Bruce Wayne exists in two separate realities: that of a billionaire playboy, and another as the Caped Crusader. But, what’s Bruce to do when one of the world’s deadliest assassins seems to be gunning for the former persona and several of his powerful and wealthy associates? That seems to be the question in Detective Comics #1009, out this week from DC Comics.
Bruce is off to a business conference in Singapore, and he insists of sharing a jet with several fellow CEOs. Of course, this makes for trouble when Deadshot is on your trail.
With Detective Comics #1009, writer Peter J. Tomasi delivers a solid story that builds to a strong, cliffhanger ending.
Despite the dark tone of the first page, the book has equal doses of action and comedy. Bruce playfully trades barbs with both Alfred and Lucius, interspaced by Deadshot’s introduction, where he also exchanges some slightly more tense dialogue. He manages to transition smoothly into a serious tone in the book’s second half without giving the reader tonal whiplash.
The action stretches plausibility; I mean, how much bad luck—and bad timing—could one planeload of people have? Still, the ending promises a great premise for our next issue. Bruce is ready to go Batmode once Deadshot shows up, but he can’t under the circumstances. It presents an interesting quandary for him, and it’ll be interesting to see how he pulls it off.
That said, Detective Comics #1009 isn’t terribly compelling on its own. Instead, it feels a bit like we’re setting up a more interesting story to come. Contrast this with our last issue, which was a self-contained, one-and-done story. This isn’t really a fault on the book, as you sometimes need chapters like this in episodic storytelling. In general, Detective Comics #1009 places all the pieces on the board, setting the stage for the action to come.
In all, it’s a fun entry in the series. From a narrative standpoint, though, it mainly serves to get all the characters in place to tell a larger story. Aside from the jokes, there’s not as much to sink one’s teeth into.
Christian Duce provides artwork in Detective Comics #1009. His style is well-suited for the job; detailed and expressive, but not overly-heavy, with just a hint of cartoonish flair. He manages to convey the grim tone of the first few pages, then transition seamlessly as Batman’s façade peels back to reveal the Bruce Wayne persona underneath.
One of the strengths on display here is the ability to convey action effectively. The artwork balances dynamism and cohesion, delivering a final product that’s visually engaging, but still flows nicely from panel to panel. There’s so much going on in the last third of Detective Comics #1009 that it can be a little visually overwhelming, but the reader never feels lost or unsure of what should be the focus of attention.
The color by Luis Guerrero is very vibrant. He employs a brighter palette than we’re accustomed to seeing in a Batman book. It meshes well with Duce’s illustration style, though, giving the book a complete and cohesive look.
Detective Comics #1009 is an interesting read, and it sets us up for an even more interesting story to come. In that light, I’d recommend it. Pick up a copy for yourself at your local comic book shop.