Batman: Eternal, Vol. 1 by Scott Snyder
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Ok, so DC Rebirth has finally gotten me energised enough to sit down and try to plod through some of my New 52 backlog. I decided to go ahead with Batman: Eternal, the massive weekly Batman event that was part of Batman’s 75 anniversary. Because it was a weekly book a large amount of people worked on these issues; but my understanding is that it was largely plotted by Scott Snyder. I’m enjoying the story but it’s lacking in enough areas that it only rates three stars with me.
Maybe it’s a little too ambitious of an undertaking with a large cast of characters including most of the usual bat-family and some lesser used characters like Spoiler and the Specter. It also has quite a few villains in it. Of course that also the best thing about it — seeing all those old familiar faces pop up again. I especially like the inclusion of a supernatural subplot.
Basically the story starts with Jim Gordon firing his gun on a subway platform and causing two trains to collide head on. Everything else sorta flows out of that event as he is arrested and all sorts of ripples are sent through the Gotham underworld.
Pretty early in the story we get the New 52 origin story of Spoiler, the daughter of a D-List supervillain, Cluemaster.
Here is one of the more unique art styles in the book, I actually kinda like it. I chose this page because it shows Starfire, Scorpiana, and El Gaucho… this goes on as Batgirl, Red Hood, and Batwoman are trying to gather evidence to clear Gordan down in Brazil.
Batman asks Batwing to go with the Spectre to investigate what’s going on at Arkham Asylum, because he’s too busy trying to figure out who’s behind the plot to frame Jim Gordon.
Meanwhile Red Robin is hot on the trail of some nanotech that’s infested several children in Gotham. Harper Row’s [Is she still called Bluebird? I don’t know…] little brother is one of the infected kids so she stows away on his ship and he is not happy about it.
I assume that all of these various plot threads will likely be tied together at the end of the series but who knows. I’m glad I picked it up when the digital trades were on sale for $5 each.
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Batgirl, Vol. 2: Family Business by Cameron Stewart
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
The second volume of the relaunched Batgirl series contains BATGIRL #41-45, ANNUAL #3, and the Sneak Peek story from CONVERGENCE: INFINITY INC. #2. It’s all a bunch of uneventful guest appearances for the most part. I hated the two guest appearances by Dick Grayson which seemed to be out of character and stupid. The only overarching plot points I could detect were some very shallow and poorly executed side character romances.
To sum it up I’d call it mediocrity in pink. In my opinion you can skip this volume of Batgirl. It’s boring, banal, and trying to hard to be cutesy cutesy. Even the art was beginning to annoy me by the end of the book.
Jim Gordon is the first character to make a guest appearance in this volume of Batgirl. Here he is comming out to his daughter the he is the new Batman. That look that Barbra has on her face in panel 6 pretty much sums up my feelings about the whole Gordan as Batman storyline.
A lot of the book has scenes like this with Batgirl interacting with one of the many side characters. It feels like she flirts with every guy in her social circle.
This is the first time Dick Grayson makes an appearance in this volume. He disguises himself and she doesn’t know it’s him. Her eyeing his butt up as he’s leaving is I guess some sort of homage to Midnighter saying that he can identify him by his rear over in the main Grayson title. The art here is less annoying looking than the other art in the book.
Here’s another guest appearance this time by the girls from Gotham Academy. I hate the way Batgirl looks here. To me it’s like a deformed disney princess look.
I obtained an advance readers digital copy of this book through NetGalley’s Read to Review program.
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I received a slightly belated Christmas gift today. A handbag with Nightwing and Batgirl on it. I love it! I only wish that the graphic had been placed slightly lower so that the handle didn’t block part of Batgirl’s face, but other than that the bag is great. It seems to be fairly well made although I haven’t had a chance to put it to the test myself. I’ll probably use this until it falls apart.