So, DC dropped Diamond as a distributor… I mean… That’s… Shocking. Expected, but shocking. I know many shop owners aren’t necessarily happy about this since it will require a little more work – and, potentially, money – on their end, but this could be good for the industry long-term. Only time will tell. For now, keep supporting your local shops.
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
The Joker 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1
The Clown Prince of Crime celebrates 80 years of chaos! The Joker has been the greatest villain in comics since his debut and to celebrate we have a who’s who of comics’ finest talent giving the Harlequin of Hate the birthday roast he deserves. The stories feature a range of terror and anarchy, showing how the Joker has impacted Gotham City from the police to Arkham Asylum, from the local underworld to the Dark Knight and his allies! Make sure to RSVP to this birthday bash-you wouldn’t want to wake up with a Joker Fish on your doorstep, would you?
Written by Brian Azzarello, Tony Salvador Daniel, Paul Dini, Eduardo Medeiros, Greg Miller, and More…
Pencils and Inks by Jock, Rafael Albuquerque, Lee Bermejo, Simone Bianchi, Tony Salvador Daniel, and More…
Colored by David Baron, Jordie Bellaire, Lee Bermejo, Simone Bianchi, Michelle Madsen, and More…
Cover by Greg Capullo and FCO Plascencia
Josh’s Stance: This should be quite a bit of fun! As with other anniversary issues, this is a great opportunity for talent to pay homage to past stories and depictions of characters, and if there’s ever been a character that has range, it’s the Joker!
Batman News Critic: Nick
The Batman’s Grave #7
There’s a lunatic on the loose and a dead body inside a supposedly impregnable home. Members of the justice system are being murdered, and nobody knows what’s happening. Does the Batman have the single clue that’s the key to the whole nightmare?
Written by Warren Ellis
Pencils and Inks by Bryan Hitch
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Cover by Bryan Hitch and Alex Sinclair
Josh’s Stance: The plot appears to be kicking into gear with all of the threads coming together, so I’m hoping we see an increase in progression going forward. That being said, despite the story taking it’s time to really get going, the writing and art have been top-notch, and I look forward to the back-half of this book.
Batman News Critic: Josh
Justice League #46
“Vengeance Is Thine” part three! On Themyscira, peace hangs in the balance when the Justice League is caught trespassing on the island of the Amazons! As the Spectre’s wave of vengeance sweeps across the world, the island is now twisted with rage. In order to quell mass retribution, the team must enter the Pit of Tartarus and find Jim Corrigan, but first they will have to fight their way into it-among each other and with their not-so-gracious Amazonian hosts!
Written by Robert Venditti
Pencils by Xermanico and Robson Rocha
Inks by Xermanico, Daniel Henriques, and Robson Rocha
Colored by Romulo Fajardo, Jr.
Cover by Brad Anderson and Gary Frank
Josh’s Stance: The previous issue faltered for me a little – I have to be honest and admit that I tend to get overly excited when I see Spectre – but I’m still enjoying what Vendetti is doing. And the involvement of the Amazons definitely adds an interesting element to things.
Batman News Critic: Nick
Batman: Secret Files #3
Spinning out of the pages of Batman! Discover the origins and motivations behind the cabal of assassins who have come to Gotham to stop Batman from enacting his plans to save the city-including Deathstroke, Cheshire, Merlyn, and the new threats of Mr. Teeth and Gunsmith. What brought this team together, and who is frightening enough to boss Deathstroke around? It’s five killer tales from five killer creative teams in this can’t-miss issue!
Written by Vita Ayala, Phillip K. Johnson, Mariko Tamaki, James Tynion IV, and Dan Watters
Pencils and Inks by Victor Ibanez, Sumit Kumar, John Paul Leon, Riley Rossmo, and Andie Tong
Colored by Jordie Bellaire, John Paul Leon, FCO Plascencia, Ivan Plascencia, Alejandro Sanchez
Cover by Guillem March and Arif Prianto
Josh’s Stance: Mmmm… Look, I’m just going to be honest… None of the writers are getting me excited. Hopefully they prove me wrong.
Batman News Critic: Josh
Harley Quinn #73
Los Angeles turns on everyone eventually, and now it’s turned on Harley Quinn! As she discovers more about the death of her friend, she decides it’s time to leave town-but the wrestling league she almost considered a family won’t let her go! She’s hit on a big conspiracy-and it just might kill her!
Written by Sam Humphries
Pencils and Inks by Sami Basri
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Romulo Fajardo, Jr. and Guillem March
Josh’s Stance: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m tired of this whole schtick. It hasn’t really worked for me since Palmiotti and Conner left, and even then, I needed to take a break from time to time.
Batman News Critic: Matina
Having a chat with the Clown Prince of Crime is scary enough…being captured, tied down, and forced to listen to him is something else! Especially when you’re Ric Grayson, and The Joker just wants you out of action so he can get to the Dark Knight. With no idea what his history with The Joker might be, Ric doesn’t find this situation one bit funny.
Written by Dan Jurgens
Pencils and Inks by Ronan Cliquet
Colored by Nick Filardi
Cover by Nick Filardi and Travis Moore
Josh’s Stance: Welp… Nightwing is still kind of treading water… I mean, it’s still better than it was prior to Jurgens stepping in, but there’s not really much to get excited for.
Batman News Critic: Michael
“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”
The greatest heist in history is underway in Gotham City, courtesy of the mysterious crimemaster known as the Designer! Batman knows what he needs to do, but in order to stop the plot, he must first escape the most ingenious death trap the Riddler has ever devised!
Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Guillem March
Colored by Tomeu Morey
Cover by Tony Salvador Daniel and Yasmine Putri
Josh’s Stance: You know… Prior to coronavirus hitting, I was trying really hard to find the silver lining here… And then I spent the past two months revisiting older Batman stories. You know what I’ve realized during these two months? I am not a fan of this run. It’s not terrible – thought I’d say some character/ plot decisions are – but it’s definitely not great. I just don’t think Tynion has the writing chops to deliver the quality that should be delivered when it comes to Batman.
Batman News Critic: Josh
- Additional releases from DC Comics: Amethyst #3, DC Classics: The Batman Adventures #1, The Flash #755, Justice League Odyssey #21, Legion of Super-Heroes #6, and Lois Lane #11.
GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:
There are no Batman-related graphic novels releasing this week.