Review: Detective Comics #1041
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writers: Mariko Tamaki and Matthew Rosenberg
Art: Dan Mora and Darick Robertson
Colors: Jordie Bellaire and Diego Rodriguez
Letters: Aditya Bidikar and Rob Leigh
Reviewed by: Matthew B. Lloyd
Bruce finds himself turning to Oracle for help as he finds his mini-cave destroyed and his home destroyed by arson. And, it doesn’t get any better from there….
Detective Comics #1041 connects the dots between the last issue and Batman Secret Files: The Huntress #1 revealing how Batman has been infected with the parasite. While the surprise ending was effective in the Secret Files issue, it did seem to steal a little thunder from the main book. However, Detective Comics #1041 maintains such a laser focus on what’s going on with Batman that it ends up working out and the way Bruce gets infected is still a surprise.
Keeping the major spoiler under wraps, it’s ok to say that Batman comes face to face with a new set of antagonists- The Jury! Who are the Jury? You’ll have to read to find out, but it’s an interesting approach Tamaki is taking. With the promise that Mayor Nakano has made about vigilantes, it now seems that private citizens are taking legal matters to the streets as well.
The way the parasite storyline is developing, it’s hard not to think of the infection as a parallel for COVID-19. Just when you think you’ve gotten rid of it, it comes back. No one is immune, it involves hospitalizations and it has the potential to be truly crippling to a city. It’s not overplayed or heavy handed, but there’s just enough there to add an extra layer to the story. It connects the Bat-Universe to ours in a different way than we usually see.
Dan Mora is again on art chores and his storytelling is right on target. Whether it’s a frenetic sequence in which he makes the action clear or dramatic pacing that allows for characters to react and emote, he makes the visuals interesting and engaging. Darick Robertson handles the art on the second feature, “What the #!$% is Task Force Z?” and he’s got a bit of a harder job as there’s a lot more conversation than action as Deb Donavan and Vicki Vale try and figure out why there are missing bodies from the Gotham Morgue.
It gets even more interesting on the final page as a we get a surprise appearance from a Bat-protege. It’s a first chapter that appears promising. Robertson delivers admirably as he alters angles and emphasizes expressions to help tell the story and keep the reader involved. It’s a nice to touch to use longtime supporting character Vicki Vale, as well. It’s always nice to see underused characters get an appearance. Gotham sure seems to have a lot of redheads, that’s three in this issue- Barbara Gordon, Deb Donavan AND Vicki!
Hard to find a negative with this issue. Tamaki and the rotating teams of artists have been doing a great job on this series, and the back up stories flesh out the main storyline with supporting tales that add layers and dimension.
Detective Comics is another example of character and story triumphing over events. It’s proof that it can be just as large in scope and just as significant. The entire creative team is doing a magnificent job of telling entertaining and engaging stories that bring Batman, his allies and enemies and Gotham City to life. Don’t miss out! Detective Comics #1041 is a great place to jump on if you aren’t already riding this train!