The Psychotic Perspective: Batwing #13
A Hard Turn
Batwing is a divisive book in the DCNU's lineup. Some believe it to be a high quality series delivering great stories while others think it is mundane at best and deserves to be cancelled to make way for a higher quality and more original series. There is definitely some truth in the idea that Batwing is the bastard son of Batman and Ironman, but I do not hold the view that Batwing is a throwaway book. In fact, I thought last Batwing had one of the strongest zero issues in the entire Batman lineup. Does this issue prove that David is as good a vigilante as any other Bat, or does it make the case that Batwing should be put on the endangered species list?
In this issue, Batwing investigates the murderous cult "The Finders" who follow the teachings of Father Lost who orders that blood sacrifices be made in the name of an unknown goddess. While David tracks the cult, Dawn, another vigilante, has already begun to dismantle The Finders.
Too Many Unknowns
At the end of the issue, I was disappointed to find that I did not much care for it. Don't get me wrong, it is not a bad comic, but it definitely left something to be desired.
I think it is the unknowns which spoil the issue. I enjoyed the zero issue of Batwing because I got to know David as a person. Here, we see through his interaction with his fellow officers that he has courage and compassion, but other than two pages, we do not see David outside his suit, and without any real inner monologue, we can only guess what is happening in his head. The new heroine Dawn has a cool set of laser blades, but we do not know anything about her motivation or background, and too little has been revealed to make her interesting. The motivation of Father Lost is also unknown, and the motivation of the cultists was ambiguous at best. Even the tech Batwing uses in this issue raises serious questions. David's suit cannot punch through plexiglass but it can push a plane off course? A few more answers to basic questions would have improved the whole issue.
What's Toing On?
I love Marcus To's work, and even in this issue, characters and action scenes looked pretty good, but I found myself confused on what exactly was happening several times. Almost every action scene had a moment wherein I had to reread to understand it. In one scene, people commit suicide by stabbing their stomachs. A stomach wound could definitely kill a person, but it would take quite a while, and these characters were dead almost instantly. This could be a problem of the scripting, but I found it very odd that they stabbed their stomachs rather than hearts.
As a name, Father Lost sounds pretty intriguing, but this issue kept his identity a secret. Yet, it seems obvious that the only surviving cultist, who possesses some unexplained powers, is probably the bad guy. If this turns out to be the big reveal of this story arc, I'll be very disappointed.
I found this whole issue disappointing. It is worth a purchase for any big fans of the series or a creator, but everyone else should wait for this one to come out in trade.