Note: Read Batman before this issue! Yes, this may be the prelude, but chronologically, this issue takes place AFTER the events of Batman #8. Trust me.
Also, there's going to be some black bars here. We don't want to spoil anything for you, unless you really want to know.
Where to start? This is a brilliant issue. The issue is split between Nightwing trying to save the Mayor from the Talons and the life of William Cobb, Dick's grandfather. The flow of this book is great, and I loved the back and forth between Dick and William. As with Batman 8, we start to understand what the Court of Owls is planning on doing, but not so much what they plan on doing afterwords.
The Talons are incredibly awesome. We've seen them before, but this issue, along with Batman, we start to understand how horrific these men can be. We have some decapitations and an epic sword battle between Dick and the Talon.
These guys not only have the numbers, but they are incredibly hard to kill since they also have regeneration powers on top of being highly trained. It's over-whelming for Dick, and I have a feeling the Bat Family is going to come out of this very different and maybe even with some losses.
The art team of Eddy Barrows (Pencils), Ruy Jose & Eber Ferreira (inks), and Roo Reis (colors) did a beautiful job on this issue. It's incredibly solid work, and there's a few pages that stand out. Two pages, towards the end, feature Dick and the Talon going at it, and they are set up wonderfully. One of them pages features Dick kicking the Talon in the face, and there are three panels on the top and four on the bottom of the page featuring some close-up action. The next page contains distorted panels as the fight concludes and the composition adds to the chaos on the page. Amazing work.
I loved how this tied into Batman 8. Just like with Batman 7 and Nightwing 7, we get some cross-over dialogue, but then the book goes off on its own. These books truly define what a tie in is and should be.
Nothing here. I loved this issue.
Court of the Owls is starting off with a bang and is a story that every comic book fan should read. It redefines Nightwing as a character and what makes him the man he is today. This is a fantastic issue. I loved how this issue ties into the Batman issue and the story is so cool.
The Talons are a wonderful villain and this issue has some great fight scenes as well as some insight into the history of one particular Talon.
I loved the art in this issue, especially how the pages were laid out towards the end of the issue.
Overall, go out and buy this book. It's amazing, and it will make you into a Nightwing fan, no matter who you are.