Batman Eternal #17 Review

Topics: 

Neither will be appearing in this issue!

 

Corrigan is trapped, a monkey is zapped, and Batman's old scrap in week 17 of DC's weekly Batman book, Batman Eternal. Even the combined efforts of Jim Corrigan and Batwing are no match for Deacon Blackfire and The Spectre doesn't seem to want to appear, while in Japan, Tim Drake and Harper Row try intimidating one of Batman's old teachers, and the only time we see the titular character is in a flashback to a storyline from decades before the New 52. Really, there's not a lot actually going on here, but let's see if I can dig something out, anyway!

 

"Except nobody likes you or reads your book."
 

Deacon Blackfire is the villain from the four-issue Batman: The Cult storyline from 1988. The limited series was written by Thanos creator Jim Starlin. It was during Jason Todd's tenure as Robin (before Starlin killed him off in "A Death in the Family"), though he barely factored into the story. Blackfire was this underground cult leader, a self-styled priest who claimed to have lived for centuries, and galvanized the homeless population to rise up against a city that had abandoned it. He even managed to capture Batman and, for a period of a few days, brainwashed him with the use of drugs and suggestion. Fortunately, Batman managed to snap out of it made the deacon look like a fool in front of his flock, who turned on him, killing him brutally, while Batman pretty much just stood by not giving any fucks. It was a comic that wanted so badly to be Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, it hurt. But it had its moments.
 

"Well, that and the thrill of beating up the mentally ill."

 

The flashback in this issue has abbreviated this storyline to a great extent. Apparently as soon as Batman was captured, he reversed the situation on the good deacon much faster. In fact, in no real time at all. I guess the New 52 Gotham is full of even angrier, less patient people than the one of the old universe. All it took was a little suggestion that Blackfire might be a fraud for his followers to brutally slaughter him in this version of the events. And obviously Batman still just kind of lets that happen, but hey, at least he's pretty grievously injured and exhausted in this version.
 

New 52 pipes are lower to the ground.

 

I guess being dead never really puts a villain down too long in comics, but oddly enough, Deacon Blackfire hasn't returned since The Cult, until now that is. I'm not really sure what Joker's Daughter has to do with him, though, or why she keeps talking to her "daddy". I guess I wouldn't put it past her to hallucinate and hear things that aren't really there. But then again, Joker did take quite a fall in "Death of the Family", so maybe he really did die and Blackfire's resurrection is just a dry run before Joker can return. I don't know if I like Joker being involved in supernatural stuff, but hey, he did steal Mr. Mxy....that extra-dimensional imp's reality warping powers once. Joker's Daughter is an annoying character, though, and shouldn't she be with the Suicide Squad right now? Nice continuity, DC.

 


"Yeah, I know I'm a terrible character. Yeah. Yeah, I know everybody hopes you kill me, Daddy."

 

We get a bit more of Tim and Harper in Japan with that one guy that helped train Bruce during his world travels. If I recall he trained him in the art of... uh, organ grinding, maybe? Anyway, he's a techy, Tim and Harper are techies, it's a nerd stare down, and Harper wins by shocking the monkey (heh heh heh). Tim, you need to step up your game.
 

Shocking the monkey. Heh heh heh.

 

Not really much to this issue. While I enjoy the continuity nod, there's not much substance here and frankly I'm getting sick of this supernatural shit. Get back to Batman, comic.

 

Next issue: Vampire Hero is my favorite action figure!

 

- Penguin Truth
(2014)
 

Story: Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Script: Ray Fawkes
Consulting Writers: John Layman, & Tim Seeley
Pencils By: Dustin Nguyen
Inks By: Derek Fridolfs
Colors By: John Kalisz
Lettering By: Dezi Sienty
Cover By: Dustin Nguyen
Editor: Katie Kubert
Asst. Editor: Matt Humphreys
Group Editor: Mark Doyle
Batman Created By Bob K--AHAHAHAHA, NO. Batman Created By Bill Finger