Thursday, February 12, 2015

Comics Rant: Detective Comics #577

Detective Comics #577
Written By Mike W. Barr
Pencils By Todd McFarlane
Inks By Alfredo Alcala
Colors By Steve Oliff & Gloria Vasquez

Tash Moore and I’m back and better than ever. I just had some coffee and if you happen to check out The Verbal Mosh pod cast you’ll find out that we hit our 300th episode. Wow, 300 weeks talking about comics. It’s made me pretty jaded. I mean really, you don’t need a fucking big event every damn year. Defeats the purpose of it being, you know, special. But we all know that the big two is only looking to pad itself up with the all mighty alldar (Not a typo but a Simpson’s reference. Look it up!)

So every so often I like to go back and read some classic stuff and that’s where we are with part three of Batman Year Two in Detective Comics #577. Where we last
left off, Batman and Joe Chill, the dude who shot Bruce Wayne’s Folks in a post crisis DCU have teamed up to stop the Reaper, who is really Rachel Caspians Dad. Rachel and Bruce are now pretty much an item. She even gives up on being a nun to get down and dirty with Bruce Wayne. Oh, that Bruce. Dude just can’t leave well enough alone.

So this tale has Batman  and Joe Chill going to a section of old Gotham and forcing some Hippies to give up just hanging around and smoking weed to start working for the Gotham Mob and start making meth. What the hell is this? Breaking Bad? Anyway, this more or less turns out to be a plan to lure The Reaper to the building so Batman and Chill can take him out. For good. Which means kill him. Glad I was able to clear that up for you. The more you know. TM

So that’s the plan. There’s a part in this issue where Joe Chill reports back to his bosses in the Mob and says that while The Batman is good, he’s soft. As soon as Joe Chill and Batman takes down The Reaper he’s to kill Batman as well. Oh, the days of a good 1980’s double cross. All that’s missing is Gorilla Monsoon crying about a “Pearl Harbor Attack!”  Gordon gets wind of the Hippies making Meth and sends a police squad lead by none other than himself to steak the joint out. He too pretty much can safely bet that The Reaper will show up.

Bruce and Rachel take Leslie and Rachel’s dad to dinner. Rachael’s father wants to meet the man who made his daughter give up on being a nun and Bruce wants her fathers stamp of approval. Leslie just want’s Bruce to stop putting on long underwear and running out into the night. If she had her way I’d clearly be writing about something else. After dinner, Rachel wants Bruce and her father to come in. Bruce has to become Batman so he can follow up on the meth lab sure to draw out the Reaper. Rachel’s dad has to run off to be The Reaper because god forbid there be a meth lab in a blighted area of Gotham. Look for the Reaper to show up in Detroit very soon.

Batman, Joe Chill, the Reaper and Gordon and his men all arrive at the building/meth lab/trap all at about the same time. Almost as if someone had written it that way. Go figure. So the cops screw it up and Batman ends up saving Gordon from the Reapers bullets. Gordon repays the Dark Knight with a punch to the face. That Gordon, guy sure is ungrateful.  Joe Chill trying to get a clean shot on the Reaper misses and hits all the ether, blowing the whole building to kingdom come. I’m guessing that unless Joe Chill can’t hit a damn thing unless they happen to be close up. What a jerk.

Joe gets blown so far away that he almost falls to his death. Batman was going to let him fall, but you know, there’s a bad guy to bring down, so he saves Chill. Kicking Joe Chill’s ass will have to wait for another thirty days.  Reaper gets away and some cops get killed.  Gordon is still pissed at Batman for he says is a betrayal. Hey Gordon, just how much can you trust a guy you know next to nothing about and wears a cape and hands out beatings like rice pudding? Not much I’d say. Batman vows to his father that once all this is behind him, he’ll kill Chill with the gun used on him and Chill will know why. Good pacing here and Todd McFarlane does a bang up job with the pencils. Very clean, but when dude inks himself and has no editorial guidelines the shit really hit’s the rail. All in all I enjoyed this, so come back to the finale. Be good. Least the Reaper finds you.

-Tash Moore

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