Detective Exit

Detective Comics #881

The hunt is on for James Gordon, Jr., the son of Commissioner James Gordon. Jim Jr. is a psychopath, and he has been since he was a little boy. The Commissioner has discovered Jim’s collection of trophies — a box full of keys from the people he’s murdered. And the Commissioner and Babs Gordon have learned that Jim has managed to make his anti-psychotic medicine work backwards — instead of making him feel empathy, it strips empathy from people who take it. And he intends to add the drug into Gotham City’s baby formula, creating a generation of sociopaths. And on top of all that, he’s also managed to kidnap Barbara, who he’s hated since childhood because she was the only person who could tell he was insane. And he plans to kill her, too, slowly and bloodily.

As Batman tries to track them down, he gets a call from Jim, who had long ago figured out that Dick Grayson was now the man inside Batman’s cowl. He’s never been a fan of Dick, either, because he was the member of the Bat-family who had the most empathy for others. Can Dick save Barbara, stop Jim, and foil the plot to poison Gotham’s infants, all without compromising his principles?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s a great final issue for this version of “Detective Comics,” with Scott Snyder and Jock providing a story that’s claustrophobic, deeply suspenseful, and action-packed. Jim Gordon winds up as an incredibly chilling villain as he describes his motives and plots — I don’t know if DC will be able to use him in future issues, but I hope they can bring him back — he’s too scary to leave behind.

B.P.R.D.: Hell on Earth – Monsters #2

Liz Sherman is temporarily without her pyrokinetic abilities and on the run from everyone. She’s been hiding out in a rednecky trailer park and impressing her no-good roommates with her ability to whup the tar out of anyone who pisses her off. But things go sour when she discovers that there’s a murderous cult hiding out inside the trailer court — and things get even worse when she finds out that the only people who aren’t in the cult are her two no-good roommates. Does Liz stand a chance against a horde of angry, semi-human cultists? Does she stand a chance when the cops think she’s the bad guy? And what’s the latest bad news coming out of the B.P.R.D. headquarters?

Verdict: Thumbs up. This one isn’t quite as shocking as the previous issue — a whole trailer park of cultists ain’t nothing once you’ve had the dismembered hillbilly corpse dropped in your lap. But the action’s good, the dialogue is fun, and the art is awesome. It’s also cool to see what’s going on with the B.P.R.D. — they’re all watching England blow up, just like you saw if you read “Hellboy: The Fury” — and there is a big surprise for all of us on the last page, too…

Today’s Cool Links:

  • The guys behind “Reed Gunther” have a great introduction for anyone interested in all-ages comics.
  • I was kinda expecting this to be some generic “Superman should be dating Wonder Woman” wishfulfic. It was a lot more insightful than I was anticipating.
  • I’m still reading Grant Morrison’s “Supergods” but I’ve been grooving on the idea of the superhero as the champion of optimism and opponent of nihilism. The blog post author and business pundit Dylan Ratigan specifically point out how this can be seen as a statement about how society, business, and politics should operate.


  1. Andy Said,

    August 12, 2011 @ 3:24 pm

    Geeze, how can anyone read Batman if it’s this depressing? Does anyone in that line have any joy in their lives?

  2. scottslemmons Said,

    August 12, 2011 @ 3:34 pm

    It’s grim and creepy, but it’s a fairly thrilling kind of grim and creepy. And good triumphs over evil. Mostly. Kinda.