Welcome back to Upcoming Comics!
This week marks the beginning of production for the Batgirl film, set within the DCEU – as opposed to The Batman, which was originally going to be DCEU but now seems to be a completely different beast. DC doesn’t particularly care for consistency, I suppose.
Maybe that’s a good thing? It’ll be nice to see the DCEU expanding its character roster with characters who haven’t had a fair shake in live action, such as Batgirl. It’ll also be nice to see JK Simmons returning as Commissioner Gordon, as well as the wonderful Brendan Fraser playing the criminal Firefly. But this will be yet another of many films in the DCEU that feels strange without Batman and Superman – characters that have, for some reason, been seemingly thrown to the sidelines of DC’s priority list in their shared universe. Batman is a complicated matter, but Superman certainly shouldn’t be – and he deserves more than being relegated to the CW.
In other news, I mentioned I wanted to cover some movies I’ve seen recently, and I’ve yet to mention Eternals. This is the second longest MCU movie, and it certainly feels it – plagued with overly long moments, uninspired action sequences and a generally flat execution, it’s easy to see why it hasn’t been showered in praise.
However, despite these things, I actually found myself having a good time with the movie! Some of the performances (Richard Madden’s in particular) are phenomenal, and the scope of the movie feels breathtaking – the Celestials are filmed in this wonderfully horrifying way that makes me feel like the MCU is actually trying to do something different, for once. Even though this movie wasn’t great, I want to see where that realm of the MCU goes. What did you guys think?
Now, here’s what we have for this week:
New creative team! Start of a new story arc as Batman leaves Gotham! “Abyss” part one! As Gotham celebrates surviving Fear State, Batman retreats alone into the darkness. But when he learns of a mystery involving Batman Inc., it forces the Caped Crusader to leave Gotham for a brand-new adventure! Thrills, chills, and international intrigue await! The Dark Knight begins a new story with superstar artist Jorge Molina and new writer Joshua Williamson!
Written by Joshua Williamson
Pencils and Inks by Jorge Molina
Colored by Tomeu Morey
Cover by Skan, Jim Lee, Rex Lokus, Jorge Molina, Tomeu Morey and Mico Suayan… (wait, really? All of them? that can’t be right.)
Thoughts: I have very middling thoughts on Joshua Williamson’s work, if I’m honest. Before Robin, none of his work really blew me away, and with him seemingly at the helm of DC’s current creative direction, I’m not really sure the quality of work reflects the privileged position he’s in. But Robin IS really good, and my coworkers liked this issue, so maybe there’s something here.
Batman News Critic: Jay
Dark Knights of Steel #2
An entire medieval world will be forever changed when a spaceship crash-lands from a doomed planet. Monarchs will die, kingdoms will rise, and what seemed the end of the world for many…was only the beginning! An epic high-fantasy story set in a DC Universe where nothing is what it seems… From worldwide bestselling writer Tom Taylor (DCeased, Superman: Son of Kal-El) and acclaimed artist Yasmine Putri comes a generational tale of good and evil within a brand-new DCU!
Written by Tom Taylor
Pencils and Inks by Yasmine Putri
Colored by Arif Prianto
Cover by Yasmine Putri
Thoughts: I liked this first issue fine! It has a lot of room to do a lot of great things in the twelve issues it has – but seeing how much was crammed into issue #1 makes me a little hesitant, all the same.
Batman News Critic: Matina and Myself
Arkham City: The Order of the World #3
Solomon Grundy has lived many lives over a great many years. Now, located by Ten-Eyed Man’s strange, but nonetheless effective, methods, he leads Dr. Joy and her many-eyed friend on a tour of the hidden history of Gotham City and the madness at its core.
Written by Dan Watters
Pencils and Inks by Dani Strips
Colored by Dave Stewart
Cover by Sam Wolfe Connelly
Thoughts: I’m not consistently reviewing this right now, but I think I should be. This is the book to read every month, I think – it finds a way to give you an original view of Gotham City and some of its less popular rogues each issue, while sowing the seeds for something larger at play.
Review will be covered in a trade release… but I do wanna get around to it sooner.
Batman ’89 #4
Someone’s hot on Bruce Wayne’s heels, out to prove his connection to Batman once and for all! Meanwhile, Harvey Dent plans his next steps for Gotham with just the simple flip of a coin. What does he have in store for Gotham, and can Batman twist probability in his favor?
Written by Sam Hamm
Pencils and Inks by Joe Quinones
Colored by Leonardo Ito
Cover by Joe Quinones
Thoughts: I have an issue with this Robin design. If you’re going to make a continuation of Burton’s films, don’t give your Robin a look that emerged from Damian Wayne in the 2000’s.
Batman News Critic: Jay
The Joker Presents: A Puzzlebox #5
It’s all coming together! With the Riddler’s treasure hunt complete, the villains must gather to assemble the mysterious box. But putting that many criminals in a room is a dangerous thing…Unless that was the plan all along. And finally, the Gotham Police will hear Two-Face, Harley Quinn, the Penguin, and the Mad Hatter’s side of the story. But they all end with the same thing—Batman!
Written by Matthew Rosenberg
Art by Jesús Merino, Chris Mooneyham, and Freddie Williams
Cover by Chip Zdarsky
Thoughts: I swear to god, I’ll get to reading this book sooner or later. Haven’t heard a bad word about it!
Review will be covered in a trade release.
Suicide Squad #10
The Suicide Squad barely manage to steal an alien technology from OA only to find themselves cut off from their transport back to Earth and on the run from Lanterns and Thanagarians. And no backup is coming from Earth because Amanda Waller is under fire from her onetime ally, current-time enemy: Rick Flag!
Written by Robbie Thompson
Pencils by Eduardo Pansica and Dexter Soy
Inks by Julio Ferreira and Dexter Soy
Colored by Alex Sinclair
Cover by Julio Ferreira, Marcelo Maiolo and Eduardo Pansica
Batman News Critic: Cam
Justice League Infinity #6
Both Justice Leagues arrive at the nexus of all realities, the Mirrored Room. Though they had hoped to find their old friend Amazo, what the League finds left behind in the ruins of the shattered mirrors is a far cry from the sentient android!
Written by J.M. DeMatteis
Pencils and Inks by Ethen Beavers
Colored by Nick Filardi
Cover by James Stokoe
Review will be covered in a trade release.
Beyond the Bat
Welcome to Beyond the Bat! Here you can see everything else that DC is releasing this week, beyond the scope of the books we cover on the website.
Most Excited: Arkham City: The Order of the World #3. Check this book out, please, and let me know if you want more consistent reviews on it!
Least Excited: Suicide Squad #10 – this character roster never really grabbed me, if I’m honest.
Wild Card: Batman #118. It’s been a while since this book has had a writer that really excites me, so let’s see if that changes any time soon.
Best wishes, and see you in the reviews!
Author’s Twitter: @ObnoxiousFinch