As highly enjoyable as Tom King’s run over on Batman has thus far proven to be, I’ve been very much pleased to see that James Tynion IV and the various artists that have worked with him for the past two years have succeeded in making Detective Comics feel like a markedly different book. They’re both fantastic, sure, but having two flagship titles featuring the same character with the same flavor is a trapping that isn’t uncommon in this medium, and I’m glad that’s certainly not the case here.
So, while Batman has (mostly) chronicled the adventures of a solo Dark Knight and has more recently focused on his relationship with Catwoman, ‘Tec has acted as somewhat of a team-up book. Uniting the Caped Crusader with the likes of Batwoman, Red Robin, Spoiler, Orphan, Batwing and even Clayface, it’s proven to be a darling among fans of various members of the Bat Family – and, believe me, they each have rabid followings.
And speaking of Clayface, issue #974 explores the fallout from the previous installment’s cliffhanger when Batwoman seemingly fatally shot Basil Karlo. If you’ll recall, he went quite berserk thanks to the machinations of the Victim Syndicate, and Gotham’s heroes were forced to put him in check. Kate Kane, however, thought it best to take more extreme measures.
From we can tell, the death will stick. Well, at least that’s the impression given by the first few pages DC has exclusively provided (seen above). Granted, a curveball being thrown before the issue concludes can’t be ruled out, but it really does look like it’s curtains for this incarnation of Clayface. Either way, this will incite much debate about using lethal force amongst the Bat Family and readers alike.
For more, be sure to check out the official synopsis below:
“KNIGHT’S FALL”! Can Tim Drake piece his dreams back together after Batwoman’s fateful decision, or will the Gotham Knights go their separate ways?
Detective Comics #974 arrives in comic shops next Wednesday, February 14.
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Philippe Briones
Cover: Guillem March
Variant Cover: Rafael Albuquerque