By Philip Schweier
April 17, 2019 - 06:45
Taking over on Nightwing is apropos, as he is also the current scribe for Batman Beyond. While Jurgens’ history may be more in line with Superman titles, the Bat office is high profile enough that it can always benefit from a writer of Jurgens’ caliber.
The issue starts off with Ric Grayson being “trained” by Malcolm Hutch, one of the new Nightwings. It’s just a training session, yet Hutch is still in full costume and mask, though Ric knows full well who he is. Hutch then takes the super-hero skyway – rooftops, flagpoles and cell towers – to a local hospital to visit his former training officer, lying in a coma for the past few years. This fits in with what little Hutch has offered Ric (and us readers) in the way of his backstory.
Rich and Hutch reunite in the wake of a mysterious arson at a local precinct, where there is far more to the fire than meets the eye. At which point we reach the end of the chapter.
THIS is quality storytelling, because it is mostly adventure, combined with a healthy dose of human emotion. Not the predictable dour and brooding Batman kind, but the inner struggles of heroism. If a protector backs down from a decision, is he still a hero? If a protector pays an almost ultimate price in the line of duty, who is the hero and who is the scapegoat? And, after a lifetime of heroism, does not wanting to be on the front line make one a coward?
These questions and more, unfolding amidst the chaos of high adventure and crime fighting, are what make for good comic books, in my opinion.
But that’s just my opinion. You mileage may vary.