REVIEW: ‘Batman and the Outsiders,’ Issue 15

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Batman and the Outsiders #15

Batman and the Outsiders #15, written by Bryan Hill, illustrated by Dexter Soy, colored by Veronica Gandini, and lettered by Clayton Cowles, is published by DC Comics. The third part of “The Demon’s Fire” sees Ra’s al Ghul in Tokyo, preparing to utilize his doomsday device. The Outsiders track down various leads in order to stop him from triggering the apocalypse.

Much like the previous issueBatman and the Outsiders #15 splits its teams into various factions as they track down Ra’s. Hill’s script expertly weaves these plot threads together and showcases how the characters have grown. Duke Thomas, who was struggling with trauma and self-doubt, has learned to master his new powers. Katana confronts the fact that her feelings for Black Lightning may be more than platonic. And Batman and Black Lightning, who usually butt heads, are now working together. Even Sofia Ramos, who started off as an ordinary teenage girl, falls into the superhero life fairly easily.

This also extends to the villain of the piece. Ra’s al Ghul has always been one of Batman’s more interesting foes because he feels like he’s saving the Earth. Here, this takes on a new dimension. Ra’s claims that he seeks “transformation” for the world, which fits in with his empowerment of his new disciples and the weapon he now wields. I’ve always loved villains like Ra’s, as they often have a noble goal but ultimately use destructive methods to accomplish it. That duality makes them fascinating and Hill understands that.

Batman and the Outsiders #15

I also love Soy’s artwork. From most of the action being set in Tokyo to a villain who has robotic arms, Soy’s artwork continues to have an anime-inspired tinge. Soy also gets to draw some intense fight sequences; bones are snapped with a visually sickening flair, and the robot armed villain doesn’t fare too well against Orphan and Lady Shiva. Soy also makes his characters seem larger than life, especially Batman. The Dark Knight often looms over his enemies, or stands in the shadows with his trademark glare.

Rounding out the creative team is Gandini on colors, who makes excellent use of light and shadow to sell the issue’s scope. One image stands out in particular: Black Lightning enveloped in a massive sphere of electromagnetic energy. The bright blue energy seems to leap off the page, nearly blinding the viewer. Not only does this scene show how powerful Lightning has become, but it also feels like something you’d see in a blockbuster film or prestige TV show. Soy and Gandini have done excellent work before, but this has to be one of their best issues.

Batman and the Outsiders #15 brings several plot threads to a close, setting the stage for an explosive final battle. With two issues left before the series ends, I’m definitely intrigued to see how Hill, Soy, and Gandini handle the final battle against Ra’s and how the storyline wraps up.

Batman and the Outsiders #15 is available wherever comics are sold.

 

Batman and the Outsiders #15
4.5

TL;DR

Batman and the Outsiders #15 brings several plot threads to a close, setting the stage for an explosive final battle. With two issues left before the series ends, I’m definitely intrigued to see how Hill, Soy, and Gandini handle the final battle against Ra’s and how the storyline wraps up.