We’re getting closer and closer to pausing/ wrapping up the current status quo, and “Endless Winter” isn’t turning out to be as good as I was hoping it would be. So, will the one-two punch of “Endless Winter” and Future State hold readers’ interest or just serve as a jumping-off point? I’m concerned it will be the latter.

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.

DECEMBER 15th

TAKE MY MONEY

Catwoman #28
Apparently taking down the mob, straightening out some crooked cops, and gaining control of Alleytown is not enough for Selina. She’s also taken it upon herself to make sure the streets of her newly adopted home are safe for the group of stray kids she’s taken under her wing-and she’s going to do it by teaching them to steal the streets back for themselves! Introducing: Catwoman and the Strays!

Written by Ram V
Pencils and Inks by Fernando Blanco
Colored by FCO Plascencia
Cover by Laura Allred and Joelle Jones

Josh’s Stance: Ram V is proving to be one of DC’s best writers, and not enough people are talking about him. Don’t sleep on this current run, because it is really good!

Batman News Critic: Michael

 

INTRIGUED

The Batman’s Grave #12
In this final issue, Scorn makes his final move to destroy justice in Gotham City! Injured and alone against an army of chaos, Batman has one chance to save the city: his ability to think like the victim. But the victim is always dead. The Batman can only win by using the approach of his own death.

Written by Warren Ellis
Pencils and Inks by Bryan Hitch
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Cover by Bryan Hitch and Alex Sinclair

Josh’s Stance: This is it! The final issue! The entire run has been building to a fight, so that better be what we get!

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

MIXED

Dark Nights: Death Metal #6
The battle rages as the entire DC Universe stands against the Darkest Knight! Villains fight alongside heroes working as one to banish this demon from the deepest corners of the Dark Multiverse. Meanwhile, the Robin King lurks nearby, his army of Groblins in wait. The dogs of war are loose and no one is safe.

Written by Scott Snyder
Pencils by Greg Capullo
Inks by Jonathan Glapion
Colored by FCO Plascencia
Cover by Greg Capullo, Jonathan Glapion, and FCO Plascencia

Josh’s Stance: Look, by this point, you all know how I feel about Death Metal. Are there moments where it’s fun? Sure. Is it convoluted and directionless? Absolutely.

Batman News Critic: Casper

 

Tales of the Dark Multiverse: Crisis on Infinite Earths #1
When the Anti-Monitor’s deadly grudge match with the Multiverse was finally foiled, there was only one Earth left! But which Earth? That was crucial to what would happen next. In one timeline, Earth-1’s Superman stopped the Superman of Earth-2 from going into final battle, but in the Dark Multiverse, it’s Jor-L of Earth-2 who survives, changing the landscape for all that follows. When Surtur comes looking to crush all life, the beleaguered heroes jump into their next big battle, jumping from one Crisis to the next…but will the last days of the Justice Society of America play out differently if Green Lantern Alan Scott can step into the darkness?

Written by Steve Orlando
Pencils and Inks by Mike Perkins
Colored by Andy Troy
Cover by David Marquez and Alejandro Sanchez

Josh’s Stance: The Dark Multiverse books have been very hit or miss. Their either great, or far from it. I’m hoping for the best, but at this point, it’s honestly a toss up.

Batman News Critic: Nick

 

Nightwing #77
Christmas has come to Gotham City, and all across the city people have taken time out of their busy schedules to spend time with loved ones. But Dick Grayson has found himself in the midst of a dilemma: How can he take time off when crime never sleeps? And how can he spend time with loved ones when he has pushed them all away? An answer, in the form of a random encounter with a lost soul-and kindred spirit-awaits him.

Written by Dan Jurgens
Pencils and Inks by Ronan Cliquet
Colored by Nick Filardi
Cover by Travis Moore and Alejandro Sanchez

Josh’s Stance: I find it somewhat interesting that after making such a point to move Nightwing out of the nightmare run we had for so long, that Jurgens is doubling back to keep the focus there. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy Ric is behind us, but let it actually be behind us.

Batman News Critic: Michael

 

“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”

Batman #105
Batman battles Ghost-Maker in the no-holds-barred, bloody conclusion of this epic tale…winner take Gotham City! And the outcome is not what you’re expecting! The future of Gotham City and the fate of Clownhunter hang in the balance!

Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Christian Duce, Alvaro Martinez, and Carlo Pagulayan
Colored by David Baron and Tomeu Morey
Cover by Jorge Jimenez and Tomeu Morey

Josh’s Stance: Wait… This is the end of this arc?… I have no faith in Tynion or this book right now. None.

Batman News Critic: Josh

 

Justice League #58
“Endless Winter” chapter five! In this turning point issue, the Justice League is scattered across the snow-covered globe, trying to stave off the frozen doom, leaving Green Lantern John Stewart to stand alone. At the Hall of Justice, he begins to piece together clues that could help turn the icy tide that threatens to overwhelm them all. But then an unexpected visitor arrives on cue: the Frost King himself! In the past, however, Queen Hippolyta, Swamp Thing, and Viking Prince witness a terrible decision made by Black Adam-one that will haunt them forever.

Written by Andy Lanning and Ron Marz
Pencils and Inks by Xermanico and Marco Santucci
Colored by Romulo Fajardo Jr., Arif Prianto, and Alex Sinclair
Cover by Francis Manapul

 

Teen Titans: Endless Winter Special #1
“Endless Winter” chapter six! Crush, Roundhouse, Kid Flash, and Red Arrow embark on a bonding exercise with new partners from the original New Teen Titans: Donna Troy and Beast Boy? Everyone’s limits will be tested as they brave the challenges of holiday shopping in Manhattan! And then, the city is buried in snow! When they discover a teen whose powers are triggered by the extreme cold, the team must decide if this new arrival is a future hero or villain. And in the past, Black Adam battles the Frost King with devastating consequences.

Written by Andy Lanning and Ron Marz
Pencils by Jesús Merino and Marco Santucci
Inks by Marco Santucci and Cam Smith
Colored by Hi-Fi and Arif Prianto
Cover by Bernard Chang and Marcelo Maiolo

Josh’s Stance: I was hoping “Endless Winter” would end up being surprisingly gripping or a ton of fun, and it’s turning out to be neither of these things. I’m hoping Future State delivers something more entertaining.

Batman News Critic: Nick and Matina

 

GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH

Batman: Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? Deluxe 2020 Edition Vol. 1 – New York Times bestselling author Neil Gaiman joins a murderer’s row of superstar artists to lend his unique touch to the Batman mythos! Spotlighting the story “Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader?” from Batman #686 and Detective Comics #853, in which Gaiman joins artist Andy Kubert and inker Scott Williams for a story that shines a new light on the Dark Knight, this title also collects stories from Secret Origins #36, Secret Origins Special #1 and Batman Black and White #2.

 

Super Friends: Saturday Morning Comics Vol. 2 – From the Hall of Justice come these tales of the Justice League of America, inspired by the hit animated TV series! In these late-1970s and early-1980s tales, the Justice League of America assembles to battle villains including Felix Faust, Gorilla Grodd, and Sinestro, and face the threat of the aliens who stole Atlantis. Plus, fun with Plastic Man and the Wonder Twins! Collects Super Friends #27-47, plus material from Super Friends Special #1 and Super Friends: Truth, Justice, and Peace.