After an intense last issue, I gotta wonder what’s next for our heroes and villains. Will Batman and friends be able to continue on despite this mess, or has Hush finally gotten the upper hand in everything? Is it good?
Batman Eternal #31 (DC Comics)
Lead Writer: Ray Fawkes
Other Writers: Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Kyle Higgins, and Tim Seeley
Artist: Fernando Pasarin
Amidst the rubble of Arkham Asylum, Alfred is trapped underneath it all and is helpless to do anything while still experiencing the strong hallucinations from Scarecrow drugs injected into his brain. However, an unlikely savior in the form of Bane manages to rescue him. Meanwhile, Batman takes down Joker’s Daughter in one clean punch (her bomb was a dud) and rushes to the surface to down the surviving inmates who survived and are causing havoc on the rescue teams above.
Bane and Alfred wander through some of the tunnels that didn’t collapse, searching for a way out of this hellhole. Bane recognized him as an ex-military officer during all of Alfred’s mumbling and ranting due his crazier moments and rescued him since he might be useful. Alfred, a bit more sane at the moment (though still tripping enough not to recognize Bane), works with him to find a way out. However, during their escape, they run into some remaining demons and demon-infected patients.
Julia Pennyworth continues working on the Batcomputer to try to find Hush. During her searching, she discovers for the first time that her father was moved to Arkham (you think they would have noticed by now). As Batman flees the police after rounding up all the baddies, he informs her that he could be still alive, since he did find survivors down in the hole.
In Downtown Gotham, Vicki Vale is trying to get to the scene of the Arkham destruction, but gridlock is an utter nightmare and at a standstill. However, her day’s about to get worse, as Spoiler comes racing through as police fire upon her. She ducks into an alley for cover, but is attacked by Hush and captured.
Bane and Alfred manage to fight off the hellspawn and continue on their way as Bane is impressed with Alfred’s action. As they continue on, Alfred leads him to what appears to be a dead end, though it’s not really that at all. It’s a secret Batcave and he gets access to it, knocking Bane out with gas. Alfred contacts Julia, Batwing, and Batman, letting them know he’s alright and they can get back to work.
I have to say this was another fun and great issue for the series. This seems to bring one storyline to a close for now and on a pretty good note (frankly, I would have thought that plot would have gone on longer). The story here was very enjoyable and I especially like the Alfred and Bane team up. There were some minor problems with the story, like the police still being hostile towards Batman and how one character just so happens to have been conveniently in one area. They stood out a lot, but didn’t hurt the book too bad.
The writing and artwork were solid as well. The dialogue was decent, the characterization was fine, and the pacing was good too. The artwork still remains a slight problem, depicting the characters’ faces strangely. They always seem so small and odd looking, sometimes not helping with conveying emotions all that well. The art does at least depict the action and scenery fairly well.
The scene everyone wanted to see since the Joker’s Daughter debut.