Wednesday, November 15, 2017

SPOILERS: Batman #35

Yeah, Talia, Batman and Catwoman, blah blah... We all know everyone here is for great Damian and Dick moments!

The Spoilers:

Talia and Selina fight on, as Talia talks about how shitty a dad she had, Batman hobbles off to a corner to lick his wounds, and Holly looks on from elsewhere. 

Outside, as Dick and Damian wait, the two discuss Bruce's latest "why the hell is he doing any of this?" Damian pretends to not care, but Dick sees through it. Dick suggests that Bruce wants to be happy, Damian says his father is happy, Dick disagrees. He basically says that Bruce is a lot of things, but at the end of the day he's not selfish. He gives everything he has for his cause. But being happy? That's not giving. That's asking for something, and Batman isn't good at asking. 

Back to Talia and Selina, Talia continues to shit on Selina's worthiness to be with Batman, and seemingly bests her. With Talia's sword at her throat, Selina pulls out the unexpected move of grabbing the sword by the blade, knocking Talia off her feet, then leaving the sword in Talia's back as she goes to speak to Holly. 

Holly knows why Selina is there. Selina needs to bring Holly back to answer for her crimes so she can be with Batman. Selina tells Holly that she's not going to make her do anything, all she's there for is to ask Holly to help her. As the two speak, Talia limps towards Bruce and gives her approval of Selina.

Sometime later, Selina helps Bruce out of the entryway to where Damian and Dick wait. As Dick helps Selina carry Bruce, Damian confronts his father who doesn't know what to say. Damian simply asks "Are you happy?" and after a pause, Bruce tells him "I'm getting there," and the group makes their exit. Before they leave, Damian asks if Bruce and Selina saw his mother, Selina tells him that Talia stabbed his father in the back, so she stabbed her in the back. Damian seems to understand and leaves it at that.

The Opinion: 

Look, as much as I don't care about online comments or discussion forums for comics anymore, I'm aware that Tom King's Batman isn't everyone's cup of tea, and I'd agree with a few select criticisms here and there... but this arc has been absolutely masterful. When it comes down to it, the entirety of this run can be defined by the final scene with Damian and Bruce: It's about Batman trying to find actual happiness in his life, everything else that happens around it is just your standard Tuesday evening for Batman. Sure, there've been stories about Batman trying to be happy and in love before, but at the end of the day those were superficial, and faded away as quickly as they came. The commitment to the theme being played in the long game is what makes this special. 

On top of everything else, you've got pitch perfect characterizations for everyone involved. Tom King's stinted dialogue fitting Talia perfectly, Selina explaining why she and Bruce stupidly love each other, Bruce barely saying anything to anyone about anything that's happening because of course the entire situation is weird... and then the scene between Dick and Damian, stole the show, hands down. Dick laying out why Batman isn't happy and how he's trying to get there was probably my favorite moment of the issue.

And of course, last but not least, put Joelle Jones and Jordie Bellaire on all the books and then I'll buy all the said books. For real.

When all is said and done, this arc may have not been the flashiest, but I'd be willing to say it was my favorite of Tom King's so far. 


  1. This is BY FAR the best arc of Tom King's run, a run that's been a little bumpy, but overall pretty solid. This issue was positively POIGNANT.

    "I'm getting there."

    I want that for you, Bruce.

  2. Tom King said rules of engagement is 17 issue arc

  3. It's kind of insane that there is not a Dick/ Damian book. The stuff with them this issue was perfect, and of course King is brilliant, but it seems like *everyone* writes great stuff with those two.