The ground is getting laid for the upcoming War Games, as Gabrych, Woods and Smith bring the Tarantula and Orpheus into Detective 794 (July 2004).
L’Shea is also sticking around for a while. The Miracle Mom attends the funeral of her daughter, although no one but Batman (and Leslie) realize that.
Catalina Flores gets introduced,before her alternate identity does. The Tarantula had been around for a couple of years already, in Nightwing’s comic, driving him up a wall with her murderous vigilantism.
Orpheus also makes his first appearance in these pages. Introduced back in 2001, Orpheus has become Batman’s undercover operative, a supposed gang leader taking control of The Hill, in order to prevent any other gangs from doing so.
The Tarantula also finds that the business that has brought her to Gotham involves the Hill.
And Tarantula gets to encounter one of Batman’s more disgusting enemies, Kafka. Introduced a few years earlier in Gotham Knights, Kafka is a semi-sentient collection of cockroaches, who take on human form. Just, yuck.
Batman is none too keen on having the Tarantula in his city, knowing about her already from Nightwing. But she has no intentions of doing what Batman wants.
The story continues in the next issue.
AJ Lieberman, Jean-Jacques Dziakowski and Daniel Green conclude The Tailor in this issue.
It’s a big, burning finale, as the Tailor takes down the former members of his team, even finding the one who betrayed them and set him up.
The ending confuses me. Presumably the Tailor finally got the money from the heist, although the dequence of events on this page is not clear. The finale had been a let down to me before that, though, as we never got to see that much of the character functioning as designer/armorer. All in all, I prefer Gambi.