Review: Nightwing #133- Legacy #300
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writers: Tom Taylor, Marv Wolfman and Michael W. Conrad
Art: Daniele Di Nicuolo, Bruno Redondo and Howard Porter
Colors: Adriano Lucas and Hi-Fi
Letters: Wes Abbott


Reviewed by: Matthew B. Lloyd



It’s Dick Grayson’s birthday, and after a mission with Tim and Damian he faces a bigger threat…receiving the Key to the CIty of Bludhaven.


Some have criticized Tom Taylor’s run on Nightwing for not moving fast enough and settling into too many stories that are no more than “look how great Dick Grayson is” plots.  A couple issues ago I commented that it was clear that Taylor had settled in for the  long game with the Heartless storyline.  Taken together, this is a defining run for Nightwing.  Nightwing #113 not only continues to focus on Dick Grayson’s character and relationships, for my money the most significant part of any story, but also throws in some celebration (this SHOULD be issue #300) as well as a tease for what will be a definitive encounter with Heartless in the upcoming “Fallen Grayson” arc which will also be Taylor and Bruno Redondo’s swan song on the title.

Nightwing #113 opens with a fun action sequence with Dick, Tim Drake and Damian Wayne as they work a mission together.  Taylor peppers it with revealing and purposeful dialogue that not only propels the issue, but works the overall characterization of the three as well as supporting characters like Batman and Barbara Gordon.  This sections absolutely sings and is a “how to” balance story and character.

The majority of the issue is similar.  Dick receives the Key to the City from his sister, the mayor, and along the way Taylor makes the character bits stand out.  Not only does Bruce Wayne get a compliment on his parenting from Melinda’s mother, but Dick forces Barbara into the spotlight as he makes sure she is honored for her work as well.  These bits build these characters and the relationships between them.  It seems like a no brainer that Dick and Babs will at the very least be engaged to be married by the end of this run.  It’s a logical conclusion.

Positives Cont’d

Taylor turns over the scripting duties to comic book legend Marv Wolfman for a short sequence (illustrated by Bruno Redondo) that is as much from Marv’s own point of view as it is his in-story stand-in Marv (of Marv and George’s Pizza- George Perez that is).  It serves not only as a tribute to Nightwing/ Dick Grayson, but also to George Perez who passed nearly two years ago.  It’s a special moment that might get you a little misty.  The issue concludes with Heartless commencing the final stage of his plan to take out Dick Grayson.  

The second story by Michael W. Conrad and Howard Porter is a neat “silent” story in the tradition of “Silent Interlude” from G.I. Joe- A Real American Hero #21 and the opening sequence of Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. #1 (1968).  Conrad and Porter present a five minute incident as Nightwing has to get on a train and defuse a bomb.  Slow down with this one in order to experience the excitement and Porter’s art.  Conrad uses a ticking clock throughout to give the reader a sense of the passage of time that is very effective.  Porter, inking himself on this story, appears to be channeling the legendary Gene Colan.  Porter’s linework and use of shadows seems evident of Colan’s influence.  It also serves as an argument that Porter should ink himself.


While Di Nicuolo turns in a fine job on most of the art on the main story, Redondo has been missed for a lot of recent issues.  He’s as much a part of the success of this series as writer, Taylor.  It’s a shame the legacy numbering will only appear as an acknowledgement on this issue and won’t be reflected on future issues as the only numbering.  Dick Grayson deserves that.


Nightwing #113 is a wonderful set up for the final Taylor/ Redondo arc.  Taylor reinforces the focus on character and relationship (including some not mentioned above), but prepares the reader for what will surely be a massive encounter between Dick and Heartless.  To top it off the issue is rounded out by a well conceived and beautifully illustrated story by Conrad and Porter, respectively.

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