Friday, December 23, 2011

Batman #4

Closing out this Friday night? The Batman! I always got a kick out of people calling him “The” Batman... That be like “The” Spider-Man! Or “The” Superman! Strangely enough, Bats is just egomaniacal enough to make “The” Batman work... Well, how's that for an odd introduction!?

Batman #4:

What Happened: The Batman manages to escape from the trap sprung by the Court of Owls last issue and heads back to the Batcave to lick his wounds and play with the skeletal remains of his dead great, great-grandfather. Alan Wayne(that would be the previously mentioned great, great-grandpappy) seemed to believe there was a Court of Owls running around Gotham, and after analyzing Alan's bones, Bats realizes that Alan had been tortured prior to his death, something that nobody picked up on back in the day. Nightwing stops by to see how Bats is doing, and Bats tells him a story about how as a child Bats looked into the Court of Owls, since baby Bats thought the Court had a hand in the deaths of his parents. After a long search that saw baby Bats get locked in an abandoned building for a week, baby Bats concluded there was no Court of Owls. Nightwing tells Bats that maybe he missed something as a kid, but Bats responds by stating that he had looked in on the Court of Owls rumors occasionally and never found any evidence. After finishing up his examination of Alan's bones, Bats heads to the sewers, which was where Alan's corpse was found and begins to look around. Unfortunately for Bats, that creepy owl guy(Talon I guess?) sneak attacks him and knocks him out cold. This issue ends with Bats waking up in a massive maze with a bunch of weirdos in owl masks watching him from a screen... Holy deathtrap, Batman!!

The Good: I still like the idea of a secret Court of Owls running around Gotham. The owls and Talon have really good villainous looks to them. The cliffhanger was interesting, as Bats finally comes face-to-face, in a manner of speaking, with the Court. I like Dick operating out of Gotham again since it gives him a reason to pop up in this series from time to time.

The Bad: I hate to say it, but this comic was pretty boring to me... The LONG story about baby Bats just didn't do it for me. And since that story made up a majority of this issue, that was bad news for me!

The Verdict: If you took out the middle 8-10 pages of this comic, it wasn't that bad. But I just never got into Bruce's flashback tale. I'm sure a lot of people enjoyed it, but for me it was just kind of time-wasting... But your opinion of this issue will definitely be decided on that flashback, so for me, this issue was a letdown.

Score: 5 1/2 out of 10.Look out, there's an owl behind you!!!


  1. wow men, you don't give your blog a rest... Hope you had a great Christmas

    Just curiosity, What stop you from buying Batman Inc. I guess is related with $ 7 cover price, but something else?

    I enjoyed it a lot, and I'm really looking forward to the consequences of what happened. If you want I cant try to explain you the new status quo in the Morrison Bat-universe

  2. HA! I actually managed to type up a few reviews before Christmas so I could take it easy that day. And thanks, I definitely did, here's hoping you did as well mi amigo.

    It was exactly that, the $7 price, Alien. Same as FF #600. With both comics I had the issue in my hand at the comic shop, saw that price and put it right back on the rack! I'd be more than happy to hear about that issue! I was def curious about it, but I just couldn't put out that money(especially since I had already brought 21 comics last Wednesday!).

  3. yes I really did have a good holyday too (although I'm Jew)

    Yeah, I saw the price and thought WTF, but it has 53 pages of story that is two and a half 2,99 issues plus extra material and it came
    with a recap! page !!!(Yes, in the end. I guess that a lot of people spoiled the end trying to get to the recap page well done DC)

    OK SPOILERS ahead..

    The first half ( #9 of Batman inc) is Basically Batgirl (Steph)issue and totally rocks, sadly DC decided at last moment set this story in old DCU so we dont know where is she now.
    The story is really simple, Steph enrolls in one girls-school in London where they are trained to become assassins.
    To get into the school she need some criminal connection and she presented with his real name as Cluemaster's daughter (so there is the possible future explanation to the change from Batgirl to Spoiler since she compromised her Batgirl identity)
    Steph gains their approval, showing his fighting skills an soon became ready for the initiation ceremony, things get complicated, Batman appears an confront the headmistress and learn that they were training the girls for Leviathan.

    Issue #10 get complicated since it is Crazy Morrison at his best, it stars really simple with Lucius Fox and Bruce talking about the Diamond from issue #1 they also talk about the Robot-Batmen.

    From there things get crazy, Batman is inside of a giant tanker with Bat-Grayson, Red Robin and Robin Dedalus is somewhere in the tanker, and the air is filled with a toxin that makes of Bruce an Alzheimer patient.

    (it can be resumed like this "Batman caught in a maze with alzheimer’s while he is tripping balls")

    While Leviathan start killing one Batmen each 5 minutes, (they don't show any corpse so I guess they are all fine)
    Resuming, Damian Wayne saves the day. (Making a decision that explain his actual relationship with Bruce in Batman and Robin)

    From there they search in the tanker for some hints and found the head of Jezebel Jet without an eye whit a red phone at his side. And they start connecting the dots.
    The simbol of Dedalus Spyral organization was an eye too and in some way related to the "Eye of the gorgon" that is a name for a star.

    now, Do you remember Batman #666? There in the apocalyptic future Damian as Batman, says "the star of the Demon is in the Zenith" ok there is an real star called like that, also know as "Algol", derived from Arabic that in English means the "Head of the Demon".

    Then the phone rings and a voice says "well that is what it takes to get your attention Batman"
    "now listen carefully a bounty of 500.000.000 dollars has been placed over Damian head"
    " so you should keep him close"
    "I offered a way out"
    "but now I must destroy you"
    "your move beloved"

    Then we see that Talia is in Gotham with "The Heretic" or the so called "The Fatherless" (seen in the one shot Batman:the Return, who now I'm 99% sure is the Damian clone from Batman and Robin 12) ready to confront Batman in his own territory.

    taking away a few letters from “Leviathan” to spell out “Talia”. All this time Morrison calls back to his old stories, and now he’s ending it where it began, in Batman and Son. it blew my mind.

    There are still some things that arent explained like the stuff with Wingman (I think that originally he was intended to be Jason Todd). Or why all in the school were dressed in a familiar way like Kathy Kane (the first Batwoman)But I really enjoyed it overall and I cant whait for the final confrontation between Talia and Bruce.

  4. Well then Happy Hanukkah to you, mi amigo! :D

    Thank you for that in depth recap, Alien! Seriously, I'm going to make you my go to guy when it comes to explaining Morrison-ese to me from now on! The Steph parts sounded really good, and like you said, it actually seems to plant the seeds for Steph going back to the Spoiler ID.

    So then it was Talia behind the Leviathan? That's pretty interesting. Plus it sets the stage for Talia to be a major player down the road(which I like since I've always been a huge fan of Talia and Ra's). And I didn't even realize there was a Damian clone out there, although when she had to take him to heal him, it makes sense she would since it was obvious that Damian had sided with his father's world-view. Thanks again, Alien, you saved me some serious money here! :P

  5. Ha, Thanks, I celebrate Christmas too, since my family is a weird mix, between, Polish, Russians, Spanish, and Italians =P I have a lot of things to celebrate each year.

    Ok I was ambiguous in some part just in case you will go back a buy the book, but to make it clear..

    Damian killed Dr. Dedalus, Immediately, and desperately apologizing to his father, he claims there was nothing he could do, as Dedalus was going to kill him.

    Exactly, after Talia healed him from his back-injury, and used Deathstroke to control him, Bat-Grayson and Damian pays a visit to Talia, and there Talia ask Damian to chose a side, since he pick Dick 's side she emancipate him from the Al ghul family and reveals that she cloned him.

  6. That sounds pretty cool. You get to celebrate all of the holidays!

    So DID Damian have to kill Dedalus, or was he just saying that to Bruce? Usually there's another way besides killing(especially for Bruce), so did Damian just kill Dedalus for the hell of it, or was he really in a situation where it was kill or be killed?

    See, that's why you're now my official Morrison go to guy, Alien! I only vaguely remembered most of that stuff! You remembered it all so clearly!

  7. Dedalus was this close of killing Bruce (who was in a deplorable state after being electrocuted, plus the Alzheimer stuff) And Damian arrives just in time to trow a knife at Dedalus head that killed him. . I'm ok with that, but I'm almost sure that Bruce not. So yes he had to do something to save Bruce, but maybe he could just injure him instead of killing him

    I think that I remember that stuff cuz when I started reading comics my english wasn't really good, I re-read Morrison comis several times until I could get it.

  8. Ah, so while Bruce would have probably used a batarang or something non-deadly, Damian went right to a deadly weapon... I totally understand why Damian would do that(to save his father) and why Bruce would be disappointed(you never kill your enemies!). I've got to say, you made this comic sound really good, Alien!

  9. Ha, Thanks X! Hope you get to read this story some day in the future and enjoy it as I did.

  10. I was down with the flashback (though I thought the "Oh, by the way, Dick, I never told you I was trapped in a room for a week and in a coma" part was a bit much). Mostly, I'm just so enjoying the Bruce/Dick relationship in Snyder's hands that I would be totally thrilled to read an issue of them playing parhceesi. But, I'm seriously, seriously digging the Court of Owls as something about which even Bruce might not be totally correct. Snyder has left open so many questions about how much the Court of Owls is involved in Bruce's life that I just can't wait to get the answer.

    Alien, if you're still reading this thread, I have a question about the Damian clone. I've seen several people mention it, but I returned to "Batman and Robin" #12, and we don't actually see the clone as an adult, right? So, is everyone assuming Talia rapidly aged him, like she did with Damian? Also, she mentions that she has to destroy Bruce for what he took from her? Is she talking about Damian? I didn't read "Batman and Son," but now I'm thinking I'm going to have to get my hands on it! (Thanks!)

  11. I am really enjoying the fact that Dick is (mainly) based out of Gotham again, and that Snyder is using that as an excuse to add Dick to so many of the Batman issues he's written so far. I mean out of the first four issues of this series, Dick has been in at least 3 of them(IIRC). With Dick being a favorite of mine, I'm quite pleased about that. And I second the Dick/Bruce Parcheesi game, if only to see Bruce glowering at Dick throughout the entire game! :D

    Alien is definitely my go to Grant Morrison translator, so I'll definitely leave that question for him, although if I were to guess, if Talia could grow Damian to the age of a 10 year old, I can't see why she wouldn't simply grow Damian 2 to an adult's age and keep D2 away from Bruce's "corrupting" influence.

  12. It wasn't explined or confirmed that the Heretic is Damian's clone, but all the hints point to that.(In Batman and Robin 12, Batman The Return and The last Issue of Inc)) and the fact that he is called "The Fatherless"

    so I will go with the option of Thalia accelerating The Heretic growth, but I guess that will be explained in the future Leviathan series.

  13. "Also, she mentions that she has to destroy Bruce for what he took from her? Is she talking about Damian?"


  14. Aha. I forgot about him appearing in "Batman: The Return." I'm going to have to re-read that one, because I feel like it has a lot of stuff that I only vaguely remember but will be important in the future. Thanks for the clarification, Alien!

  15. Hmm, I know I read Batman: The Return, and I have ZERO idea as to what happened in that comic... Literally zero! I don't recall anything about it! Ah well...

  16. That is the problem with morrison run in Batman, Nothing make sense until the last issue, but not in a simple way. You have to reread everything after reading the last issue. and track down each hint for all the run.
    That and the delays doesn't help too.

  17. HA! I just literally wrote like the SAME thing over at JW's blog, Alien! Between all of the hidden messages and the fact that you almost need to reread the entire run every time a new issues comes out, Morrison can be mighty tough to understand at times... Or remember!