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@BatWatcher Reviews: @DCComics Batwoman, Birds of Prey, Red Hood and the Outlaws


Here are today's Guest Reviews by Jeremy Sims from Batwatch for DC's; Batwoman #21, Birds of Prey #21, and Red Hood and the Outlaws #21. I have also added my rating after each review. If you have any questions about my rating or want to discuss anything just leave me a comment.


See the Review Rating Overview page for more information on how I rate each comic.



Batwoman #21 - Interlude III



In the aftermath of the Medusa ordeal, Killer Croc is rescued by a mysterious cult...but what connection do they have with Batwoman, and why do they need to see her die?

Preview



Killer Instinct


Batwoman has been a consistently good time every issue, so I'm hoping for great things here. The preview showed that this issue was focused on Killer Croc, and at least in the preview, it looked pretty great as Croc had been taken in by the late Abbot's cult, the true believers of the Religion of Crime. How will Croc and company tie in to Kate's forthcoming take down of Batman? I don't know, but I'm eager to find out.

Is Batwoman #21 a killer good time or a scaly, smelly, disgusting, repugnant monster of a story.

In this issue, Killer Croc is offered leadership of Abbot's old crew if he can kill the Batwoman.

Just a quick reminder, I'm doing super short reviews since I have to start packing for a move.

I'm always of two minds on Batwoman's interim issues. It seems that at least once every four issues, the regular story is interrupted to bring a tangent tale usually focused on a supporting character. On one hand, it's pretty annoying that the main story is delayed. On the other, these supporting character stories are almost always so darn good that I just can't stay mad at them. This is yet another example of a first rate side story, and this one focuses on Killer Croc.

If anybody was excited about the upcoming Villains' Month title starting Killer Croc, you may as well buy this issue too because it's very good and it has little to do with Batwoman's ongoing story. It can easily be read as its own thing. I do hope the new details of Croc's history revealed in this issue have been revealed to Seeley so he can create one coherent version of Killer Croc like he has stated is his intention with the Villains' Month title because this will create some new wrinkles to the character.

Read the rest of Jeremy Sims' review on Batwatch

My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 3/5
Art, Colors & Inking - 2/5
Layout & Flow - 2/5
Story - 3/5
Verdict - 2.6
 - (Buy Batwoman #21) SAVE 20%


Birds of Prey #21 - Talon vs. Talon


The Birds are forced to work with Calvin Rose in order to protect one of their own in this confrontation that continues in this month’s TALON #9!



Preview



This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things!


Birds has been on the upswing ever since writer Christy Marx (current writer of Birds of Prey and Sword of Sorcery) took over the writing. Black Canary is not acting like a ditz. Strix is doing a little more than just wantonly attacking everyone. Batgirl is...well, still kind of generic, but even Condor has developed a little bit of a personality. Is it a perfect book? Not by a long shot, but it's been fun enough that I do not even mind too much that the best member of the team, Starling, is currently out of the picture having betrayed the team. Now, we seem to be past the Mr. Freeze arc, and we're moving to a crossover between Birds and my favorite new character, Talon. This will be readers first chance to see how Calvin Rose operates as an agent of the Court of Owls, so I'm eager to sink my teeth into this one.

Does Birds of Prey #21 deliver a fresh version of the classic superhero team up or is this stale formula a transparent excuse for heroes to come to fisticuffs?

In this issue, Batgirl and Strix face Talon while Black Canary and Condor lend support.

Since I have to start packing for a move, I'm going to make this review super short.

Well, crap. This is why I usually wait several months before really praising a new creative team because once I start thinking well of writers and artists I get disappointed with them when they fail to live up to my expectations.

As I seem to be saying with every review this week, this was not bad as a whole, but it had some real problems.

The thing that really disappointed me was the hokey romantic scene inserted into the middle of this issue. It's a classic case of shoving romance in on the wrong moment just because you think people want to see romance. I have no problem with romance in comics, but only if the story sets the stage for it. All the events of this issue happen in crisis mode, yet two of our Birds, I'm sure you can guess which two, take time for that stupid, “I must tell you something! I have loved you from the first moment I saw you! Even though we barely know each other and we both seem like complete morons, I feel I know your soul, and I've already named our future kids and grandkids. Let us seal our love with a kiss even though we know we could be shot in the back at any moment for this danger only heightens the need for us to say what is true! (mock make out sounds)”  nonsense. It's really bad, and it is made worse by the fact that one of the characters says, “This is not the time for this,” yet goes along with it.

Read the rest of Jeremy Sims' review on Batwatch

My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 4/5
Art, Colors & Inking - 4/5
Layout & Flow - 5/5
Story - 5/5
Verdict - 4.6
 - (Buy Birds of Prey #21) SAVE 10%


Red Hood and the Outlaws #21 - Dissolution


There is a bounty on the heads of the Outlaws, and Jason can’t remember what he did to cause it.



Preview



Disappointed Yet Again


Red Hood and the Outlaws has left something to be desired these last two months. Though James Tynion's (current writer of Talon, Red Hood and the Outlaws and Batman) work on the title has not been bad, it hasn't really been a lot of fun which makes things a bit boring. With an artist who seems to struggle to come up with a look on par with the industry average and characters that no longer have a devil may care attitude towards death, RHATO has become heavier than I would really prefer.

Is RHATO #21 a creative step in the right direction or a fate worse than death?

In this issue, Roy gets counseling from Doctor Strange, Starfire confronts Essence, and Jason faces down some of his old assassin buddies.

Quick reminder, I'm doing super short reviews today.

This issue isn't bad, but I've waited four issues now for Tynion to find the right tone for the Outlaws. I'm beginning to think that this is the new normal, and I'm not crazy about it. My problem with it consists o a whole bunch of little things, so let me make some examples.

The Hugo Strange plot line feels like it adds little to the story other than just throwing in a familiar face. This could have been a long subplot with Roy counseling with a villain, but it appears to have been wrapped up fairly neatly with this one issue without much fanfare.

Starfire has clothes in one panel and doesn't in the next. Apparently, the ability to summon slutty atire is now a superpower.

Read the rest of Jeremy Sims' review on Batwatch

My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 3/5
Art, Colors & Inking - 3/5
Layout & Flow - 3/5
Story - 3/5
Verdict - 3
 - (Buy Red Hood and the Outlaws #21) SAVE 10%

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Jeremy Sims is a blogger at https://batwatch.squarespace.com/ and a comic book reviewer at Comic Vine. The use of these reviews has been authorized by the original author.

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