As Gotham descends even further into madness with the return of Hush, Batman Eternal has been evolving into a much more intriguing book. Gee, who would have figured that plots are better when they have more direction? Of course, last week’s primary weakness was in the dismal visuals. Thankfully, there’s a welcome turnaround in art quality this time.
Tim Seeley takes the wheel this time and again, we’re given a lot of material at once. On one front, Batman and Catwoman team up to put a lid on the gang violence in the midst of the search for Hush. It’s an interesting read to see how recent developments put a strain on Gotham’s power couple. The relationship between Bruce and Selina has always been one worth reading. While he genuinely cares for them all, Batman has always had a degree of sway and authority on his extended family. Part of what makes Catwoman a compelling character is the fact that she’s basically the only person in his life that constantly remains a variable he can’t control. Also, Batgirl confronts Jason Bard in the “holy shit” fashion we love her for. This was pretty good but got overshadowed big time in favor of the Bat/Cat drama and also Killer Croc tracking down one of his sewer urchin friends.
My pick for best moment in the book is the Spoiler showing up to make herself known to the Bat. Not only is this book giving Stephanie Brown a really intriguing theme to separate her from the rest of the capes in Gotham, but we also get a funny appearance from an old nemesis from the Grant Morrison days. Javier Garron shows up to take the art baton from J.M. Guera and not a moment too soon. This is an improvement that separates itself from the last couple of weeks by light years. There’s a very vibrant color palette at work this week that works out pretty well, namely for the Spoiler.
Bottom Line: Seeley and Garron really managed to turn things around with on-par visuals to go with some fairly decent character development. 8 out of 10.