Batwing #22 – Daddy Issues
Luke is back in Gotham but the friendly homecoming does not last long.
I have never been a great soothsayer, but the creative team at Batwing have fulfilled my prediction that Lucius Fox was going to be abducted. The opening of this book is completely stolen by Lucius and his smart house. The man who makes gadgets for Batman has kept some for himself for a rainy day. And it is raining. Of course he still ends up taken captive by the end of the home invasion, but it is a very satisfying start to the story.
The inclusion of Batman in this story is something that not only works very well but also reinforces the fact that the Batwing title is now firmly back in the Batman universe. And it makes sense on a more general level. The head of Wayne Enterprises and Batman INC inventor being kidnapped is something that Batman would not leave in the hands of anyone but himself. It is refreshing to have a guest character who’s appearance does not seem contrived.
The attempted rescue of Lucius is interesting. For starters we get some Arkham City style detective vision which is awesome to see in the normal Bat-Continuity. But we get to see Batwing and Batman working together in the field. The banter back in forth is fun but the real show stopper is the very frank conversation about the fact that Batwing can not reveal his identity to his father at any cost because Batman knows that Lucius would resign his job on the spot. This is something that makes natural sense and raises the stakes for not just issue but all future interaction between father and son.
The interlude with Bruce Wayne in the Congo is far from exciting. It seems to be a trend that every time this title leaves Gotham City for Africa it forgets to pack a story for the trip. I hope these scenes will not go on for too many issues into the future.
The scene where Batwing catches a ride with a random redhead driving a convertible comes across as just plain silly. It is not offensive or cringe worthy but defiantly has a WTF factor.
This is another solid issue from the new creative team who has improved this title tremendously in the few issues it has been in their care. The enemy is the most forgettable thing about this story, but this early on that’s okay. The team is successfully building an interesting world for Luke to inhabit and, although this issue does not blow you away, the Batwing is going somewhere. I think I am going to enjoy the ride.