Wednesday, July 9, 2014

SPOILERS: Grayson #1

So, on paper, turning Dick Grayson into a super spy, and dropping all the vigilante shit is pretty weird... But put it in the hands of a guy who loves some of the most underutilized elements of Grant Morrison's Batman mythos, and hooooly shit, is it great.

The Spoilers:

The mission is: Dick Grayson and Helena Bertinelli, agents of Spyral need to get some overweight Russian off a train and into Spyral hands. The problems at hand: Russian intelligence wants the same target, as does a mysterious man in black. Once Dick and Helena deal with the Russian agents on the train, they make their exit, but the Russians make their move, and open fire. Dick does some quick thinking, using a hypnos implant given to him by Spryal, which allows him to manipulate the mind of his target into cooperating with him, soon taking cover in an abandoned nuclear silo.

Enter Midnighter. What's he doing there and who's he working with? Who knows! But after he makes it known he wants the target too, he and Dick get into a bit of an altercation, and Midnighter figures out his opponent is working with Spyral. Knowing he's dealing with Spyral now, Midnighter seems to be ready to take Dick out completely, but then we realize why this russian guy is so important... He's got something in him that allows him to blast nuclear energy. Having overheard Midnighter telling Dick what Spyral is going to do to this man, Russian guy asks Dick if they're really friends (which Dick said to manipulate him). Dick tries to convince him of that again for about half a second, but then manipulates him in a different way, but getting him to attack, thus wasting his energy, causing him to pass out.

Once all is said and done, Helena gets Dick and the target extracted, and the two agents are met by Mister Minos, the weird face guy we saw in Nightwing #30, who congratulates them on a job well done. Later in Dick's room at St. Hardian's Finishing School for Girls (Batman Inc), he fiddles with some electronics in his clock radio, sending a message back to Bruce, but gets interrupted by Helena. Dick's new partner compliments him on his work earlier, then gets a biiiiiit closer to him, forcing Dick to back off, citing Spyral rules about "relationships." Helena is well aware of the rules, but just wanted to demonstrate her "charm" after Dick suggested she use hypnos to do the same with the target earlier in the mission.

Back to Minos, apparently Otto Netz has another daughter, Frau Netz, who is a scientist for Spyral, examining that implant that was found in the Russian dude. Minos commends her for her work, stating that she's as good as her father, but instead will help Spyral identify the superheroes, not kill them. And so far, Batman and Cyborg have already been ID'd.


The Review:

So yeah, this issue hit all the nails on the head. Everything I wanted on a basic level from this series is right front and center. Dick Grayson characterized well? Check. Dick is energetic, light-hearted, and sarcastic in the face of danger. Helena having a good dynamic with Dick (phrasing)? Check. Boy, that sexual tension did not take long to surface. Morrison-esque weirdness? Check. I mean, that dude's face is a spiral and Dick lives in a boarding school for young female assassins... Weird!  

So all the elements of the story are there, then you've got the art by Mikel Janin and Jeromy Cox, who seem to be working in pure harmony here. Mikel Janin is one of those artists who just makes everyone look visually appealing to look at. Dick looks good (phrasing), Helena and her new look looks good, and Spryal looks crazy. Mission accomplished on the art front.

The only negative? Where's Kathy? I'm probably just going to keep saying that until we find out.

Oh, and the board of heroes Spyral wants to ID? This is totally nitpicking, and doesn't matter, but some of them already public... I mean hell, Aquaman went to his high school reunion a few issues back.

The Bottom Line:

I'll tell you one thing, I was already pretty sold on this whole deal after some interviews and teasers... But as if I needed anymore convincing, this issue went above and beyond, delivering everything I could have wanted from a book that takes Dick Grayson, puts him in some clandestine spy organization created by Grant Morrison, and pairs him with an old favorite character who I never expected to see again. Yep, Grayson got off to a great start.


  1. Good review can't wait to pick this up. Question did they edit dicks hair on the cover it looks different.

    1. Yeah, they edited the hair to reflect how he actually looks.

  2. I loved it just based on the fact that it felt so different from everything else I read

    1. Absolutely! This issue did a lot more than just ease my worries about the future of this book.

      Now if this can just avoid crossove... Future's End... damnit.