The Review 52: Batwing 1
Besides fighting crime, running a multi-million dollar corporation, and trying to convince people there’s nothing suspicious about him, Bruce Wayne enjoys going to new and interesting places and teaching new heroes to kick criminal ass. His trip to The Democratic Republic of the Congo has left us with Batwing. David Zavimbe works for the police force by day, fights as Batwing by night and sleeps…NEVER! While working with Batman to remove some of the serious problems in his country, he also tries to reduce the level of corruption in the police force from within.
The artwork in the series is really well done. It keeps the grittiness of the Batman comics while incorporating the African atmosphere. The run down shacks of the slums look dark and forbidding. While in the day the oppressive heat can be seen in the frames.
The suit is not the best aspect of the comic. It’s blue, it’s got robotic wings, and it glows. Rather than giving off the dark, imposing presence of Batman, Batwing just seems to be in a suit, fighting crime. There is one frame where he actually looks intimidating, but it relies heavily on shadow and the glow is even removed from his suit.
The story is interesting and to the point. There is a very short and simple origin story for Batwing. Batman gave him tech and trained him. This short and simple introduction lets the reader dive right into the action. It also cuts out a lot of the pointless talk and over-explaining that is seen in many comics. The situation is given, and Batwing gets right to the action.
The way that the story is set up is constrictive. The issue is placed in a flashback that isn’t fully completed before the end. This means there will be at least one more issue where the reader knows there’s a certain point things will progress to. This causes the prequel effect, where excitement is reduced because readers already know what characters end up where, they just need to find out how.
The villain for this issue is amazing. He’s a simple machete wielding psychopath, named Massacre, who wants to do nothing but kill. There’s no back story, no reason and no fucking around. He simply takes a machete and cuts off heads. This simple yet devastating villain shows just how different the super hero game is in Africa.
Overall Batwing earns a 4/5. It is well written with great artwork and a terrifying villain. It loses some points for the main character being a bit boring and wearing a dorky costume. But it is a comic series that is worth reading
Final Score: 4/5