Wednesday, December 5, 2012

SPOILERS: Detective Comics #15

While Penguin's men buy Ivy alive, we flash back to her recent whirlwind of a romance. Ivy and Clayface had quite the relationship, breaking out of Arkham, getting hitched in Vegas, traveling the country, seeing the sights, committing some crimes. Fun time... But now Ivy is missing, and Clayface is pissed, taking it out on Batman, who just recently regained consciousness.

Unable to properly deal with Clayface at the moment, the the warehouse going up in flames, Bruce makes a tactical retreat with the help of his batline and plane, but not before grabbing a flower Ivy left behind, in hopes it will allow him to figure out how Ivy is controlling Clayface.

Elsewhere, with Joker's summons, Penguin is sweating it out a bit in his Casino. While he leaves to deal with some... funny business, he leaves his right hand man, Ogilvy in charge... which SURELY won't result in Ogilvy making a power play at Penguin's throne.

In the Batcave, Bruce analyzes the flower he found, and figures out that all of Clayface's memories of happy times with Ivy were completely false, and the plant proves it. Bruce later finds Clayface tearing apart downtown Gotham, and orders Gordon's men to fall back, as he douses Clayface with some herbicide, as Ivy's plants have grown deep into him. Turns out she somehow infected Clayface with a mildly hallucinogenic plant from the Amazon. The revelations that all the feelings of love he felt were false breaks Clayface's heart, and even Bruce almost feels sorry for him, before Clayface manages to escape into the sewer. Bruce follows him, but Clayface has already escaped... having more pressing business to take care of, Bruce gives this one a pass.

Elsewhere, Ogilvy digs up Poison Ivy, who almost goes straight to killing him, but is interested in why he didn't let her suffocate... Ogilivy points out that it would have been pretty hard for her to sufficate, as she has the ability to photosynthesize carbon dioxide if around plants, and turn it into oxygen, something Ogilvy made sure to bury her with some greenery. After being asked who exactly he is, Ogilvy introduces himself as the new player in town, Emperor Penguin.


Meanwhile, in the backup, we see just how Ivy took control of Clayface. She would send him anonymous love letters with dried flowers inside. The flowers would germinate, and eventually grow deep within Clayface, taking over his mind, and that's when Ivy came to break him out. Later, Ivy returns to their secret hide out, thinking "Basil" is still under her control, but the scorned Clayface corrects her, informing her that there's no more Basil, just Clayface.


The Good:

The over all package that this book has become is fantastic. Concise story telling, great art in both main and back up feature, and the back up feature compliments the main story perfectly. This issue continues the fantastic upswing that the Layman/Fabok team have created within the title, and each month I become more and more excited to read it. The big stand out starting with this issue is Ogilvy. Talk about an awesome, cunning character, with a lot of potential. I really hope he grows to a point where he can be used as an over all threat in Gotham's crime world (possibly the boss?), it would be a disservice to him if he isn't allowed to accomplish that.

The Bad:

Like a few of the other first issues of Death of the Family tie-ins, there really isn't a whole lot to tie into here. That's marketing for you.

The Bottom Line:

Once again, this book has really reestablished itself well. It reminds me greatly of Some of Paul Dini and Dustin Nguyen's Tec issues, prior to "Heart of Hush," which I also really enjoyed... Only this time, there's way more connective tissue between each issue, yet each stands alone pretty well, something Layman aimed to do, and pulls off really well. I guess I shouldn't be surprised at this point, but somehow, I keep asking myself "wow, did this book really get that much better?" each month.


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