DC Comics
Review: Detective Comics #988
By Philip Schweier
Sep 12, 2018 - 5:02

DC Comics
Writer(s): James Robinson
Artist(s): Stephen Segovia
Colourist(s): Ivan Plascensia
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh
Cover Artist(s): Stephen Segovia, Ivan Plascensia; Mark Brooks



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The title of the new story arc is “A Solitary Man.” Whether it refers to the man whose murder Batman is investigating, or Batman himself, is in the eye of the beholder. Following the cancellation of Bruce Wayne’s nuptials, Batman is attempting to return to basics. Maybe I missed something, but I was under the impression it was a mutual decision (though Bruce did show up and Selina did not, so I could be wrong).


Either way, the broken Bat is attempting to reset his life to zero and then move on. To do that, he is investigating the murder of a seemingly innocent citizen of Gotham City. But as he digs deeper into the man’s past, he discovers there are many layers to this particular onion, and what was supposed to be a routine murder case is anything but. Major players – plus one to be named later – are getting involved, indicating Batman’s involvement is warranted.


I’m sure fans are sympathetic to Bruce being left at the altar, but I do wish the Bat-writers would stop bringing it up. I feel it does a disservice. Think of it this way: if your friend goes through a divorce, are you inclined to bring it up every time you speak to him/her? Show a little sensitivity and steer him/her in a more productive direction. In this case, let Batman pursue whatever criminal he wants, and beat the living snot out of him.


One thing I am uncertain is included in the back-to-basics approach is a simple matter: shaving. There was a time when the Bruce Wayne persona was as important as the Caped Crusader. Toward this end, Bruce presented an appearance of being the clean cut corporate head he’s supposed to be. But more recently, Batman has been seen with facial stubble, and I can’t say it serves him well. Is it an indicator for his emotional state? Perhaps. But mostly it just makes him look sloppy, and not in a charming Don Johnson way. I blame Ben Affleck for this, but even he was clean shaven more often than not.


Rating: 8/10


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