Posts tagged ‘Harvey Bullock’

Detective 827 – The Ventriloquist returns?


Dini, Faucher and Kramer have a lot of fun with the reader in Detective 827 (March 2007).


The story begins as Batman sees Catwoman fall into the street.  It turns out to just be a mannequin,and a trap, apparently set by Scarface.  Going to the cemetery, Batman and the police discover that Arnold Wesker’s grave has been dug up, and the coffin is empty. Bullock relates how many cops, and criminals, suspect there is more to Scarface than just a wooden doll.


Scarface calls a meeting of the Ventriloquist’s old gang, and other hoods.  Batman, in disguise, is present.  Wesker does appear, but his corpse is just used as another dummy, as the new Ventriloquist introduces herself.


Scarface suspects one of the people at the meeting is probably Batman.  As the scene starts to get violent, Batman goes into action, and manages to escape.  The new Ventriloquist likely does not succeed in hiring any of the people Scarface just shot, or shot at.


Batman, and the reader, do get a glimpse of the Ventriloquist’s scarred face, her bond with Scarface, and the assurance that there is more to her story than we know.


And the relationship between the Ventriloquist and Scarface has changed as well. Yuck.

But I’m glad they brought Scarface back.

Detective 787 – Batman vs the Jabberwock, and the Dog Catcher doesn’t drink the coffee


Detective 787 (Dec. 03) has two great stories and a wonderful cover as well.


Brian K Vaughn, Rick Burchett and John Lowe are the creative team on the lead story.  Harvey Bullock is back on the force, and is in charge of the investigation prompted by a mysterious clue sent to the force – why is a raven like a writing desk?  The police suspect the Riddler or Cluemaster, but Batman recognizes it as the answerless riddle from Alice in Wonderland, spoken by the Mad Hatter.


And indeed, Jervis Tetch is the villain in this issue, having broken out of Arkham, he has brought his psychiatrist with him, against his will, and also kidnapped Kirk Langstrom.  Under his control, the Hatter has Langstrom create a serum that he injects his psychiatrist with.


It turns the man into the Jabberwock, looking much like the Tenniel illustration from Through the Looking Glass.


Batman first frees Kirk Langstrom, who is relieved to discover that he did not become Man-Bat during his time with the Hatter, and then battles the Jabberwock, as the Hatter recites lines from the poem Jabberwocky.


Batman wins by injecting the beast with the antidote Langstrom creates.  To his surprise, the psychiatrist is actually understanding of the situation, and sees that the Hatter did this in a twisted attempt to help the doctor better understand his patients.  Batman is left with high admiration for the man.


Spears and G take the Dog Catcher to a darker place with this chapter.


With no response from the Joker, and time running out for the dog, the Catcher attempts to encourage people to adopt him, but without any luck.


As the work day ends, he reluctantly puts the dog to sleep.  He does not notice he co-worker die horrifically from drinking the coffee left sitting out.


But he can’t possible miss the Joker’s big entrance.

The story concludes next issue.

Detective 762 – Batman gives Sasha a push, and Slam Bradley ends


Sasha Bordeaux becomes a costumed crime-fighter in Detective 762 (Nov. 01), whether she wants to or not, in a story by Greg Rucka, Rick Burchett, Dan Davis and Rodney Ramos.


As the Internal Affairs investigator takes Renee Montoya around, showing her the evidence and the witnesses, Bruce continues to play the fool, even with Vesper Fairchild.


But he is all business when it comes to Sasha.  She does not want to wear a costume and mask, but he insists.  It would detract from his persona to have her dressed normally, and add to the risk of exposure.  She is also tentative about his retracting line, but he gives her no choice, shoving her off the roof.  Hang on or die.


The training night is interrupted when Batman spots some actual criminals.  He orders Sasha to stay behind.  And like every single other person Batman has trained, she disobeys and dives into the action.


Having seen all the evidence, Renee is brought back to the station.  She confronts Harvey Bullock, who admits the murder.  The guy got away with shooting Gordon, and Harvey couldn’t have that.  He resigns from the force.


Slam Bradley meets with Catwoman in the last issue of his series, by Brubaker and Cooke.  She answers his questions and fills in the gaps, and generally charms Slam.  Enough that he decides to say he couldn’t find anything.


The mayor, the mob and the cops are all upset to hear that Slam is leaving the case without a solution, and express their discontent. But he keeps his mouth shut.

And for this, gets a supporting role in the new Catwoman series, launching the following month.



Detective 758 – the dangers of too much coffee, and Oracle has dinner


Martinborough and Mitchell rejoin Rucka as a two-part adventure begins, bringing back an old villain with a new twist, in Detective 758 (July 2001).


Sasha Bordeaux spends the night tailing Batman, trying to figure out how she can possibly function as his bodyguard.  Batman stops a couple of masked hold-up men, who turn out to be Gotham police.  They claim to remember nothing about the thefts, or even being caught by Batman.


Sasha can barely get up, and yet Bruce is wide awake, to her consternation.  The day does not improve as she is forced to be his caddy as he golfs with another multi-millionaire, subtly encouraging him to build in Gotham.


The police are puzzled, and cannot figure out if the officers who pulled the crime are just lying, or if something more is going on.  Crispus Allen and Renee Montoya discuss the case in while getting coffee from the nearby vendor, the ever-friendly Fez, who reminds them to bring back a cup for Bullock.


As evening falls, Bruce tells Sasha to go to bed for the evening, in a way that makes clear he was aware of the previous night’s activities.  He knows she knows, and she knows it.


And Fez disrobes, revealing himself to be the Mad Hatter.  He places a phone call to Renee and Allen, which activates them as his pawns.


Akins, the new Commissioner since Gordon’s retirement, uses the Bat-Signal for the first time.  He has discovered a pattern of thefts by police, and is not sure if this is widespread corruption, or someone manipulating things.  Sasha goes home, but passes Renee and Crispus as they don masks, and follows them.

The story continues next issue.


Oracle has dinner with Renee Montoya, as they discuss Commissioner Akins in this one-shot tale, by Ed Brubaker and Steven Lieber.


Montoya relates a story Akins told her, of his early days, and a neighbourhood vigilante, the Watchdog, who gained the trust of the community, to the detriment of the police.  A series of child kidnappings went unreported until the fourth case, simply because everyone relied on the Watchdog.


And the Watchdog wound up dying, killing the kidnappers, but the child was not there, nor was anyone left alive who could tell them where she was.


Which all circles back to why Akins does not want the police, or the community, to rely on Batman.

It’s a good tale, but there is one problem to it.  It’s Akins use the Bat-Signal which prompts this discussion, and we see it in the distance.  But it’s this same use that happens in the first story, and Renee is with Crispus Allen, under the Mad Hatter’s control, not having dinner with Barbara Gordon!

I credit this as an Oracle story, simply because she is the narrator.  But really, it stars Commissioner Akins.



Detective 754 – The Interrogation Room, and Leelee finds her husband


Detective 754 (March 2001) is the sixth chapter in Officer Down, a storyline running through the Batman books this month, in which Commissioner Gordon gets shot, and the regular creative teams get shunted around.


Nunzio Defilipis scripts, with Michael Collins on pencils, and Jesse Delperdang and Steven Bird on inks, as Crispus Allen and Renee Montoya try to extract a confession from the man they are certain is guilty of shooting Gordon.  He was a policeman in Chicago years ago, and Gordon fired him for corruption.


The evidence they have is not enough for a conviction, but even with Renee doing all she can as bad cop, the guy never loses his cool.


Barbara Gordon is sitting vigil with her father, while Batman watches from an adjacent roof.  Harvey Bullock comes by, with a picture of the man, but Gordon did not see his shooter, and cannot identify him.


Allen nearly gets the confession they want, after threatening the man with Batman, who he fears will kill him.  He actually admits the crime, but modifies his sentence to wheedle out of it.


They release him, and Batman corners him. But when he finds out that Batman does not intend to kill him, his composure returns, and goes free.

The story continues in the next issue of Gotham Knights.


Gorfinkel, Johnson and Panosian leave the Jacobian under the sea, as Nereus heads above the waves to attack a city.  Nereus remembers the Jacobian, but it’s not mutual.  The Jacobian recalls none of his abilities, yet retains some, as he and Leelee are able to breathe and talk underwater.


Leelee is finally able to convince the Jacobian that he is her husband. It’s been pretty obvious for a while now, but he’s suffered numerous memory wipes, and wouldn’t have believed her had she said it at the start.


The Jacobian makes a deal with the Mahmetchik to restore enough of his powers that he can stop Nereus, which they do.

Detective 749 – Lucius gives a good report,and the Jacobian looks at a map


Detective 749 (Oct.00) has a really great cover, even if it doesn’t pertain to the Rucka/Hester/Mitchell story about a bomber.


Commissioner Gordon does appear, along with Bullock, as they find the body at the site of the latest bombing, and swallow the bait, assuming him to be the bomber.


Gordon goes to check on the man’s background.  He had been an employee of Wayne Enterprises before No Man’s Land, and Lucius Fox explains that he was a software engineer, a model employee and in no way a likely mad bomber.


Batman tracks the bomber he saw at the rally, and eventually puts the pieces together.  he and Gordon wiretap the contractors, who were raking in insurance money from their bombed sites.  They wait long enough to hear them dis the OGs, and then pounce.

A decent little tale.  I enjoyed how it expanded on Gotham’s new peculiar divide in its citizenry.


The Jacobian gets some answers in this installment, by Gorfinkel, Jeff Johnson and Dan Panosian.


He continues to follow his hunches, and they continue to be correct, as Leelee is nowhere near as injured as she was pretending to be.  He gets some answers out of her about the ninjas – the Mametchik.


Looking at a map, the Jacobian discovers that his travels and those of the ninjas are the same…

Detective 742 – TEC 742


Greg Rucka, Shawn Martinborough and Steve Mitchell become the new creative team with Detective 742 (March 2000), as the book regains it’s identity.  In fact, under Rucka, the detectives of Gotham would rise to new prominence.


This issue is all about Commissioner Gordon, returning to work, but still deep in mourning.  Batman follows him, observing, for much of the story, which deals with a murdered police officer.


Harvey Bullock gets promoted, becoming a lieutenant, and throughout Rucka’s run the actual positions of the various police would become more defined.


The murdered officer leaves behind a dying clue, TEC 472, written on his hand.  For reasons I have never really understood, the abbreviation for Detective Comics has always been “tec.”  Why it is not “Det,” when Adventure is “Adv” I have no idea, but it isn’t, it’s “tec.” So TEC 472 is not only a clue, but also the way the comic would be indexed, by geeks like me.


Mackenzie Bock, who is a captain on the force, gets a bit more status under Rucka, appropriate to his position.


And the new boy, Crispus Allen, becomes Renee Montoya’s new partner.  Though considered prissy by the other cops, he shows his stuff in the interrogation room, getting the location of the killer.


It’s Gordon’s show all the way, though Batman does participate in the bug bust.  Gordon chases down, and apprehends the murderer, without even firing a shot.

He is not painted as a super-human.  The heroic is simply how he keeps going on.

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