Comic Vine Review


Detective Comics #28 - Gothtopia, Part 2 of 3: The Maddening Crowd Review


Batman teams up with Poison Ivy to stop Scarecrow's evil plan!

The Good

Gothtopia continues as Batman tries to escape the clutches of Scarecrow and his associates with the help of Poison Ivy. Flat-out, this issue is a ton of fun and writer John Layman does a great job at putting the "detective" in DETECTIVE COMICS. Most of this issue revolves around Batman trying to escape Arkham Asylum as well as trying to figure out what Scarecrow's plans are.

A few pages into the issue, Layman catches up readers who may have missed the last issue with two pages reliving the last issue's moments, in a way that doesn't hinder the main story. Batman has a "how did I get here moment" as he sits in his jail cell and the reader is flooded with images of what Gothtopia was like before Batman broke the spell, or rather before Poison Ivy's thorn broke the spell.

Batman and Poison Ivy are one hell of a cool team. I love seeing them work together, and while Poison Ivy is one of the rogues that could walk a fine line between hero and villain, seeing her in the role of sidekick was very cool. Although is was brief, their team up fight against Killer Croc was one of the highlights of the issue.

From page one, I loved the art on this issue. Aaron Lopresti (pencils), Art Thibert (inks), and Blond (colors) do an awesome job with the art here. Page one opens with a beautiful splash of Batman in a straight-jacket. The lighting, shadows, and overall design of this page are fantastic and it's one fantastic way to lead into a book and establish where Batman is at. The book is dark, which is a complete contrast from the bright and happy world of Gothtopia. I love the play with colors and light in the few scenes we saw bouncing back between the worlds.

The Bad

If you read issue #27, and by that, I mean the final story at the end of the super-sized issue, then you'll have a good, solid idea of what's going on. However, this is one of those story lines that bleeds into other series, and even though I read both DETECTIVE #27 and #28, I feel like I'm missing out on something. Not all the fans of DETECTIVE, like myself, want to read the other books for various reasons, so they're missing out on a full scope of the world. We really only get to see Gothtopia in issue #27.

The ending was a bit of a let down. It's supposed to raise the stakes, but it falls a little flat. Batman is already up against some formidable villains with a HUGE plan and what the reader sees at the end will bring on some craziness in the next issue, but it's just not doing anything for me.

The Verdict

Story lines that bleed into other series, with information that really helps out the reader, are a bit of a bummer, and DETECTIVE #28 feels like it's missing a bit more of that Gothtopia world; however, this issue is one fun ride that makes this series feel like a detective book again. The writing and art mesh incredibly well together and it's one fantastic roller coaster of a ride. On it's own, this side of Gothtopia feels like it's missing a little something, but by the end of the issue, you'll forget all about that because this is a well crafted and incredibly interesting story.

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Posted By detective38

Good issue I've enjoyed this arc. Really liked the scene with catwoman (or is that catbird) visiting

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Posted By mak13131313

I really enjoyed this issue. Batman and Poison Ivy working together was awesome! I've been reading all the tie in books and I think that's why I'm enjoying the arc so much. And I did make the mistake of buying Birds of Prey #27 because DC said it was a tie in which it is not. It has nothing to do with Gothtopia.

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Edited By iceslick

@inferiorego: @muyjingo: I think reading Batgirl, Batwing and Catwoman #27 was necessary if you wanted to know more about Gothtopia. Because I read them and they were about how the characters were dealing with in the alter reality world. You really do get to see what the world looks like in those issues.

I noticed there was a editor's note mistake it mentions Birds of Prey #27 as a tie-in and it's definitely not at all. It has nothing to do with at all and I read the issue. It doesn't even say Gothtopia tie-in anywhere in the issue. I just want to point that out to anyone who read the Detective Comics issue. And warning people of buying that issue (Birds of Prey) for the wrong reasons.

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Edited By lifeofvibe
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Posted By entropy_aegis

Loved seeing Ivy and Batman together.

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Edited By AlwaysTheBigSpoon

I was intrigued when I got #27 for the anniversary but I decided to not continue this arc, budgetary reasons, and wait for Manapul and Booch's run.

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Posted By Hawkguy

I wish this could have been a longer arc, it would have felt so much richer. I agree with the complaint that we only got to see Gothtopia for a few pages last month. It would have been cool to see Gothtopia for 3 issues and then have the story unfold as it is now. Either way, great issue, great art, but I can't help and wish Fabok was on it (granted he has 4 issues of Batman Eternal he's probably getting carpal tunnel over).

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Posted By MuyJingo

So reading Batgirl and Catwoman wasn't necessary?

I just wasn't that intrigued by the Batman in a fake reality story from #27.

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Edited By infantfinite128

Great review! I was going to skip this, because I had no interest in the story line from Detective 27. However, I got it, and was pleasantly surprised. Although, I've been really liking Layman's work a lot, so I shouldn't have been too surprised. I love Batman and Poison Ivy teaming up! I always liked her, but because of the New 52, I'm now a Poison Ivy fan! Unfortunately, I hate the overpowered teleporting ninja Joker of the New 52, but at least he's got a lot of good stories.

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Posted By inferiorego

After the last issue I had high hopes for this story and I love the art my problem is with Layman. He seems to have problems with pacing, sometimes his story is really smooth and others, like this one, everything slows down to a crawl and a bunch of stuff is explained and explained again before we can move on.

That's actually one of the things I liked about this issue. It focused more on the mystery, which wasn't anything too huge. Sure, there was a ton of over explanation, but for me, it actually worked here.

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Posted By manwithoutshame

After the last issue I had high hopes for this story and I love the art my problem is with Layman. He seems to have problems with pacing, sometimes his story is really smooth and others, like this one, everything slows down to a crawl and a bunch of stuff is explained and explained again before we can move on.