Review: DETECTIVE COMICS #957 Author: Peter Verra (Follow @PETER ILLUSTRATED)
Date: May 24, 2017
SYNOPSIS: “The Wrath Of Spoiler”! Stephanie Brown wants nothing more than to save Gotham City from the epidemic of costumed vigilantes and madmen that regularly tear the city apart. But before she can try to stop them, she must face the challenge of one in particular: the insane idealogue the Wrath is back, and Stephanie knows what he has planned—but she refuses to let Batman risk more lives to stop him. That means it’s all on her…and a very unlikely ally!
Detective Comics #957 – “The Wrath of Spoiler” is a new arc in James Tynion’s run, now with co-writer Christopher Sebela and new artist Carmen Carnero. We join them for Spoilers return to the Bat-Family since she left around the time following Red Robin’s “death.”
This was a really creative idea. There is a lot to love in this issue. Honestly, if this issue were centered on Batman it would have left fans talking. It’s just a real fun romp around Gotham. We follow Spoiler who is about to have a very eventful night. She starts messing with Harvey Bullock and some of my favorites parts are between these two and it really pays off in the end! It’s always enjoyable when you can bring Bullock into a story and this is a fantastic extended cameo, really great on both ends.
Our villain, I don’t think I have seen him since we started Rebirth, the Wrath. Personally I have never been a fan of this character, he just reminded me of the Wario version of Batman. I know some people are, I just never got into him. He has gotten a few upgrades this issue; he ditches the purple Bat-look and is now sporting armor reminiscent of Doctor Doom. Spoiler takes down the enemy with a tech savvy touch as if she were Tim Drake. The whole time we are getting into her thought process; we are introduced to her reasons and motives. We start seeing what she has been up to with her time away from the Bat-Family and she is not too happy with them. In fact her motivation against Batman is taken into the field and it is used to really push and drive her, it was a real pleasure to watch this all unfold. As I said earlier to was really creative to see this play out at the end.
Carmen Carnero draws a very good book. I really enjoyed flipping through the pages of his artwork. There is a splash page of Spoiler in front of the Batsignal that would make a great poster. Carnero does however draw the most in shape Bullock I have ever seen, very svelte for Bullock that is. I always loved Bullock a bit rounder and sloppier but that is a very minor gripe. The highlights of the artwork here are the opening and closing panels of the book between Spoiler and Bullock. According to DCcomics.com we are getting new artists again in Raul Fernandez and Alvaro Martinez next issue.
The covers for this issue are very different; the main cover illustrated by Eddy Barrows references the story and features Batman and the Wrath back to back in the background while Spoiler lands on the Batsignal. If you like the splash page I mentioned earlier then this is the cover for you. Rafael Albuquerque draws another fantastic variant cover. This is does not reference the story but is a vibrant burnt orange and yellow sketch of Batman and it’s really cool. If you are a fan of autumn and fall colors this is really something.
Over all I really got into this issue. I really like what they are selling with Spoiler here. She seems like she has a plan and is motivated by what she thinks is the correct thing to do in her eyes. Let’s hope for her sake this will not turn out like “War Games” which didn’t end well for Spoiler. I do recommend that you go out and read “War Games” and “War Crimes”. If you a Stephanie Brown/Spoiler fan you will love those stories. I like getting in deep with the other members of Bat-Family that’s part of the reason I really enjoy this run. We are getting into the heads of these characters, first Cassandra Cain now Stephanie Brown. I really love all of it. - Peter Verra