Thursday, April 12, 2012

Detective Comics #8

$3.99? So now I have to read 28 pages of Tony's crap?

This issue begins with Catwoman falling to her death. Not really. Batman is being dramatic because he saves her on the next page. But he's narrating instead of thinking and this is where I remind everyone how much I hate that. Who in the comic's field decided that what comic books needed was an audio commentary track by the hero?

So Catwoman is stealing something from Gotham City's Disease Control Labs. She's been poisoned with the Scarecrow's fear gas. But Batman has the antidote and he sprays it in her face. He's playing some game that the Scarecrow is forcing him to play because fifteen minutes before page one, over on page five, Batman gets a phone from Commissioner Gordon. A call comes in from the Scarecrow on it. The Scarecrow has a hostage and his hostage will suffer if Batman doesn't track down Catwoman, find out who she is stealing some anti-fear gas agent for, and find that person. Scarecrow can't let this anti-fear toxin get in the hands of his rivals. But since Batman already has the anti-fear toxin, what does it matter? Is Batman not going to share it with others? He should just have Alfred tweet the recipe. (Oh, the Scarecrow is afraid of his Fear Toxin getting out, not the cure. Which is why Batman wants to stop it as well.)

Batman finds out some guy named Digger Jones put Catwoman up to this burglary. And he knows where she was supposed to meet him. So off he goes with just 39 minutes left before some unnamed hostage is tortured by The Scarecrow. It seems odd that Batman would go through all of this trouble without even asking The Scarecrow about the hostage. He just takes it on faith from Commissioner Gordon who says the Scarecrow made it seem like he had a hostage. Batman is so easily manipulated!

Why do people in Gotham always bust through walls to catch the people they're after? Are all walls in Gotham City made out of cotton candy?

Batman catches up to Digger Jones and gets right to the point. He finds out where Catwoman was supposed to take the pills and Scarecrow calls Batman on the phone to congratulate him on a mission well done. Which makes Batman realize Scarecrow is watching him. Which, of course, means that Batman immediately sees Scarecrow off in the distance and chases him down to confront him.

That's what I was just saying!

Batman beats up the Scarecrow and ties him to a chimney. I don't know what that's supposed to accomplish. Batman then heads to the address to try and save the boy Scarecrow says is in danger. Batman also tips off Gordon about either the Scarecrow being tied to the roof or the gang of jerks Scarecrow wants stopped. It's hard to tell! Maybe both!

Turns out Eli Strange, the boy who doesn't know how to play Poker, is running the operation. Eli Strange isn't the toughest foe in Gotham.

The Bat Bitch Slap!

Eli Strange was the boy in the photograph Scarecrow gave Batman. That was a dumb plan by the Scarecrow. Although it accomplished what he wanted. Hugo Strange did not get his hands on The Scarecrow's fear toxin. And Batman got what he wanted (stopped some jerk from getting more fear toxin) and he wasn't really manipulated. When he got the chance to take down The Scarecrow, he did it without fear that a hostage was really in danger. He took precautions in case there was one but he didn't let Scarecrow control the game. So that was good to see.

This one shot story was decent but it didn't really seem to prove a point. It felt like it wanted to make some kind of point about Gotham being the victim and Batman saving it yet again. But it was really just average. I think it was one of those forced stories that Daniel had to write because the editors are making him write a Court of Owls tie-in for the next issue.

The back-up story is just another $1 worth of Tony Daniel crap. It's a Harvey Dent story that shows Harvey torture a guy after flipping his coin. The guy says he's from the prosecutor's office and that the prosecutor wants to meet with Dent. Dent doesn't believe him and flips his coin. Then he tortures him. The big reveal (if you can call it that) is that Harvey's coin landed good side up. Sheesh. That's the big twist? Harvey tortured a guy because the good side of the coin came up? So what? He would have killed the guy if the bad side came up? Or did Harvey just not care what side came up? He's not really ruled by the coin? Don't we know that shit already? He just uses it as an excuse or a crutch. This is just the first part of the story. It took place 13 days before the first page of the story where Dent is all fucked up for some reason. Boring.

Detective Comics Issue #8 Rating: No change in the ranking. Nothing horribly wrong with the comic. It told a story pretty much worthy of its position at #43 in the New 52.

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