Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Tim Seeley
Artist: Javier Fernandez
Release Date: 27th July, 2016
Dick Grayson. Circus performer, the original Boy Wonder, Nightwing, and of course occasionally Batman. Has CV that reads like a teenagers ‘who I want to be when I grow up’ list. In this self-titled series Dick, in his Nightwing guise, is the latest pawn for the illuminati-esque Court of The Owls.
Blackmailed into being the parliament’s enforcer, Nightwing is charged with traveling the globe executing the Owl’s unique brand of justice. However, his unwillingness to break the morals ingrained into his very soul after so many years in the shadow of the cowl infuriates his masters. They decide that he needs a new mentor with looser morals than the Bat, to show him how they expect him to act upon their behalf. This inevitably leads to an abrasive first meeting with this new teacher.
Nightwing has always been a conundrum of a character to me. I find him a brooding, borderline moody hero with deep-seated father issues towards Batman. Long gone is the wide-eyed Boy Wonder trying so desperately to follow in Batman’s boots, and gone with it is a lot of the joy in the character.
So in picking up this issue, I was a little apprehensive of what I was getting int. It turned out that I perhaps needn’t have been so cautious. The story has a substance to it that, admittedly, is only teased at in this issue. Can the boy who for me so desperately seeks his ‘fathers’ benediction hold the course of all that he knows when faced with a foe that will question all that he is?
In a environment where the norm is to give a comic a gritty realistic look to it, Javier Fernandez’s artwork embraces a more classic comicbook feel, which lets each panel focus on the development of the characters. Tim Seeley is writing the character with more panache than I have read of late. He almost has a sense of the James Bond (or should that be Gayson) arrogance about him while at the same time holding on to the frailties than come from being Dick Grayson..
It is this dichotomy of personality that I hope develops in a storyline which, if followed through, has the potential to be a definitive point in this character’s evolution. And, while we’re definitely not there yet, there’s definitely a firm foundation to make this series into something truly special.
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The writer of this piece was: John Patterson
John Tweets from @jpeg37