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Batman Fights Roadrunner in Detective Comics #877 (Review)

Seriously? He's fighting someone called "Roadrunner"?

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We are in the middle of Scott Snyder and Jock's "Hungry City" storyline and it looked like Dick Grayson's career as Batman was about to be cut short.

The Good

Last issue my complaint was the villain, Roadrunner, that Batman (Dick) went up against and how easily he was trapped. After reading this issue and thinking about last issue some more, it does make sense. One of the things I always commend Scott Snyder on the way he writes Dick as Batman. Too many times we see a generic Batman in comics and even though Dick and Bruce have the different bat-emblems on their chest to quickly let us know which one it is, they aren't always written as such. Dick getting captured by this Roadrunner guy makes sense. He simply let his guard down. He's not perfect, close to it, but not there yet.

On the opening pages, we get some inner monologue dealing that gives us insight, not only into Dick's mind, but also Bruce, Tim and even Damian. What do these heroes think about going face-to-face with the criminal scum night after night? The way it's always been presented, you would think Bruce is an cold emotionless robot. But Dick tells us how it is. Which leads into when and how they can come up with ideas to fight villains and impossible odds. We also find out more about Roadrunner and Sonia Branch (hopefully you know her real name by now).

What about the art? Leave it to Jock to draw a sexy and spooky car lot like no one else could. There's also a shot of Batman in the air, you know the kind, cape extended, moon in the background, etc. We've seen this many times but Jock's rendition is pretty dang sweet. But what about the 'bad' part?

== TEASER ==

The Bad

It's no secret that I love Scott Snyder's Detective Comics. It's always had the right mix of storytelling, action, character development and suspense. Roadrunner does get a better explanation that adds a great deal to him but...he's still just an okay villain. At least so far. The real real excitement will be with Sonia Branch and the villain coming up in the next issue.

I also don't think it's a good idea for Batman to dive into the Gotham River wearing his cape. Isn't that thing super heavy in order to help deflect bullets?

The Verdict

It's almost hard to take a villain calling himself Roadrunner seriously but the added development to him makes him a little more interesting. The true hook in this issue is the mystery behind Sonia Branch and what her true intentions are. We get some great insight into the mind of Dick Grayson, courtesy of Scott Snyder, that also gives an idea of what goes on in the mind of the others in the Bat-family. Snyder continues to superbly write Grayson's character and shows that this is about Dick evolving into his version of Batman instead of just another Batman comic with Dick under the cowl. Jock manages to make even the simplest scenes pop off the pages and really establishes the mood that compliments the writing. You just can't go wrong with Detective Comics these days. This issue gets a 4 out of 5.

Check out the preview pages and pick up the issue on Wednesday, May 25.

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