Review: Bane: Conquest #12 (FINAL ISSUE)

by Joshua Raynor
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[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writer: Chuck Dixon

Artist: Graham Nolan

Colors: Gregory Wright



Bane! Batman! Their eternal feud continues in the heart of a Kobra stronghold! Who will live and who will die? And who will triumph in the end as this crime epic races on to its shocking conclusion, Bane co-creators Chuck Dixon and Graham Nolan bring their yearlong saga, the latest chapter in the life of the Man Who Broke the Bat, to a climax that you’ll never see coming!



The finale is here!!

Artist Graham Nolan definitely saved his best cover for last.  It’s one I want to get a print of and hang on my wall.  Everything pops, from the orange and yellow explosion background, to the vibrant green title, and especially Bane himself.  His artwork is one of the main reasons I love this series, and combined with Dixon’s stellar storytelling abilities, it has become one of my favorite runs over the past year.

Seeing Bird call KGBeast “KFCBeast” made me laugh out loud, which isn’t something that happens all the time.  It was a perfect example of just how good Dixon’s writing is in this series.

Bane is like a dog with a bone when it comes to Batman.  It’s his one real weakness, in my opinion.  As Bird says, “he takes his eye off the ball when Batman is around”.  And it’s so true.  He gets obsessed.  He could dominate just about any place he wanted, but his need to take on the Bat holds him back.  Perhaps he needs it to feel whole, similar to the Joker, which is why he doesn’t expose his secret identity as Bruce Wayne.  It’s the one adversary he has deemed worthy of his respect.

We finally get to see the fight between mech suit-Valentina and Bane that I wanted from the previous issue, even if it was kind of short.  It was great seeing Bane rip through the suit like it was nothing.  It shows his sheer strength, which is one of his biggest assets.  This book also shows why Bane is one of my favorite characters.  He’s so deeply layered.  He wants to bring Kobra to their knees, yet doesn’t want to put this child through the same things he went through.  He’s willing to let Batman take the child and leave than lay that curse upon him.


The only negative I have is that the ending left me hanging just little bit.  Part of me wishes Bane had actually stayed and taken over Kobra.  It would’ve been a bit more satisfying for me, personally, and could’ve set up for some interesting stories down the road.



Overall, this was a great ending to this maxi-series.  Kobra is essentially done, the Naja-Naja was sent to an orphanage and will hopefully stay hidden.  So will Valentina rebuild Kobra, or will she start something new?  This feels like it’s setting up for a new series, as it ends a bit more abruptly than I was expecting.  Hopefully we’ll get to see more of Bane, preferably with Dixon and Nolan at the helm.


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