Saturday, September 21, 2013

SPOILERS: Batman Beyond 2.0 #3 - 4

It may be the future of Gotham City, but one thing remains constant, there are going to be mass breakouts at Arkham Asylum Institute. With Dick taking the place of Bruce in his ear, Terry deals with the situation the best he can, and manages to recapture a number of the inmates, but some made it to boats, and onto the mainland of Gotham, which means Terry has quite the night ahead of him.

Once Terry gets to serious work, it cuts communications with Dick. As soon as Terry's off the line, Dick gets a call, and it's from Bruce. Dick is surprised it took him so long, and also surprised he's even calling at all. Bruce is trying to help and uploads an analysis report on the electrical signal that killed the mayor, despite Dick working on his own. Dick asks if Bruce wants anything else, and all Bruce can say is a question about how Terry's doing. Dick decides not to answer, and hangs up on Bruce.

Elsewhere, Commissioner Gordon is meeting with the new acting Mayor, and doesn't seem too pleased that the GCPD hasn't found anything solid yet. The new guy tells Barbara that their now dead Mayor always believed in her, which is something he didn't see eye to eye with, so he suggests perhaps it's time to talk about her future soon.

After Terry finishes up finding goons for the night, he returns to his dorm and gets a call from his mom, asking if he'll come home for his brother's birthday. During the conversation, in true evil guy fashion, whoever responsible for the death of the Mayor takes over the TV broadcast system and calls Batman out to meet him at the offshore rig, or else more die. Of course, despite how tired he is, Terry has to answer, dipping out on the call with his mom.

Dick tries to talk some sense into Terry, telling him it's a Knightfall-esque trap, with him being tired, and running head-on into another confrontation, but as Terry points out, he's Batman, which Dick eventually concedes to, commenting "stubbornness and all."

Gordon on the other hand is meeting with her investigation crew, and find that the Mayor had been putting the same amount of money into a blind bank account every month for the last three years, until two months ago, when the payments just stopped. Now, if you know anything about fishy business, that's a red flag, and they go to the widow to investigate.

On the offshore rig, it doesn't take long for things to get totally weird, as Terry is soon attacked by three people... all of whom each look like a Gotham protector of the past, Nigthwing, Batgirl and Robin. Being outmatched, Terry doesn't do too well

While Terry is getting his ass kicked, and taunted by a mysterious hidden voice, Barbara interviews the Mayor's wife who seems hesitant to reveal why they made those monthly payments, but eventually reveals that they were for the Mayor's therapy. And on the rig, the fourth voice finally reveals himself to a beaten down Terry, and completes the old gang, looking a lot like Bruce as Batman.


The Good:

Aside from the crazy "wtf is going on fight" with the people playing pretend as Batman, Nightwing, Batgirl and Robin, these two chapters continue from the first two and just do a lot of things right in terms of the Batman Beyond Universe. Higgins puts an emphasis of the push and pull nature of someone trying to balance being Batman and having a personal life, as well as sort of putting the mirror up to Terry, and showing how he's just as stubborn as Bruce, with Dick, who would know, making the comment. Overall, I just think that there's a good balance between action, personal stuff, and the mystery (both with the Mayor and the overall picture), which creates a pretty entertaining dynamic, when all is said and done. To compliment that dynamic, Thony Silas and Andrew Elder's art continue to set the visual tone perfectly for anyone who has ever been a fan of this universe.

The Bad:

I mean... You know it's not really Bruce, Dick, Barbara and Tim fighting Terry, but why be cynical? 

The Bottom Line:

The Batman Beyond 2.0 series is really off to a great start. I complimented the first few chapters for really mimicking that nostalgic tone well, but not playing it completely safe, and clearly shaking things up a bit. These two chapters follow right in line with where the series started. On the surface, there's a lot of fun and action in the punchy superhero type variety, but there's also a lot going on deep down, that I can't wait to find out about (aka, what happened in that One Year Later time gap). I believe I said something along these lines last month, but if you've ever been a fan of Batman Beyond, there's no reason not to pick these chapters up. Really fun reads.


Side note, if you read print, both these chapters are available now in Batman Beyond Universe #2, which came out Wednesday.

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