- Cover by Sean Murphy
- Written by Kyle Higgins
- Art by Thony Silas
- Colours by Andrew Elder
BEWARE OF SPOILERS (they’re also above sorry but I love this image!)
It’s time for the big reveal in this half way mark in the ‘Rewired’ arc as finally after keeping the villain secret for all the previous issues we finally get to see her no him no… THEM!
At the end of chapter 3 Terry was being called in to action by the mysterious villain who, after murdering the Mayor and releasing the inmates of Arkham, had called for Batman to make himself known or face the slaughter of the citizens of Neo-Gotham.
This chapter opens with Terry speeding to the dock whilst arguing over his comm-system with Dick who pleads with him not to go in to such an obvious trap. We cut away momentarily to catch up with Barbara Gordon who finds an anomaly with the Mayors finances whilst prepping her force for the potential outcome of Batman’s meeting.
Next comes the first of the twists: Terry arrives at the docks to be confront by Nightwing, followed by Batgirl and then Robin. It’s a massive mind blowing twist to the story that comes completely out of left field.
The rest of the issue jumps between the revelation that the Mayor was undergoing counselling and the battle at the docks between Terry and the old Bat-family until the final panel which brings the family together to stand behind none of that Bruce’s Batman (or somebody masquerading as him at least).
The story up to now has been intriguing and the level of intensity has been high for a comic, especially one based on a kids cartoon. I’m impressed with how Higgins has taken the basics of the ‘Beyond’ world and recreated them in such a way that they feel like they’ve belonged in the comics all along. Tie-in titles can often feel like a cash cow but this is a genuine comic franchise in its own right.
I’m not sure I know how they’re going to write themselves out of this ending, there’s clearly a reason why heroes from years gone by have reappeared and decided to take over the city but for now I have no clue who the villain is going to be.
The artwork in this issue echoes the old ‘Batman: the Animated Series’ perfectly. Much like the art in this rest of this series so far it echoes the character designs of the past but has Silas’s own personal flair which updates it for a contemporary comic audience.
Stepping aside from the story unfolding at the docks the secondary story in which Barbara investigates the death of the Mayor is a great testament to her work as a detective. In previous ‘Beyond’ comics she has played the role of police commissioner who dips in and out as required but here she’s being used as a major player.
If your interest hadn’t been grabbed but this series before now then now is the time to go back to chapter one and dive in to ‘Rewired’.