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Comic Book Review: Batwing #2

By: Adam Basciano

This issue begins 8 months in the past.  Batman presents David with the Batwing armor.  David is clearly impressed with the armor, yet Batman reminds him that the armor is simply a tool.  The man inside is the most important part of Batwing’s arsenal.  Cut to the ending of last issue where David had been stabbed from behind by Massacre.  We’re still in the past but we’ve moved forward in time, for anyone keeping track at home.  Just as Massacre is about to deliver the killing strike, Officer Kia Okuru comes to the rescue firing shots at Massacre.  The scene shifts to The Haven, where Matu is tending to a badly wounded David.  Luckily for David the bade narrowly missed his heart, leaving him with a punctured lung and massive blood loss.  When discovering that Kira is alive but was badly beaten, David is determined to rejoin the fight, despite hardly being able to stand.  Meanwhile, Masacre’s next target is a school teacher who was once the superhero Thunder Fall of the Kingdom.  Despite putting up a valiant fight, Thunder Fall looses an arm for his troubles. Batwing arrives on the scene ready to take the fight to Massacre.

While last issue had a CSI type quality to it, this issue felt more like a traditional superhero story.  While this story didn’t really expand on the main character’s back story, we did learn a lot about David’s character.  He has an incredible will power and determination.  So much so, he is willing to tranquillize his ally and forego his own health to do what is right.  It makes perfect sense why Bruce Wayne would choose him as a Batman operative.  Technically speaking this issue hasn’t really moved the story forward.  At the end of issue two we are seemingly back at the beginning of issue one.  Having said that, the second installment manages to deepen the intrigue of Massacre.  As for the mystery of The Kingdom, just when Judd Winick drops a clue, said clue leaves you with more questions.

He may not be a world-class chef and his name isn’t Jamie, but Ben Oliver is cooking up a quite the delight when it comes to the art in this book.  Once again issue two provides images worthy enough of being in a museum, neatly packed in between the front and back cover of a comic book.  The layout of the panels really enhances the quality of the artwork.  There are anywhere from three to six panels per page each featuring a specific image.  This really allows you to take time to focus on the detail in each drawing, rather than being bombarded with images, not knowing wear to look first.  My favourite piece of art is on the last page. The combination of light and shadow really gives Batwing this ominous larger than life look that says; I’m here to take some names, and kick some @$$!

 This issue lacks the oomph and surprise quality of the premiere issue.  That’s not to say that it’s bad or anything.  It’s just about on par with its predecessor  The only gripe I can actually find with this issue is the annoyingly plain blue background of the cover, featuring a confrontation that doesn’t truly take place in the book.  Other than that this comic book remains a pillar of consistence in story, writing, and art.  In terms of the plethora of bat-titles in the New 52, this is one of two books that go in to my “must read immediately” pile.

Overall Grade: 7.5/10

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