Review: DETECTIVE COMICS #968
Author: Peter Verra (Follow @PETER ILLUSTRATED)
Date: Noveember 12, 2017

SYNOPSIS: "A LONELY PLACE OF LIVING” finale! Tim Drake is back on Earth — but if the deadly threat he brought back with him from outside of time has its way, it won’t be for long…and this shadowy figure wants to take one of Batman’s team down with him, too! Everything Tim died for the first time is at risk, if he can’t survive this attack!

The conclusion to James Tynion’s latest epic ride in DETECTIVE COMICS “A Lonely Place of Living” will not disappoint. This superb love letter to Tim Drake is worthy of being purchased alongside Wolfman and Perez’s, “A Lonely Place of Dying.” Living up to the hype the team of Tynion and Barrows delivers stunning storytelling and epic artwork throughout the arc. Steeping in to finish the artwork for this issue we are lucky enough to bring back Alvaro Martinez. Tynion and Martinez are at their finest and it bleeds through the pages.

Tynion has been at his best in this particular arc and he starts off with a blast from the past. Bringing back the almost forgotten Colony tech genius and Red Robin fan boy, Ulysses Hadrian Armstrong. Who just so happens to still be in possession of the Red Robin suit he has stolen from the Belfry way back in issue #956 and appears to have been excommunicated from the Colony. While this does answer a question I had after “League of Shadows Finale: The Duel” it has been noted that the Colony and Colony Prime are my least favorite characters in Tynion’s run.

From here on out it's a battle of the brains between the Drakes. Bat-Drake and Red Robin go toe to toe hacking technology, Batmobiles and pretty much anything else you could purchase at Best Buy; with some incredible action mixed in. Batwing proves to be the true tech genius that actually deserves all the credit for saving the day. While never learning what Batwoman does in the future is somewhat disappointing now, I have a feeling it's a plot point that will soon be rediscovered. Tynion really delivers some great dialogue between the Robins as the melee ensues and Bat-Drake seems to drop valuable “bread crumbs” along the way.

While having Eddy Barrows draw the other issues of this arc was just splendid, Alvaro Martinez doesn't miss a beat finishing off. This is some of Martinez’s finest work! It's just a pleasure to flip through the pages and look at this gorgeous artwork. In fact I myself had to double check that the artist was not Barrows. It's hard to over shadow Tynion’s writing but the artwork in this arc has constantly made me say to myself. “Was it the art or the story what made this arc so incredible?” I still can't decide. The fight scenes are fun, bold and laid out to perfection. Martinez art helps build tension and drama like a tough 12 pitch at bat in the 9th inning of Game 7. We even get a cool homage splash page to “Fight Club”. Martinez really stepped up his game finishing this run and I can't wait for him to take over next issue.

While not having Barrows finish of the run is a bit of a bummer he does provide the main cover of the book and it is absolutely incredible. A beaten and angry Red Robin swinging into action with the bat signal in the sky shining bright while Batman, Batwoman and Spolier lurk in the distant shadows. I want this framed for sure! We have been so lucky to get some real poster quality covers from this run but this is epic. It honestly doesn't get better than this, I may not have known much of Barrows before this run but I am a huge fan now.

Cully Hammer brings the variant cover alive. With the PR machine for Justice League going full throttle DC has been releasing JL inspired variants. This one gives us Batfleck and Wonder Gal standing next to the batsignal, looking intimidating. While I am gearing up for JL I will admit, the Barrows cover is the way to go for this issue. It’s a Tim Drake Story and you will need the Red Robin cover.

You got to give it up to Tynion and Barrows/Martinez; they provided us with a really fun entertaining tale. Tim Drake is such an important part of the Batman mythology, this love letter was long overdue. I really enjoyed this arc and cannot wait until the next story line to see what is store for us. The next issue, Detective Comics #969 goes on sale 11/22 and Barrows will be doing the main covers while Raúl Fernández and Alvaro Martinez provide our interior work for Tynion’s new arc “Fall of the Batmen.” - Peter Verra

GRADE: A+

A lover of genre films from BATMAN
to FRIDAY THE 13th.

A producer of college sports at the world’s
most famous arena, MSG.

A fool for watching that SCOOBY DOO
teaser trailer from 2002 and preying Batman is
the one who turns around and every time.

Follow Peter on Twitter @PETEILLUSTRATED.


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