Comic Vine Review

22 Comments

Forever Evil: Arkham War #2 - The Bane Mutiny Review

3

Bane meets with the Penguin and Scarecrow attempts to ruin one of Bane's plans.

The Good

It might be all kinds of ugly on the streets of Gotham for the people who live there, but for us, this chaotic course of events looks mighty fine. Artist Scot Eaton and colorist Andrew Dalhouse are doing an awesome job with all of the craziness writer Peter J. Tomasi is throwing their way. Each of the villains make their presence more than felt. Man-Bat is particularly frightening and seeing Two-Face firing away is a blast, but the true highlight is how they tackle Bane. Taking his signature pose from The Dark Knight Rises, the big man looks ridiculously formidable. Not every artist can pull off his look in The New 52, but this duo absolutely does and then some. With Tomasi showing off his intellect, the visuals more than convey why he's a physical threat, too.

As implied by the cover, this issue revolves around Bane's desire to get the Talons on his side. While the narrative doesn't take many big steps and throws two huge action pieces our way, the core of this issue is a meeting between Bane and Penguin (sorry, Scarecrow fans, he still gets no love). The man who broke the Bat's back comes off as a bit out of character, but it's still a compelling scene and by far the most interesting one in this issue. Is Penguin really playing it safe in the middle or does he have bigger plans? My love for these characters reeled me in, but Tomasi's sprinkling just enough intrigue to keep me around.

The Bad

There's a lot of exposition thrown in here and it's definitely noticeable. Honestly, it would be so much easier to just have a recap page instead of forcing characters to tell loyal readers what we already know. Without the need to include that, the book could have maybe taken a few more strides with the overall narrative. Sure, this issue expands on Penguin's role and a bit with Bane, but it's mostly covering things we already knew and doesn't throw any particularly exciting developments our way. It's a minor gripe, but a couple of the transitions also came off as a bit abrupt as we jumped into the middle of a scene with characters who were also in the previous one.

While it looked great, it was also a letdown that the battle between so many villains never really had a standout moment. The splash page was good and filled with potential, but then we just had bits and pieces of material which never really delivered on how exciting the scene could have been.

The New 52 Bane has been a particularly brutal character. Heck, he struck a little girl just for touching him in his one-shot. So, to have him seem more compassionate while expressing his overall goal to Penguin and even standing down to him so quickly came off as somewhat odd to me. Additionally, I'm all for showing off Bane's intellect, but the ending came off as pretty abrupt.

It shouldn't come as a surprise by now, but no, the cover doesn't even come close to happening within the pages of this issue. We knew Bane wanted to utilize the Talons, but they likely won't be spotted until at least the next issue. Oh, and I imagine Scarecrow fans will continue to be disappointed by how Arkham's "leader" is faring.

The Verdict

Part Two of ARKHAM WAR is entertaining and looks good, but ultimately, it comes off as pure set-up for what's to come without ever really engrossing us in what's currently going down. It's not a bad issue, but it's one of those reads that'll definitely be better in a collection. There's a lot of potential here and Tomasi's doing a bit of a slow burn with the greater picture, so hopefully the narrative makes some game-changing developments in the next one and he's able to give characters other than Bane and Penguin more of the spotlight. And yes, I say that as someone who can never get enough of Bane.

22 Comments
Edited by Saint_Wildcard

Wonder Woman/Superman review... where is it?

Posted by BR_Havoc

For me the Talons have been done to death and I'm just kind of sick of them someone needs to kill all of them off other then the two hero versions.

Posted by cobra88king8

So I may not be paying attention to everything, last I remember seeing Kurt Langstrom was in the pages of Batman Inc. when his formula was stolen by Talia. Since when is man bat an arkhamite?

Edited by k4tzm4n

@citizenbane: I totally get why Bane views him as valuable and respects him over the other costumes, but also kneeling down to his level, placing his hands on his shoulders, etc. It seemed to be a tad more than I would expect from the Bane we've seen post-Flashpoint.

Staff
Edited by k4tzm4n

@citizenbane said:

Oh, and did Ragdoll just die in this issue? Reaper seemingly punched a hole right through him. I know Ragdoll's body is.....special, but I don't recall it ever being that special.

That caught my eye too. I can't tell if he is being slashed or impaled. On one hand, Ragdoll's position would imply the latter. But on another, I can see how that's a slash going across and his shirt is ripping outwards from it. Regardless, it doesn't seem like they had big plans for the poor guy.

Staff
Posted by War Killer

I want to like this series, but so far nothings happened that makes this series stand-out. Sure we have complete chaos in Gotham with villains fighting for control, but is this really new? Like Gordon states in this very issue, this just feels like another Wednesday.

I'm hoping things will pick up next issue, but I can't help but feel that this is going to just be a random event that is simply here because of Forever Evil, but once everything is said and done I curious if the events in the book will even be mentioned post-Forever Evil.

Overall, this series leaves a lot to be desired.

Posted by k4tzm4n

I want to like this series, but so far nothings happened that makes this series stand-out. Sure we have complete chaos in Gotham with villains fighting for control, but is this really new? Like Gordon states in this very issue, this just feels like another Wednesday.

I'm hoping things will pick up next issue, but I can't help but feel that this is going to just be a random event that is simply here because of Forever Evil, but once everything is said and done I curious if the events in the book will even be mentioned post-Forever Evil.

Overall, this series leaves a lot to be desired.

I forgot to add it in the review, but I thought that was a nice little bit of comedy from Tomasi.

Staff
Posted by timelord

It felt like this book was treading its wheels. For me it's defiantly the weakest of the 4 Forever: Evil books.

Posted by LordoftheNorth

liked the back and forth between Bane and Cobblepot hope their is more stuff like it but i did have the problem that this story is bane vs most of arkham and it just bugs me that bane can take on so many of batmans villains and make it look easy

Posted by Herokiller12344

Okay, am I the only one bothered by the fact that all these books still have the New52 logo on them? It's been 2 years, shouldn't they be treating this like the norm by now, instead of planting false hope that things will go back to how they were?

Posted by cobra88king8

@herokiller12344: nope it bothers me whenever I pick up a book and look at the cover

Posted by Wilbertus

When I got to my comics store today, they were all out of this one... I'll be back next week though and I decided to immeaditely add this to my pull list. I still have high hopes for the rest of the mini-series.

Oh and Team Scarecrow, baby.

Edited by k4tzm4n

When I got to my comics store today, they were all out of this one... I'll be back next week though and I decided to immeaditely add this to my pull list. I still have high hopes for the rest of the mini-series.

Oh and Team Scarecrow, baby.

Good luck with that :P

Staff
Posted by redhood21

where the @!@$%% IS CATMAAAAN?!

Posted by Jake Fury

DC really needs to adopt a recap page policy.

Posted by SavageDragon

This was fun tho I agree with the score

Posted by TDK_1997

This issue was a serious letdown for me.Nothing mind blowing happened here and even though the last issue wasn't anything bigger than this somehow I enjoyed it way more.This issue just didn't have the right tone for me even.For some reason everything was setting me up to not like the issue.

Posted by Dernman
Posted by Dud317

@k4tzm4n: Weren't these tie-in issues originally solicited as 3 issues, rather than 6? Perhaps that's why this is somewhat redundant.