Hey guys, Darius here, bringing to you my review of BATMAN ETERNAL #13! In BATMAN ETERNAL #13, A demon from Jim Gordon’s past comes to haunt him in Blackgate while the Gang War threatens to rip Gotham City apart. I was really looking forward to this issue, especially after how last week’s issue ended with a shocking return. We have the combination of Mike Janin on art duties and James Tynion IV on script duties for this issue. I really enjoyed this issue, the writing was great as always and Mikel Janin continues to do an exceptional job with art. What I enjoyed the most is that even though it is not centered around Batman heavily, the story continues to be so good that it makes up for the lack of Batman. Let’s dive into BATMAN ETERNAL #13 with the positives and negatives!
- The conversation between Jim Gordon and his son James Jr. was so enticing! As I was reading it, I felt like I was watching a movie. Every word that James Jr. said was like a blow to Jim Gordon’s soul. Things like this, and I’m paraphrasing: “…you can tell me that deep dark secret that you don’t want to admit to yourself—you hate this city, you always have…” You can’t help but be tantalized by his words. Now there is this plan to break Jim out of Blackgate. Now the question that remains: is Jim Gordon willing to take the chance to escape or will he let the justice system of Gotham do their job and set him free in due time? We will find out in the coming issues his decision and the outcome of his decision. How exciting!
- I’m really loving Mikel Janin’s artwork. I already said before that his artwork really displays the characters emotions but he pushes that even further with scenes where he purposefully gave certain characters goofy looking expressions and I commend him for that. Reason being is because most artists try to draw a character so perfectly that sometimes the characters end up looking stoic and manikin-like. When drawing those goofy expressions he leads himself away from that and I really loved that. Also that picture with Batman that is two pages long is awe-inspiring. The image is smooth, clean and has this iconic feeling about it. It shows that if Batman is not going to make too many appearances in this issue, then, when he does show up, you WOW us and you make sure we realize he is there!
- Bard’s plan finally moving in motion and being effective nonetheless. We see Lt. Bard and his team get the okay to “capture Batman”. His plan was executed so flawlessly that it even impressed Batman! I knew I liked this Lt. Bard character for a reason. I enjoyed how he influenced Vicki Vale to catch Commissioner Forbes in the act and now they know that he is working for Carmine Falcone. Watching this play out, I felt like I was watching Batman mixed with the shows Burn Notice and The A-Team! When a comic book crosses mediums by having excellent writing, it’s always a plus for me. Now what happens next, Forbes gets busted and Lt. Bard becomes interim commissioner maybe?
- The quick scenes with Stephanie was awesome. Now I know I complain about the writers including scenes that feel forced in just for a setup later down the line and is not cohesive enough with the overall flow of the issue. However, I have to make an exception this time because this escapade ended with a bang! Was I the only one thinking that the box was a bomb? No? I didn’t think so. Anyways, I think this will be the point that pushes Stephanie over the top and I think in the coming issues, she is going to get her redemption!
- The only real negative I see from this issue is the lack of Batman. Most readers who reads Batman comics hopes to see Batman kick some bad guy butt, and rightfully so. I can see this turning some readers off. I believe Batman will get his action turned back up to maximum in the coming issues.
As said before, even though Batman has had a diminished appearance in this issue, and issues before, the story keeps you entertained. You see Gotham function on its own without Batman always having to save the day as usual. The visuals will keep you entertained and the story, pace, and dialogue will have you enticed. This is another solid outing by Scott Snyder and company. I highly recommend this issue!