I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. I invaded my local comic book shop on Saturday to score some loot for Free Comic Book Day! There were way more people than I expected considering my town is so small, but a full comic shop always makes me happy! With free comic book day behind us, I’m now looking forward to this Saturday because of… Eurovision!

I know this is a random subject to bring up on a Batman site, but I literally spent my entire Sunday helping a friend prepare a piece on this year’s show (which is why this post is coming to you a little later than usual). In case you’re wondering, I’m pulling for Bulgaria to win (and not because there are two Americans in the band), but I’m also fond of Belgium, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Cyprus, and F.Y.R. Macedonia, so I wouldn’t mind any of them taking the crown. I have not, however, jumped on the bandwagon for Israel, despite the fact that they’re the favorite to win. Sorry to all you Netta fans out there. So, while listing the comics you plan on picking up this week, let me know if you plan on watching Eurovision, or if you even know what it is! If you do plan on watching, who are you rooting for?

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.

May 9th

TAKE MY MONEY

Batman: White Knight #8
In the extra-sized finale of Sean Murphy’s top-selling miniseries, Jack Napier’s suspicious seduction of Gotham City comes to its twisted conclusion! With the city on the verge of becoming an icy tomb for the GTO, Batgirl makes a crucial assist and Gordon is forced to reevaluate his judgment of Batman to secure the greater good. As the true Joker’s return becomes imminent, Harley seeks vengeance and reckons with the bleak future that looms for her loved ones.

Written by Sean Murphy
Pencils and Inks by Sean Murphy
Colored by Matt Hollingsworth
Cover by Matt Hollingsworth and Sean Murphy

Josh’s Stance: Noooooooo! I’ve gotten to the point that I expect Batman: White Knight to be the highlight of each month. What are we going to do without it? Hopefully, a follow-up will be announced sooner rather than later! I’m ok if we have to wait more than a year before we get it, just let us know it’s coming!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

Justice League: No Justice #1
DARK NIGHTS: METAL left the DCU transformed in ways both terrifying and wondrous—and only the Justice League is strong enough to face the threats to come…or are they? Four giant beings comprised of the universe’s major energies—Mystery, Wonder, Wisdom and Entropy—who sustain their life force by devouring planets are on their way to destroy the planet of Colu. The only way to take down this unimaginable threat is for the superhero teams of Earth to forget everything they thought they knew and form new alliances.

What secrets of the cosmos will Superman, Martian Manhunter and Team Mystery discover? Will Zatanna, Wonder Woman and Team Wonder awaken alien magic they cannot put back to sleep? What can Harley Quinn possibly have to teach the rest of Team Wisdom? And most importantly…why the heck is Beast Boy on Team Entropy with Lobo and Batman? Find out all this and much more in the most exciting, bombastic event of summer 2018!

In this kickoff issue to the four-issue miniseries, after Brainiac systematically takes down all of Earth’s super-teams, the last thing the League expects is for him to ask for their help! Without their aid, his home planet and the universe are both doomed!

Written by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Joshua Williamson
Art by Francis Manapul
Cover by Francis Manapul

Josh’s Stance: I’m excited, but I’m also anxious. I tend to feel that Scott does better work when he’s reigned in, but if you’re going to go big, then you might as well do it with Justice League. Then again, I didn’t care for Metal much, so who knows. I am looking forward to Francis Manapul’s art though!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

Red Hood & the Outlaws #22
The Penguin has redeveloped waterfront property into a new boardwalk attraction for children of all ages, but Red Hood knows any “legitimate” business of the Penguin’s is a cover for something illegitimate. Plus, Artemis pays a visit to Lex Luthor to find out about the “side effects” of Bizarro’s revival, though Lex might be more concerned with dredging up his past with the wayward Amazon than answering any of her questions.

Written by Scott Lobdell
Pencils and Inks by Alisson Borges and Dexter Soy
Colored by Veronica Gandini
Cover by Antonio Fabela and Trevor Hairsine

Josh’s Stance: Red Hood continues to be an entertaining read, and this arc in particular has a certain gravitas to it! I’m a fan, and if you give these rebels a chance, I’m sure you will be too!

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

MIXED

Suicide Squad #41
“CONSTRICTION” part one! Batman has broken Deadshot out of Belle Reve! Now the Dark Knight and the assassin who never misses have a new mission: rescue Deadshot’s daughter from the clutches of Kobra! But Amanda Waller’s not having it, and she’s determined to drag her prisoner back at any cost!

Written by Rob Williams
Pencils by Eduardo Pansica
Inks by Julio Ferreira
Colored by Adriano Lucas
Cover by Guillem March and Wil Quintana

Josh’s Stance: This story started off all the way back in Suicide Squad #1, and it was great! Then Williams picked it back up when he was writing Trinity, and it was a bit of a letdown. Now we’re diving back in, and I’m not sure  whether I should be excited or not… I feel like “Constriction” will be better than the last arc…

Batman-News Critic: Casper

 

“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”

Batgirl & the Birds of Prey #22
“WHO IS ORACLE?” revisited! Batgirl and Black Canary must find Huntress and save her from Calculator and Blackbird’s nefarious plan. But everything comes full circle when the answer to Calculator’s question—“Who is Oracle?”—is at last revealed. The Birds of Prey have always been a tight-knit team, but here, in what could be their final hours, they truly become a family.

Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Pencils and Inks by Roge Antonio
Colored by Marcelo Maiolo
Cover by Rachel Dodson and Terry Dodson

Josh’s Stance: This is – in my opinion – the best Batgirl & the Birds of Prey has ever been, but I can’t bring myself to recommend it. One strong issue led to a follow-up where the Benson’s fell back into their bad habits. Hopefully our Birds will have a strong presence in other books since this is the last issue.

Batman-News Critic: Brian

 

Detective Comics #980
“BATMEN ETERNAL” part five! The worst possible future for Gotham City has been locked into place, and there’s nothing Batman can do to stop it…until Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain catch a glimpse of something they never would have thought possible!

Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils by Scot Eaton
Inks by Wayne Faucher
Colored by John Kalisz
Cover by Brad Anderson, Raul Fernandez, and Alvaro Martinez

Josh’s Stance: Meh… I’d be more excited if we were just dealing with the characters themselves, and not watching another O.M.A.C./ Brother Eye battle…

Batman-News Critic: Brandon

 

NOTES:

  • Additional DC titles hitting shelves this week: Eternity Girl #3, The Flash #46, Hal Jordan & the Green Lantern Corps #44, The Immortal Men #2, New Super-Man and the Justice League of China #23, Scooby Apocalypse #23, Sideways #4, Wildstorm: Michael Cray #7, and Wonder Woman #46.

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH: 

Detective Comics: The Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 2 – This latest Rebirth Deluxe Edition features two of the most critically acclaimed arcs in the Dark Knight’s history in hardcover for the first time in Batman: Detective Comics: The Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 2.

Batman’s newest allies both have histories they’d rather forget, but when figures from their respective secret origins appear in Gotham, will Cassandra Cain and Azrael be able to keep their pasts from destroying their present lives?

When the League of Shadows—led by Cassandra’s mother, the deadly Lady Shiva—comes to take down the team and bring Cassandra home, Orphan must weigh the life that was planned for her against the new path she’s forging for herself. But what place can society ever have for someone with her violent pedigree?

Then, Azrael’s former masters, the Order of St. Dumas, send the perfect assassin—an artificial intelligence named Ascalon—to hunt their ex-disciple and all who stand with him. Batman and Zatanna need the power of a mystical artifact called the God Machine to turn the tide, but will the Machine’s promise of absolute power corrupt even the World’s Greatest Detective?

Collecting issues #950-962 in hardcover for the first time, Batman: Detective Comics: The Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 2 features Batman’s new recruits in a trial by fire from an all-star team led by writer James Tynion IV (Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dark Days: The Forge) and artists Alvaro Martinez (Batman Eternal) and Marcio Takara (Nightwing)!