Detective Comics #981
Writer James Tynion IV
Artist: Eddy Barrows
Detective Comics #981 marks the end of not only the Batmen Eternal arc, the Brother Eye arc and the Batman of Tomorrow arc, but also the end of James Tynion IV’s run on Detective Comics. Having written 49 issues, including one annual, there have been high points and low points. However, not all of the issues are solved, such as the friction between Batwoman and any of the Bat-Family, or Spoiler was working with Anarchy. Though all of this may be resolved in the next Detective Comics run which will be written by Bryan Hill.
Apart from some unfinished plotlines, this issue serves as a fine ending. It ties up loose ends for the team members. Cass finally gets help from Batgirl, most characters make up, and Tim and Stephanie go on a road trip. This makes for a good ending, everything is tied neatly, even with a few mishaps for Steph and Kate. Unfortunately, the issue still manages to fall flat. When reading it, it seems as if each part is simply a point on a list that must be ticked off. It all feels rushed, with certain characters having no more than one narrative box. This all leads to a feeling that Tynion had to leave before he had completely finished his story. Had he been given a few more issues, this could have been resolved and each character would have more closure.
Despite the shortcomings, Tynion IV once again demonstrates a deep understanding of Bruce and Tim, utilizing their human side, which is often overlooked. The best character writing in this comic goes to Orphan. Her arc in this part of Detective Comics finally comes to a close, and it is possibly the greatest arc in this run, despite being underutilized.
As usual, the best art in this book features Cassandra, but this also highlights a noticeable issue. Many of the characters look soulless if they are not demonstrating a large amount of emotion, such as great sadness. This works for Cassandra, who is emotionless. With other characters, it seems odd that they do not display emotion. Bruce and Tim are difficult to distinguish from each other in terms of art, although as this is often the case with many artists. so readers shouldn’t hold this against them.
Overall, Detective Comics #981 does its job, yet it is difficult to praise much else. It feels lacking in terms of story, and the art is jarring at times. It still serves as a solid a conclusion to Tynion IV’s run.
Detective Comics #981
Detective Comics #981 does its job, yet it is difficult to praise much else. It feels lacking in terms of story, and the art is jarring at times. It still serves as a solid a conclusion to Tynion IV's run.