A bit of a mixed bag
With a mix of amazing characterization, jaw-dropping jokes, and a somewhat questionable last page, Night wing # 81 takes you on a roller coaster of emotions while introducing a new threat to the streets of Bludhaven.
Let’s talk about the good first. Bruno Redondo, Adriano Lucas and Wes Abbott aren’t just delivering one of the prettiest books to the stands – it’s superb – but that rewards re-reading because the tiny artistic gags have sneaked onto the t-shirts and the random elements are absolutely funny. When there’s a fight scene, seeing how it plays out as a sequence of ideas in the same picture is very, very creative and smart.
Likewise, Tom Taylor’s script breathes life into these characters’ dialogue and ideas, from Nightwing’s stubborn refusal to listen to the kind of grinning exasperation Barbara Gordon shows in her relentless lover. This is all the best.
Considering the relative novelty of the Heartless antagonist, its introduction here has been quite fluid and kept enough of its air of mystery while selling it with action and joke. It’s a good choice.
The last page revealed was a bit of a soap opera, and while it does give the plot some legs on the Mayor’s side, it does so by taking a hit in an area of Dick Grayson’s life that was seen as a settled case. . Religious areas like this are rarely a good idea, but this team has done wonders before, so let’s see if future issues show it off as a masterstroke.
This is an example of solid, comprehensive comics that are made to a high standard with only the creepiest idea to throw out. EVALUATION: HONORABLE MENTION.
Night Wing # 81
By Tom Taylor, Bruno Redondo
Dick Grayson trades his fencing sticks for a magnifying glass and detective hat to investigate Bludhaven’s new mayor, Melinda Zucco, and find out how the daughter of the man who murdered Dick’s parents came to power in the town of Nightwing. But his investigative adventure is cut short when he comes face to face with the most gruesome villain in Bludhaven history – HEARTLESS.