Totally saw that coming. Only that one part though. The other part I did not see coming at all and HOLY CRAP!
Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo have been rocking the boat quite a bit in their Batman run; from adding a villain who’s got more Gotham in them than the Bat himself, the intention all along for Dick Grayson to be a talon, and pulling a switcheroo with Alfred and his father; but of them all this, this takes the cake.
I’ve honestly not enjoyed the Night of the Owls event as much as I thought I would outside of the Batman title, I even stopped buying the crossover issues, it seemed like the stories have been so heavily focused on the actual zombie ninja Talons and each of their personal revenge stories that the Bat family of characters are almost secondary, and it’s those characters that I love reading about so much – but Scott Snyder’s story in Batman continues to shock and amaze me; each issue drops another hammer I didn’t see coming. And for a character with over 70 years of stories, who’s fans are educated on a lot of those 70 years, I’d imagine pulling off a legitimate shocker is harder than we think, and Mr. Snyder seems to have a bottomless drawer full of them that he pulls from with each issue.
Well actually, the first real shocker was the Court of the Owls.
When I turned the page and figured out what had happened I literally let out a “daaaaaang.” The issue could have ended right there and I would have been left pretty blown away. The Court of the Owls has had so much build up and hype that it was unexpected for Batman to kick down the doors to a room full of dead Court members. Then to cut straight back to Bruce at Wayne Manor had me guessing, you know the other shoe is going to fall but you don’t when or how.
Also, I can’t say on any authority what Greg Capullo’s thought or direction was in the scene leading up to finding the Court but was I the only person who had a Year One flashback?
Batman: Year One
I think we can all agree that Lincoln March, whether he was really dead or not in Batman #9, hadn’t made his final curtain call. There was going to be a reveal of some kind down the line, he was introduced too early and often to not play a role somewhere. But Thomas Wayne Jr., Bruce Wayne’s brother, I honestly didn’t think that was the shoe that would drop.
Even though the clues have been in front of our face the whole time.
Thomas Wayne Jr. is actually a pretty old Batman character from World’s Finest back in the day and was revived by Grant Morrison in his JLA: Earth 2 series in 2000, as…Owlman. Granted, this Owlman existed in the antimatter universe, or “Earth-2″ at the time of the series, which has since gone from being unnumbered to back into play as “Earth 2″ now, so Owlman (or Thomas Wayne Jr.) was never in the regular good ol’ for-real continuity (aren’t comics fun!) but still, a new Owlman was coming, whether all of us had thought about it or not.
And to solidly it even more the backup by Scott Snyder, Jame Tynion IV, and Rafael Albuquerque continues the story of Alfred’s father, Jarvis, where we see a pregnant Martha Wayne who gets in an [orchestrated by the Court of the Owls] accident at the corner of “Lincoln” and “March.” (Sidenote: It’s always fun to see Martha Wayne taking on a bigger role than just best-mom-ever/Thomas-Wayne-eyecandy. Love it).
Course, it’s comics.
So you know. It could be Clayface.
But I doubt it. I think Thomas Wayne Jr. the new Owlman is here to stay.
And yes, the family member back in Bruce’s life has been done before, even recently, with Dr. Hurt and the Flashpoint Batman, and it did feel a bit like Hush but I still didn’t expect it; here, at all, from Scott Snyder. And the concept is in great hands with Synder and Co. Not to mention that I’m honestly a sucker for stuff like this with Batman, so I’m game.
I’m also glad the Court of the Owls/Night of the Owls is bigger than a group of weirdos trying to one-up Batman. Reveals like this can always be a bit cliche but this series continues to be a thrilling book of surprises each month, all of which fit and make me desperate for more.
At it’s core Scott Synder is giving on heck of an epic story that gets bigger with each issue and always keeps me guessing, all the while Greg Capullo and the whole art team only get better. It’s not a mystery at all why this is one of the best selling books in comics right now, it’s just good. Better than good, it’s freaking great.
We asked Greg Capullo on Twitter about whether or not he was inspired at all by Batman: Year One in his panel mentioned above…
So unintentionally Mr. Capullo channels some of the best batman comics, sounds about right!
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Beautiful art, thrilling action, and a true mystery that always has me guessing.||Every page was great, beginning to end.|