No Man's Land: Who's read it?

#1 Posted by Red_Jack (285 posts) - - Show Bio

Hiya to anyone who reads this.

So if anyone's noticed, I happen to be an avid Batman fan and have been reading a LOT of Batman comics that I never knew existed.

I've been going in chronological order (to the best of my ability) and after thoroughly enjoying arcs like Cataclysm and Road to No Mans Land, I was, at first, very interested in the arc No mans land.

Well, so far I have read the first three volumes. I have just left reviews on each issue page for comic vine but my overall summary is that I'm really disappointed in the seemingly inept lack of continuity.

I put "seemingly" because I'm hoping the next two volumes may answer a lot of the plot holes this story arc is rife with.

So who has read this story arc before? What do you think? Would you say the end of it justifies a lot of the unanswered questions I keep coming across? I'm keen to hear from y'all.

#2 Posted by G-Man (18922 posts) - - Show Bio

Funny. I just started re-reading it this morning!

Staff
#3 Posted by Red_Jack (285 posts) - - Show Bio

So you've read it before right?

I wont spoil the story to non-readers, but did you find certain continuity aspects downright annoying?

#4 Posted by serpent222 (319 posts) - - Show Bio

I didn't read the entire thing. I was irked by a lot in it, so I ended up omitting certain tie-ins and skipping around. I don't know what inconsistencies are bothering you so much, but from what I saw of it, they were not addressed, and since it went on for so long with so many different series, a lot of it drags on and remains inconsistent.

#5 Posted by danhimself (22720 posts) - - Show Bio

what was wrong with the continuity?

#6 Edited by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

#1 Do not read the "volumes." They are not complete and this have been a long time annoyance, I understand, for many fans.

#2 What inconsistencies? I'm sure i could probably answer any problems you are having.

#3 Do not skip out on the tie ins. There are very few that do not matter at all. Off hand I can think of maybe one.

The best way to read it possibly is if you start with Contagion, Cataclysm, Road to No Man's Land, No Man's Land 0, and then look up and put every issue over the course of that year that ties in in order.

#7 Edited by Billy Batson (58381 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken said:

#1 Do not read the "volumes." They are not complete and this have been a long time annoyance, I understand, for many fans.

The new editions are collecting every issue and they will be complete.
BB

#8 Posted by SmashBrawler (5978 posts) - - Show Bio

I thought No Man's Land was good? I don't know, I really liked it. Especially No Law and a New Order, Shades of Grey and Endgame

BTW, DC is going to release a complete edition of NML, which includes every tie-in, so I recommend getting that edition

#9 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

Nice to know that they are going to try to collect them all. The word being "try"

#10 Posted by TDK_1997 (15123 posts) - - Show Bio

Ihave forgotten it so I'm gonna re-read it soon.But from what I remember I liked it.

#11 Posted by Red_Jack (285 posts) - - Show Bio

Well, I'll try and answer everyone all at once.

Firstly, I've read all of the contagion arc and the knightfall arc before that. I went through a comic reading marathon of going through Catclysm and road to no mans land. Never had a single complaint of anything thus far.

I read the first volume of No Mans Land and I fell in love with the story and got totally immersed in it. The second volume is when it started to disappoint me and the third volume. Then, the fourth and fifth redeemed most of my gripe.

I think the truth is, my problem stems from the different writers doing different chapters and also, some of the artists kinda sucked (d'isreali, whoever that is).

Some of the continuity errors seem less significant now that I've read the whole arc, but it was mainly little things like: -

spoiler alert

When we are first introduced to LockUp working with Batman, which is an uneasy alliance, it was depicted that Lock up was holding the prisoners in some nearby prison... and not Blackgate. Then a few chapters later LockUp and KGBeast were in fact at Blackgate.

During the first volume, Bob Gale had put that Croc Killer was roaming around like a nomad fighting anyone he comes across. Then he suddenly had his own gang by volume 2! I much preferred Bob Gales idea as it suits Croc Killer well. He could've been made to look really frightening.

Other things that disappointed me is that Greg Rucka made Black Masks appearance underwhelming and Mr Zsasz just seemed too inaccurately portrayed. Mr Zsasz is meant to be a serial killer psycho who just doesn't care about life. But then he's given his own gang in the turf wars. What!??

#12 Posted by danhimself (22720 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red_Jack said:

During the first volume, Bob Gale had put that Croc Killer was roaming around like a nomad fighting anyone he comes across. Then he suddenly had his own gang by volume 2! I much preferred Bob Gales idea as it suits Croc Killer well. He could've been made to look really frightening.

No Man's Land covered an entire year so it's very plausible that Croc took over a gang at some point

#13 Posted by Red_Jack (285 posts) - - Show Bio

@danhimself: Yeah, I loosened up on that one after a while. I think it all boils down to one chapter being written by Lisa Klink. It wasn't even necessary to read her chapter anyway because it didn't affect anything else, but there was still Mr Zsasz territory which I considered dumb.

Also, near the end, Tim Drake is taken out of no mans land.......... then suddenly he's back in there. That, I found utterly stupid too.

Otherwise, the story arc was quite epic.

#14 Posted by danhimself (22720 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red_Jack: it's been a while since I read it but maybe the time you're talking about with Robin was after he fought Ratcatcher and was sick?

#15 Posted by Rick_Grayson (887 posts) - - Show Bio

I haven't re-read in quite a long time, mostly because i remember being VERY distracted by the artwork in most of the book and didn't want to have to go through that again. If i remember right it starts off well but then radically changes every 25-30 pages. I wouldn't even mind if the whole thing was 1 terrible style, but going from bad to worse to different kind of bad just doesn't work.
 
Good story, deserves a revisit with one consistent artist.

#16 Posted by Crash_Recovery (850 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red_Jack: Have you read Contagion and Legacy?

They're pre-Cataclysm. The first deals with an Ebola-type virus hitting Gotham and decimating the city, and Legacy is a follow-up.

Great, great stories.

#17 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

Tim being airlifted out was a publicity stunt and I'm pretty sure it happened at near the end which is why it happened and then he was "back" because NML was done and Tim and Bruce don't live IN Gotham, but rather on the outer rich suburbs which is why they're among the first back.

Killer Croc (not Croc Killer) didn't form a gang so much as a gang formed around him. Which happens in Lord of the Flies situations where you have someone that can kill others pretty easily.

The Zsasz gang isn't if I remember right. You'd have to give me an issue where they say they are. I believe their origins are the False Face gang. They scar themselves to put on their true face or something like that

The thing with Lock Up is your own misconception.

#18 Posted by Red_Jack (285 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken: Tim being lifted out was a publicity stunt which would've made him returning to NML about three issues later unrealistic.

The Zsasz gang was even highlighted as a part of the Gotham map. One issue showed him threaten some old war vet who had his own house he bought in Gotham a long time before.

Finally, Lock Up was a misconception. I checked out the issue again and blackgate didn't look right but there was a body of water around it. Frank Teran did the artwork involving the Black Mask chapter which introduces Lock Up and Tally Man too. Frank Terans' artwork was just awkward. He made everyone look skinny, gaunt and scruffy. Probably appropriate for the story arc, but completely out of place compared to the other artists.

#19 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red_Jack: I'm pretty sure there was a reason for Tim's insta return, but I couldn't find any point, but then I didn't look at a detail of the plan and between the time he was lifted out and the time his next issue the arc was over so yeah... It should also be pointed out that story of him getting air lifted took place over 3 months and wasn't really mentioned in any other title as far as I can see even though it is supposedly the catalyst for Luthor to attempt to rebuild the city. I have to imagine that the editor/writers simply didn't coordinate well enough as to what exactly happened with that situation and the delay between writing and publishing was, like in most cases, far to vast a gap to change anything. I would say there are a few ways you can resolve it... 1) simply remove Tim from those other issues as he doesn't play a big role 2) say Tim, as Robin resnuck in after the fact and that was the plan all along 3) Tim resnuck temporarily but Lex made his move which prompted Tim's parents to start moving back early which is why he was able to stay there D) make up something on your own lol

Zsasz... while he does have territory it isn't really explored from what i see or remember. Given that fact it is probably just bad reporting, lack of information, and lack of care. Zsasz is psycho and so the best option is to stay out of his way, as such he would gain territory by default and with that Babs' reporter kids may have mistook that as having a gang or it might have just been easier to write that on the map, but I think that's just a little nit-picky especially when you consider that the maps, while supposed to be a help to the reader, they are "in character" maps and not "out of character" maps meaning they are restricted by the info Oracle has and not the information the writers/editors have and thus are going to be inaccurate in some way... so I don't see this as a problem.

#20 Posted by RoboShark (1283 posts) - - Show Bio

I liked No Man's Land. I will say it's a tad drawn out. A lot of reading for the big ending.

#21 Posted by G_Money_Christmas (884 posts) - - Show Bio

I almost bought the first one the other night because Vintage Stock had a buy one get one free deal but I ended up finding the Court of Owls and Justice League hardcovers and got then both for $13

#22 Posted by BatWatch (3087 posts) - - Show Bio

I read the novelization of No Man's Land, and I really liked it. I've read bits and pieces of the comic series, and I liked all I read.

What plot holes are you referring to?

#23 Posted by BatWatch (3087 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken:

All right, I'm a Tim Drake expert, so maybe I can answer the question here, but I don't really understand it from what you were talking about.

Tim came back into the city after a couple of months because Batman realized he couldn't handle things alone and summoned all hands on deck. Tim snuck in with Nightwing by using an old abandoned and never quite finished tunnel under the bay between Gotham and Bludhaven.

#24 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

@PsychoKnights said:

@Durakken:

All right, I'm a Tim Drake expert, so maybe I can answer the question here, but I don't really understand it from what you were talking about.

Tim came back into the city after a couple of months because Batman realized he couldn't handle things alone and summoned all hands on deck. Tim snuck in with Nightwing by using an old abandoned and never quite finished tunnel under the bay between Gotham and Bludhaven.

after that...Tim gets air lifted and then in he magically is back in other titles that occur after that, but before his next Robin issue which takes place after NML

#25 Posted by BatWatch (3087 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken: So, in continuity Tim must be airlifted out after the other the other No Man's land issues.

#26 Posted by Durakken (1591 posts) - - Show Bio

@PsychoKnights: Except that the airlift event is the trigger which causes the events of those following comics.

#27 Edited by BatWatch (3087 posts) - - Show Bio

@Durakken: Well, that was pretty stupid. Still, its kind of reassuring in a way to know that the Bat editing room has always been asleep at the wheel.

I can say that there is nothing in the Robin comics which indicate that Tim slipped into Gotham a second time, but...let me check something.

Okay, just checked and there is an undisclosed gap between Robin 73 and Robin 74, so you could theorize that Tim slipped back in...but it seems a stretch.

#28 Posted by Kesho_Ronin (209 posts) - - Show Bio

i've read it last summer.i liked it

#29 Posted by batshrine (1001 posts) - - Show Bio

I always read Tim returning after the publicity stunt was simply as that, TIm returned...He snuck back in as Robin. Maybe what would have been helpful is show a conversation between him and his Dad I guess, but over all I didn't think it was that big of a deal. Just took it as it was. Though I mean in my opinion NML in general was REALLY drawn out. Overall though I enjoyed it.

And ya don't read the old volumes those aren't complete. The New Ones are much better

#30 Posted by Crom-Cruach (8869 posts) - - Show Bio

I own no man's land and have read it multiple times, I enjoyed it

#31 Posted by Onemoreposter (4101 posts) - - Show Bio

@Red_Jack: I loved the story. Personally I'd recommend getting Batman: Contagion and Batman: Legacy as well as they both lead up into Cataclysm and then into No Man's Land. Legacy in particular was my favorite No Man's Land prequel. It's probably the best Bane story after Knightfall in my opinion. It also stars Ras Al Ghul and Talia as part of the principle cast of characters.

As for No Man's Land, I though it was great. Long, but great.

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