Final Crisis #7: The Day Evil
Here’s something you may not know (or would have guessed) about me. I have an Ivy League education and a degree in literary analysis. Now, I don’t bring this up to sound like a jerk, but to make the following point. I’ve read every issue of Final Crisis, and I can’t tell you what the hell any of it was about or what actually happened. The closest comparison I can make is to the mid-century theatre of the absurd movement, where writers rebelled against the idea of story structure and character development, instead striving for a non-linear, surreal experience. Not a single panel in Final Crisis feels like it logically follows the previous panel. I got that Darkseid returned…and infected the world with some sort of bio-technical virus…and Batman died (sort of)…and Libra was there…and you were there…and you were there. So, while I give high praise to the writers and artists of the Final Crisis series for, well, getting paid, I’d still really love for someone to explain it to me.
Nightwing #152/Batman #685: No More Batdance
Speaking of Batman’s death, Dick Grayson‘s dark (k)night of the soul continues as he faces the Batcave alone and makes some not-so-subtle remarks about the holes that will go unfilled because of Batman’s demise. He barely has time to sign into Manhunt, when Ra’s Al Ghul sends his Ninja henchmen (Ninchmen?) to round up Nightwing and bring him in for a little chat. Nightwing clobbers the Ninjas pretty easily, but still agrees to pay Ra’s a visit. The Nightwing story has been taking a very introspective turn lately, and this issue is more of the same. Ra’s main purpose is to get a feel for Dick, see if he’s up to taking over for Batman. It’s an interesting angle to play in all of this. Who do Batman’s enemies want to see put on the cowl and the cape? It seems Ra’s has his own preference, and it’s Dick. Dick all the way. Meanwhile, in Batman, Selina Kyle is in the middle of busting up an animal poaching ring in Vietnam. Why not? Apparently, bad guy Thomas Elliot (aka Hush) has been flitting around the world impersonating Bruce Wayne. You’d think this would be a problem, but Selina seems to think his charade can be of use to her and the other folks Batman left behind. Like in Nightwing, the reality of a world without Batman is slowly sinking in, and those closest to him are beginning to plot, plan and speculate on how to keep the Batman legacy alive.
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P.S. Check out Ra’s Al Ghul’s package in the cover art above. Holy Magnum XL, Batman! No wonder Nightwing was so anxious to go visit him.