This is first and foremost a Batman site… But let’s be honest, we all know that this week is really about Action Comics reaching its milestone, issue #1000! I mean, think about that! What an incredible feat! So, in addition to our usual coverage (and there are some great releases hitting shelves this week), we’re also going to review Action Comics #1000! I hope you’re as excited as we are, and I strongly encourage you to pick up the issue while at your local comic book shop!

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Alright, on to business! This week’s releases are listed according to our anticipation scale, with titles listed in alphabetical order within each sub-header. 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. Following that, you’ll find notes pertaining to other DC Comics titles, as well as our Graphic Novel Watch. And finally, we want to hear from you! What titles are you picking up? Why are you excited? What do you hope will happen in the book? Etc. So, without further ado, review our Anticipation Scale, and comment away!

The Anticipation Scale

NO! – A comic I downright dread reading and if I wasn’t a reviewer, I would never buy it.

“You Don’t Have to Thank Us” – The idea of reviewing it doesn’t make me ill or angry, but it definitely sounds like it’s going to be a chore. Still, I’m reading it for you. I’m putting it at the bottom of the pile, but I’m reading it for you.

Mixed – A middle of the pile comic. It’s probably got the same chance of being dreadful as it does of being stupendous. I’m neither looking forward to it or avoiding it, whatever happens… happens.

Intrigued – I think this comic has potential to be a fantastic read. There’s some slight hesitation there, but it’s definitely going to be at the top of the pile.

TAKE MY MONEY – Everything about this issue has me excited. If I don’t get to read this book on Wednesday, I will be furious. I would pay extra just to have it in my hands right now! That’s how much I’m looking forward to it!

And as a reminder, our review scale is based on a 10-point system. A rating of “5” means the book is mediocre/average, and the more toward “10″ we go, the more awesome/worth buying it is. The more toward “1″ we go the more awful/not worth buying it is. That’s how we rate things. It’s not like most video game review scores where everything under 8 is crap, and it’s not like a school report card where everything under a 7 is failing or close-to-failing. Please keep this in mind when reading our reviews.

APRIL 18TH

TAKE MY MONEY

Action Comics #1000
Celebrate 1000 issues of Action Comics with an all-star lineup of top talent as they pay tribute to the comic that started it all! From today’s explosive action to a previously unpublished tale illustrated by the legendary Curt Swan to the Man of Tomorrow’s future—this very special, oversized issue presents the best of the best in Superman stories!

Written by Brian Michael Bendis, Paul Dini, Richard Donner, Cindy Goff, Geoff Johns, and More…
Pencils and Inks by Rafael Albuquerque, John Cassaday, Olivier Coipel, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Patrick Gleason, and More…
Colored by Hi-Fi, Jordie Bellaire, Jorge Jimenez, Laura Martin, Dave McCaig, and More…
Cover by Jim Lee, Alex Sinclair, and Scott Williams

Josh’s Stance: If you enjoy comics – no matter your stance on Superman – I hope you pick this comic up! We are lucky enough to be part of history, and that’s exciting!

Batman-News Critic: Jay, Elena, and Josh

 

Batman: Creature of the Night #3
Bruce Wainwright isn’t a child anymore—but the trauma that shaped him, and the monster he created, is still with him! Has Bruce grown enough to deal with the shock when he learns that one of his most closely held beliefs was a lie?

Written by Kurt Busiek
Pencils, Inks, and Colors by John Paul Leon
Cover by John Paul Leon

Josh’s Stance: We’ve had a decently sized delay since the last issue of Batman: Creature of the Night, but Busiek and Leon are doing such interesting work that I don’t mind! This a truly unique story that is more of a reflection of a Batman story than an actual Batman story, and I feel pretty certain that it will be viewed as an else-world classic years from now!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

The Brave & the Bold: Batman & Wonder Woman #3
Batman arrives in Tir Na Nog to help Wonder Woman solve the mystery of a murdered god. But while he may be the World’s Greatest Detective, he soon learns that the techniques he uses on our world may not aid him in this strange new one. As the investigation continues and new suspects are revealed, this dynamic duo learns that they each may be more dangerous than the last.

Written by Liam Sharp
Pencils and Inks by Liam Sharp
Colored by Romulo Fajardo, Jr.
Cover by Romulo Fajardo, Jr. and Liam Sharp

Josh’s Stance: Liam Sharp’s artwork is phenomenal! We knew that already, though. It’s not like we came into this book wondering if it would look good. No, we were all curious as to how good of a writer Sharp would be… And honestly, he’s damn good! I like the care he’s putting into Bruce and Diana, and I love the tone of his narrative even more. This book has a clear identity that separates it from everything else DC is publishing, so you get the feeling of something “fresh, new, and original” without changing the core traits of our favorite characters! I highly recommend giving The Brave and the Bold a chance if you haven’t!

Batman-News Critic: Casper

 

Injustice 2 #24
It’s all hands on deck for the start of the final battle against Amazo. Former enemies are forced to reunite to stop Professor Ivo’s creation and Ra’s al Ghul’s mad, genocidal plan. Ra’s’ own team seems to be fracturing at the same time. And a secret weapon is finally unleashed!

Art by Daniel Sampere
Cover by Juan Albarran and Bruno Redondo
Written by Tom Taylor

Josh’s Stance: How much can I gush about this book? It’s consistently good, and balances characters and plot perfectly, making it one of the most engaging and exciting releases from DC!

Batman-News Critic: Elena

 

Super Sons #15
“END OF INNOCENCE” part one! Robin and Superboy have been to hell and back again, but this time their friendship must stand the ultimate test: the Amazo Project! Kid Amazo returns as the pieces of this deadly plan fall into place and reveal a secret that might tear apart Damian and Jon’s growing friendship.

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Pencils by Carlo Barberi
Inks by Art Thibert
Colored by Protobunker
Cover by Jorge Jimenez and Alejandro Sanchez

Josh’s Stance: I know this title is transitioning to the new “young reader” line, so it’s not like the story is going away, but I’m sad to see Tomasi and Gleason leave these characters.

Batman-News Critic: Jay

 

INTRIGUED

Batman #45
“THE TRAVELERS” part one! Booster Gold has come to Gotham City, and he’s enlisting Batman and Catwoman to go on a time-traveling mission to rescue…Booster Gold! It seems a younger Booster Gold has gone back in time to kidnap an even younger version of himself, and to rescue his own past, Booster must pursue both of his previous incarnations through Batman’s history to find out what is going on. The start of a new story that will sow the seeds for a whole new epic to come—and also the return of Master Class artist Tony S. Daniel (DAMAGE) to BATMAN!

Written by Tom King
Pencils by Tony Salvador Daniel
Inks by Livesay and Tony Salvador Daniel
Colored by Tomeu Morey
Cover by Tony Salvador Daniel and Tomeu Morey

Josh’s Stance: I’m excited to see with time travel, and who isn’t curious to see his approach to Booster? I’ve been wanting a King penned Booster Gold maxi-series for a while now because King is the master of taking obscure characters and giving them fresh, new, interesting identities. I’m expecting some good work.

Batman-News Critic: Brandon

 

Batman: Sins of the Father #3
Based on the hit video game series from Telltale Games! Having eliminated all the obvious suspects behind the killing of former Arkham employees, Batman breaks into the most secure area of the facility to search their most deeply buried files, only to be ambushed by the villain known as Black Spider. Meanwhile, the search for Deadshot’s true identity points toward a family called the Lawtons—a family with a dark and twisted history.

Art by Raffaele Ienco
Cover by Raffaele Ienco
Written by Christos Gage

Josh’s Stance: I’m not the biggest fan of the Thomas Wayne’s history in the game/ this story, but that’s my only gripe here. I think Christos Gage is an underrated writer, and he’s delivering a solid, street-level narrative that embraces so many themes and elements that I want to see in Batman books!

Batman-News Critic: Dan

 

Batwoman #14
“THE FALL OF THE HOUSE OF KANE” part two! Vengeance and madness come home to Gotham City! The Many Arms of Death have descended upon the city, bringing a plague that will devour everything Batwoman holds dear—and Alice, Kate’s long-lost sister, leads the way!

Written by Marguerite Bennett
Pencils and Inks by Fernando Blanco
Colored by John Rauch
Cover by Dan Panosian

Josh’s Stance: Ok Batwoman, you have my attention… Now don’t let me down!

Batman-News Critic: Dan

 

Harley Quinn #42
“THE GANG’S ALL HERE!” Harley’s grudgingly accepted the Gang of Harleys back into her life—and now they intend to impress her with all the new tricks they’ve learned in her absence! Unfortunately, they might’ve picked up some bad habits too…

Written by Frank Tieri
Pencils and Inks by Mauricet
Cover by Amanda Conner, Paul Mounts, and Alex Sinclair

Josh’s Stance: I’m pretty certain the solicitation for this issue is wrong… Then again, maybe it’s not. Anyway, I’m super excited to see this parody/ rip-off of Old Man Logan will be like… especially considering it’s coming from the mind of Frank Tieri!

Spoiler

Batman-News Critic: Elena

 

Justice League #43
“JUSTICE LOST” finale! Struggling to save one of their own and extricate themselves from the grip of war, the Justice League’s hand is forced by the mercenary Deathstroke! Decisions must be made about Red Lion’s brutality, the insidious tactics of the Fan and the League’s role as the World’s Greatest Heroes. When the dust settles, will the old alliances still stand?

Written by Christopher Priest
Pencils, Inks, and Colors by Pete Woods
Cover by David Yardin

Josh’s Stance: In many ways, Christopher Priest is absolutely KILLING it with Justice League! And then there’s his villain, the fan. He’s easily the weakest part of the entire narrative. I understand that DC probably mandated a physical villain, but I would’ve preferred it if Priest could’ve just focused on the other obstacles that the team is facing – public perception, international law, team dynamic, etc. These elements are so good, and Priest juggles an ensemble than most of the team writers at the moment… In fact, he does this so well that I believe he should be writing Teen Titans and Titans… I know it seems like an odd choice, but I have many reasons to support why I’d love to see him take over these books. That’s for another time though… Anyway, let’s enjoy this final issue before Snyder takes the reigns!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

Nightwing #43
“THE BRAVE, THE OBNOXIOUS AND THE INEPT”! All Dick Grayson wants is a night to himself. But when Robin and Arsenal come calling in need of his help, Dick has to throw on his Nightwing costume and get to work. Before he knows it, he’s neck-deep in League of Assassin ninjas and trying to stop Arsenal’s sometime-girlfriend from killing them all—assuming Robin and Arsenal don’t kill each other first!

Written by Michael Moreci
Pencils and Inks by Minkyu Jung
Colored by Felipe Sobreiro
Cover by Jorge Jimenez and Alejandro Sanchez

Josh’s Stance: I’m not that familiar with Michael Moreci, but what I have read of his has ranged from good to great, so that gives me high hope for this issue. Even the solicitation makes it appear as though he has a grasp of who Dick is, and his relationship with Damian and Roy, so I’m hoping for a really fun chapter before the new creative team takes over next month.

Batman-News Critic: Josh

 

 

MIXED

Batman/ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II #6
It’s the final battle as the Bat-family and the Turtles face off against Bane and the Foot Clan on Liberty Island. With America’s great symbol of freedom watching over them, the Dark Knight and the Heroes on a Half-Shell must bring Bane’s tyrannical rule over New York to an end. And don’t forget about Shredder. What role will that deadly villain have to play in all of this? It’s all-out action in this exciting series conclusion.

Written by Ryan Ferrier and James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Freddie E. Williams II
Colored by Jeremy Colwell
Cover by Jeremy Colwell and Freddie E. Williams II

Josh’s Stance: Let’s be honest… Batman/ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II is a let down compared to it’s original run. As much as I wanted to love this, it’s mostly been a clunker with decent moments here and there.

Batman-News Critic: Jay

 

Notes:

  • Additional releases from DC this week: Aquaman #35, Bombshells United #16, Cave Carson Has an Interstellar Eye #2, Damage #4, Deadman #6, Green Lanterns #45, Mister Miracle #8, and Superman #45.

 

Graphic Novel Watch:

Batman Arkham: Hugo Strange – One of the Dark Knight’s oldest enemies, Hugo Strange is the first foe to determine Batman’s true identity: Bruce Wayne, mild-mannered playboy billionaire! In Strange’s first appearance, he was a simple mad scientist turned bank robber, but after being foiled by the Caped Crusader, he dedicated his life to taking revenge on Batman and assuming his identity.

Batman Arkham: Hugo Strange collects some of the villain’s greatest stories by classic creators, including Marshall Rogers (Detective Comics), Steve Englehart (Green Lantern), Gerry Conway (Justice League of America), Doug Moench (Batman) and many more!

Collects Detective Comics #36, #471, #472 and #942, Batman #356, Batman Annual #10, Batman: Gotham Knights #8-11 and Who’s Who: The Definitive Directory of the DC Universe #18.

 

Harley Quinn & the Gotham City Sirens Omnibus – Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn are tired of playing by other peoples’ rules regardless of which side of the law they’re on. These tough ladies have a new agenda that’s all their own, and they’ll use any means necessary to pursue it. But can they get along and work as a team? And who will get hurt along the way? Collects GOTHAM CITY SIRENS #1-26 and CATWOMAN #83.

 

Red Hood & the Outlaws Vol. 3: Bizarro Reborn – Red Hood, the rogue Robin. Artemis, the exiled Amazon. Bizarro, the flawed clone of Krypton. Together, these three unlikely allies make up the DC Universe’s “Dark Trinity.” As the Outlaws, they’ve taken to the shadows to take down evil…from the inside.

But when Bizarro gives his life in battle against a powerful villain, an even more dangerous enemy approaches: Lex Luthor, Metropolis’ self-made, so-called Man of Steel. He has a plan to unleash a superior model of Red Hood and Artemis’ strange teammate—a Bizarro 2.0, with a brilliant brain to match his unstoppable brawn.

Now this new Bizarro and his allies will be put to the ultimate test. An army of Gotham City’s greatest crime-fighters—Batwoman, Nightwing, Azrael, Clayface and more—are out to bring the Outlaws to justice. Can the Dark Trinity remain united? And can Bizarro’s bizarre transformation possibly last?

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