Batman gets the band back together in Detective Comics #934
When Batman encounters a problem he can’t face alone in Gotham City, he assembles a squad to save his home. Detective Comics #934 sees Batman rally his team to protect a city soon to be under siege.
Investigating a case, Batman discovers tech suggesting someone is gathering intel and plotting against the Bat family. Given everything Batman’s gone up against, the opposition from first appearances seems underwhelming and hardly worth the trouble for Batman let alone a team. Still, comic book teams have come together for worse reasons.
Easily the book’s best moment was the team’s formation. It had a bit of an Ocean’s Eleven vibe to it with Batman sizing up potential recruits before making his pitch.
While the recruiting segments are fun, the team selections felt arbitrary. It’s hard to imagine there being a genuine threat in Gotham where Batman wouldn’t call up Nightwing, The Red Hood or Damien. Or new main sidekick/partner Duke Thomas.
Orphan (Cassandra Cain), The Spoiler and Red Robin are logical additions. Clayface was a wild card recruit that was puzzling since actual Bat family members like Batwing and Azreal are sitting on the bench at the start of the series.
Writer James Tynion IV tries a little too hard to establish Batwoman as Batman’s equal. Tynion creatively comes up with a link between Batman and Batwoman thanks to their personal and professional ties. Making use of Batwoman’s military past is inspired in this setting, but making her the co-lead felt unearned.
If Batwoman truly were a full rights partner she probably should have had some say on the roster. Or at least make a few suggestions on her own. What’s The Question doing in this new Rebirth era anyway?
Eddy Barrows’ art is a major selling point. He has such a clean, yet detailed, style that he thrives handling team books. Batman titles require artists who will commit to fleshing out the backdrops and convey emotions with only half the face visible and that’s Barrows to a tee.
Detective Comics is one of the more intriguing Rebirth titles as it delivers a Batman team book we’ve always wanted. It’s not quite there yet. Tynion is still working on team dynamics and building a threat level worthy of Batman and company, but it’s clearly only going to get better.