Detective Comics #1027
Written by Peter J Tomasi, Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka, James Tynion IV, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Marv Wolfman, Grant Morrison, Tom King, Scott Snyder. Dan Jurgens and Mariko Tamaki
Art by Brad Walker, David Marquez, Chip Zdarsky, Eduardo Risso, Riley Rossmo, John Romita Jr, Emanuela Luppachino, Chris Burnham, Walter Simonson, Ivan Reis, Dan Jurgens, Kevin Nowlan and Dan Mora
Inks by Andrew Hennessy, Klaus Janson, Bill Seinkiewicz and Joe Prado
Colors by Nathan Fairbairn, Alejandro Sanchez, Ivan Plascencia, Arif Prianto, Jordie Bellaire, Laura Martin, Marcelo Maiolo, Hi-Fi and Tamra Bonvillain
Letters by Rob Leigh, Joshua Reed, Aditya Bidikar, Tom Napolitano, Andworld Design, Troy Peteri, Carlos Managul, Steve Wands and John Workman
The Rundown: A series of short stories celebrate the past, present and future of the Dark Knight detective.
Blowback – Locked in a seemingly inescapable death trap, Batman will use past experiences with his Rogue’s Gallery to find a way to escape and seek out the man responsible. A good story with some great art throughout, but the ending fall apart quickly.
The Master Class – The members of the Bat Family each find themselves converging on the same crime scene to investigate the murder of a Gotham City detective. With each member looking at the scene using their unique skills, a suspect is discovered from the myriad of clues available and the team goes to hunt down a familiar face. The interpersonal moments are very well done and the overall tone of the story makes it fun and interesting. There is a definite focus on the detective aspects of these heroes and that makes the story work. I would have liked to see this story expanded. It was that good.
Many Happy Returns – Every year Joker decides to celebrate Batman’s birthday with a new and elaborate scheme that causes death and destruction. Every year Batman foils the plan. But when one year comes and the prank doesn’t appear, Batman gets nervous. Scouring the city looking for the Joker, he is surprised when the clown appears to give him a dark and ominous message. A well done and deeply troubling story that culminates in a final image that perfectly encapsulates the Batman/Joker dynamic.
Rookie – A young police officer gets a crash course it what it means to be a cop in Gotham City. After being inspired to serve, she quickly becomes disillusioned by the rampant corruption she sees around her and determined to make a difference, she follows the law. An act that puts a target on her back by her fellow officers and also gets the attention of a figure watching her from the shadows.
Ghost Story – Batman and Robin team with Deadman to take down a villain feeding on the souls of the dead and preventing them from moving on. As the heroes seek out the villain, Deadman wonders why Batman seems to unfazed by the events, but the Dark Knight has a unique insight about death from someone who meant the world to him. A very sweet story that has great humor and dialogue throughout.
Fore – A man named Steele calls out Bruce Wayne for a friendly game of golf early in the morning in the middle of a rain storm. Steele has determined that Wayne is weak and uses the game to intimidate him into selling a piece of property Steele wants. He has no idea who he’s playing with or what the stakes of the real game Steele is playing are. A great, cerebral story from Kelly Sue DeConnick. There is a measured tension throughout and everything plays pitch perfect to the finale.
Odyssey – A tragic explosion on a luxury ship financed by Bruce Wayne’s grandfather causes the deaths of its passengers and the loss of the ship and the small fortune it was carrying. A podcast crew is given the opportunity to search for the wreck by Bruce Wayne, but the truth about the tragedy will awaken some long buried secrets as well as betrayal. A great detective story that, despite a single moment of disbelief, plays out perfectly both in its tone and execution.
Detective #26 – A single figure stands on the roofs of Gotham and tells the city that he will stamp out crime and corruption to fulfill the vow he made one fateful night. As he chooses his costume, his personal and his name, he sets out into the night ready to fight crime. Then he sees Batman in action. A funny, but ultimately forgettable story from Grant Morrison.
Legacy – Batman travels alone to take on Doctor Phosphorus. In a battle across the city, Phosphorus tells the hero he is going to kill him, but not in the way anyone would suspect. The premise is really good and I really liked the art from Simonson. The story just didn’t have enough of a compelling narrative or emotional impact to keep me invested.
As Always – Commissioner Gordon recounts a ritual he has with Batman. One where they wait for the sun to come up after a particularly difficult night. When the sun doesn’t rise, Batman is called away to deal with an intergalactic problem that Jim couldn’t begin to fathom and he wonders if they will ever have those near dawn moments again. A dark, ominous story that is filled with great dialogue from Gordon and an undercurrent of hope that helps you remember why Batman is so necessary a hero. Beyond that, the story feels personal and you can put yourself in Gordon’s shoes and see things from his perspective throughout.
Generations: Fractured – Batman races to the museum to take on Calendar Man on Halloween night. The villain’s plan has a personal connection to Bruce Wayne but when he arrives and confronts the villain, the story switches to another Batman in the same museum on a completely different year. An interesting precursor to a larger story. I like the classic look of the art and am interested in seeing how the story unfolds.
A Gift – It’s day three of the Joker War and Batman must break into Wayne Enterprises to retrieve something of unique value. Unfortunately, with Joker in control of both the company and Lucius Fox, the Dark Knight will find that things have changed in the building and those changes could be deadly. A great precursor to a new storyline for the character with some fantastic art from Dan Mora.