DC Comics
Review: Detective Comics #1004
By Philip Schweier
May 22, 2019 - 07:49

DC Comics
Writer(s): Peter J. Tomasi
Penciller(s): Brad Walker
Inker(s): Andrew Hennessy
Colourist(s): Nathan Fairbairn
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh
Cover Artist(s): Brad Walker, Andrew Hennessy, Nathan Fairbairn; Mark Brooks

This issue presents the origin of the Arkham Knight. The psychological motivations seem sound: Astrid Arkham is the daughter of Dr. Ingrid Arkham, and grew up on the ground of the asylum. She was born in the midst of a riot, but a discarded batarang wielded by an inmate killed her mother. As a result, she blames Batman for feeding the insanity of Gotham’s underworld, and has rallied them to her cause.


However, I find the logistics suspect. She has trained herself to go toe-to-toe with the Dark Knight, and armed herself in medieval-style armor and a sword. Sounds clumsy and unrealistic, at best, but it’s comic books, so any sense of disbelief left us long ago. And it’s kooky enough that Batman could be blindsided by it all.


Much of this chapter is origin/background/exposition. That’s okay, we need that once in a while, but it doesn’t leave room for much else. It all leads to the Knight rallying the lesser residents of Arkham against Batman and Robin. Sure, they all share the common enemy. I doubt it has less to do with devotion to Astrid and more to do with hatred for Batman.


But the showdown is due for next issue, which is fine by me. I’m not a fan of over-extending the story, anything more than four or five issues fails to hold my interest. But the creative team of Tomasi/Walker/Hennessy/Fairbairn have kept matters apace and come together to tell and engaging story. I had my doubts at first, but am pleased to have been proven wrong.


Rating: 7/10

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