BatWatch Review: Talon #6
After seeing my favorite characters, Tim Drake, once more butchered in the pages of Teen Titans, I am looking forward to Talon and James Tynion IV (former writer of Batman and Detective Comics and current writer of Talon) to ease my headache and put my little heart at ease. I've been very happy with Talon thus far, and if anything, the series seems to be getting better with time. I should probably not get my hopes for the series too high since it is but a fledgling, but I think there might be great things in store for it. The last issue left our hero, Calvin Rose, trapped inside an amazing fortress along with a slew of talons and the leader of The Court of Owls. Could Talon finally have the chance to land a mortal wound to the Court? Also, how will Batman play into this arc? From what I've seen of the preview, it appears that this issue is going to be a blast, so I'm strapping in and getting ready to enjoy the ride.
Does Talon #6 prove to be a wonderful escapist adventure, or is this series trapped by bars of its own inflated ambitions?
In this issue, Calvin takes on a trio of talons while The Butcher targets Batman.
I greatly enjoyed this issue, but I do not really have any major thoughts to contribute, so I'll do a bunch of little thoughts instead.
1. The pace of the story stays fast and intense for the entire first half of the story picking up exactly where the last issue left off. Calvin's escape from the cage was clever, and though it was a bit odd at first to hear some personality development from the talons, it is actually quite a welcome change to see them as something more than heartless killers.
2. Guillem March does a good job with this issue as usual, but he goofed up on the cage. On the first panel showing the cage (and in last issue too unless I am mistaken) it is circular, but when the cage withdraws into the ceiling, it is square.
3. I enjoyed Calvin's converting of the talon to his cause. Like I said, it's nice to see these villains as more than mere sociopaths. There is something somewhat compelling about his character though I do not expect it to be developed longterm.
4. The Butcher has definitely grown on me as a villain. I'm still not to the point of seeing him as a great villain, but he is a good one. It will be interesting to see what route he takes. The series almost seems to be building him up as an ongoing character though I'm not sure how that would work. The scene with The Butcher also gives a potential answer as to why the talons are staying loyal to the Court. It is not clear if all talons are implanted with freeze bombs in their head, but if so, that would explain the loyalty. It does reflect badly on the chances of the newly converted talon though, and it raises questions as to how Strix is able to operate independently.
Spoilers until Conclusion
5. It seems pretty obvious that Calvin allowed himself to be “captured” by the talon. I hope this is not supposed to be a big reveal.
6. Despite his most likely evil ways, I have some sympathy for Sebastian Clark having to listen to young Sarah Washington describe her Pokemon style game. I've had to endure those sorts of conversations.
7. The last six pages seemed a bit drug out to me since the whole thing was meant to reveal that Sebastian Clark was the old Grandmaster of the Court of Owls, but though I did not know his particular status, I always figured Clark was evil and trying to weaken the Court for a hostile takeover, and I am not the only one to draw that conclusion from issue #1, so it seems a bit odd to have such a build up in two separate scenes, to reveal something that was already pretty obvious. It's such a long buildup that it actually made me wonder if maybe Clark really is a reformed member of the Court. Anytime a story is trying to push me too strongly to one conclusion, I get suspicious unless it is at the end of an arc. I think this part of the story was probably just elongated to make Clark's role clear, but I will not be fully convinced until I see the next issue.
I made a list of predictions about Talon awhile ago, and I promised I would hold myself accountable regarding how well I called things, so let's see how I did. My predictions were mostly incorrect this month. I did predict that Sebastian Clark would be revealed as a traitor, but I also thought that Calvin would try to use lethal force and Batman would try to stop him, and that did not happen. Maybe next month will prove me right on these predictions, but at the moment, it's looking like I would make a poor soothsayer..
Despite the fact that I do not have as much to say about this issue as usual, I still really enjoyed it. If you are a fan of Talon or interested in giving the series a try, pick it up.