The misadventures of Ric Grayson continue in Nightwing #62. Now, if you’re like me, then you were excited with the tease of the Court of the Owls for this issue… Unfortunately, we barely get any of that here. Instead, we get more repetitive nonsense and filler. We got Ric’d y’all. We got Ric’d…
I’m in that group of people that love what Scott Snyder and Kyle Higgins did with Dick Grayson during the New 52. I love the connection and history they established between Dick and the Owls. I know not everyone was a fan of this development, but for me, it helped give Dick more context and backstory without needing to be tied directly to Batman. Now, having the Court come after Dick now that he’s “Amnesia Ric” (no relation to Pickle Rick), I’m all for it! In fact, it feels like the most logical, as well as the best, option to pursue considering our current circumstances.
The biggest problem with this issue is that there are only about three or four pages of fresh material. Everything else that takes place is just more regurgitation of what we’ve already received. Notice I said “more regurgitation.” As in, Jurgens and team are repeating something they’ve already repeated many times before. Nothing about that is exciting. Now, I know I usually gripe about the repetition in Nightwing, but this issue, in particular, is a massive offender! Forget spending half the book to recap what’s happened with Dick, Jurgens spends the entire damn issue doing that!
I mean, look… I get it. Dan Jurgens already wrapped up his previous story, but he needed this issue to set up “The Offer” and that took away the ability to start a new story or even start the confrontation with the Court of Owls… So, he just recaps everything! Dick Grayson getting shot? Check. Dick losing his memory? Check. The confines of what Ric actually remembers? Check. Ric rejecting his friends and family? Check. Ric denouncing his former life as a hero while actively operating as a hero? Check. Ric joining the new Nightwings while refusing to call himself a Nightwing? Check. The Nightwings acknowledging Ric’s skill? Check. The Nightwings questioning how secretive Ric is and whether he can be trusted? Check. That one Nightwing recovering in a hospital after nearly getting killed? Check. I feel like there is no effort being put forth here. My twelve-year-old niece could’ve written this!
Honestly, I am disappointed. I expect more from DC and Dan Jurgens. They should be better than this. Hell, Jurgens could’ve easily taken this issue in a different direction that would’ve worked better and still setup “The Offer.” You’re bringing the Court of Owls in? Great! We’ve known for a while now that Dick Grayson is supposed to play a large role for the organization over time according to the Court’s plans… Why not show their perspective for the past few months? They’ve clearly been searching for Dick since the incident. Why not show that? Or, if not that, then why not take advantage of this time to develop the Nightwings? There are a ton of possibilities that would’ve been better than what we get here.
The only worthwhile moment in this issue is between Ric and Bea. In a bold move, Ric tells Bea who he “used to be.” With his vigilante past now out in the open between the two, I thought Jurgens was setting the pair up for an interesting arc. I mean, if anyone is going to call Ric out for his double standard of claiming he isn’t a vigilante while operating as a vigilante, it would be Bea. But she doesn’t. She acts as if she’s glad he’s left that life behind despite knowing he’s still doing it… What!?!? Now, I’m concerned she’s just being set up to serve as the standard trope of the superhero’s girlfriend. You know what I’m talking about! The trope where the girlfriend is always getting targeted and needs to be rescued. Yeah, that one… *Sigh*
The other “new” aspect is Lex Luthor’s offer. Again, take this with a grain of salt because we all know it isn’t going to lead anywhere until next month. I do think that Jurgens missed another opportunity though. Knowing that the Court was following Dick, everyone expected them to receive the offer from Lex. It would have been way more interesting had we been set up with this expectation, only to discover an offer was made to one of the new Nightwings. I mean, think about it… They’re all questioning Ric’s loyalty and reliability, and one of them is actually risking that loyalty… And you’d still have the Court looking to get involved. I don’t want to toot my own horn, but that would’ve been an issue worth reading!
You know what? Screw it! I’m going to toot my own horn. Toot! Toot!
Ronan Cliquet handles the art for this issue and does a respectable job. I’m not familiar with his work – or, at least not familiar enough to recognize it or associate his name to any other projects – but he does a respectable job. He draws Ric in a way that feels like a throwback to how we’d expect to see Dick/ Nightwing. The problem here is that I can’t decide if that’s a good thing. I loved seeing the swift, acrobatic movements because I want the real Dick Grayson to return. But at the same time, I feel like I’m watching Dick Grayson as Ric continues to deny who he is. It, like this entire concept, is infuriating. Hopefully, we get some promising announcements this week at DC. (And if I know Dan Didio, he’ll probably make sure he makes that announcement himself so he can be the hero that returns Dick Grayson to fans, despite the fact that he was the driving force behind all of this nonsense to begin with.)
- I don’t. This is a filler issue in every way.
Once again, DC appears to be tripping over dollars to pick up pennies. They were so desperate to make Dick different in an attempt to make him interesting, and this issue continues to prove that they’re not really doing anything different with him at all. The sad thing is, if you’re going to create an experiment like this, then you need to go for it. Don’t get cold feet and half-ass your attempt. Go big or go home.