Posts tagged ‘KGBeast’

Detective 817 – One Year Later

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After the conclusion of Infinite Crisis, the entire DC line jumped ahead one year, with the skipped year’s events detailed in the weekly miniseries 52.  James Robinson scripts an 8-part storyline, Face the Face, covering Batman’s return to Gotham after a year’s absence, running through both this book and Batman, starting in Detective 817 (May 2006).  Leonard Kirk does the pencils, and Andy Clarke on inks.

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Harvey Dent, his sanity restored along with his face, back during Hush, has been appointed by Batman to tend to Gotham while he was gone.  The storyline opens as Harvey takes down the KGBeast.  It’s an intense and brutal fight, ending with the KGBeast falling from the rooftop.  But when the police find the Russian murderer, he has been killed, shot twice through the head.

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And Harvey seems a bit less than pleased when Batman shows up, to take his city back.  Although Batman has nothing but admiration and gratitude for Harvey’s efforts.

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Jim Gordon is back in the Commissioner’s job again.  The more things change, the more they stay the same.  This issue also introduces a new police officer, Jamie Harper.

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Poison Ivy does not make an actual appearance in this story, but her actions are certainly dramatic.  Enough to prompt Gordon to turn on the Bat-Signal.

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So this first chapter concludes as Gordon introduces Batman and Robin to Officer Harper.

Many of Batman’s villains appear in this storyline, but most have small roles.  It’s part of James Robinson’s style of writing, and I have to admit I do enjoy it, even though some get short-changed, like Ivy, who is taken down between this issue and the Batman story that follows it.

 

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Detective 732 – Batgirl vs Black Mask

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The mysterious new Batgirl is at the centre of this 2-part story, which concludes in Detective 732 (May 1999), by Greg Rucka and Frank Teran.  It’s part of No Man’s Land, running through the Bat-books this year.

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The art is particularly well suited to the tale, making it all look like a horror film.  Batgirl has less trouble taking on Black Mask and his gang than might be expected, but that’s fine, as there are other things equally important going on.

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After Batgirl turns Black Mask over to Batman, she tags along to find out what he does with his prisoners.

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We find a jail, now under the command of Lock-Up, with the KGBeast as his assistant.  They have less trouble keeping people in, than keeping people out, who are starving and want some security.

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Barbara Gordon observed the battle between Black Mask and Batgirl.  She has figured out who it is, and confronts Batman, furious that he turned over her secret identity to someone else.

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Jim Gordon and Sarah Essen are having a fight of their own, both frustrated with the situation in No Man’s Land, and their inability to effectively change things, venting on each other.

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Although, as Montoya awkwardly discovers, the fight between the Gordons has a happy ending.

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The story closes on an unusual trial, with an unseen judge, and the Tally Man serving as executioner.  A tease for an upcoming storyline.

Detective 682 – The KGBeast returns

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Detective 682 (Feb.95) features the second part of Troika, the story that sees Bruce Wayne back in the role of Batman, at last.  Troika began in the most recent issue of Batman, and concludes in the issue of Robin later the same month.  The old creative team is back at the helm – Dixon, Nolan and Hanna.

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Bruce Wayne is still not quite up to par.  The story picks up from the cliffhanger in Batman, in which he was thrown from a roof by Colonel Vega.  He misses his toss with a batarang, and Robin risks death to save him in a dangerous move.

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The KGBeast is working with the other Russians in an elaborate protection scam.

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While Vega meets with Lucius Fox and Bruce Wayne, demanding a percentage of Wayne Enterprises, the KGBeast blows up one of their chemical plants, to show they mean business.  It’s still, frankly, a big step down for the KGBeast, even though they will net millions.

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Mackenzie Bock has an entertaining, if not impressive, exchange with Bullock.  Street smarts vs college.  Bullock seems to come out on top, but he’s the one who winds up getting critically wounded by the KGBeast.

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Who, not surprisingly, has an agenda of his own, and it’s a nuclear one!

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