REVIEW: ‘Nightwing’, Issue #84

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Nightwing #84

Nightwing #84 gives readers an introduction to another crossover. This issue is plotted by series writer Tom Taylor. Robbi Rodriguez stops by as penciler and inker. Adriano Lucas is the series colorist, and Wes Abbott maintains the letters. DC Comics publishes this title monthly, and as of this issue, Fear State, the current Batman crossover event, hits Dick Grayson. 

It’s a gradual shift, to be fair. In the last issue, Dick publicly announced he would be using his inherited millions to solve Bludhaven’s problems, especially concerning the unhoused. Issue #84 opens with that choice weighing heavily on his mind. Truthfully, it’s the highlight of the issue, reading Dick’s thoughts about the immensity of the decision he’s made. Then a quick call to Oracle sends him driving back up to Gotham and headfirst into drama.

That drama is the futuristic seeming Magistrate. It has been allowed to take over for law enforcement in Gotham, and quickly things go wrong for Nightwing. The call from Oracle is a setup. Magistrate forces attempt to take him down. This leads into what looks to be an interesting storyline involving Oracle and Nightwing with great art, and it’s nice to see Barbara Gordon didn’t get sidelined after her own title was canceled.

My one gripe is that this takes place in yet another Batman crossover. Batman gets a ridiculous amount of DC’s comic book space, and my previous reviews have been upfront about wanting Dick to get away from the Shadow of the Bat. While this is undoubtedly taking place, this temporary sojourn into Gotham again is another reminder of how hard it is to keep a character out of Batman’s pull. Yes, the characters are family. Yes, it makes sense Dick would get involved. But this title is still building up its own story arc, and it would be nice to have crossovers be separate series or something. 

However, that does not mean in any way that Nightwing #84 isn’t worth reading. There are some amazing words put down here by Taylor and Abbott that offer incredible, moving dialogue between Nightwing and his allies. The lettering is crystal clear. Lettering FX is eye-popping, in use a bit more per panel this issue, and larger FX lean towards a cartoonish font that sets off well with the art. There is nothing but good coming out of Taylor’s writing, so I look forward to seeing Dick’s arc in Fear State in this series while also eager for it to end so we as readers can see what happens to Bludhaven and its quirky cast.

Rodriguez fills in for Redondo this time around, and they offer a hyperkinetic, visually energetic Nightwing and a moody Gotham City. The lines are loose and long, sketchy, similar to Rick Leonardi, which is great. This is good penciling, and Rodriguez needs to be on a monthly book. As usual, Lucas brings the kaleidoscope of colors, though less utilized and darker as the story rolls into Gotham. This is a wonderful comic full of superhero eye candy and slick action.

I loved this issue, despite the inevitable crossover. It keeps the focus on Nightwing and Babs, so in that sense, it remains on course. Not sure if the effects of the Magistrate will later trickle into Bludhaven (let’s hope not). But as usual, I’m along for the ride.

Nightwing #84 is available now wherever comic books are sold.

 

Nightwing #84
4

TL;DR

I loved this issue, despite the inevitable crossover. It keeps the focus on Nightwing and Babs, so in that sense, it remains on course. Not sure if the effects of the Magistrate will later trickle into Bludhaven (let’s hope not). But as usual, I’m along for the ride.