Convergence Batman And The Outsiders #1 brings old fashioned Outsiders action back to the forefront written by Mark Andreyko, art by Carlos D’Ana, colors by Gabe Eltaeb, letters by Steve Wands.
All the retro favorites are here. Like many of the Convergence issues we start in media res after a year of being “under the dome” to see how our heroes ( The Outsiders are Black Lighting, Halo, Katana, Metamorpho and Geo-Force) are doing. We see them helping the best they can without powers, hey Rex is happy to be without as that means he can finally be with Sapphire Stagg. Halo, meanwhile seems to be in a coma and on life support with the Aurakle supposedly suppressed, and is in the care of Leslie Thompkins. Batman is completely stumped over being completely stumped about the Dome and how he has yet to figure anything about it even after a year.
Mark Andreyko I feel is definitely one of the better “Gotham” writers. Not necessarily Batman, but he does a great job with Gotham as a city. Batman And The Outsiders is a great book for him as well. His books always generally feel very populated and living. Examples here include the Outsider’s interactions with workers and his inclusion of Jim Gordon and Leslie Thompkins as well as the world building he did showing the effect the dome has had on healthcare in Gotham City. It’s no surprise his Kate Spencer Manhunter was such a cult classic with these small realistic details. No it’s not Vertigo, but it’s still okay.
He’s also good at making the characters pretty even and round. Katana is focused on Gaby, Geo-Force is a wreck, still angry over Terra and being cut off from his kingdom but he’s been channeling it by helping others. Black Lighting continues to wear the costume (because he likes to) but because he’s there to help as much as they can. Rex just wants to be normal and be able to touch the person he loves. These are still comic book characters and still rather comic-booky, but they seem a bit less like caricatures here than say as all the ladies written in the Justice League book were.
Additionally while the art is not particularly special Batman and The Outsiders does have an interesting cartoony quality to it. It’s not as bad as it could be (Batgirl‘s in comparison is very sloppy in my opinion) but it’s certainly one of the better ones.
Like many of these Convergence issues, Convergence Batman And The Outsiders is no different; they are slow starters with them ending with the bad guys actually arriving (hello Omac!) so we’ll have to see where they go next with this.
Better than most with a writer I tend to like, this one seems more solid and likable than the “abduct the still living version of your wife/love from this world” seen in other issues. Batman And The Outsiders is a good team and I like the respect they’re generally given here.