Every Rose has its thorn..
Talon was a book that immediatly perked my interest when it was announced during the last wave of new 52 (we still call it that?) of books, mostly because the Owls are a fascinating foe and took on Batman and his extended family and nearly won! The prospect of a rogue Talon sounded great to me, i always find these kinds of stories to have the most potential and of course having Scott Snyder co-plotting on the story dosent hurt.
Although i didnt review the zero issue i actually read and enjoyed it, but since it was a backstory i thought id hold off for the proper begninning and i was not disapointed. Calvin Rose, the character this book centres around thinks a lot, in fact he is a lot like Batman in that way, there are a lot of text boxes full of his inner monologue running all the way through the book but thats fine because everything he has to say is interesting.
It appears that Calvin was able to escape the nest just before he was due to be injected by the compound that makes them pretty much unkillable so he is still a human and relateable in that sense. He is a little cocky but like Nightwing this is more because of how sure he is of his abilities. Calvin decides to return to Gotham after hearing about the Talon's big defeat at Batman and his various allies, tired of running and constantly looking over his shoulder he thinks it best to check the situation out and see if they are truely gone. Without spoiling the plot too much and assuming you have read last weeks Batgirl/Catwoman crossover or Birds of Prey, you will know that the owls are far from vanquished, though low on numbers they are still hiding in the shadows which Calvin discovers much to his dismay.
During the story he meets a mysterious benefactor Sebastian Clark who may be his only ally against the foe he has fought to stay hidden from for so long. There is also an explaination as to why he is still dressing as a Talon which was a huge question on my lips when the first images where released.
The first thing i noticed about this book where of course the pencils, Guillem March's art is astounding! Regardless of what is being drawn, an action panel or a still, the art is goregous throughout and is a treat for your eyes! I can see it being a little too "pretty" for some, but if you enjoy Jim Lee or Ken Rocaforts art this is really going to appeal to you.
Calvin is a very likeable character and is written as a hero, his time with the court shows him as an honorable man and someone who was constantly at odds with what they wanted him to do, so it gives us the ability to skip past the whole bad guy redemption ark and hit the ground running. I literally cant say anything bad about any aspect of this book, for a first issue it is already showing a strong narritive and a likeable main character and it is showing us another side of Gotham without resorting to having Batman showing up which i really appreciated.
If you have room on your pull list for a book that has roots to Batman but isnt a Bat family title i cant recommend this enough, it feels a lot like a DC version of Scarlet Spider, a book that has ties to Spiderman but dosent feel the need to have him show up every five minutes. It was an easy decision for me to give this give stars, infact its probably the only one ive read from this weeks books that i believe deserves that score.