Review: DETECTIVE COMICS #954 Author: Peter Verra (Follow @PETER ILLUSTRATED)
Date: April 15, 2017
SYNOPSIS: “League Of Shadows” part four! Ra’s al Ghul has the answers Batman needs to take down the League of Shadows…but will he lift a finger to help him? Or would he rather use the League to take care of the Dark Knight Detective once and for all?
Now this is the issue I’ve been waiting for! If you read my last review then you know that #953 is not a personal favorite of mine. I even said at the end of my review I thought #954 was going to get us back on track. Well…
“League of Shadows Part 4: Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow” starts off with a bang that screams The Dark Knight. Tynion does some solid Ra’s/Batman banter here, keeping you locked in and on the edge. We learn some really great secrets and tricks Ra’s has had up his sleeve for a very long time. The setting was perfect, in the Batcave Ra’s “trapped” in Batman’s cage and then spinning the scenario on Batman, very impressive. Lady Shiva’s breathtaking cameo into the final splash page, beautiful and I would have loved for that to be the book.
Most of what I think works well in this issue involves the highlights of Tynion's run; Batman, Lady Shiva, League of Shadows and League of Assassins. The only thing in this book that I don’t appreciate is the Colony. Now I know what Colonel Kane witnessed in #953 was horrible but seeing Colony Prime makes me cringe. He looks like a Myesterio knock off. I’m just over the Colony. I know this is setting up for a massive 4 on 4 everyone for himself extravaganza. The only thing is; I care about 3 out of 4 in the fight. Don’t get me wrong I’m pumped! Shiva v Ra’s v Batman showdown is going to be tremendous. After what I have seen from them so far in this story I am eagerly waiting for that conclusion! The Colony can take up the body count for all I care. Very interesting panels of Colony hacker Ulysses starring down Tim Drake’s Red Robin memorial. I am extremely curious to see what he is going to do with that suit; he did have this weasel like smirk.
Marcio Takara draws the interior art. I felt Takara made it difficult to see Batman’s emotions. It looks like Batman has that Deadpool/Spider-Man eye thing going on, one eye is bigger than the other, some times it looks like Batman is wincing or has only one eye open. It’s only the first few pages, I see what he was trying to do with shadows it just didn’t really come out right. I enjoyed his take on Ra’s, the Batcave; the whisper panel was really eye popping great use of color there as well. Also second page, front of the Batcave we get two really cool cameos from Anton Furst’s Batmobile and the Batpod. Well done, any time we can incorporate cameos for animated or cinematic vehicles in comics I am all for it. My favorite parts are from the flash backs to the end of the book. Lady Shiva in the Batcave towards the end was really something.
Now this time around we get two really cool covers to choose from. The main cover drawn by Eber Ferreira and Eddy Barrows is a classic Batcave stare down between Ra’s and the Batman with a beautiful backdrop, really classy. The variant drawn by Rafael Albuquerque is an eerie Ra’s near a Lazarus Pit/light green laser show backdrop while surrounded by bats, very grindhouse. You can’t go wrong with either of them.
Overall this issue was up to the standard that I have held Tynion to, if he could just get the Colony out of here sooner rather than later. I’m still high on this book for fans of the Batfamily this was just what we needed to get back on track. They may not be your typical names when it comes to the Bat-Family, but they are entertaining. - Peter Verra