We’ve got a slew of releases hitting shelves tomorrow, so let’s not waste any time!
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.
TAKE MY MONEY
Batman: Curse of the White Knight #5
The GTO struggles to forgive Batman for his behavior on the tails of tragedy, but a promising path forward comes into focus when he uncovers a monumental clue about the mystery of Gotham’s ancestral curse. It may prove too little too late, as Azrael breaks free of Ruth’s mandate and unleashes a radical new reign of terror over the city and its competing super-criminals.
Written by Sean Murphy
Pencils and Inks by Sean Murphy
Colored by Matt Hollingsworth
Cover by Matt Hollingsworth and Sean Murphy
Josh’s Stance: While I think some of the allure of Murphy’s universe has warn off a little, I’m still enjoying his work quite a bit! This book took an interesting turn when it killed Gordon, and I’m still waiting to see how all of this unfolds.
Batman-News Critic: Brian
The Batman’s Grave #3
A corrupt politico dies by his own hand, but James Gordon is convinced there’s something more to it. Now, it’s time to ask for access to the Batman’s resources. And that is why, right now, in a stately Gotham City mansion, the Batman is being beaten to death.
Written by Warren Ellis
Pencils by Bryan Hitch
Inks by Kevin Nowlan
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Cover by by Bryan Hitch and Alex Sinclair
Josh’s Stance: Last month’s issue wasn’t quite as good as the book’s debut, but I still have faith that we’re in for a hell of a run when all is said and done. Because of that, The Batman’s Grave is at the top of my pull list.
Batman-News Critic: Josh
Detective Comics #1017
In the dead of winter, a child has gone missing from the Martha Wayne Orphanage in Gotham City…and the bearer of the Wayne family name is on the case. But to solve this mystery, Batman must turn to another bearer of the Wayne family name, his estranged son Damian, to hit the night skies as Batman and Robin once more. Can father and son put aside their differences to rescue the missing Miguel Flores? And what other dark turn is in store for the duo on their journey into the night? Don’t miss this special tale by guest writer Tom Taylor!
Written by Tom Taylor
Pencils by Fernando Blanco
Inks by Christian Alamy and Fernando Blanco
Colored by John Kalisz
Cover by Brad Anderson, Tony Salvador Daniel, and Kelley Jones
Josh’s Stance: Tom Taylor returns to writing Batman. I shouldn’t have to say anything else…
Batman-News Critic: Jay
Batman & the Outsiders #8
Queen takes rook in this master’s game of chess played by the Demon’s Head himself, Ra’s al Ghul, as he cultivates more of the Outsiders for his taking. Cassandra Cain is caught in the middle between friendship, family, and her own moral judgments. Meanwhile, Black Lightning continues to make his moves while Batman seems to be away on “Bruce Wayne” business.
Written by Bryan Edward Hill
Pencils and Inks by Dexter Soy
Colored by Veronica Gandini
Cover by Tyler Kirkham and Nei Ruffino
Josh’s Stance: Hill continues to grow and improve with this book, but the one thing Hill needs to show me to move this into the “Take My Money” category is consistency. A few more issues at the quality of Batman & the Outsiders #7, and I’ll be singing this book’s praises non-stop.
Batman-News Critic: Josh
Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Teen Titans The Judas Contract #1
The Dark Multiverse reimagines one of the most renowned stories in comic book history, “The Judas Contract”! In this shocking tale, Terra’s betrayal starts not with the Teen Titans, but with Deathstroke himself! Now, free from her mentor’s influence and supercharged by the same serum that turned Slade Wilson into the world’s deadliest man, Tara Markov will forge a new destiny, written in the Teen Titans’ blood.
Written by Mat Groom and Kyle Higgins
Pencils and Inks by Tom Raney
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Brad Anderson and Lee Weeks
Josh’s Stance: Kyle Higgins has delivered the best Tales from the Dark Multiverse story so far, so I’m happy to see him return, even if it’s in a co-writing role. Also, the source material will undoubtedly give us a lot to sink our teeth into, so I’m looking forward to this quite a bit, even if I’m cautious.
Batman-News Critic: Nick
Dark Knight Returns: The Cursed Child #1
Frank Miller returns to the Dark Knight Universe!
It’s been three years since the events of Dark Knight III: The Master Race. Lara has spent the time learning to be more human, and Carrie Kelley has been growing into her new role as Batwoman. But a terrifying evil has returned to Gotham City, and Lara and Carrie must team up to stop this growing threat-and they have a secret weapon. Young Jonathan Kent, “the golden child,” has a power inside of him unlike anything the world has ever seen, and it’s about to be unleashed…
Dark Knight Returns: The Golden Child is Frank Miller’s triumphant return to the world of the Dark Knight and joining him is the superstar artist Rafael Grampá, the mastermind behind the groundbreaking Mesmo Delivery. Following work in advertising and film, this incredible collaboration marks Grampá’s first comics work in six years, bringing his extraordinary detail and storytelling to the Dark Knight saga, resulting in a Dark Knight story like nothing you’ve ever seen before.
Written by Frank Miller
Pencils and Inks by Rafael Grampa
Colored by Jordie Bellaire
Cover by Rafael Grampa
Josh’s Stance: Oi… I don’t know. Frank Miller is such a mixed bag at this point that I just try to come in with no expectations or presumptions. The only thing I can say with certainty is that I’m glad Miller isn’t on art.
Batman-News Critic: Nick
Gotham City Monsters #4
Melmoth has come to Gotham City, and he’s ready to use the dark forces of the city to carry out his final attack on the Multiverse at large. While he figured his old servant Frankenstein would be rallying his monstrous friends to give him trouble, Melmoth didn’t bargain on the Bat family taking notice. (Don’t they have enough to do with Bane and all that other stuff?) But take notice Batwoman has, and she’s looking to add some extra kick to the efforts of Killer Croc, Lady Clayface, and the rest. It may not be enough, however, when Melmoth puts one of their own- Andrew Bennett, a.k.a. I, Vampire-under his evil spell.
Written by Steve Orlando
Pencils and Inks by Amancay Nahuelpan
Colored by Trish Mulvihill
Cover by Hi-Fi, Howard Porter, Jay David Ramos, and Philip Tan
Josh’s Stance: After a misstep with the second issue, Gotham City Monsters #3 took a step in the right direction, and I’m hoping that momentum continues here. This issue will most likely determine the intrigue of the next few episodes.
Batman-News Critic: Michael
Harley Quinn: Year of the Villain #1
Harley Quinn hosts “Villainy’s Biggest Night” as the DCU’s most dastardly gather at the Hall of Doom to do what they do best-congratulate themselves! But one villain has a secret plan, fueled by years of being overlooked by his peers, and the burning desire to receive the praise he so rightly deserves… Don’t miss out on a one-of-a-kind comic book experience, with the winners decided by you, the fans! Who will be crowned DC’s Villain of the Year?
Written by Mark Russell
Pencils and Inks by Mike Norton
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Amanda Conner and Paul Mounts
Josh’s Stance: I’ve made it clear that I’m pretty burnt out on Harley, but there’s some hope here. When Mark Russell is on his game, he’s really on his game! I’m hoping this will be one of those instances because I want to like this.
Batman-News Critic: Matina
“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”
Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy #4
The hits just keep on coming as Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy crawl away from the rabbit hole that is the Mad Hatter’s endless tea party and get back on the road- but when they take a rest in a seemingly abandoned dinosaur theme park, they may not be the only clever girls hanging around…
Written by Jody Houser
Pencils by Adriana Melo
Inks by Mark Morales and Wade von Grawbadger
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Mikel Janin
Josh’s Stance: I continue to feel this is nothing more than a wasted opportunity… That probably won’t change at any point throughout this book’s run.
Batman-News Critic: Nick
GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:
Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 2: Arkham Knight – After Batman’s battle with the Arkham Knight, things only get worse when one of his allies jumps into the fray and ends up in way over their head! Damian was so certain he could succeed against the Arkham Knight where his father failed-and not only was he wrong, but the Knight has a surprising plan for the son of Batman! And when the face behind the mask is finally revealed, we’ll learn who’s taken up the mantle of the Arkham Knight. Collects Detective Comics #1001-1005, Annual #2 and a story from Detective Comics #1000.
Harley Quinn & the Birds of Prey – Relive key stories of the Birds of Prey-Black Canary, Huntress, Renee Montoya, and Cassandra Cain, not to mention Harley Quinn-along with the deadly Black Mask! This new title collects Detective Comics #831, Nightwing/Huntress #2, Gotham Central #6, Batman #567, Catwoman #16 (2002 series) and a story from Showcase ’96 #3.
- Additional releases from DC Comics: The Dollhouse Family #1, Doom Patrol: Weight of the Worlds #6, Far Sector #6, The Flash #84, Hawkman #19, Justice League Odyssey #16, Ocean Master: Year of the Villain #1, Supergirl #37, Superman #18, Titans: Burning Rage #5, and Wonder Twins #10.