The first story arc set in Blüdhaven ends this week, but is it good?
Nightwing #14 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The summary reads:
“BLUDHAVEN” finale! The psychopath who’s been carrying out the killings in Blüdhaven has placed the blame on Nightwing! Now Dick Grayson must apprehend this maniac to stop the murders and to convince Blüdhaven he’s not a villain.
Why does this book matter?
Everything comes to a head this issue as Nightwing finally faces down the villain he’s been attempting to discover and his stay at Blüdhaven wraps up with the question of whether he’ll stay or not. Can writer Tim Seeley stick the landing? I wanna see!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Why does this remind me of the Simpsons?
Seeley and artist Marcus To wrap things up well and in particular flesh out the villain in a way that’ll make you want more. Before this issue accomplishes that though it fleshes out the cop character who is good, but willing to take credit whilst others do the work. Props to Seeley for such a unique, intriguing take. The supporting characters and villain take the mainstage in this one so you might be wishing for more Nightwing, though he does get to punch and kick plenty. The villain is what people will be talking about as Seeley crafts someone who, while small time on some level, has a unique corner to call his own.
Seeley also brings back a fun narrative trick that pays off splendidly. You think you’re seeing actual events, but once again Nightwing is just imagining it. It’s a cool way to visually show the thoughts of a character and I hope to see more in the future.
To keeps the art honest as there’s a fair share of dialogue to get through. He’s wickedly good at showing Nightwing dance through the air via shadow selves ala Spider-Man (god what I’d give to see To draw Spider-Man!) which conveys the acrobatics of the character. I rather like how he draws faces in a way that look natural and not overtly beautiful. It adds a layer of realism to the art.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Maybe it’s due to the heavier dialogued scenes, but the art feels stuffy with many close ups that ends up slowing down the pace. There isn’t a lot of action, there’s some, but the blocking again is less kinetic as one might like. Generally the pace is slow which hinders the climax.
Look at them soar!
Is It Good?
Seeley and To wrap up their first arc in Blüdhaven with enough spark to make you want more. It may be a bit stuffy and slow, but it’s got some great narrative and character ideas at work throughout.