I hope everyone had a happy and safe 4th of July! I know this year’s festivities probably weren’t what many of you were hoping for, but holidays – or moments and memories in general – are honestly what you make of them. So, hopefully it was one for the books!

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.

JULY 7th

TAKE MY MONEY

DCeased: Dead Planet #1
After a corrupted Anti-Life Equation turned billions into monsters-including Earth’s Greatest Heroes-our planet was as good as dead. Years later, a distress call brings Damian Wayne, Jon Kent, and Cassie Sandsmark-the Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman of Earth 2-back to a dead planet…but what will this new Justice League find waiting for them? If life still exists on Earth, who-or what-is lying in wait for these heroes? The original creative team of Tom Taylor and Trevor Hairsine reunite for the sequel to the 2019 blockbuster series DCeased!

Art by Trevor Hairsine
Written by Tom Taylor

Josh’s Stance: Hell yeah! I’ve really had a blast with the various DCeased books, and I look forward to the continuation of the heroes that escaped. I do with DC had pulled in a different artist than Hairsine though because my only complaint about the original story was the art.

Batman News Critic: Casper

 

INTRIGUED

Batman & the Outsider #14
Batman is going to push the Outsiders to their absolute limits in order for them to stop Ra’s al Ghul once and for all. He’ll force them all to use their powers in ways they never imagined and possibly push them over the edge in the process! Batman and Black Lightning will need to decide who the true leader of the team is, or Ra’s’s victory will be assured!

Written by Bryan Edward Hill
Pencils and Inks by Dexter Soy
Cover by Tyler Kirkham and Arif Prianto

Josh’s Stance: Based on the solicitation, I almost feel as though Hill is spinning his wheels a little bit and I hope that’s not the case. This book has been so good, and I want nothing more than to see that quality continue!

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

The Batman’s Grave #8
This was never about just a few strange murders. A war has been declared on the justice system of Gotham City. And the Batman finally has a clue as to who is running the war. He’s been fighting his own shadow the whole time.

Written by Warren Ellis
Pencils and Inks by Bryan Hitch
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Cover by Bryan Hitch, Jee Hyung Lee, and Alex Sinclair

Josh’s Stance: The quality and craft of this book has been excellent! It hasn’t gone for gimmicks or shock to gain attention. Instead, it’s just been about telling a good, quality story – something that’s underrated in comics today!

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

Detective Comics #1023
Just when you thought it was safe to crack a smile, The Joker is back to crash the party! Hot on the heels of “Joker War,” the Clown Prince of Crime is revealed as the mastermind behind Two-Face’s turmoil-but to what end? Batman will need all the allies he can get, and what better ally than Harvey Dent? Can the Dark Knight cure his friend once and for all in time to fight the greatest battle of his life?

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Pencils by Brad Walker
Inks by Andrew Hennessy
Colored by Brad Anderson
Cover by Brad Anderson, Andrew Hennessy, and Brad Walker

Josh’s Stance: I would really like to know if Joker was originally part of this Two-Face story… I’m going to assume no, but I could be wrong. Anyway, I was liking this story way more when it was just focused on Two-Face, and I really wish DC would just let Tomasi write his Batman book without the interference of events and crossovers. Honestly, Tomasi is one of DC’s best writers and he should be leading the Bat-books… Not the other way around.

Batman News Critic: Casper

 

 

MIXED

Justice League #48
As writer Simon Spurrier jumps on board for the start of the three-part tale “The Rule of War,” it’s close encounters…of a Justice League kind! After answering a distress signal from distant space, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, and Green Lantern discover an abandoned cargo ship full of young aliens! When the League attempts to return the children to their home planet, they are met with awe, terror, and war! Thus begins a three-part storyline that will take the League to a previously unknown planet, with an all-new species, a dangerous mystery, and a new, otherworldly villain.

Written by Simon Spurrier
Pencils by Aaron Lopresti
Inks by Matt Ryan
Colored by David Baron
Cover by David Marquez

Josh’s Stance: Look, all I’m going to say is this… I’ve, personally, never read anything from Si Spurrier that I’ve actually liked. So… I’m not feeling too promising for this run – especially based on the cover – but I’ll give it a fair chance.

Batman News Critic: Nick

 

“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”

Batman #94
The Designer’s machinations have left Batman’s life in tatters! Gotham City’s ambitious rebuilding has skittered to a halt as  new powers are rising to shape its destiny-and Batman is powerless to stop them! With no Alfred or Bat-Family to lean on, the Dark Knight stands alone against the ascendance of his greatest adversary!

Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Rafael Albuquerque and Guillem March
Colored by David Baron
Cover by Tony Salvador Daniel and Tomeu Morey

Josh’s Stance: *Sigh* I’m just trying to mentally prepare myself. The cover is so melodramatic, and I know what’s inside is only going to be so much worse. I might be in the minority here, but I’m not looking forward to Joker War. The entire thing just screams “desperate.”

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

Harley Quinn #74
Harley Quinn’s sojourn in L.A. has been full of tragedy and heartbreak, from the death of her friend to uncovering a deep web of moral compromise that’d make even the most sadistic Batman villain’s stomach churn. In the epic finale to our story, Harley will come face to face with the person pulling the strings and learn who’s out to see her fail!

Written by Sam Humphries
Pencils and Inks by Sami Basri
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Guillem March and Arif Prianto

Josh’s Stance: I’m still not ready to jump on this Harley train at the moment. I feel like I can’t escape her. I’m reading the Harley Quinn & the Birds of Prey book, at the moment, the Black, White, & Red, and Criminal Sanity – this is in addition to her appearances in other books. My cup runneth over for now.

I’ll definitely circle back to this run – probably as a trade – and I’ve honestly heard good things about what Humphries is doing, I just know I’m not in the mindset to read it at the moment.

Batman News Critic: Matina

 

Young Justice #16
Impulse unleashed! Bartholomew Henry Allen II has traveled to the edges of space and time-and along the way, he’s discovered truths that he’s kept from even his closest friends. Until now. The truth behind the legacy of Young Justice is revealed! What does tomorrow hold for Young Justice?

Written by Brian Michael Bendis and David F. Walker
Pencils and Inks by Scott Godlewski
Colored by Gabe Eltaeb
Cover by Gabe Eltaeb and John Timms

Josh’s Stance: I spent so much time waiting for the team to return to earth thinking that the book would finally find purpose and resonate with me… And that still hasn’t happened. I really want to like this book, but it isn’t giving me much reason to.

Batman News Critic: Matina

 

  • Additional releases from DC Comics: DC Classics: The Batman Adventures #2, Doom Patrol: Weight of the Worlds #7, The Flash #757, The Green Lantern: Season Two #5, Hawkman #25, House of Whispers #22, Justice League Odyssey #22, Lois Lane #12, Superman #23, The Terrifics #28, and Wonder Woman #758.

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH

There are no Batman-related graphic novels releasing this week.

  • Additional graphic novels from DC Comics: Supergirl: Being Super