfortunately, someone from his old home with the Order of St. Dumas has found him! The Order has unleashed a bizarre new evil on the world, and it’s convinced it must destroy Jean-Paul Valley!

Art by Raúl Fernández and Alvaro Martinez
Cover by Raúl Fernández and Alvaro Martinez
Variant cover by Rafael Albuquerque
Written by James T Tynion IV

Josh’s Stance: When Detective Comics first started, it was the best Bat book in my opinion (Nightwing would be a contender though). Since then, the quality of this book has slid down hill, and it should have been doing the opposite considering the stories Tynion has been telling. Personally, I blame these Dark Nights books because they appear to be doing exactly what I thought they’d be doing… Keep the talent from focusing on their core titles.

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

 

Dark Days: The Forge #1
DARKNESS COMES TO THE DC UNIVERSE WITH THE MYSTERY OF THE FORGE! Aquaman, The Flash and more of DC’s pantheon of heroes suspect Batman of hiding a dark secret that could threaten the very existence of the multiverse! It’s an epic that will span generations—but how does it connect to the origins of one of DC’s most legendary heroes?

The great comics event of summer 2017 is about to begin courtesy of superstar writers Scott Snyder and James Tynion III and illustrated by a master class of comics artists: Andy Kubert, Jim Lee and John Romita Jr.! You do not want to miss this one!

Art by Jim Lee, Various, John Romita, Jr., and Andy Kubert
Cover by Jim Lee, Scott Snyder, and Scott Williams
Variant cover by John Romita, Jr. and Andy Kubert
Written by James T Tynion IV and Scott Snyder

Josh’s Stance: I’m holding my opinion until I read it… But I’m 50/50 at the moment. It could be great. It could be awful. The array of artists with distinctly different styles definitely makes me nervous though. There’s no way this book is going to look good, so I’m praying for strong writing.

Batman-News Critic: Elena

 

 

Titans #12
“Bad Omen”! After the stunning events of “The Lazarus Contract” rocked the Titans to their core and called into question the team’s leadership, Omen discovers the shocking truth about their future—that one of their very own is destined to betray them…and it could be anyone!

Written by Dan Abnett
Pencils by Kenneth Rocafort
Inks by Dan Brown
Colored by Dan Brown
Cover by Kenneth Rocafort

Josh’s Stance: “The Lazarus Contract” has left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth, so I’m sure I’ll return to my usual eagerness once things return to normal… Hopefully.

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

 

Supergirl #10
“ESCAPE FROM THE PHANTOM ZONE” part two! The Phantom King holds all the cards, and he’s forcing Supergirl and Batgirl to turn to the alien antagonist in order to save themselves and the humans trapped inside the Phantom Zone.

Art by Brian Ching
Cover by Daniel Henriques and Robson Rocha
Variant cover by Bengal
Written by Steve Orlando

Josh’s stance: This had potential to be good… But I honestly feel as though Orlando has bitten off more than he can chew. At least in comparison to what fans deserve anyway. It’s great that he’s cranking out scripts at light speed (JLA, Supergirl, co-writing Batman/ The Shadow, and I’m sure I’m forgetting something or he’s working on a secret unannounced project), but I’m a quality over quantity guy. Quality over quantity DC.

Batman-News Critic: Elena

 

Batgirl & the Birds of Prey #11
“Source Code” part one! The Birds of Prey tentatively accepted working with the new Oracle, even though they knew he’d gone down a dark road to find them…but did they have any idea how dark? His story unfolds here—including the identity of the person who trained him, to whom he owes a dangerous debt!

Art by Roge Antonio
Cover by Yanick Paquette
Variant cover by Kamome Shirahama
Written by Shawna Benson and Julie Benson

Josh’s Stance: No. Just no. Look, I already (strongly) dislike Batgirl & the Birds of Prey. But I hate Gus. Let me make that clear. I HATE GUS! I sure as hell am not looking forward to reviewing an arc that focuses on him.

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

Justice League of America #8
“THE MAN FROM MONSTER VALLEY” part one! While fighting the forces of the malevolent super-science outfit known as Skull, the League discover a secret valley deep in the Russian Tundra, home to Makson, a lone human male raised by fantastic creatures. Learning his true identity, the JLA endeavors to reunite Makson with mankind, his family, and his birthright. But not everyone wants the mysterious savage to come home…

Art by Scott Hanna and Felipe Watanabe
Cover by Felipe Watanabe
Variant cover by Doug Mahnke
Written by Steve Orlando

Josh’s Stance: This crap sounds like the worst kind of filler. DC… Orlando… JLA deserves to be more than just filler stories! Get your $#!& together! If you’re desperate for good stories, I’ll send you my phone number. I’ve got a ton of pitches for you. None of them are for JLA  specifically, but I could have half a dozen within a week, and they’d all be better than this crap… Just saying.

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

 

 

Notes:

  • Additional DC Releases slated for this week: Bug! The Adventures of Forager #2, Hal Jordan & the Green Lantern Corps #22, Legion of Super Heroes/ Bugs Bunny Special #1, Martian Manhunter/ Marvin the Martian Special #1, New Super-Man #12, Scooby Apocalypse #14, Scooby Doo Where Are You? #82, Superwoman #11, The Flash #24, and Wonder Woman #24.
  • We were originally going to review Action Comics, however it looks as though there isn’t anything directly effecting Suicide Squad that isn’t covered in Suicide Squad itself. We will include a recap of this issue in our Break (from) the Bat post.
  • Justice League vs Power Rangers #5 has been pushed back to May 31, 2017 August 9, 2017.
  • Justice League vs Power Rangers #6 has been pushed back to September 6, 2017.

 

Graphic Novel Watch:

Batwoman by Greg Rucka and JH Williams III – Writer Greg Rucka and artists J.H. Williams III and Jock’s legendary run of Batwoman adventures from DETECTIVE COMICS #854-863 are collected in a single title for the first time! In these stories, Kate Kane takes on the Religion of Crime and struggles to save Gotham City from the surreal villainy of Alice. Plus, learn the origin of Batwoman!

 

Nightwing Vol. 2: Back to Bludhaven – Writer Tim Seeley (GRAYSON), artist MARCUS TO (RED ROBIN) and colorist Chris Sotomayor (BIRDS OF PREY) take Dick Grayson from Gotham City to a whole new stomping ground in NIGHTWING VOLUME 2: BACK TO BLÜDHAVEN.

No sooner did the former super-spy take up his old mantle as Batman’s ally Nightwing than he was forced to fight for the soul of Gotham City during the Night of the Monster Men-then do battle with Raptor, the new mentor he thought he could trust. Not even Superman can help him escape the nightmare.

So Nightwing takes off for the neighboring city of Blüdhaven, hoping to find a fresh start. Instead, he finds old foes who’ve waited years for payback against the one-time Boy Wonder.

And Blüdhaven holds bloodier horrors. A serial killer stalks the streets, framing Nightwing for crimes he didn’t commit. His only hope to catch the killer and clear his name: teaming up with his sworn enemies. If he succeeds, he can be this strange new city’s greatest guardian. If he fails, the blood in Blüdhaven will be his own…

 

Teen Titans: The Bronze Age Omnibus – In these tales from the 1970s, the assassination of a world leader forces the Teen Titans to rethink their mission, leading to time travelling and cross-country adventure as they take on social issues of the day. This new title collects TEEN TITANS #25-53; THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #94, 102 and 149: BATMAN FAMILY #6, 8 and 9; and WORLD’S FINEST COMICS #205.

 

Teen Titans Vol. 1: Damian Knows Best – Exploding from the blockbuster DC Rebirth event, it’s an action-packed new spin on one of the most famous superhero teams of all time, from writer Benjamin Percy (GREEN ARROW) and a titanic team of talented artists including Jonboy Meyers (Spawn), Diogenes Neves (GREEN LANTERN: NEW GUARDIANS) and Khoi Pham (The Mighty Avengers) comes TEEN TITANS VOL. 1: DAMIAN KNOWS BEST.

His father is the world’s greatest detective. His grandfather is the world’s deadliest terrorist. He is Damian Wayne, a.k.a. Robin, Son of Batman-and he now commands the Teen Titans.

Whether they like it or not.

When Starfire, Raven, Beast Boy and Kid Flash answer this brash new Boy Wonder’s call for help, they find themselves on the front lines of a war between Damian and his immortal grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul. The entire League of Assassins and the elite Demon’s Fist are prepared to move against these young heroes, all to claim Robin for their own. And if these new Titans are toppled, so be it.

The stakes are crystal clear: if they win, they live. If they lose, Robin will join the forces of evil-and the rest of them are history. But with Damian in charge, sometimes death doesn’t look so bad…

It’s a culture clash for the ages in TEEN TITANS VOL. 1: DAMIAN KNOWS BEST. Collects TEEN TITANS #1-5 and TEEN TITANS: REBIRTH #1.