My Pull List – 27 September 2017

Evil!Cyborg!Batman breaks my heart in Dark Nights Metal; Tim Drake finally returns in Detective Comics and Wonder Woman begins a new mission.

So, before I start, I must mention this week’s Champions from Marvel. It’s not a real issue, just a run down of who’s who. But it’s free, and Champions is the best of the new teams formed after Civil War 2. The primer is a good way to start, if you’re not already reading. Also Marvel are issuing a bunch of similar free primers for other characters. Worth a look.

But my Pull list remains DC heavy. This week…

Dark Nights Metal: Batman The Murder Machine

Dark Night Metal - Batman: The Murder Machine

Oh, the origin story for evil!Cyborg!Batman is so tragic! Unlike the Flash one, this feels like something that could have really happened to “our” Bruce Wayne.

In the present, this twisted Cyborg-Batman infiltrates the Justice League watchtower, attacks Cyborg and does some real damage. But it’s the flashbacks, the origin story, that make this one a must-read.

In this Batman’s dimension, Alfred has died, tortured to death by Harley Quinn, Bane and some others. A grief-stricken Bruce activates an AI version of Alfred that he had been working on prior to his old mentor’s death, but had not completed. The AI sees it’s primary purpose as protecting Bruce, much as the real Alfred would have, but in pursuit of that mission it, well, goes on a murder spree through Bruce’s enemies.  But Bruce can’t bring himself to destroy the AI and instead they merge somehow. And every bit of humanity left in Batman is rewritten in their joining.

It’s so well drawn – in every sense. The scenes in the present are clear and vibrant, though in splashes of colour rather than saturated (this is a dark story, after all). The past is similar, but desaturated and muted. In the final panels, as the terrible consequence of Batman’s voices becomes clear, there’s a merging of the colour styles. It’s just beautiful art from Riccardo Federici and Rain Beredo.

Detective Comics #965: A Lonely Place of Living (Part One)

Detective Comics #965 Cover

At last we learn the fate of Red Robin/Tim Drake!

Well, I say at last. We’ve know for a while that Tim was alive, held captive by the mysterious Mr Oz. Now that Oz’s identity has been revealed ( in a different comic), Detective Comics returns to Tim’s story. We begin with flashbacks as Tim explains to Oz how he became Robin after Jason Todd’s death. Oz shows Tim a glimpse of Bruce Wayne in Gotham, desperately searching for Tim.

Tim decides he’s had enough of captivity. Being a tech genius, he hacks Oz’s system to send a message to Batman. He receives a transmission back, in which Batman claims he is also a prisoner of Oz. Together they break out of the cells but it’s only then that Tim learns who is under Batman’s cowl. It it himself, from the future (which, BTW, ties in nicely with Batwoman #6).

Wonder Woman #31: Children of the Gods (Part One)

Wonder Woman #31 Cover

When I first heard that the next WW arc would be about “the mystery of Diana’s brother”, I almost took this off my list. I’m not interested in “Wonder Woman, but with a dick!”

This issue has convinced me to reserve judgement, but no more than that yet.

We are introduced to a man who lives a solitary life as a logger in Oregon; he is confronted by Grail, Darkseids daughter, who attacks him. He reveals himself as Hercules, son of Zeus, and fights back but is defeated and Grail feeds his power, or life force to Darkseid. (In Metal, we saw Darkseid as a baby, now with this meal of Demi-god, he’s a bit older but still not an adult.

Eleven days later, Wonder Woman is having a whale of a time fighting Giganta. Once she’s taken down the fifty-foot woman, she is approached by a man who looks like a geneti hybrid of Hercule Poirot and HG Wells. *shrug* What can I say? Anyhow, he tells her that he’s a lawyer, Hercules is dead and she is his heir.

It would be a great opening if I didn’t have such a dread of where this is going. Well…time will tell.