REVIEW: ‘Detective Comics’, Issue #1048

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Detective Comics #1048

Detective Comics #1048 delivers the second act in the ‘Shadows of the Bat’ story, with a trip back to Arkham Tower, Day Twelve. Once again, we get two great stories written by Mariko Tamaki and Matthew Rosenberg. Ivan Reis and Fernando Blanco handle artwork, with Danny Miki on inks for the main story. Brad Anderson and Jordie Bellaire tackle colors, while Ariana Maher and Rob Leigh are the letterers for the DC Comics title. 

Last issue, ‘Shadows of the Bat’ kicked off with a split story, giving us a peek into the end of Arkham Tower’s first magnificent week, as it cured the very man who had attempted to kill Mayor Nakano in the recent past. Flash forward to Day Twenty Four, and the tower was under siege from within, with a madwoman knifing staff and many of our heroes undercover, trapped inside. We are left with a time gap, not knowing what set off this chain of events. That’s brilliant on the part of Tamaki, who leaves readers wanting to know more, and we get some morsels this week, though not in the form of the hostage situation. The issue opens on a scene in Gotham years back, when a young Tobias Wear was in the hands of Childrens’ Services after his mentally ill mother went on a stabbing spree at home. This places Tobias in the hands of the city, much like the poor young boy in the first part of ‘House of Gotham’ last issue. From there, the story leaps forward. Welcome to the twelfth day, in which Dr. Wear interviews Lisa Frow for a position at the tower. Frow once served mentally ill soldiers and harbors a secret of her own. I mean, this is Gotham.

Though he takes her on a tour of the facility (a much cleaner, attempted utopian vision from what Arkham Asylum once was), this issue turns the spotlight on Wear himself. We are spoonfed portions of his past this time around, including some details of his psychiatric background. From this standpoint, he almost seems credible, like a man who is truly trying to save Gotham’s psychologically afflicted. Later scenes depict recoveries almost too good to be true, so knowing in advance that this will come crashing down in two weeks makes for painfully good reading.

Detective Comics #1048’s backup ‘House of Gotham’ piece by Rosenberg takes our young ginger boy into Arkham Asylum, where frightening things take place, and change seems to be his only constant. There seems to be a connecting thread between the two tales, but you decide for yourself when you pick up this issue. And you should, because with this story, Detective Comics is going places and telling two rich stories that are refreshing and troubling, with gorgeous art to boot.

Speaking of, Reis, Miki, Anderson, and Maher make what is mostly a common person issue look flawless. Even without dazzling costumes for most of the issue, ordinary people come across with detail and full of life, well worded, with the perfect amount of ink and a variety of hues. Loved the blues and reds on the police lights. In ‘House of Gotham,’ Blanco, Bellaire, and Leigh deliver a much darker set of visuals and letters in boldly inked lines and more scratches and grit along the walls and floors. The font and coloration on one character’s balloons are chilling and very fitting for them. All in all, the artwork is a huge win, and both teams know how to make their respective stories feel just right.

In short, this storyline is selling a post-Arkham Asylum Gotham very well. With the undercover operation and characters old and new, this issue reveals just enough to leave us wanting more, and that’s a key to great mystery and drama. 

Detective Comics #1048 is available now wherever comic books are sold.


Detective Comics #1048
5

TL;DR

In short, this storyline is selling a post-Arkham Asylum Gotham very well. With the undercover operation and characters old and new, this issue reveals just enough to leave us wanting more, and that’s a key to great mystery and drama.

But Why Tho? A Geek Community
%d bloggers like this: