Posts Tagged ‘Court of Owls’

Night of Owls

Posted: March 23, 2015 in Comic
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  The second volume, of sorts, to Scott Snyder’s run on The Dark Knight in the New 52 is just as fun of a read as the first volume.

Well, “of sorts” only because the Night of Owls trade paperback doesn’t cover just The Batman parts of the storyline, which Spilled over into the other Bat-related books such as Batgirl and Nightwing, so if you just got one part of the story it would have been short, disjointed, and confusing.

The different books in the collection were also written and drawn by their respective creative teams, which makes them fantastic chapter breaks if you can’t get through it all in one sitting, this is thicker than an average trade. And since time is somewhat important, the books go in order of time throughout the night, making a strong timeline of events. There is an emergency call from Alfred at the Batcave that went out to all  Batman’s allies in Gotham that went out through all the books, which put where everyone was at a specific time when things were going down. Except for Catwoman’s chapter, she came later on in the book, but earlier in the night, and not as integral as the others.

This takes place right where the last volume left off, with a legion of The Court’s Talons woken up to set Gotham “straight” by killing a bunch of people on a hit-list. And at the end of Court of Owls, there were a lot of Talons flying of to get their targets.

howSince the Court of Owls has a lot of history within Gotham untold to us, there are many flashbacks showing  some of the Talons came to serve The Court. For instance, the Talon that fights Batgirl has an interesting back story, she was a schoolgirl making balloon bombs that Japan sent over  across the Pacific during World War II in Nagasaki. Another Talon was a poor kid in Gotham who fell in love with a girl from a higher class, a more told type of story, but it did give an origin to Dick Grayson’s last name, an unexpected revelation. Then there are some Talons, like in Batwing’s chapter who don’t have a background, or anything. He just shows up,  out to get his target, in that case it was Lucius Fox. Luckily most of the chapters are more interesting than not.

Night of Owls as a whole has a good pace going with interconnected scenes between the members of the bat-family, until the end. Catwoman doesn’t feel out-of-place, but if they mysteriously left her out you wouldn’t notice, and the final scenes are of Bruce and Alfred at the grave of Alfred’s father, who had also served the Wayne family. Which leaves with a lot of questions to ask, like where did all the Talons in the Batcave go after they had been frozen? Or, how did Dick’s great-grandfather, a Talon captured by Batman escaped the cave and found Nightwing, I thought he was on ice as well.

Volume two into “new” Batman is as good as the first a definitely worth reading, adding an entire new mythology to something that has been well established is hard, The Court and Night of Owls does it better than you would think.

The Court of Owls

Posted: February 9, 2015 in Comic
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 The first volume of Batman in the New 52 era of DC comics was an awesome start. Yes, the whole restart the universe idea had a few kinks, but this is Batman, you don’t need much to get going.

The last writer/artist combo to take on The Dark Knight in the old universe is the first team to tackle a story in the new one. Author Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo did it right. After seventy-five years it’s hard to come up with an actual threat for Batman, there are several tomes on The Joker alone.

At first it seems an overrun Arkham is about to get loose and in the thick of it is The Caped Crusader battling back. At one point, looking like he teams up with The Joker to help with the rumble, even commissioner Gordon was confused. Turns out it was Dick in a future E.M.P mask that looks like something out of Mission Impossible. I don’t know what E.M.P. means, they don’t say, but it looks cool.

In the same scene the former Robin appears, Bruce tells Dick he is trying out a new contact lens that has the whole Bat-computer linked to it. Those two little bits put this whole world into the near future with better technology, but not so far off the gadgets seem like they’re that far into the future.

Anyway the story revolves around a Gotham City specific nursery rhyme about how a court of owls is always watching and not to turn or they’ll get you. It is a touch creepy, but nursery rhymes usually are if you think about them. 

It seems The Court of Owls is something Bruce looks in on, in his spare time of course, and he’s always come up empty. So when things start to look like they exist, Batman denies their existence. Until Bruce finds himself trapped in one of the Court of Owls labyrinths.

Then it gets interesting. The story does what stories do, but the art goes in a non-traditional direction. Batman spends at least a few days in a maze, after some time he starts looking  ragged. At the same time the art gets topsy turvy, you have to slowly turn the book around every page or two. I thought the whole ideas was interesting. Though I wouldn’t know how to do that with the digital version. either it would play out like a regular comic, or the auto-orientation would make the upside down pages tough to read.

This book is a good read, it does it’s fair share of interesting and does a few things that give you some new mythos in the world of Batman. You’re a Batman fan, new things are good, this is fun, you should read this.