Monday, October 27, 2014

Batman Eternal by Snyder and Tynion issue #20

This was the conclusion issue for Tim Steely's script divided into three events among Batgirl, Red Hood and Batwoman in Brazil; Batman, Bard and Killer Croc in the sewers; and Gordon, the warden and the guards of Blackgate trying to resolve a prison riot between Falcone and Penguin loyalists. Strangely enough, the first two issues of this three-part arc have been more superior and stellar in scope than this actual pay-off. Don't get me wrong. I still think that this one did a great job wrapping up each story neatly with resolutions that made sense--but something about the entire delivery feels weirdly unsatisfying for me. Maybe my expectations were just too high to appease. In any case, we get another fabulous cover by Alex Garner, and Emanuel Simeoni as the artist provided the rest of the art again and his use of dark shading in some edges and panels work really well for the characters and the settings involved. I personally enjoyed his illustrations in the forest. It was lush and foreboding to look at all at once.

I don't feel like going into the resolutions themselves for each story because I quite honestly didn't feel like there was any monumental significance to them. Sure, I can count the mission is Brazil to be a success and therefore a valid win since the Bat-team was able to uncover a sufficient amount of evidence to exonerate Gordon from the manslaughter charges. We also get yet another cutesy moment between Batgirl and Red Hood. Barbara is surprisingly softer now which is great because I wasn't really a big fan of the hothead mode she was in since Eternal started, but I was also suspicious of her sudden fondness for Jason, at least with the way she was physical about it. Hell, she just looks perfectly comfortable hugging him for the second time in the panel below. It's really cute.

I didn't know they were ever chummy. Not that I have a reason to complain. Like I said in my other review, I thought they're quite amazing together and I wouldn't mind if somebody in the writing staff decided that BG and Red Hood should have more scenes together, and possibly have their relationship develop and deepen into something that's more than just 'passing work buddies'. Am I hinting hard enough for a romantic angle or what? Well, excuse me! But just look at them and tell me that you don't see a potential for something more!

There is a significant revelation in the Gordon-Blackgate scenes. However, if you paid close attention to the events from issues 12-14 before, then this wouldn't be an unexpected twist, really. It turns out that Gordon's cellmate, the old man called "Leo" is no other than former mob boss Rex Calabrese, also known as The Lion. It's...there in the name, for Loki's sake! Anyway, that's still a great revelation in itself. Gordon Die-Hard-ing his scenes was sort of amusing to read too. The storyline for Batsy, Bard and Croc was probably the most underwhelming. The conflict with Ten-Eyes was resolved fairly quickly. Bard's sudden arrest of Killer Croc was great though because it once again shows Bard's code as a law enforcer and how he does not hesitate to implement it if he knows that an injustice has happened, but Croc managed to evade capture and Batman---well, he kinnda just stood there and watched Bard and Croc have at it...or not have at it. I don't know, Croc just got away and Bard didn't even get to shoot him. Batman didn't feel like he had to interfere either. That sequence felt weird to me.

The issue ends with an update of Stephanie Brown's whereabouts. It looks like her own story arc is about to move forward and have its overdue spotlight in the later issues. Speaking of story arcs, I failed to mention that we get a Red Robin/Harper Row/Professor Milo update in the previous issue too but that's only because it was so forgettable that I didn't feel I should bother. Hopefully when they make another cameo of that arc, something finally happens than just characters standing around, talking.


No comments:

Post a Comment