Wednesday, May 7, 2014

SPOILERS: Detective Comics #31

Silly me, after last issue I thought "Well, Elena could maybe survive the drug overdose?" But, NOPE... She dead. Given the personal nature of the Icarus case, Detective Bullock doesn't take its reemergence leading to a death on Bruce Wayne's doorstep lightly, instantly believing Wayne to have killed her with some recreational party drug use gone wrong. But of course, Bruce didn't do it, and in a Batman power move, pisses in a cup for Bullock then goes to investigate for himself, finding tire tracks and signs of a struggle. Elena was murdered! DUN DUN DUN.

While Bullock's leads on Icarus eventually go dry the next day, with some deaths in the holding cells, Bruce puts on an EMP mask, goes looking for the source of Icarus, and ends up taking a shotgun blast to the chest, but not before placing at tracker on the car of his assailant, and potential icarus source.

At Elena's funeral, Bullock approaches Bruce to give him more shit about rich kids not caring about their family as Elena's daughter didn't even attend the funeral. Bruce doesn't play around with Bullock, asking about his investigation, knowing full well that his drug test came back clean, then telling Bullock to actually follow real evidence instead. OOOOOH! Batman burn!

What about Elena's daughter Annie? Well, she's on the street looking to score drugs, and while she buys some "white candy," it seems that she isn't interested in the drugs, as much as she's interested in finding where the icarus came from. Also, side note, seems like all records of Annie have been wiped clean for some reason... She'd make a good Rob--NOOOOO! DAMIAN!!!

That night, the tracker Bruce placed leads him to a ship docked in the bay. Lots of shipping containers, with lots of human trafficking. No good, but you know what else is no good? Some dude named Sumo, looking to kill Batman... blah blah blah, they fight, Sumo breaks his back, coughs up he was just doing a job for The Squid, had nothing to do with Elena.

Remember that dude Holter? The biker? Well, he's got a guy at the docks who hears Sumo squealing, and reports back. Holter knows that there are going to be some loose ends to tie up, but first he and his companion need to transfer the source of Icarus, which seems to be some dude who is perpetually on fire or something... pleasant.


The Good:

Does anyone really need to compliment Manapul and Buccellato on their art anymore? I mean, really. Why waste my breath? Or type the set number of letters that will incrementally get me closer to carpal tunnel syndrome? Yeah, it's pretty fucking good, no shit!

In terms of the story, I thought things flowed pretty well this issue, compared to last, which just threw a whole bunch of characters at us real fast. Like I thought last month, knowing who these characters are now, the jumps from scene to scene will feel less choppy now that we have context.

The Bad:

While the issue had a better flow than last month, still wasn't perfect. Between Sumo appearing out of nowhere with no real explanation or nothing coming from that scene with the corrupt congressmen telling his attorney to try and convince Bruce Wayne to go with the original waterfront plans, the issue's structure still had a couple of hiccups.

The Bottom Line:

Would it really be a surprise to say that this book has easily become one of DC's best looking titles? Not really, but it's true. The art is spectacular, and the colors are eclipsing this team's work on The Flash, in my book. Like FCO on Batman, Buccellato isn't afraid to use colors we don't really see in Gotham a lot... like pink, orange, magenta. There's a way to make Gotham look colorful, but still hold that certain darkness, and this book does it perfectly. On the writing side of things, the story has begun to get it's footing and have a consistent flow, and it's turning out to be a pretty interesting mystery so far. So, we got fantastic art, and a story that's picking up pretty nicely? Hard to go wrong with Detective Comics at this point.


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