Tag Archive: batman inc

A bit late this week. Clearly must still be recovering from the trip to Gamescom. Either way, after catching up from the missed week before, we ready for another edition of the Pullbox!

Marvel – Secret Avengers #30 – Many of the villains of the Marvel Universe start to get wise to Venom’s act and soon what seemed like an easy snatch ‘n’ grab turns into all out mayhem! And with it, Taskmaster bolts for Max Fury with the Third Crown. Lucky for them, it seems the completed Crown will not work on the head of a Life Model Decoy. That doesn’t mean the Secret Avengers are out of the woods yet though…

Tons of action, great banter between Venom and Taskmaster and later Hawkeye and Vengeance, and a cliffhanger that sets up this story arc possibly coming to an end soon. If it doesn’t end soon, you can expect a lot more conflict and action in the coming issues as it looks like some of the Secret Avengers are falling under the power of the crown. And it’s interesting how once again, being just a robot, how Max Fury is left all alone. If you haven’t been reading Secret Avengers, now is not the time to jump in, with such a convoluted story line, but if you have, keep going!

Marvel – Astonishing X-Men #53 – After being blown up at Northstar’s wedding, Wolverine starts to put himself back together and Beast helps this small team of X-Men figure out who has Karma, who put her up to this, and just what they’re going to do about it. And Northstar is none too happy about having his wedding crashed by exploding nanobots.

I think the best part of this comic was that we are really starting to see how far Iceman’s powers go. For a long time he was considered an Omega level mutant who was only held back by his own inhibitions and lack of imagination. In this book, as we have in a lot of other recent X-Men stories with Iceman, we see just how far he is able to push himself as he’s split up his consciousness, pulled himself back together from almost nothingness, and in this issue created an absolute monstrous ice creature. The rest of the issue though was rather lackluster, but hints at something larger as it looks like yet another new X-Men villain is in the business of existing simply to make their lives miserable and prove they are not as special as they think.

DC – Batman Incorporated #3 – In order to see just how far Leviathan has permeated the power structure of Gotham, Batman dusts off an old disguise, fan-favorite Matches Malone, to see if he can’t stir up some trouble in Gotham’s underbelly and get a few snitches to point him in the right direction. Unknown to him though, the snitches might be in Leviathan’s pocket, too.

Bringing this long-time alias back to life, after the real Matches Malone was killed by the Ventriloquist some time ago, and having Malone’s new crew being other members of Batman, Inc. was just a stroke of genius by Morrison. And he needed it considering how much momentum this book lost in the launch of the New 52. Finally though it seems to be back on track. And the idea of Robin having his own second identity now, although a bit too early in his life for my liking, was a nice touch as now everyone who has ever worn the yellow cape has matured into something more. And keeping with the red theme that now permeates Nightwing’s costume to match Red Hood and Red Robin, Damian decided to do the same as his new moniker is Redbird. What this means in the future, we will have to wait and see, but at the very least after ‘Matches’ stumbled into a Leviathan trap, I think he’ll be happy to have Redbird around next issue. 

DC – Green Lantern: New Guardians #12 – After finally realizing who has been pulling the strings of members of each lantern corps, Kyle and the others must band together to stop Invictus once and for all before he brings chaos to every star system in his path. But will the secret that Sayd has kept for so long also drive this group apart once their mission is accomplished?

Honestly, for what was supposed to be an epic final battle with Invictus, this issue felt flat in a lot of ways and was more about the upcoming drama within the Green Lantern Corps as Invictus folded like a house of cards after the Lanterns figured out what his power source was. It was also mostly about how no one in this New Guardians Group could trust one another, even after all they had been through and Kyle is left there twiddling his thumbs. The only interesting thing this issue brings up is the corruptions amongst the Guardians and how Kyle will fit into that picture as the fabled ‘Third Army’ that has been built up over the last few months will finally come to fruition in the next couple of issues. 

IDW – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #13 – The Turtles are still rattled after nearly losing Splinter to the hands of the Shredder and even Splinter himself isn’t the same. But when Casey Jones stumbles into the sewers, beaten and bloodied once again by his father, Raphael has enough and goes out to wreak vengeance on the old drunk. Splinter feels this is a perfect time to teach his son a lesson of ninjitsu though. Meanwhile, the Shredder realizes that Karai is not fit to serve him as his second-in-command, even though we find out that she was the one who resurrected Shredder, her grandfather. We also see Krang finally show off his true form, that of a living brain!

Even though Shredder and Krang were two short asides for the main part of this story, this is obviously setting up the team-up that fans of the 80s cartoon have been waiting for. Shredder needs a new second-in-command, Krang needs someone more competent than Baxter Stockman. The ending to this book was shocking though and makes me wonder just how dark Kevin Eastman will take his original characters in the next issue as Splinter is definitely different after his encounter after his old nemesis. If you haven’t been getting Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles yet, now is a great time to get on board as it looks like business is about to pick up!

Batman, Inc. #5 Review

Originally Published: April 27, 2011, on Comicvine.com

Batman and Gaucho pair up with Batwoman and The Hood in order to stop an insane scheme by Dr. Dedalus that threatens to bring the civilized world to its knees.

The Good

Grant Morrison continues to weave a complicated and thrilling web over Batman lore as he introduces new villains and schemes while continuing to expand the Batman, Incorporated franchise. Dr. Dedalus is proving to be another major threat for Batman as it is revealed that he is a character who will play both sides of the fence in order to achieve his end goals.

In this one issue, we also saw several new candidates for the Batman, Inc. franchise with Gaucho all but being initiated for Argentina, The Hood possibly for England, and a new unknown Batman in Africa who will likely be expanded upon in future issues.

Couple all this with some great action highlighted with an awesome fight scene with Scorpiana against The Hood, Gaucho, and Batwoman and this book entertains from beginning to end.

The Bad

With all this world traveling and new characters being constantly introduced or re-introduced after long hiatuses, it’s sometimes hard to keep track of just which way the comic is going. Combine that with a lot of flashbacks to help flesh out the character of Dr. Dedalus and long speeches between characters we haven’t seen in a while to get us up to speed on who they are, and this Batman, Inc. arc is a little tough to follow at times.

Also, even though Dr. Dedalus has a lot of ties to Batman’s past according to his story, he feels a bit like a Ra’s al Ghul clone and hasn’t done anything to prove to be very memorable as of yet. He comes off as just another megalomaniac who wants to destroy the world.

The Verdict

Batman, Inc. is something you have to keep following because it is surely building up to something beyond huge for the Dark Knight. Although I prefer to see Batman work alone most times or just within the Bat Family, this comic does a good job of making sure that Batman doesn’t lose sight of his goal and see this devolve into a less campy Brave and the Bold series of team-ups every issue.

A little difficult to follow at times, the elaborate plot and great action are more than enough to keep your attention for the long haul as we’ll hopefully start to see just what Batman, Inc. can really evolve into in the coming issues.

4/5 Stars

Originally Published: April 12, 2011, on Comicvine.com

It has become a very popular argument by Batman’s rogues’ gallery, especially the Joker, in recent years. The villains taunt Batman with the idea that if he weren’t around, most, if not all of them, would never have come into existence and that he is just as much to blame for their brand of chaos as he is. It is all an attempt to throw Batman off his game, but there is clearly some truth behind their words. Without Batman there surely would be no Joker venom, giant penny, or trick umbrellas. There definitely would be no “Same Bat-Time, Same Bat-Channel”. And there would be no Boy Wonder, Oracle, or Batman, Inc.

And speaking of Batman, Inc., the basis of this new idea is that there is supposed to be Batmen all over the world that will be supported by Bruce Wayne. But what if Bruce’s next logical step on his unending war on crime does the exact opposite though of his intent and escalates it instead? Could all these new Batmen, in an attempt to quell crime around the world, be the launching point for more villains worldwide, much like Bruce theoretically was for some of his in Gotham? The world has enough trouble staying together what with the threats the JLA, JSA, Green Lantern Corps, and others are constantly having to snuff out. I’m sure that exactly what the world wants is three new Jokers, two new Two-Faces, and a Penguin from Sicily.

Already the Batman of Japan, the former Mr. Unknown Jiro Osamu, has an arch-nemesis it would seem in Lord Death Man who re-emerged after a long hiatus in the launching of the Batman, Inc. series. What is it to say that this could not be the jumping off point now for Jiro’s own cavalcade of themed villains that could feature crazed samurai, ninja, or dragons that wish to take down Batman, Inc. and its representatives? And we all know how much Japanese people love dressing up in costumes (just check out the entire cosplay section of Anime Vice here).

Then there is Bilal Asselah, the Nightrunner, and currently the Batman of France. He truly lacks any sort of a rogues’ gallery, but that just sets him up for any number of possibilities. Bilal was last seen dealing with the difficulty of not being accepted by the Muslim people of France as they see him as an extension of an unnecessary American system. This leaves the door open for some extremist to come up with a gimmick to take him down. Or how about that France is home for many of the most evil and twisted group of clowns (even though they originated in Ancient Greece): mimes. It’s only a matter of time before one decides to become the French Joker that traps people in real invisible shrinking boxes that crushes them to death or hangs them from invisible ropes.

Of course, this is all dependent on these new Batmen at some point popping back up in the DC Universe and being fleshed out some more. Otherwise, are all these new Batmen simply tools to forward a current concept and never to be heard from again except as future fodder for another Crisis? Should the more popular ones come back as recurring characters in Batman, Inc. or get their own limited series or monthly spin-offs to expand the roster of DC rogues as a whole? Or will we start seeing more global inspired plots for Bruce Wayne’s villains in order to features these new Batmen more often?

And just how many Batmen are destined for Batman, Inc.? There are nearly 200 countries in the world. Will each one have a Batman? As interesting as it might be to see Batmen all around the world, and it would probably take several hundred issues to get to them all, the gimmick would definitely burn itself out at some point without adding some twists to the creation of dynamic, recurring, new villains with unique stories for these new Batmen or some huge event that features a lot of them all at once. Because right now Batman, Inc. seems like a drawn out version of an Elseworlds I read when I was a kid called Brotherhood of the Bat and in the end of that, “Damian” kicks the snot out of all the imitation Batmen.

So what do you guys think? If there were not a spike in the villain population caused by these new Batmen and some epic storyline that results from it, would this just be a waste of time? If new villains don’t start appearing all over the world, will Bruce Wayne’s rogues’ gallery have to give up the “Batman is the reason why we exist” argument? If the concept of Batman, Inc. doesn’t fail in the comics, does it mean the story will dry up and fail on newsstands instead if nothing radical happens? Let us know what you think with comments below!