More Background to the Beginning of Batman's Crusade
I have loved this series and have been very pleased with the work Snyder has produced on this series. I wasn't a huge fan on his Detective run and didn't like what I read of his Swamp Thing series but he has certainly done a good job on this. This issue also has the amazing art work of Capullo which was sadly missing from the last issue.
This story starts with a party getting crashed by a gang called the Red Hood gang (nothing to do with the Jason Todd Red Hood). They find out one of their members is an imposter who in fact is Bruce Wayne (although they don't know this as he's in disguise). After escaping Bruce is at a new building he has near Crime Ally. Whilst testing a new boomerang gadget he is visited by Commissioner Gordon. Gordon discusses how it is illegal to be in league with a vigilante and and that he should tell him whatever he knows.
In the side story by James Tynion IV which I think steals the issue we see Barbara Gordon (Batgirl) talking with her father about Batman. In the same story we see Tim Drake (current Red Robin and third Robin) use detective skills before he becomes Robin, Jason Todd (current Red Hood and second Robin) stop a member of a gang he was in for going to far and Dick Grayson (Nightwing and first Robin) stop a mugger using his gymnast skills.
I really liked this issue and I liked the side story even more. It was nice to see all the younger members of the Bat family before they meat Batman and see how they had most of their skills prior to meeting Batman. I also liked how we saw a inexperienced Batman try to bluff his way past Gordon. I however don't know like how it appears the Red Hood gang will be seen in the near future as we already have a Red Hood and I feel this would be a bit confusing.
Final verdict. Brilliant series and one of the better Batman series' although I wasn't hugely fond of the Night of the Owls story. I would highly recommend it and am looking forward to the Death of a Family story.