Saturday, November 13, 2010

Comic Book Review: The Return of Bruce Wayne #6 (of 6)

Literary & Artistic Credits
Writer: Grant Morrison
Penciller: Lee Garrett & Pere Perez
Colorist: Guy Major
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Inker: Alejandro Sicat & Walden Wong
Cover Art: Bill Sienkiewicz
Editor: Mike Marts

Batman created by Bob Kane

My Awe-Inspiring Opinion
There’s a lot of meat in this issue and it compels me to say something I don’t very often say.  There is a moment in everyone’s life where they have to own up to the fact that even the people they hate the most can accomplish something worth while.  It doesn’t pain me at all to say that Grant Morrison truly did bring us an issue worth the price you pay for it.

Morrison fans defend the writer to the utmost ends, always spurting out bits of rhetoric explaining why he is one of the best writers in comics to date.  But what these fans fail to realize is Morrison’s inability to bring a story together in a comprehensive fashion and leaving room for the future potential of a character to shine indefinitely.  Again I state, Morrison has shown he actually does have the ability to write a story with real depth and meaning to it.

The book opens up with Wayne lying on the archivist’s floor, ripped cloths, lingering flames and all from a gruesome trip back from the past.  Darkseid seems to have just as much ingenuity and cleverness that the Dark Knight has as everything that has transpired is an apparent plot to destroy Earth.  Through as series of flashbacks and events, we are not only giving a story to end the destructive conflict that began with Final Crisis, but we are also shown why Bruce Wayne will always remain the greatest fictional hero the world has ever seen.

This entire series has been nothing more than a huge disappointment.  Why?  Because, like I said in the beginning, Morrison is unable of bringing stories to understandable conclusions.  I’ve never understood why people like his writing so much, and the Return of Bruce Wayne was showing that same typical pattern that I hate of Morrison’s writing.  But what a pleasant surprise it was to see Grant finally make sense of the cluster fuck!  I don’t want to give anything away but each individual issue, as boring and horribly written as they were, truly does tie into this Batman installment.  It never occurred to me that the first five issues were mere explorations of Bruce Wayne’s qualities that make him who he is; a warrior, a fighter of the super-natural evils, a deceptive thief, masked avenger, and the greatest detective of all time.  This culmination of everything that Bruce Wayne is leads to this final, climactic issue where Bruce, once again, defeats evil with his cunning and never failing intellect.  I’m sorry Chuck Norris, but you officially have nothing on Batman

To give away the details of how and why Darkseid planned this all out would be a disservice to you as a reader, but keep in mind it’s something I think you all will enjoy.  But I was more impressed with the way Morrison handled Bruce’s amnesia.  I never quite understood how, when Bruce had no idea who he was, was still capable of leaving clues for his friends to find him.  Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought even Bruce could have outwitted the bad guy at this degree.  But now a question still lingers in my head…Is Darkseid still alive in some capacity, and will he return?

You have to be completely invested in this issue in order to see where the questions raised in this series come to light.  Morrison has never been one to simply give you the answers, you have to look for them.  Unlike most of his work, the answers are ACTUALLY there and make sense!  But this is no easy read.  You might even have to go back for a second reading, maybe even a third in order to understand all the clues and how they tie into this final chapter of Bruce Wayne’s return.  But make no mistake, this issue does bring everything together.

The action never stops!  From page one to the end you will always be grasping the pages waiting for the next thing to occur.  Not only can we thank Morrison in this effort, but also artists Garbett and Perez.  While not being the greatest artists in the world, there is certainly a quality that can’t be denied as beautiful and story-aiding.  There is no laziness or “rushed” feelings here, it’s all very seemless and detailed, and that’s all I can ask of any comic book artist.

My Majestically Climactic Conclusion
Morrison really does outdo himself here, and I’m finally glad to see him write a story that is as captivating as the ads make it out to be.  I still think this miniseries is overall one of the worst that DC has put out, (with Brightest Day making that list as well) but #6 of 6 is a fantastic piece of work I’m glad to own. 

Now, how is Morrison going to keep this momentum up with Bruce Wayne being the “funder” of Batman?  Ugh, with every one good thing Morrison does, there are at least 50 bad things he does in return. 

Rating: 10 out of 10
Writing: 10
Art: 10
Themes: 10
+ 2 incentive points

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