We’ve got a light week ahead of us, and I wish I could say that I was looking forward to the few books that are in the pipeline… but I can’t. Granted, our coverage consists of Batman, Nightwing, and Teen Titans, and none of these books have really been hitting home for us. On a positive note, Black Mask: Year of the Villain is being released this week, and with Tom Taylor helming this story, this could be the one book worth getting excited about. Which poses the question, “What kind of weird world do we live in when a tie-in, one-shot of a C-list villain makes us more excited than Batman?”

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.

AUGUST 21st

MIXED

Batman #77
“City of Bane” continues! The last of the independent villains are on the run, leaving Gotham City entirely to Bane and his cronies—including Flashpoint Batman and Gotham Girl! Though this means a semblance of peace on the streets, the iron grip of tyranny is squeezing all life out of Gotham. And with Bane’s machinations keeping other heroes out, the city really needs the Batman to return. Is Bruce Wayne ready to face his toughest foes yet…his father and the man who broke his back?

Written by Tom King
Pencils by Tony Salvador Daniel and Mikel Janin
Inks by Tony Salvador Daniel, Mikel Janin, and Norm Rapmund
Colored by Jordie Bellaire and Tomeu Morey
Cover by Tony Salvador Daniel and Tomeu Morey

Josh’s Stance: The last issue was surprisingly better than previous issues. Was it great? No. Does the book still have a plethora of problems? Yes. Any improvement is welcomed at this point though, and I’m just hoping for the title to end on a better note. Will it? Who knows? I’m not going to hold my breath.

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

Teen Titans #33
In the wake of the Terminus Agenda and Crush’s first encounter with Lobo, the Teen Titans begin again at Mercy Hall with a new mission and a new lease on life. But just when they catch their first break in ages in their hunt for the Other, Robin confirms that the person who let his prisoners escape…was one of his teammates. As Robin’s hunt for the mole begins, Lobo accepts a gift from Lex Luthor…and an unholy alliance is born!

Written by Adam Glass
Pencils by Sean Chen
Inks by Norm Rapmund
Colored by Ivan Plascencia
Cover by Bernard Chang and Marcelo Maiolo

Josh’s Stance: Teen Titans has been mediocre at best, but Lobo has definitely helped bring a certain energy to the book that’s needed. Because of that, I’m actually looking forward to this chapter. Hopefully Glass and Chen deliver…

Batman News Critic: Matina

 

“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”

Nightwing #63
While the Nightwings recover from their last battle against the fiendish Burnback, Ric reflects on the small portion of his past that he remembers—life in the circus as the youngest member of the Flying Graysons—in hopes of finding any clues as to what kind of man his parents hoped he’d become…perhaps a certain Talon has the answers he seeks?

Written by Dan Jurgens
Pencils and Inks by Ronan Cliquet
Colored by Nick Filardi
Cover by Nick Filardi and Bruno Redondo

Josh’s Stance: Last month’s issue was a complete waste of time, so I’m hoping Jurgens actually delivers something worthwhile here. Bringing the Court into Nightwing at this point makes a lot of sense, and considering most readers just want Ric to go away, it’s nice to have something to look forward to… Maybe.

Batman News Critic: Nancy

 

NOTES:

  • Titles we’ll cover in This Week in Comics: Black Mask: Year of the Villain #1, as well as the titles listed above.
  • Additional releases from DC Comics: Aquaman #51, Lucifer #11, Pearl #12, Scooby Doo, Where Are You? #100, Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #2, Superman: Year One #2, and Wonder Woman: Come Back to Me.

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:

Batman: Kings of Fear – In this collection of the six-issue miniseries, Batman’s been overseeing Gotham City for years now and isn’t sure how much of a difference he’s making. Doubt, fear and insecurity are starting to take over. And as all of those negative feelings set in, the Scarecrow orchestrates a riot at Arkham Asylum to give the Dark Knight one of his greatest challenges yet!

 

Grayson: The Super spy Omnibus New Edition – Collects all of Dick Grayson’s adventures as Agent 37 for the spy organization known as Spyral under a new title! Faking his death, and entering a game of cat and mouse, Dick must take down Spyral from the inside in order to save his loved ones. This omnibus edition collects GRAYSON #1-20, SECRET ORIGINS #8, GRAYSON ANNUAL #1-3, GRAYSON: FUTURE’S END #1, ROBIN WAR #1-2 and NIGHTWING: REBIRTH #1, with appearances by Batman, Superman and more!