[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Tom Taylor
Art: Daniel Sampere, Bruno Redondo & Juan Albarran
Colors: Rex Lokus
Letters: Wes Abbott
In deep space Brainiac turns his ship toward Earth in order to find the Kryptonian, Superman. And, on Earth, Alfred pays a moving visit to prison to visit Bruce’s daughter with Talia, Athanasia. She isn’t very welcoming, but he successfully makes his point to the young lady, which in turn takes him back to Wayne Manor to have the other side of the conversation with Bruce.
Bruce and Selina are sitting together on the sofa in a truly intimate and heartwarming arrangement. Never has the Dark Knight appeared more relaxed or comfortable. Alfred is able to convince Bruce that he needs to make an overture to Ra’s in order to prove to Athanasia that there are other ways to affect change outside of violence and destruction. With Harley Quinn’s help, they are able to arrange a summit in Atlantis hosted by Aquaman and Mera between Batman and his allies, Ra’s al Ghul and his cadre as well as President of the United States Jefferson Pierce (Black Lightning.)
Emotions and tempers are running high as Batman and Ra’s have grievances that come out immediately. Before things break down entirely, Harley and Poison Ivy are able to get all parties back on track with some inventive action and insightful reasoning. It will certainly prove to be important as in the African jungle, Brainiac has arrived to attempt to recruit Gorilla Grodd to his cause!
The stakes always go up with each new installment of this series, but the fact that there appears to be hope for the future between the two factions is a gratifying element. It all grows out of a very human moment that could be between any estranged father and daughter. This transcends the super-hero genre is relatable to any father and daughter. It doesn’t end there as the moment with Bruce and Selina reveals a Batman who is very comfortable in his personal life. Despite, all the trauma and tragedy that the Dark Knight has faced in this series, it is a beautiful candid moment.
Harley and Ivy coming to the rescue at the last moment is another highlight. Harley is insightful in her argument and both are surprising in their forethought to have planned a contingency. It seems they’ve both learned something from their encounters with Batman over the years!
Nothing really negative here except that it all ends in order to link up with the video game. There appears to be a lot more story to tell in this world that doesn’t have to lead to the video game tie-in.
As this alternate universe story line continues to plunge forward, there is no shortage of wonderful character moments peppered throughout an intriguing notion for detente between the remaining factions. The character moments are intimate and evocative and take the already catastrophic stakes even higher as they bring the humanity of the individual into focus. With only two more issues of this series left, it is heartening to see an alliance forming to combat this world’s latest threat- Brainiac!