Thursday, October 17, 2013

DETECTIVE COMICS #675 - June 1994


Midnight Duel
Credits:  Chuck Dixon (writer), Graham Nolan (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), John Costanza (letterer), Adrienne Roy (colorist)

Summary:  Gunhawk holds a hospital hostage, demanding his girlfriend Bunny be treated for her gunshot wound.  He responds violently to any efforts by the police to intervene, leading Batman to directly confront him.  After an intense firefight, Batman tackles Gunhawk down a staircase and knocks him unconscious.

Irrelevant Continuity:  The new weapon created at the end of Shadow of the Bat #28 was apparently a shuriken shooter that works like a machine gun; or perhaps the new creation was intended to be the flamethrower Batman debuts this issue.

Gimmicks:  An foil-embossed cover of the issue was also shipped.
Review:  Inserting the resolution to the Abattoir arc in-between the two chapters of this story does it no favors, although Dixon tries his best to make it work.  My favorite example is a nurse asking Gunhawk why he’s waited two days to take Bunny to the hospital.  “We were kind of on the run, y’know?”  Meanwhile, the death of Abattoir has apparently freed Jean-Paul from whatever inhibitions he previously held, as his narration now seems even more Punisher-esque.  Once again, the shift towards standard vigilante and away from crazed loon brainwashed by an ancient religious order makes Jean-Paul a more tolerable protagonist.  While Gunhawk remains a one-note villain, Dixon is able to get some material out of the obsession with weaponry he shares with Jean-Paul, and the scenes focusing on how the police deal with a hostage situation at a hospital are pretty interesting.  This is also one of Nolan’s strongest issues, as he excels at drawing relentless action scenes and the somewhat plausible, but still comic booky, weapons used during the fight.  I’m still not convinced this arc needed to be reprinted at the expense of more “significant” issues, but it’s entertaining on a very basic level.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Holy cow, that cover... yeesh.

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