Wednesday, May 23, 2012

SPOILERS: Batman - The Dark Knight #9

Flash back to Batman #9, the Talon, Alton Carver is finishing off his attack on Lincoln March, but this Talon, who held the mantle longer than normal, is slower than the rest, as his body fails him, allowing Lincoln to shoot him in the head.

Years ago at Haly's circus, the ring master puts Alton through one test, telling him he lives in fear, that he needs to get over. He locks Alton in a trailer, and locks the door, setting the place on fire. Alton begins to panic, screaming for help, as the ring master looks on. But Alton's screams eventually stop, as he finds it in himself to escape death, and get out of the trailer, albeit badly burned. With this, he's declared ready to be the next Talon.

Twenty six years later, after holding the mantle for a long time, the Court begins to notice that his skills are deteriorating, and that they're thinking of replacing him, as they have found their next potential candidate.

Before what would be Alton's final mission, he takes it upon himself to see just who is to replace him. It's Dick Grayson, still in the circus with his parents. He didn't have to be told who the next Talon would be, as soon as he saw Dick preforming, he knew it was him, and Alton was afraid. He would become afraid a second time that night, whereBatman caused him from eliminating his target.

With this final failure, the Court retires Alton, where he'd be put to rest, until the Night of the Owls, where he was sent to kill Lincoln March.

Not yet dead, he see's Batman enter the room where Lincoln soon dies. His regenerative properties kick in, as he tries to get revenge on Batman by attacking him, but Alton's dull skills are too little to match up to Batman, as he's sent plummeting to the street below. As Bruce meets with Dick, Damian and Tim, he tells them that he couldn't find the body, and the Talon is still out there.

Alton, badly wounded, struggles through the sewers below. Having woken from death twice in one night, Alton thinks to himself that now he's finally free of fear, and free from all that previously bound him.


I really liked this issue. Yeah, the fact that Bruce saw a Talon back in the past is a little off putting, but I'm glad they didn't try to explain it. Just he saw it, there was nothing to say he was connected to the Court of Owls, just another crazy masked dude. Anyways, it was really interesting to see a story told from entirely the Talon's point of view, set to great David Finch art. Judd Winick has really turned out some great issues for this cross over, and is 3 for 3 in my book.

Though, if you're expecting a Tim Drake story... yeah, no. Tim got the short end of the stick for this cross over.



  1. I bought this to check in on Tim v. Owl. I feel cheated, even though I did enjoy the story I was given. This just was very misleading to me.

  2. i gotta agree with Zach on this. I bought this issue to see some Tim in action (honestly, i truly HATE the new Teen Titans series... but seriously fucking LOVED the Red Robin series pre-reboot) but I really can't complain cause the story was damn good.

  3. Wholeheartedly disagree. Aside from losing out on the chance of having all THREE Robins square off against a Talon in Gotham, this issue just read horribly and the gimmick of Talon's view did not overcome the pace, time placement, and otherwise shoddy result. I know this was a throwaway issue before the next writer comes on board; as such I intend to do just that. Throw it away.

  4. This book was terrible and followed the exact same formula all the other Owl crossover books did. Show the Talon, give a history lesson, fight, dead Talon. I'm tired of it, it's overrated.

    One panel for Red Robin? Why bother putting him on the cover.