Wednesday, March 5, 2014

SPOILERS: Batwing #29

Remember how Luke was really angry and kicking the shit out of people last issue? Well, it's gotten worse, and he's starting to lose it, as the GCPD discovers a great deal of criminals tied up to one of Gotham's bridge, as if Batwing was sending a message. Both Bruce and Alfred can't help but take notice of this and Alfred says what they're both thinking, but Bruce doesn't want to hear... what happens if Luke truly suffers a loss, like so many of the Bat-Family has?

Goodish news though... Tam is found by some kids at Amusement Mile's wreckage, bad news is, she's in pretty bad shape.

After Tam is taken to the hospital, the prognosis is pretty bad, as she's suffered severe brain damage from repeated use of the new drug on the street known as snakebyte. So basically, she's a vegetable. Bruce shows up to speak with the family, but Luke leaves in a rush, meanwhile Lucius lashes out at Bruce, telling him to get Batman to find his other daughter.

Luke goes to investigate where Tam was found, knowing the cops won't find anything of use, because they don't have the right tools, but luckily he does and soon enough, Luke finds the entrance to the Gotham underground, a huge city beneath Gotham that no one knows about some how...

Luke gets to work, as he saves a resident of the underground from being "evicted" by a dude named Anubis, and starts to interrogate him. Thing is, people in the Underground stick together, and Anubis has a whole lot of friends, who all attack Luke. In the struggle, Luke gets tied up, and thrown into a lake below, where he meets a giant mutated angler fish, because why not?


The Good:

I like this sort of... Batwing Unleashed vibe we're getting from Luke these past few issues. He's pissed off, and beating the absolute shit out of people, which is cathartic in a way. The art has been kicking just as much ass recently as well. Panisca has got a style that's pretty common at DC, big superhero looking sort of stuff, but it's honestly some of the best, as it's very clean and detailed, with tons of weight behind the action. Panisca is definitely pretty underrated, and I could definitely see him drawing some big stuff down the line.

The Bad:

Not a fan of Tam's fate... While I could see her waking up to snap Luke out of his anger, at the same time... How many people get better from being brain damaged and in a vegetative state? While Tam wasn't killed, it definitely walks the line of the "fridging" definition. Something bad happens to female character, turns into male character's motivation, you know, all that. I'm not going to go down the feminist path on this topic, there's plenty of other sites for that sort of stuff, personally, I just think it's lazy. 

Also the Underground... I don't know what I was expecting, given this particular locale's book of origin, but it goes a little past "absurd... but this is comics after all" into "just plain absurd." Even Batwing questions the entire idea, straight up asking how no one could have known about this... I mean, come on.

The Bottom Line:

Batwing unleashed is great. I love seeing Luke sort of fall into the darkness that comes when one puts a bat on their chest, as it creates all sorts of possibilities for character development, as well as drama to see just how far Luke goes. The problem with this shift in Luke's story, is that the motivation behind it has started to enter some a very grey territory, littered with refrigerators. While others have very well documented issues with character motivations such as this, I just find it lazy, as it's been done many times before. Perhaps the developments in this issue won't stick, perhaps due to the low readership hardly anyone will notice, but all I know is something sort of rubbed me the wrong way in this issue, and I hope there's some redemption and deeper reasoning down the line as to why those things happened.


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