REVIEW: ‘Detective Comics,’ Issue #1068

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Detective Comics #1068

Detective Comics #1068 from DC puts Batman in a fire he may not be able to quell. The continuation of ‘Gotham Nocturne: Act I’ is written by Ram V, with art by Ivan Reis and Rafael Albuquerque. Danny Miki provides those intense inks, and Ariana Maher graces the art with brilliant lettering. ‘A Tune That Listens Back’ is written by Si Spurrier, with art by Dani, and clean lettering from Steve Wands. Dave Stewart colored both tales so well (and so differently) you’d think it was done by two separate artists.

Last time around, we saw Batman dropping into a housing complex set aflame by the Orghams. Well, while it’s great to see our tired, falling-behind hero jump into the thick of things, once again, the Bat has bitten off more than he can chew. The Orghams have demons, werewolves, and multi-eyed schemers on their side. Not to mention they’re ahead in…whatever it is they’re doing to corrupt Gotham. Batman gives it his all to save people who are being carted off like animals into the underground. But he again comes up against the wolf, and others, in a well-choreographed but futile battle.

V, Reis, and Albuquerque provide readers with a magnificent danse macabre with bloody highlights. Stewart’s colors allow for visibility, so nothing is obscured by the dramatic inks. Maher’s words are equally bright and disturbing once Two-Face enters the scene to watch the horrific fight play out. There’s a lot of psychological torture going on in tandem with this dance, and how it affects Gotham and its characters gives me chills.

‘A Tune That Listens Back’ brings back not only a Gordon story featuring the kid he saved in his last solo arc but the same creative team who drenched that story in pulp detective drip. This time around, the kid and Gordon raid the library to try and find out how and when the kid with the bird on his back got locked away in Arkham’s bowels. We get that amazing murkiness of Dani’s art that so fits Gotham while also giving it a completely divergent look from Reis and Albuquerque (Dani could draw broken pencils and I’d be thrilled). Stewart turns Gotham a stale brown, making the city look fossilized, archaic, and lost.

Spurrier keys us into more about the kid, with his ability to see the light/darkness/music in others, and this factoid propels the story once he finds what appears to be an old enemy. Gordon is perfect as both the diligent detective and Gotham’s everyman, out to find the truth while being flabbergasted by the city’s latest, youngest surprise in child’s clothing. This is the start of yet another intense tale that reveals ruined Arkham isn’t done leaking out cthuloid tendrils. I doubt it will happen, but I would love to get this team doing a Jim Gordon title with this kid in tow.

Two stories show that the more Gotham changes, the more things remain the same. Batman is at his wit’s end; the Rogues Gallery is shifting, growing, maybe even maturing. And old characters are guiding new ones through the city’s primal psychoses. And all the while, Barbatos watches and plots behind beautiful art and tortured personas.

Detective Comics #1068 is another journey into the Dante’s Inferno called Gotham. Or perhaps it’s best to call it Orgham’s Inferno, for it is definitely dragging Batman and its citizens into a new level of darkness just when they were seeing a light at the end of the subway tunnel.

Detective Comics #1068 is available wherever comic books are sold.


Detective Comics #1068
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TL;DR

Detective Comics #1068 is another journey into the Dante’s Inferno called Gotham. Or perhaps it’s best to call it Orgham’s Inferno, for it is definitely dragging Batman and its citizens into a new level of darkness just when they were seeing a light at the end of the subway tunnel.

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