Welcome back to another review, this issue focuses on the darker side of the Batman universe. The cover of the comic has Batman fighting cops on the roof of GCPD, you can tell he’s there because the Bat-light is right behind him. Like last week the cover is drawn very well, we get two good covers in a row. Let’s hope they can keep it up. This looks like a hard fight for Batman and sets a dark mood for the story. Carmine Falcone’s dive team searches the wreck of the Iceberg Casino for Penguin’s stuff as the story starts. There is too much going on in the pictures on the first page, can’t tell if the artwork is good or not.
Batman shows up and we get a montage of him beating up Carmine Falcone’s men all over the city. Good drawing of Batman but little hard to believe all of it happens in only one night, even for Batman. Batman gives a message to one of Carmine Falcone’s men. We learn what it is once we cut to Carmine Falcone’s place. I think Batman would have done this job in person. On the up side, Carmine Falcone is drawn great for once. We get more of Batman’s message through flashbacks as Carmine Falcone says he’s not worried. In the flashbacks Batman looks intimidating, as he should.
We cut to Harvey Bullock and Jason Bard looking at a crime scene, thing is now Harvey Bullock looks too old. Harvey Bullock and Jason Bard talk about how they’re at the scene against Interim Commissioner Forbes orders and how they hate him. Jason Bard is drawn well, Carmine Falcone’s man is tied up and badly drawn. Then we cut to a classics ‘goon sucking up to his boss’ scene with Carmine Falcone. Carmine Falcone spares the goon’s life as he calls Interim Commissioner Forbes to tell him to get Batman. This scene went in a different direction than I thought, this page has good drawing as well.
At the Bat-Cave, Batman and Alfred learn that Interim Commissioner Forbes is crooked. I like that Batman is realizing that now, reinforces how busy Batman is. We cut to James Bard meeting Vicki Vale at a crime scene where she questions him. Vicki Vale is drawn beautiful as she should be. As they talk, we get a flashback of Stephanie Brown’s parents talking about “dealing” with her. They’re looking at Stephanie Brown through a security camera, all three characters are drawn great. Stephanie Brown dodges a drive-by shooting as we return to James Bard and Vicki Vale at the crime scene. I love the drawing of Stephanie Brown diving for cover. James Bard and Vicki Vale argue about what James Bard can tell, as we get good drawings of both of them.
We cut to the GCPD as they set a trap for Batman as he fly’s in. The swat team in the back ground looks good, Interim Commissioner Forbes look ok but the sky looks terrible in my opinion. Batman pops out of nowhere, then argues with Interim Commissioner Forbes. He tells Batman that he wants Batman off the street, artwork tells the mood of the scene. James Bard tells the swat team to fire smoke bombs on Batman, what the hell? I thought he was a good guy. Smoke fills the roof as James Bard helps Batman get away, smoke looks ok. Interim Commissioner Forbes smashes the Bat-light and chews out James Bard.
Batman returns to the Bat-cave where he tells Alfred that he’s leaving Gotham for a bit. Batman without a mask looks ok, I would say that it’s nothing to write about but I am. The issue ends with the Bat-plane entering Hong Kong as a girl that looks like Catwoman, but is not, sees the Bat-plane. The unknown women is drawn well. This was a very good issue and one of my favorites so far.