Comic Vine Review

27 Comments

Batman Eternal #5 - Disinfect Review

4

Tim Drake makes some headway on the children Professor Pyg infected and Vicki Vale wants some answers on the supposed gangwar in Gotham.

The Good

BATMAN ETERNAL AKA Gotham Eternal AKA Baternal #5 does a wonderful job at continuing to expand on the Gotham Universe. This issue steps into the world of the Gotham Gazette, the dangerous part of Gotham known as The Narrows, and introduces the already well-known characters of Tim Drake AKA Red Robin, Vicki Vale, and Harper Row.

While this story is a departure from the last couple of issues, which revolved around Batman, Gordon, and Stephanie Brown a bit more, the switch up in this issue just reestablishes the fact that this book is a lot bigger than fans may have thought.

It was great to see Tim Drake back in a Batbook, and there was a particular moment that gave me new respect for the Batbooks. There's been a lot of madness in the Batworld for the past couple of years with all the events and changes. Tim reminds the reader he's on his own because there's been so many bad events in recent years, including what happened to Nightwing. It's great to see one of the characters in the book flat out say "things aren't what they used to be," since it seems DC likes to either move on and forget the past or move on to a new event. It's nice to see the past recognized, out loud, by Tim.

Last issue, we saw Dustin Nguyen on art. Issue #5 has Andy Clarke on art with Blond on colors. Yes, the two different styles between the issues is a bit of a change, but overall, it's fine because Clarke has a very nice style that conveys emotion on his character's faces incredibly well. Blond kills it on colors. He gets little things like clothing and the lighting on clothing to look perfect to the point where it looks very realistic. This is a colorist to keep your eye out for.

The Bad

This is more personal preference than anything else, but I'm not a fan of Vicki Vale. There's already a very established reporter and photographer duo in the DC universe, so this team just doesn't have the appeal they should have.

When it really comes down to it, the whole Vicki Vale section has been done before. It's an overused trope in comics and cinema: The younger reporter takes advice from the aging reporter and said new reporter wants to let the people know about the bad things going down in their city. Most recently, it reminds me of the first season of House of Cards to a "T."

The Verdict

We're five issues into BATMAN ETERNAL and this book continues to do a fine job at building on the world of Gotham while continuing to tell and interesting story. Tim Drake truly is the star of this issue, and in some ways, bests Batman through Tim's detective work. The art is fantastic, but it's the colors that really make the art. Overall, this is a very satisfying weekly series, so far. The only real downside to the issue is that the Vicki Vale story feels completely overdone as far as stories go. This is especially apparent if you watch House of Cards. However, this is still a highly recommended series.

29 Comments
Posted by Jayc1324

Really happy to see Tim drake written well again and actually be important

Posted by inferiorego

@jayc1324 said:

Really happy to see Tim drake written well again and actually be important

YES!

Staff
Edited by Nahuel

A reminder please: Who is Vicky Vale? I started with the new 52 so I don't have all the baggage of the previous continuity :/ and I don't remember her if she has appeared previously in the current continuity.

I'm on issue 3 of this weekly, but overall this has been a killer series! Better than the current Batbooks have been recently.

Edited by Jayc1324

@nahuel: she's a Gotham newsreporter. She appeared a few times in the Batman series by Snyder, but that's all she's been in so far in new 52. Besides batman eternal of course

Posted by entropy_aegis

@nahuel said:

A reminder please: Who is Vicky Vale? I started with the new 52 so I don't have all the baggage of the previous continuity :/ and I don't remember her if she has appeared previously in the current continuity.

I'm on issue 3 of this weekly, but overall this has been a killer series! Better than the current Batbooks have been recently.

You're joking right? she was the main love interest in Burtons Batman movie.

@jayc1324 said:

Really happy to see Tim drake written well again and actually be important

This,so MUCH this.

Edited by Nahuel

@entropy_aegis: @jayc1324: Man, I still don't remember her! And I've read the entire Snyder run. Well, to re-read my older issues!

(edit) Was she the one who introduced Lincoln March to Bruce Wayne?

Posted by Jayc1324
Posted by SupBatz

So we're actually seeing Tim written well again? I'll believe it when I read it.

As for Vicki Vale (I haven't read the issue yet, so I'm just referring to her characterization, in general), she is a character who has the potential to be very interesting. Nobody really wants to see her as a main Batman love interest. I'd say that ship has sailed. But I find that she's most interesting when she's brought into Batman's world, deducing the identities of the Bat-Family. I have this vision of Vicki as working backwards after learning Batman's identity and managing to use that to deduce the identities of basically every other hero in the DC Universe. As a reporter, she may struggle with a respect for Batman (and heroes like him, in general) and her desire to break the biggest story of her career. It'd certainly be a way to make her a distinct character, as opposed to just another DC Universe reporter.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

@jayc1324 said:

Really happy to see Tim drake written well again and actually be important

YES!

Yep.

Image waking up to see Batman and Robin in your bedroom lol

Edited by obsidian_raindrop1

Is it just me or does viki vale look really ugly? (because i thought she was pretty)

Edit: looking back at this comic every ones face looks terrible I think the best looking people were the homeless guys.

Posted by 8008S

You'll have to forgive my utter ignorance of Batstuff but was the guy at the end Hugo Strange?

Posted by Brione

Very good issue. I like what they're doing with Harper Row. I like the Vicki Vale story so far too but I don't watch House of Cards so I don't know what inferiorego was talking about. Also, Andy Clarke made Vicki look a little ugly. I usually like Clarke and he did a good job on this issue for the most part but there are a few ugly looking faces in this comic.

Posted by detective38

Terrible issue such a disappointment coming off such a strong start. I don't dislike Vale nearly as much as I hate harper row snyder's already reintroducing spoiler no need to make another young female hero

Posted by manwithoutshame

I thought there were some great scenes with Tim Drake, but overall the issue was hit and miss. 3/5

Posted by MuyJingo

The other reporter due you refer to doesn't tend to hang out in Gotham. Haven't read the issue yet, but I would think it makes sense to use a Gotham reporter character over Lois and Jimmy.

Posted by kennybaese

@8008s said:

You'll have to forgive my utter ignorance of Batstuff but was the guy at the end Hugo Strange?

I'm betting so. I'm going to have my review of the issue up a little later today, but that little reveal at the end was terrible. The only part of the issue I really didn't like/

Posted by kennybaese

@inferiorego said:

@jayc1324 said:

Really happy to see Tim drake written well again and actually be important

YES!

And to actually see some fallout from Death of the Family too with Tim's attitude toward Bruce.

Posted by inferiorego

@8008s said:

You'll have to forgive my utter ignorance of Batstuff but was the guy at the end Hugo Strange?

No... it's this person.

Staff
Edited by obsidian_raindrop1
Edited by jdp180

No Stephanie Brown and her crazy parents? Maybe next week. No follow up of Jim Gordon in Blackgate? Maybe next week. No follow up on the GCPD and Falcone? Maybe next week. This felt like a throw away issue and the final page did nothing for me. I hate when the issue tries to shock me at the end with some reveal and I dont even know who the person is.

Posted by Afrikan

I'm really liking this weekly. So happy Harper Row getting more screen time.

Edited by 8008S
Edited by noj

@jdp180: It wasnt really a throwaway issue just because it didnt address everything thats happened previously. Its setting up new plot threads and mysteries.

Posted by ScarletBatman

Solid issue! Except for the art... The faces were a little... Strange, to say the least. I loved all the introduction of Harper and Vale, as well as getting to see way more of Tim. So cool!

@jdp180 said:

No Stephanie Brown and her crazy parents? Maybe next week. No follow up of Jim Gordon in Blackgate? Maybe next week. No follow up on the GCPD and Falcone? Maybe next week. This felt like a throw away issue and the final page did nothing for me. I hate when the issue tries to shock me at the end with some reveal and I dont even know who the person is.

Issues 4-7 are issues that will set up all of the story lines going forward. After this, the comic will return to its previous, inter-laced style.

Posted by Eagle_Vision11454

Solid issue! Except for the art... The faces were a little... Strange, to say the least. I loved all the introduction of Harper and Vale, as well as getting to see way more of Tim. So cool!

@jdp180 said:

No Stephanie Brown and her crazy parents? Maybe next week. No follow up of Jim Gordon in Blackgate? Maybe next week. No follow up on the GCPD and Falcone? Maybe next week. This felt like a throw away issue and the final page did nothing for me. I hate when the issue tries to shock me at the end with some reveal and I dont even know who the person is.

Issues 4-7 are issues that will set up all of the story lines going forward. After this, the comic will return to its previous, inter-laced style.

Wait, so Deacon Blackfire still exits in this continuity?

Posted by Mucklefluga

Tim Drake! :D

Posted by longbowhunter

I'm not following Eternal. Hearing Tim Drake is heavily featured and Andy Clarke drew this I'd really like to pick up this issue.

Posted by sentryman555

Reading Tim Drake in this was pretty cool after finishing Teen Titans annual #3. It actually goes together with where Red Robin is at. Harper Row is not really growing on me as a character. So seeing her getting more involved is really meh to me.