Thursday, October 14, 2010

Bruce Wayne: The Road Home: Batgirl #1

Overall: This issue begins with Batgirl happening across a break-in at a Waynetech research facility where some man dressed in black was in the process of stealing an experimental gun that was capable of shooting bullets through walls. Steph tries to wrangle the mystery man, but he uses super-speed, Green Lantern power blasts and invisibility to escape Steph with the gun. After Steph leaves, the mystery man unmasks and reveals Bruce Wayne(!!!!!!!)!!! Ahem... So Steph reports back to Oracle who tells Steph that she was going to send the Birds of Prey after the mystery man since he's proven too dangerous for Steph to take on alone. Naturally Steph disobeys Oracle's decree to not continue the search, and with the help of Proxy, Steph discovers the mystery man's secret base and manages to dispatch his hired goons. After some thought, Steph realizes that the mystery man had to be targeting somebody at the nearby Crime Alley Reclamation Press Conference, and upon getting there she spots old boyfriend and current Red Robin, Tim Drake on stage. After some more quick thinking, Steph manages to track the mystery man down to a parking garage seven blocks away. Steph confronts him and demands to know who he was, since with all of the powers he was exhibiting there was no reason he needed that gun to commit a murder. Upon hearing that, Bruce unmasks and tells Steph that the whole situation was a test. Before he can tell Steph she did a good job, Steph slaps Bruce in the face(!)and runs off. Bruce catches up with Steph a bit later and Steph apologizes for the slap, but explains she was afraid Bruce's return would herald the end of her time as Batgirl. Bruce pretty much gives Steph his okay to continue being Batgirl, and this issue ends with Bruce telling Alfred that it looks as if Steph had really grown into the Batgirl role.

Well, this issue surprised the flying (insert favorite expletive here) out of me! I was absolutely STUNNED to see that Bruce was back in this issue, especially with the Return of Bruce Wayne mini-series still going on. So yeah, this was probably the most surprised I've been while reading a comic since... well, since I can remember. Besides the shock value of seeing Bruce back and interacting with Steph and Alfred, the story itself was DAMN good. It would have been REALLY easy for Bryan Q. Miller(writer)to just rest on his laurels and let the shock of seeing Bruce carry this issue, but no, he also told a fantastic story. The way he interweaved the work he's been doing in the Batgirl series with Steph's prior storylines was really impressive. We got some good flashbacks, fantastic dialogue, great art, a great story and a hell of a surprise. The only question that was really in my head after I finished this comic was, does this issue deserve a perfect score?

Score: 10 out of 10. Yes, yes it does deserve a perfect score.Who IS that masked man?!?


  1. I always wondered who win in a fight between Steph and Cyclops.

  2. HA!! Well thankfully that's one less question for you to worry about Kello!

  3. Woooooooooooo FINALLY!!! I've read this issue. It may have taken a week but darn it I made it. And I'm right along with you and JT. Definitely deserved a 10. I had NO idea how I thought BG and Bruce would interact, but I definitely liked how Stephanie handled herself and told Bruce how she felt.

    I mean geez, she slapped the hell out of him. Lol. I don't think many women ever THOUGHT about doing that to the Bachelor Bruce.

    Great review X.

    I loved this issue. Now on to the next paythway on the road home!! :)

  4. Lol I knew you'd mention the big slap. That was so awesome, she slapped the taste outta Bruce's mouth. I loved this though, because she always has been trying to get Bruce's respect and she finally got it. Hell, comparing someone to Grayson is the best compliment Bruce can give to someone.

  5. Glad to hear that you liked this one Lisha. And that you finally found some time to read some books! :P

    Looking back at this comic, I'm still so impressed with how Bryan put together a great story instead of just phoning it in. The way he touched on Steph and Bruce's past, and Steph(and Alfred's!)reactions to Bruce's test was really pretty awesome. This whole issue was pretty awesome!

    I think that's such a great point, JT. Steph was always after Bruce's respect, and all she ever was to him was just a piece to be used. So it was really satisfying to see her FINALLY get Bruce's seal of approval.

  6. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Bryan Q. Miller is a hell of a writer. I mean he'd written episodes of Smallville but the way he's been writing Batgirl is amazing, I can't wait to see what else he has up his sleeve. I think he could even write a great Jason Todd.

  7. Yeah, agreed. He's definitely on my short list for writer of the year. Right now I'd say Bryan, Ed Brubaker, Dan Way and Tony Bedard are my top 4 right now. One of them will wind up dethroning GEOFF "1959" Johns as my favorite writer in my rapidly approaching Year End Awards.

    Man, can you imagine the job he'd do with Jason? Hell, he made Damian likable, he'd make Jason AMAZING again!

  8. Lmao @ Geoff "1959" Johns. That's hilarious. If I had to pick my top four writers of the year so far I'd probably go with Dan Way as well for his work on DP, Daken and Wolverine Origins, Judd Winick for PG, Red Hood and Gen Lost, Bryan for Batgirl and Gail for Birds of Prey. Also, we should do what we discussed for the year end awards, since the mid-year never happened :P

    Good point, I hadn't even thought about his great job writing Damian. Hell even his Bruce felt like a genuine Bruce and that's his first time writing him. So if he can write amazing stories with Steph, do a perfect Bruce, Dick, Babs and Alfred, AND make Damian likable than he could definitely do great with Jason. Hell he could probably even redeem Arsenal.

  9. Lol. Yes X, finally time has slowed down enough for Falisha Ann to read some comics and I still have a few to read. :)

    And its' funny how we look at the composition of comics, you guys look at comics based on writers, art second. I look at the art and writer secondly. I may know 3-4 writers style by heart and Bryan has definitely made his way into my heart. As JT said, he's a really talented writer.

    I know it'll never happen but if all comic writers could write like some of the best in the game, the world would be a better place. lol.

  10. Yeah, we def should try to get something together for the year end awards. I mean hell, we've got like two months to get things planned, so I should be able to do this, right? :P

    That's really interesting, Lisha. I know that personally I always check out who's writing the comic before I read it(and I mean ALWAYS), but I rarely/never look to see who the artist is. The only time I'll look to see who the artist was if I was REALLY impressed by the art in the book. But yeah, since you're so artistically talented, I guess you're drawn to the art, while I'm drawn to the story first.

  11. Well, it's expected of you to see who wrote it I mean you ARE the King of Comics. Lol, and there is ONE name I stay away from, well 3. Frank Miller, Grant Morrison and dear god Greg Rucka. They've ruined a few comics for me with their terrible writing. I've been considering giving Rucka another try, but the other two oh no. Not even the art could save them and have me read something of theirs. Unless you and JT BOTH gave it a 9+ rating. Lol.

  12. Yeah X, it should be easier than getting you to do a podcast! :P

    It's funny you guys mention that because in my GLC review I typed today I mentioned how wonderful the art is, because it's friggin gorgeous, and I STILL forgot to see who the artist was. I'd assume it's Ivan Reis though.

  13. Lisha, I agree FULLY about Frank Miller! His stories just plain don't make sense! Grant WAS good way back when(I don't know WHAT the hell's happened to him these past 4 years or so)and Rucka... I'd probably give him another shot too. He did some good work on Wolverine, so maybe that horrible Blackest Night: WW was a one-time only mis-step

    Heh-heh, maybe we could do a joint year in review podcast? HA!! Yeah, suuuuuure X...

    I know the most recent issue of GLC had a new art team, but I'm totally blanking on the names of the new guys...

  14. I mean, being new to the Comic Book reading society, lol, I picked up Frank Miller's "The Dark Knight Returns" and I was just completely upset at how bad it was and seriously thought about returning it. Lol.

    And Grant Morris, I'm just going to continue to pray for him. Lol.

    And as for Rucka, I've read some stuff that was good and bad, but was actually looking forward to the BN: WW and he just totally rained on my parade with a hail storm. Lol. But I am willing to read some more stuff by him. I'll try to keep an open mind lol. Any recommendations?

  15. Same here with Dark Knight and DKR, Lisha. I was pretty new to DC when I read both, and I'd heard people RAVE about how awesome those books were. Then I read them and was like, "This was some of the worst crap I've EVER read!!!"

    Morrison... Yeah. Next.

    Like you said, Rucka runs pretty hot and cold. He was REALLY cold w/ BN:WW, but he DID have some okay stuff in Marvel with Wolverine, and I just read a mini Avengers story by him that wasn't that bad. As for recs, not really... I can't think of anything written by Rucka that I absolutely loved...

  16. "Same here with Dark Knight and DKR, Lisha. I was pretty new to DC when I read both, and I'd heard people RAVE about how awesome those books were. Then I read them and was like, "This was some of the worst crap I've EVER read!!!"

    Couldn't agree more, I mean man that stuff was HORRIBLE.