THE FINAL SHOWDOWN! Tim Drake comes face-to-voice with the villain who's been taunting Tim by using his metahuman powers to create ghostly animals. When this Moriarty's identity is revealed, all hell breaks loose in the marina. Can Tim keep things afloat, while simultaneously dealing with his relationship with Bernard?
- Author: Meghan Fitzmartin
- Artist: Riley Rossmo
- Colorist: Lee Loughridge
- Letterer: Tom Napolitano
- Publisher: DC Comics
- Genre: Action, LGBTQ, Superhero
- Published Date: 02/28/2023
With this issue being the story arc’s conclusion and having only been the second issue of the arc I’ve read, I’m still sifting through my feelings on this one. In my review of issue 5, I was happy with the writing but not thrilled with some of the artwork as I didn’t enjoy it due to some of the distracting styles for me. I still gave it a favorable score though because the artwork I didn’t enjoy was only prevalent in about 7 pages of the story. This issue, however, is different in that all of the pages were done by the same artist, and the second time around I still didn’t enjoy it, personally.
Again, to be fair, just because I didn’t enjoy it doesn’t necessitate it being bad. Art is, more or less, subjective so some people will enjoy it, but it does not for me personally. It still uses the same distracting styles where the lines are way too sharp for features that shouldn’t be, the hairstyle for Tim Drake was not my preference with the very flat and circular style, and overall the style just wasn’t for me. I can only score this from my point of view and not from the majority of people, so the score here is more indicative of my tastes rather than the skill level and capabilities of the artist, Rossmo.
Without reading issues 1-4, I thought the story by Fitzmartin was well done. The whole arc seems to play on the idea of Tim Drake finding who he is as a person and as a hero, and so it made sense to use a villain, Moriarity, that was Clayface-esque to have Tim deal with this conflict as a question of identity; it juxtaposes Tim’s external conflict with Moriarity with the internal one he faces. Although the final stance between Tim and Moriarity was probably a little rushed and shoehorned to resolve both the conflict between them and the conflict that Tim had within himself, I really enjoyed the story and how Tim came to peace with himself and with his relationship with Bernard.
The colors by Loughridge here I thought complimented the art very well. Again, even though I didn’t enjoy the art, I think the colors helped highlight the art style and gave it the sort of personality it needed to bring it to the reader’s enjoyment. There were a lot of duotone styles and use of flat colors with a variety of split complimentary colors as part of its style that is reminiscent of some animated shows that we’ve seen that can be a bit flat or distracting, but here with the art style, it seems to work really well.
The lettering work by Napolitano was done very well. There was a good balance of using heavier weights on the fonts without changing them completely to show the progression of the character’s intensity of their dialogue.
Although the weakest aspect of this issue for me was the art, overall this was a fine story. I think this really connects with teenagers and young adults really well with the story and art. It's not one I am rushing to get off the shelves right away but am definitely looking forward to reading when its available on DC Infinite.
- Writing - 8.5/10
- Storyline - 9/10
- Art - 5/10
- Color - 7.5/10
- Cover Art - 7.5/10
- Overall - 7.5/10
This review was originally written and published for Comic Watch on February 28th, 2023.