Just a few quick thoughts this week as I'm packing for a trip this weekend.
Detective Comics #948
Maguerite Bennett joins James Tynion IV to set up her Batwoman ongoing. I was a bit worried that this would be another divergence from the series' ongoing concerns like the Night Of The Monster Men crossover. Frankly, I want to get to the bit where Tim Drake makes his dramatic return. And, well, this is a sequel to Night Of The Monster Men but I'm always up for a bit of Marguerite Bennett, even if the interviews she gave about her Batwoman series make me feel old because she says a character I think of as “new” was a great inspiration to her in high school.
Still, this storyline feels a lot more relevant than Monster Men did. Given this is half an origin story for Kate her father gets a lot of time in the spotlight, both in flashback and in his cell. The origin stuff concentrates on Kate's first days as Batwoman rather than her being cashiered from the army, which is good because we have that story already.
I do hope ARGUS post-human bioweaponry expert Dr. Victoria October is going to end up a regular somewhere. She drops a mention she's known Batman for a while so hopefully there's some history planned out for her.
Plus, the art is spectacular. Is Ben Oliver doing the art on Batwoman? I hope so, the art here has a fantastic painted look to it that really suits the character. He likes big panels and expressive close-ups on his characters.
Fifteen issues in and I'm still not sure about this incarnation of the series. I don't hate the return of the secret identity or the prosecutor angle, I don't dislike Blindspot as a sidekick, it just isn't clicking.
Still, this issue sort of took a break from the major themes of the series. Blindspot and his new status quo gets a little time but by and large the plot of this one is a scheme by Matt Murdoch to take a contract out on himself to lure out some assassins for... well, that's not quite clear yet. The tone is more whimsical than this series has been, rather more like the pre-Secret Wars version and that I very much liked.
Honestly, though, this series is living on borrowed time with me but I guess I'll see out this storyline.
Jessica Jones #4
This series, though, I am convinced by as things are finally coming together. Not only is this series making something of what I assumed to be the most pointless part of Civil War II but Bendis is getting around to explaining what the hell is going on with Jessica and Luke Cage after only four issues. For Bendis this is commendably fast.
Also, Bendis writes the hell out of Misty Knight and Luke Cage. I do so love Misty Knight and Bendis writes her as Luke's voice of reason here, down to Earth and sensible. She has a very poor opinion of Jessica, which is not surprising in the circumstances and not entirely unjustified even now we have an explanation.
There's also one of those Bendis police precinct scenes full of all the usual madness but also featuring a new detective character who promises to actually be interesting. Given how Jessica has become more of a mainstream superhero over the last decade, I think this character has the potential to be the outsider looking in on the world that the series needs. Frankly, Jessica who has been an Avenger doesn't have that anymore but this detective seems to have experience with the superhero world, just enough to fulfil that old role.