jonesdeini's Detective Comics #874 - Skeleton Cases, Part 3 review

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Detective Comics #874

Jim and James have a long overdue talk and Dick and Tim team up to take down some smugglers.  
The Good 
Love this Cover, it has that vintage Batman feel, very much reminds me of Morrison's Gothic run.  
I'm overjoyed that Francesco Francavilla is doing art duties this issue. This guy's a one man art team and his pencils perfectly compliment Snyder's writing. The synergy between these two is electric. The chemistry between Snyder and JOCK was crazy enough, but to have that kind of dynamic with two artists on the same title is utterly uncanny. I love Francavilla's use of color, it enriches the dialog, causing every beat to hit precisely like a jazz drummer feelin' the groove.  
Snyder's writing is once again superb. The tension between Jim and James is amazing. Each panel, every page, builds perfectly on the mood set by it's predecessor. The conversation between these twos kept me on the edge of my seat. It was like watching a great psychological thriller.  
Snyder's characterization of James makes him truly unnerving, and we've yet to see him do a single thing. Snyder writes him with all the qualities that make the best serial killers so intriguing but simultaneously frightening. Every word out of his mouth, regardless of how benign, has a sinister and chilling undertone to it. Despite his docile appearance looking into his eyes really makes you feel like you're staring into the proverbial abyss. And believe me, it's staring back at you, in you, making plans for you. just look at that panel where he smiles and says "I'm a psychopath.", now exactly how many inches did your skin crawl?  
There's a moment when James makes a dark joke about a suspicious stain on his shirt. And I love the way that Snyder and Francavilla use this to toy with us just as much as James does with his father. 
I pointed this out in issue 871, but I love the way that Snyder ties together the main story and back up features. There's always little easter eggs featured throughout the main story that nicely link it to the backup. This issue he uses the running water from the diner to take us through the sewers to Batman and Red Robin's location.  
I'm really happy to see Dick and Tim bonding and doing a little patrolling together again. Feels like it's truly been too long since I last read this in a Batman title. Dick's still suffering the effects of the fear toxin that The Dealer dosed him with. The panels that depict its effect on him are nicely done. If this comic's taught me one thing it's that Free Wily is not your friend.
The Bad 
This comic did about everything except wifely duties for yeah, I got nada here 

The Verdict 
If You're reading one Batman title this should be it. In fact, fan of Batman, Dick Grayson, or not you ought to be reading this. 

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