Sunday, June 23, 2013

365 Comics...173: Batwoman #21 (2013)

Just to assuage any concerns Killer Croc fans might have had after the events of the last few issues, he gets the spotlight here in a pretty great character profile.  The tendency for these types of stories is to show the bad guy in a redemptive light, to show them as sympathetic, heroic even, in some way.  Blackman and Williams may elicit a little sympathy, but there's little here that's redemptive for Croc, he does whatever he needs to do to survive, and doesn't seem to have much of a conscience about it.  From a criminal psychology standpoint it really comes down to an insular and selfish world view, only by the end Croc understands that he has more responsibility than himself.  It's not that he inevitably does the right thing, but he does the smart thing, which is to get out of the game of duking it out with the Bat-family.

Though Blackman and Williams focus on Croc, there's still a great injection of Batwoman, Hawkfire and Maggie Sawyer into the story, the writers not forgetting to advance their story, if only a littlebit and from a third person perspective.

Francesco Francavilla guest illustrates this issue, which I would have thought cause for celebration (given my affection for the Black Beetle) but while his layouts are intriguing as always, the figure work and general finished product seems like a rough draft, like the rough thumbnails blown up to full page size.  Disappointed there, but still a solid read.

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