Imagine if Batman’s rogues gallery took over Gotham. Jeez, I wonder what they’d call it, maybe Arkham City? Well they’ve done just that—straight out of the video game—but DC Comics is calling it Arkham War, and Bane is trying to usurp each villain’s territory to make the entire city his. Is it good?
Forever Evil: Arkham War #2 (DC Comics)
Check out our review of issue #1 here.
So we got Bane taking over portions of Gotham that were divvied up between Scarecrow, Man Bat, Mr. Freeze, and Penguin (I’m probably missing some). Last issue Scarecrow became aware of Bane’s arrival to shore, complete with an army of venom-pumped bad guys. His first action was to take over Black Gate Prison, partially because it’s the only known power source on the east coast, but also because the remaining Talons are housed there. An army of Talons for Bane to use?! Sounds rad, right?
This is rated T for teen? That seems to be a bit much, no?
Let’s start with the good. Writer Peter Tomasi has a killer plot unfolding right now, particularly because the villains are teaming up which creates new dynamics for him to explore. It’s also interesting how he’s made the Talons the secret weapon of the Bat villains. Bane is written well; he seems to be a general, not some idiotic muscle head, so basically he’s back to where he was pre-New 52.
The art is quite good too, maybe a few too many close ups, but that’s inherent to a story when there’s so much dialogue. I particularly like how artist Scot Eaton draws the Man Bat baddies. Again, the only problem is a lot of these panels feel crammed in and unable to breathe.
So with the good out of the way, let’s move to the bad. Why is there so much dialogue?! These characters talk and talk and talk, and while there are two action sequences, it’s too little too late. I’m one to believe this is a visual medium, but the amount of dialogue in this book makes me think it should be a play. It’s not necessarily bad dialogue, but there’s so much of it it becomes a drag to read through it all, partly because of its posturing of villains, but also because it could be said much more succinctly.
You don’t say?
- Love the plot that’s going down
- Man Bats rule!
- Blah, blah, blah.
Is It Good?
Not quite. The plot is there, and the art can be too if we can get rid of so many giant word bubbles, but damn is the dialogue stifling this series. I’ll stick around to see where things are going, but the execution is leaving a lot to be desired. Especially for a book that’s technically an event.