'The Wrath' made his comic book debut in 1984, when he tried to pit his wits against 'the player on the other side' we all know and love as, Batman. Still. I can't help but wonder what he's going to now, in this issue created by John Layman and Jason Fabok; Published by DC Comics, in June, 2013. Play the piano left handed perhaps?

Using GENERAL terms, answer the following 5 questions about this STORY entitled 'Targeting the Shield'.
  • WHAT'S THE MAIN THRUST OF THIS TALE: Batman has to figure out whose killing the cops in Gotham City, and framing him for this heinous crime.  
  • ARE THE MAIN OBJECTIVES ACHIEVED: No. Not yet anyway. But Bat's does find something that points him in the right direction.
  • ANYTHING ELSE HAPPEN: During the day, Bruce Wayne meets up with the head of Cadwell industries, Ed Cadwell, who's a bit of a prick.
  • HOW DOES THIS STORY END: With the Wrath showing Scorn his wrath.
  • WHAT'S THE BACK-UP FEATURE ABOUT: Before Kirk Langstrom can investigate why he's involuntarily turning into Man-Bat, Harvey Bullock takes him down town, and questions him about a monster stalking the night.

All in all, what is the most memorable SENTENCE OR CONVERSATION spoken in this issue?
I love the expressiveness in Kirk Langstrom's words when he mused to himself by stating...

'I close my eyes and I remember flying. Freedom. Strength. And when I open my eyes... a job cataloguing genetic codes, combining DNA strands seems increasingly pointless to me' .

Ouch! Now if you've ever done the drudgery of the daily nine to fine, I'm sure you can sympathise with his erroneous remark.

What are the BEST bits about this issue?
(+) Even though I really do appreciate Jason Fabok's previous efforts on this book, the artwork on this one was the best I've seen yet. Honestly. His line-work appears more detailed. The colours appear more atmospheric. And overall, the visual elements are out of this blooming world.
(+) I really did love reading the Man-Bat back-up feature this month. From my perspective, it came across like a 1940's thriller of sorts. Where a mad scientist comes under suspicion of murder, only to find out that someone else -- hint-hint -- is involved. Ohhhhh!
(+) Now the original version of 'The Wrath' was basically a ying to Bruce Wayne's yang. Bruce was rich and righteous, whilst he was poor and bodacious. Bruce's parents were killed by a thief, whilst his parents were killed by a cop [notably, Jim Gordon]. And conceptually, this tale summed them both up as two halves of the very same coin. In this case though, well, I'm not rightfully sure if truth be told. It seems rather obvious that this Cadwell character is the Wrath. However, why he is the Wrath? I don't know? Hmmm. I'm sitting on the fence with this one at the moment. 50 / 50.

What are the WORST bits about this issue?
(-) My one gripe about this tale would be how its overall structure was a might doddery in places, thus bestowing the conceptual through-line with a dip and parry type construction. Not much though. No. Only here and there.

Choose TWO CHARACTERS out of this comic book, and then compare them to SOMETHING YOU CAN BUY ON EBAY .
A PACKET OF DISPOSABLE TOWLETTES AS SCORN: Well, if you think about it, folks, this bad-guy was used and then disposed of afterwards, wasn't he?

AN ELECTRONIC DEVICE YOU'VE PURCHASED FROM CHINA AS OFFICER STRODE: No. Don't worry. I haven't blown a gasket. The main reason why I've compared this type of product to this character is because you're always happy to see them, yet are unsure what state they'll be in when you eventually do.

What QUOTE would be appropriate to sum-up this story?
'The player on the other side is hidden from us. We know that his play is always fair, and patient. But also we know, to our cost, that he never overlooks a mistake, or makes the smallest allowance for ignorance' -- Thomas Henry Huxley

What SONG, THEME-TUNE, or MELODY, would complement this tale, as well as add and extra dimension to it by default?
'MAN IN THE MIRROR' BY MICHAEL JACKSON: One of the main reasons why I'm comparing this song to this story, is because they're both about one man's perception of himself and those around him. Think about it. You know it makes sense.

Imagine if you will. Your name is Ed Cadwell, and you are a successful weapons developer that has ties to Gotham City. Yet, for some strange reason, you've suddenly become the masked bad-guy called 'the Wrath'? Why, huh? Why do this at all? Does it have anything to do with...

  • Taking your S & M to the next level.
  • You're parents being murdered by a budgie.
  • The conclusion to Zack Snyder's 'Man of Steel' movie.
  • Income tax going on the rise.
  • Asparagus.
  • The voices in your arm talking to the voices in your toes.
  • You're way of expressing yourself through modern dance and munitions.
  • Monkey porn.
  • Justin Bieber telling you to.

OK. That's enough of my silliness for this months, folks. All I have left to say is that this issue of 'Detective Comics' was a brilliant read. The art was fantastic. The story was intriguing. And the back-up feature was like a cherry on top of a cake.

Special. Extra special.

DETECTIVE COMICS #22 DETECTIVE COMICS #22 Reviewed by David Andrews on July 18, 2013 Rating: 5
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