“Superheavy: pt. 10” (48 pages)
Writer: Scott Snyder
Pencils: Greg Capullo (pp. 1-40)
Inks: Danny Miki (pp. 1-40)
Colors: FCO Plascencia (pp. 1-40)
Epilogue Art: Yanick Paquette (pp. 41-48)
Epilogue Colors: Nathan Fairbairn (pp. 41-48)
Letters by: Steve Wands
Covers by: Capullo, Miki & Plascencia; Chris Daughtry, Jim Lee & Alex Sinclair; Dave Johnson & Dave McCaig
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $5.99
The massive conclusion to the multi-part saga pumps up the volume and the intensity in this penultimate issue by one of the longest-running creative teams in current comic book history. Bombs! Bats!! Bloom!!!
After last issue’s extremely nail-biting delivery, Bruce has regained all his memories – the most important being his acknowledgement of his true persona. Going out for a night of the town requires the appropriate outfit. HHUUMM, what to wear?
Current Batman Jim Gordon is not faring well. His battle with Mr. Bloom was not in his favour. Julia Pennyworth tries to convince him to seek medical attention since he has less than sixty minutes to remain alive. Julia makes an impassioned plea for him to listen since she has already lost one Batman in her line of duty.
What an unexpected development!! The GCPD are holding the line in several Bat-Chappies :0 It seems like Geri Powers went full throttle in manufacturing these blue steel protectors. Maggie Sawyer leads the assault on Mr. Bloom. The man-monster is unstoppable. He hacks into the control systems having the officers turn on the public, slaughtering innocents.
The Joker infestation was pretty gruesome. The Bloom infection ups it all by the power of ten. Luscious Precious, brother of Precious Precious, appears on the rooftops with some cronies. He wants some payback for Gordon taking out his brother. All seems bleak until the Dark Knight smashes the guy’s face into the Bat-Signal. He stands poised for battle. The ultimate ice-breaker: he cheekily asks Jim who appointed him as his successor.
It makes perfect sense to have the one true Batman sport new duds. Glory days are here again!!
Alfred asks his master if he is relishing in the occasion. The Dark Knight doesn’t deny it. Bat-Fans rejoice: the Dionesium repaired every single thing about him – mind, body, soul. The plethora of scars is non-existent, but that is a temporary situation. PSHAW. This revived modern myth embodies Daft Punk’s criteria: bigger, faster, better, stronger!! Alfie gleefully welcomes back his beloved Bruce/Batman.
Jim is reunited with his greatest ally. Awkwardness isn’t allowed since Batman cuts off his apology. Gotham needed safeguarding and Jim stepped up to the game. The two must now devise the most effective way to take out the ever-growing Bloom. Well, it’s a solo mission since Bats cuffs Jim to the chopper.
Duke Thomas surprises Daryl Gutierrez by boarding the Bat-Blimp. The teen is disheartened. He found his parents but they are permanently affected by the Joker Venom. Daryl tries to console the boy. Duke admits wanting to throw in the towel, discard evidence against Bloom, and hang up his Robin fatigues. However, his investigation led to two names: his own and that of Daryl’s. Those stood out clear as day as underlings of the Penguin who wanted to abscond Bloom’s tech. Daryl feigns shock until Duke demands answers. Daryl swats aside the persistent prodigy in a strength-augmented fit of rage.
Mr. Bloom is basking in his triumph. There’s a new dawn black hole sun hovering over Gotham and it continues to expand. His reflection is cut short by a batarang. He is flattered that he gets to face a formidable opponent: the one true defender of the city. After complimenting him on the threads, he delivers a swift kick to the flowery face.
Batman is about to insert a disruptor in Bloom’s back when several Bat-Chappies emerge. Bloom still has dominion over them. To rattle his foe, he has five of them change appearance, showing the miens of his rogues’ gallery.
Jim has commandeered the chopper. He is heading towards the vortex. Julia insists he seek medical care. Jim won’t back down. She wishes him the best of luck. Bloom makes a hasty retreat. Bombs take care of two clunky distractions. The ultimate one is a mecha-sized Joker-bot. That’s bold!!
Mr. Bloom’s secret identity is revealed. He was Daryl Gutierrez!! The snake in the grass details his origin. Notice the previous sentence: the verb was. Daryl had heroic aspirations, especially after Zero Year. His experiment failed miserably. He tried again after Endgame. More setbacks. Providence provided him with a willing test subject: an anonymous individual who took on the mantle. Since then, Daryl has desperately tried to regain his life’s work. Duke breaks free of Daryl’s bio-matter grip, pins his Robin badge on his shoulder, and gives him a swift kick across the neck.
Gotham is being ripped apart. Geri Powers feels powerless [natch!] She wants to act. Jim communicates with her. He heads back to the ‘rookie suit’ to foil the flowery fiend’s plans. Bloom is omnipresent. It’s near impossible to proceed since he is tapped into all power sources. Bloom spews some metaphors about his vision for GC when Batman makes his second timely save. He takes on Bloom’s size having seized one of the mechas and re-colouring it.
Batman orders Jim to come up with a solution for the strange star. Bloom destroyed the antenna but there has to be an alternative. Bloom tries to convince Batman to see his side of things. Not gonna happen. Bloom’s omnipotence is boundless!
He has the upper hand until Duke intervenes and allows Bats to destroy the transmitter. That was pointless since enough citizens are fueled by Bloom’s seeds. He can simply siphon their energy. Bloom is confident his plan will bring about rebirth for the metropolis. He extends one of his claws to eliminate Duke. Young Mr. Thomas turns on the blimp’s magnetic cycle and takes the gaunt goon for a ride.
Jim re-acquaints himself with the rookie. He knows this is the last hoorah. He has the remedy at hand: Batmanium!! He consults Geri for some scientific specs and confirmation.
Duke puts on a flight suit to parachute out of the burning dirigible. The ersatz’s Robin’s wings are clipped before he makes it to ground level. Luckily, the Dark Knight swoops in to prevent him from going splat.
Jim’s efforts are proving fruitful. Power levels are decreasing. The downside is that his life is ebbing. On the comm link, Jim tells Geri that she made the right decision in firing him.
His inheritance of the Batman name was a massive error in judgment. While he is opining, Bloom is sucked into his own creation.
Jim retrieves the super-conductive Batmanium in the densely concentrated batarang. He delivers an excellent treatise on the nature, significance, and impact of Gotham City’s one-and-only upstanding citizen. Bloom has met his doom!!
Jimbo gets to live another day. He recalls his awe in espying the city upon his arrival many moons ago. Some time has passed since the fauxhawk is encompassed by growing follicles which also cover his countenance. The ‘stache is here to stay!! Julia jests about the power of the facial front. Jim assumes that Batman came in the nick of time. Julia corrects him: it was Geri. He expresses his gratitude and resigns.
Geri states that she has scrapped the entire Batman program. She will use those funds for the city’s important organizations. Heroes come in all forms, but she realizes that super-heroics are only for a select few. Geri informs him that he has regained his position as Commissioner. Jim is aghast and mentions Maggie. Harvey barges in and tells his pal that she prefers Major Crimes. He brandishes the official badge. Jim grabs it and asks for alone time.
Jim steps out to the fire escape. Batman comes out of the shadows. The Dark Knight tells him that there is literally no rest for the wicked. They cannot stand on their laurels. Jim finally gets a chance to deliver an apology. He feels responsible for Bloom’s ascension and points out his inadequacy. Batman brushes off the self-criticism. The two men operate on two completely different planes of reality. Jim thwarted his major nemesis. That is all that matters.
Duke sits by his parents. He cries over their unjust fate. Bruce Wayne approaches him with an alluring offer.
Gordon commiserates a bit more with Bats. I’m a bit confused here. Batman repeats Jim’s words verbatim about the awesome impression Gotham leaves on its visitors and residents. Either way, there is assurance and indubitable affirmation that Batman is back in business!!
Julie Madison returns to the group home. Amid the wreckage, she spots the giant plastic T-Rex. That triggers a memory of Batman. She crouches down along a brick wall and puts her hand over Bruce Wayne’s name.
WWWWWOOOOOOEEEEEE!!! Mssrs. Snyder and Capullo never faltered. They have capped their outstanding opus. Despite one more issue, this chapter was the culmination of ten months’ worth of teasing. It’s no disservice that Jim Gordon got to walk many miles in his old friend’s shoes. He was a suitable substitute despite his flaws. No one individual is immune to screwing up. Without getting too much into it, Jim already had the heroic qualities. His tenure as Gotham’s number one do-gooder gave him a bit more pull. Nevertheless, it is his position as an officer of the law that allows him to make the difference. The separation of ‘class’ is not meant to be divisive. It is to emphasize the varying degrees of evil tackled by those willing to combat them.
Change is necessary. Progress is natural. Status quo equals stagnancy. There are times when it is necessary to take a few steps back, to retreat from the spotlight, to pause and contemplate. Scott Snyder espouses such passion for all the characters. He has single-handedly revitalized the Batman mythos in the last half-decade. Every member of the expansive cast has a significant role. He was snarky and smarmy teasing us with Bruce Wayne’s whereabouts immediately after “Endgame”. It is as if the amnesiac Bruce was stealing Gordon’s first mission as the new Batman. Not so! Bruce needed time to heal in every single way. He is now back in black, and grey.
Mr. Snyder clarified in several interviews regarding this arc that he wanted the fictional folk of Gotham to see what it was like to not have then have Batman, to experience firsthand the symbiotic necessity of his presence. The Dark Knight cannot put out every little fire, nor should he. His status has been elevated: gone is the grim and gritty urban legend that elicits fear in the cowardly and superstitious lot. He is a man of the people. He is in the inspiration to strive for betterment. He is the overseer, the mentor to all. He was subject to his losses, like anyone else. The bottom line was that he rose to the adversity time and again. Mr. Snyder has stated that Batman will now be lighter: in tone as well as being more visible and interactive. No longer will he operate under the cover of darkness.
Greg Capullo is a beast!! The man stretched his über talents into this double-sized entry. Forty pages of grandiose artistry is a monumental accomplishment!! He literally tackled all things great and small. The cake topper is the Cowled Crusader standing atop the Bat-signal bathed in an amber and orange glow while the others observe a scary silhouette. Bloom’s thinness continued to unsettle me. Daryl going off the deep end also gave me shivers. Mr. Capullo showed off his might and gave each of us well-deserved satisfaction with Batman booting Bloom in his new costume as well as armour. He brought the repurposed Bruce to the forefront as he leaps from the Bat-signal. His hand in designing the upgraded look has him beaming with pride [pun intended!]
Danny Miki has an unwavering hand. He has never been amiss with anything. One could spend hours poring over each panel, shifting one’s eyes to the more unnoticable after gushing over the visually apparent.
FCO Plascencia is quite the colourful fellow. Okay, that was cheesy. There isn’t one tone, shade, nor hue that escapes him!! I noticed how the heroes’ little victories were awash in clarity while Bloom’s counterattacks darkened things.
Yanick Paqutte makes a repeat visit after illustrating the previous issue. His linework has become more elegant. The characters are halycon and ebullient!! The former commish is understandably morose while his stalwart supporter dismisses his concerns. The major plume in Mr. Paquette’s chapeau is having the Batman swing over the city in all his splendor and glory.
Nathan Fairbairn is Canadian?!? Shame on me :$ I was oblivious to this. He is Mr. Paquette’s go-to guy and immediately comes back to the fold as well. I enjoy the sepia tones as the sun sets once again, with Gotham having endured another visceral invasion. We are treated to a more open and comfortable Dark Knight since the cowl does not completely encompass him. Julia, Geri, and Harvey are so fresh-faced. It’s a reflection of the promise of a new day.
Some minor points. Maybe you can provide feedback and/or answers:
- Bruce only appears for one full panel.
- Fake-out re: Bloom’s origin.
- Gojira!! or is it Batzilla?
- I don’t pretend to understand the science behind Bloom’s experiments.
The titanic tag team of Snyder & Capullo are as worthy of the cpae and cowl as Mr. Wayne. For all the thrills, chills, and spills, I give this book 9 out of 10 on the periodic table of elements.
Forever and always, I acknowledge my main comic book store for the purchase.
Check out these cool covers. Try your luck 😉