Comic Vine Review

43 Comments

Beware the Batman #110 - Sacrifice Review

3

Anarky returns and manipulates Batman, Katana and even the League of Assassins in his latest plot.

*Contains some spoilers*

Anarky is apparently going to serve as Batman's archenemy (makes sense since it's blatantly pointed out they're polar opposites), but unfortunately, his previous debut wasn't all that gripping and didn't leave too strong of an impression. The villain unleashes his second plot in 'Sacrifice' and thankfully, it makes him feel far more formidable.

Not only does the foe open with a great showing of hand-to-hand abilities, but his plot this time around is way more sinister and impressive. Sure, we all know it's rather unlikely the villains will actually destroy Gotham in animated show, but it's a commendable display of tactics as he aims to manipulated both the heroes and the League of Assassins. Moreover, what comes from this plot is super promising. They're finally introducing a big name villain and it'll be quite interesting to see how they incorporate this person into the mix. The first glimpse of said character makes their identity pretty obvious, but despite that, the final reveal was still totally exciting.

Right when the formula for the second half of the show starts feeling repetitive (run from Grundy-esque ninjas! Hack a new door!), they thankfully switch it up and that's when the episode really shines. There's some seriously badass moments, but more importantly, it's a great moment for Katana and shows how she's developing. Wayne has already lectured her on killing and in the last episode discussed her rage, but this episode reveals whether or not she's truly been taking all of that to heart. Oh, and does anyone else think there's something else to the CRC Executive Director? She felt totally wooden.

While there's a standout moment for Katana and the team did a solid job selling Anarky, I have a lot of small to moderate gripes with the episode. I'm a huge sucker for a good action scene and this episode cuts off some potentially great scenes way too soon. The standoff between Batman and the large foe was just oozing build up, then one short combo later and it's done. On hand hand, it's great seeing Batman rock so easily, but on the other hand, it felt like a missed shot at a "boss battle" kind of brawl.

I'm thrilled they're using Lady Shiva, but honestly, she's not nearly as formidable as she could be. It's a bit difficult to swallow her being a cunning and ruthless leader of this dangerous organization when she's quickly manipulated by two different characters, never firing back with her own alternative. "You can't bargain with me! Okay... sure, you can." Not to pile on their treatment of the character or anything, but it was also disappointing to see how swiftly she lost in her one-on-one with Batman. Don't get me wrong, this is yet another double-edged sword. Seeing Batman wreck someone so skilled is a treat, but at the same rate, if she's doing just fine when he's teamed up with Katana, how'd she do so poorly in the one-on-one? Not to mention she previously took one of Bruce's vicious punches to the face like it was nothing, then she's out of commission with a basic throw. It just feels inconsistent.

Batman seems to talk about important lessons at the most pressing times. Place burning down? Lecture on morals. Timer is dangerously low until the place goes kaboom? Explains why he came back and the two talk somewhat slowly about it. It's well-written, but doesn't exactly seem like the wisest time to discuss these things since time is of the essence. Lastly, unless it's Halloween (which it apparently isn't), it's tough to believe any guard saying, "May I help you, ma'am?" when someone as elaborate as Lady Shiva and two ninjas walk into a heavily secured facility holding all kinds of dangerous things.

'Sacrifice' does quite a few things right. There's some great bits of dialogue, it does a thorough job improving Anarky, has a cheerworthy ending, and most important of all, it's entertaining. Unfortunately, it's also bogged down by a whole lot of minor gripes, including missing the mark on potentially great action scenes and its treatment of Lady Shiva. It's by no means a bad episode (I consider 3 stars "okay") and if you've been following along, there's no good reason why you shouldn't check it out. In fact, it's strongly recommended you should simply because it appears to be the start of a far bigger narrative.

P.S. Folds deserves his own comic. 'Folds' Poker Adventures,' perhaps?

P.P.S. How awesome was that Deadman DC Nation short?!

Viners, what did you think of 'Sacrifice?' Speak your mind below or chat with Gregg about it via Twitter.

50 Comments
Edited by k4tzm4n

Since we're now using the star system for tv reviews, I'll do my absolute best to reserve 5-stars for the truly exceptional episodes.

...or at least the ones I believe are truly exceptional. :D

Staff
Posted by Thomas_Dreyfuss

Dat ending....OoooOOOOooooHHH!!!

Edited by bob808

I hate this version of Anarky.

Posted by Barkley
Posted by Deranged Midget

OH SNAP! An actual reviewing system for tv shows now! Kind of a bummer really.

Moderator
Edited by blkson

this show has been so mediocre to me.

each episode just as dull as the previous.

glad some seem to be enjoying it though, 'cause its bland as hell.

Posted by Herokiller12344

@blkson: I'm not. The more people enjoy a dull ass Batman show, the more dull ass Batman shows that we'll get.

Posted by k4tzm4n
Staff
Posted by CrazyScarecrow

I not that fond of the show after I seen what they did to Metamorpho. They kinda made him the shows Clayface.

Posted by Lurkero

This episode was not impressive at all.

I had a problem with Batman giving Katana a morality lesson and Katana just taking it. She doesn't talk back or poke holes in Batman's logic. Katana comes off as more of an equal partner rather than a sidekick, and I would have liked the writers to have given her an individual personality that is not exactly like Batman's.

The episode was also inconsistent. Sharp blades didn't affect the ninjas at all, but a couple punches from Batman and they're knocked out? Katana's "sacrifice" seemed forced because she could have also cut the ladder and made the ninjas fall down the shaft. Since when does Batman not handcuff both arms? It was already bad enough that he was able to defeat Lady Shiva solo when he wasn't able to do it before, but he only handcuffed one arm? Not the Batman I know.

The only enjoyable part to this episode was the drama going on with the police. I have enjoyed the evolution of Gordon so far.

Posted by MrMazz

I definatly found this more entertaining and intersting than "Control". Only where "Control" was a under developed and didn't show signs of more interesting things, "Sacrifice" clearly undercut itself. Mainly give me more Lady Shiva being all manipulative and evil.

Anarky, I'm not sure how you don't make him Joker-like (i've never read any of his comic apperances). Just do it in more interesting ways I guess?

cheap plug to user review

Posted by NightFang

My only question was way Ra's Al Ghul in that box?

Posted by Mbecks14

Is this series worth watching? Nothing I've seen has made me remotely interested in it.

Edited by War Killer

This episode seemed very inconsistent and forced character into situations that felt out of character. The biggest one being, I feel, being why Shiva didn't kill Anarky at the beginning, I understand that he had something she wanted (Ra's al Ghul's body) but why didn't she just kill him right then and there and be done with it? With him out of the way, I'm sure the League could easily find out where Anarky's base was and retrieve what he stole.

Along with this, why did Shiva have to go to the CRC and risk placing her life in danger, which I assume would leave the League effectively leaderless if she were to die? Did she not have someone else to send in her place?

I also don't get why the League of Assassins would be transporting Ra's al Ghul, their freakin' leader, by boat, and on top of that only have two ninja's guarding him, seriously? I find it hard to believe that a group as well connected as the League couldn't find an easier, not to mention safer, means of transporting Ra's body into Gotham.

I also felt that Batman's whole comment about how leaving Shiva to die would make him no different than her, but yet was willing to leave the two ninja's to die when the building imploded on itself. That part felt like an odd contradiction.

Posted by turel_hash_ak_gik

these episodes are getting more and more nonsensical as they go on. 'i shall prove i am not a killer by totally trying to kill 2 people' and 'we have huge tension because we are trying to avoid contact with infected ninjas even though the mutagen is air-born and we will later on say 'f it' lets take them head on and it takes katana a lot of time to change even though the ninjas changed in like 10 seconds'. and people compare this to batman TAS.

Posted by TenEyedMen

This episode seemed very inconsistent and forced character into situations that felt out of character. The biggest one being, I feel, being why Shiva didn't kill Anarky at the beginning, I understand that he had something she wanted (Ra's al Ghul's body) but why didn't she just kill him right then and there and be done with it? With him out of the way, I'm sure the League could easily find out where Anarky's base was and retrieve what he stole.

Along with this, why did Shiva have to go to the CRC and risk placing her life in danger, which I assume would leave the League effectively leaderless if she were to die? Did she not have someone else to send in her place?

These two complaints contradict themselves. So, you think Shiva and the League are confident and competent enough to just kill a man and find his hideout with no leads or clues at all, but retrieving a virus from a lab in a specific location is suddenly too risky?

Posted by TheCheeseStabber

I just learned of the Bat-Embargo and thought about how this show seems to stem directly from it

Edited by War Killer

@teneyedmen said:

@war_killer said:

This episode seemed very inconsistent and forced character into situations that felt out of character. The biggest one being, I feel, being why Shiva didn't kill Anarky at the beginning, I understand that he had something she wanted (Ra's al Ghul's body) but why didn't she just kill him right then and there and be done with it? With him out of the way, I'm sure the League could easily find out where Anarky's base was and retrieve what he stole.

Along with this, why did Shiva have to go to the CRC and risk placing her life in danger, which I assume would leave the League effectively leaderless if she were to die? Did she not have someone else to send in her place?

These two complaints contradict themselves. So, you think Shiva and the League are confident and competent enough to just kill a man and find his hideout with no leads or clues at all, but retrieving a virus from a lab in a specific location is suddenly too risky?

Do I think that the League are confident and competent to find Anarky's hideout? Uh, yeah, I do. They've already proven to have vast resources, so I have no doubt they could find his hideout eventually.

As for the mission being too risky, I brought that up because so far in the series the only leader of the group we've seen is Shiva. I just found it odd that Shiva would not only give into Anarky's blackmail but would then personally go on a deadly mission. I'm not saying she couldn't do it, I just find it odd that she didn't just send someone else to do it for her. If she were to die, as far as we know, it would leave the League leaderless therefore seemed a bit odd that she would go on a such a dangerous mission, putting the leadership of the League at risk in the process.

Posted by ArmaX

It was good! ****! I'm really enjoying it.

Posted by longbowhunter

I find myself recording this show just so I can fast forward to the end and watch the DC Nation short. The Deadman one this week was adorable!! More of that please.

Online
Posted by teclo

I don't know why I'm still watching this. It feels like a series made by fans for release on their website, and not particularly talented fans. The voice acting is often pretty bad, Alfred always sounds like he's voicing over a tutorial in a videogame to me ("Now Bruce, remember to press X to climb over the wall. That's it, you've got it!")l the animation is really weird - people seem completely frozen in place until they do an animation cycle, then go back being frozen again, if there's a series of animation cycles, they pause briefly between each one; Gotham feels more like an abandoned film set since you very rarely see anyone at all other than the people directly related to the plot; very little that happens makes any sense whatsoever, it's just plot contrivance after plot contrivance with no thought put into at all... The list goes on.

Edited by wade_wilson22

For superhero memes check this out

Posted by dagmar_merrill

This episode was bad. Would of gotten a 1 star from me, but that short at the end was awesome!

Online
Posted by HushoftheWind

@dagmar_merrill: yo you talking about that Deadman short? that was so godlike i wish DC would just do a 30min block of shorts like that and call it a day.

Posted by Darkmount1

That was the ODDEST interpretation of Deadman I have ever seen.

Posted by garlyle

This show is just too sloppy for me to ever really enjoy. When the ninja presses the button. the order of people closes to the door goes like this: ninja, katana, ninja, shiva, batman. The very next scene though is Batman running after the three bad guys, with katana RIGHT BEHIND HIM! Unless I missed the part where Katana jumped fifteen feet down the damn hallway, and lady shiva SPRINTED forward, they skipped something. These episodes are FILLED with small inconsistencies like this. it's lazy writing.

Posted by TenEyedMen

@garlyle said:

This show is just too sloppy for me to ever really enjoy. When the ninja presses the button. the order of people closes to the door goes like this: ninja, katana, ninja, shiva, batman. The very next scene though is Batman running after the three bad guys, with katana RIGHT BEHIND HIM! Unless I missed the part where Katana jumped fifteen feet down the damn hallway, and lady shiva SPRINTED forward, they skipped something. These episodes are FILLED with small inconsistencies like this. it's lazy writing.

That's not lazy writing, that's inconsistent animation.

Also, newsflash: 2D, "traditional" animation ALSO has mistakes like this.

Posted by TenEyedMen

I just learned of the Bat-Embargo and thought about how this show seems to stem directly from it

The Bat-Embargo ended years ago.

Edited by venomoushatred1001

@bob808 said:

I LOVE this version of Anarky.

Fixed.

Edited by SupBatz

3/5 sounds about right. There were some good points. But most of the characters (not just the blond lady) feel wooden and lacking in any sort of distinctifying qualities. I still am not a fan of this version of Anarky. He feels like a Joker stand-in. And while I, for the most part, enjoy Shiva's portrayal she has a terrible design. She looks like a cross between an Egyptian monarch and a vampire. Gordon stalling for Batman was nice. And I liked Katana's development. Everything else was just okay.

EDIT: It only took about two minutes for me to love that Deadman short more than the entire runs for Beware the Batman and Teen Titans, Go!

Posted by TenEyedMen

@supbatz said:

I still am not a fan of this version of Anarky. He feels like a Joker stand-in.

Eeh, not really. He's nowhere crazy enough. He seems mostly to "embrace" or fake insanity in order to antagonize Batman, while The Joker was both mad AND antagonized him.

Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus

Awesome Deadman short, yes :)

Posted by HexThis

One of the reasons Batman is such an enduring franchise is because the villains are just as much the stars as Batman himself, the classic rogues gallery needs to be there. This is the loneliest incarnation of Batman ever, it looks like the product of a lawsuit where they don't have the rights to characters so they're just rendering bootlegs like Magpie.

The only welcomed change is Katana for me. But I just can't watch this show, it's so vacant.

Posted by blastaar

Whoa, such a cool & awesome ending in this episode. Finally, getting some big time villains for this show. I hope Lady Shiva let Batman beat her. She got took down too easily imo.

Posted by jameskom3

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Posted by StrangeMan

I don't get why people solely compare Anarky to Joker, he isn't nowhere near his level of insanity and he doesn't even have the same MO as the Joker, he's a somewhat crazy villain who manipulates people in order to follow his plans... in other words he's just like a half of Batman's entire rogues gallery, and that's why he hasn't clicked with me, until he starts to move masses with the people of Gotham like a real anarchist or he starts to act like an actual Anti-Batman like the producers said he's supposed to be then I'll be interested, until then I'm gonna be bored out of my mind.

Posted by TheCheeseStabber

@thecheesestabber said:

I just learned of the Bat-Embargo and thought about how this show seems to stem directly from it

The Bat-Embargo ended years ago.

I know but still

Edited by patrat18

I thought if was a phenomenal episode.

Posted by kidhero999

meh

Edited by vandinejd_1991

Finally a Batvillain that matters makes his way into the series. Now all they need to do is do away with Anarky, Magpie, Humpty Dumpty, Tobias Whale, Professor pyg, and Toad and then replace them with Batman's better villains: Joker, Bane, Catwoman, Penguin, Scarecrow, Mr. Freeze, Riddler, Two-Face, Killer Croc. Then the show might last more than a season.

Posted by ogg927

@vandinejd_1991: I guess that I'm in the minority? I actually like that this show is different from what has been done in previous shows. I hated the preview art that showed Alfred holding two machine guns. I watched the show and instantly fell in love. Katana is fantastic and Alfred as an ex-MI6 Jamed Bond type mentoring Batman is brilliant IMO.

I thought that Professor Pyg would be ridiculous, but it was actually a great character and the voice actors are spot-on.

Posted by TenEyedMen

@ogg927 said:

@vandinejd_1991: I guess that I'm in the minority? I actually like that this show is different from what has been done in previous shows. I hated the preview art that showed Alfred holding two machine guns. I watched the show and instantly fell in love. Katana is fantastic and Alfred as an ex-MI6 Jamed Bond type mentoring Batman is brilliant IMO.

I thought that Professor Pyg would be ridiculous, but it was actually a great character and the voice actors are spot-on.

You should see Professor Pyg in the comics. He's also ridiculous, but in an incredibly disturbing manner.