Posts tagged ‘Lock-Up’

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 699 – Lock-Up opens the cells

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Dixon, Nolan and Hanna conclude the introduction of Lock-Up in Detective 699 (Late July 1996).

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Lock-Up brings Tim Drake back to his prison.  Tim is still in contact with Nightwing, and informs him that he believes they are on, or near, water.  But then Lock-Up tosses him into the delousing tank, and his mike shorts out.

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With hoods about to shoot him, Matches Malone (Batman in his underworld identity) fights back in close quarters, causing a car accident, spectacularly illustrated by Nolan and Hanna.  Batman manages to crawl out and get away.

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Lock-Up takes Tim’s fingerprints, to determine who he is.  Some quick thinking, and hacking, by Oracle provides him with a fake identity and rap sheet, so Lock-Up has no idea who his new prisoner really is.

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Nightwing keeps searching, eventually finding the prison.  He is interested in freeing Tim and getting away, to return with Batman later.  But Lock-Up opens the cells, and starts flooding the prison.  Nightwing has to deal with Two-Face and Killer Moth, both as interested in vengeance as escape.  Two-Face has already figured out that Tim must be Robin, simply because of Nightwing’s interest in him.

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Batman shows up just in time, and the flooded villains, Lock-Up included, are taken away.

Lock-Up would return, and for a while actually become a sort of ally.

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One other significant thing does happen in the issue.  Armand Krol, hanging on to the bitter end of his term, collapses and dies.  He had survived the Clench, but it seems to have returned.

This is a set-up for next issue, and the Legacy storyline.

Detective 698 – Lock-Up has a key

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Dixon, Nolan and Hanna continue the introduction of Lock-Up in Detective 698 (Early July 1996).

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Two-Face, Killer Moth and Veezey are all concerned when Lock-Up does not return.  They are not his only prisoners, but the only ones of note.  Killer Moth’s inhuman new appearance is a result of his deal with Neron in Underworld Unleashed.

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The police refuse to make the deal and release him, but this is not of much concern to Lock-Up.  He swallowed a handcuff key, which he brings up.  He takes out the guards, steals a uniform and walks right out the front door.

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The heroes decide to split up, each keeping watch on one of the three men they feel most likely to be Lock-Up’s next target.  Batman goes into his Matches Malone disguise, but things do not work out well for him.  Nightwing gets busy, when he discovers his subject has kidnapped a child.

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Tim turns out to have the right target, but winds up getting captured by Lock-Up himself.

The story concludes next issue.

Detective 697 – Lock-Up

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The mystery man grabbing the villains comes to the forefront in this three-part story by Dixon, Nolan and Hanna, beginning in Detective 697 (June 1996).

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Two-Face is busted out during a prison transfer.  Batman, Robin and Nightwing all gather when Gordon turns on the Bat-Signal (for the first time since regaining his position).  They worry what he might be up to, but their concerns are misplaced.  Harvey Dent is in the hands of Lock-Up, a dominatrix-garbed warden of his own personal prison.  He was the one who grabbed Veezey while Batman was dealing with Poison Ivy, and also grabbed Killer Moth, in the pages of Robin.

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When nothing happens with Harvey, the heroes compare notes on other villains that have gone missing.  But the police are more concerned with the spreading influence of Black Mask, and one of his men turns informer.

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Batman, Robin and Nightwing join the police assault on one of Black Mask’s hideouts.  The leader himself is not around, but there are plenty masked gang members to deal with.

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As it turns out, Lock-Up also had Black Mask on his list, and it turns out to be his misfortune to come across the police.  Montoya takes the big guy down!

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I really like the unusual way the issue ended.  Lock-Up is in police custody, his identity as Lyle Bolton, a wanna-be cop refused because he was considered too violent and disturbed (for Gotham!)  The tables are neatly turned when he points out that no one else knows the location of his secret prison, and those incarcerated will starve to death unless he is freed.

The story continues next issue.

 

Detective 694 – Poison Ivy out for vengeance

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Dixon, Johnson and Hodgkins conclude their Poison Ivy two-parter in Detective 694 (Feb. 96).

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Harold proves his worth yet again, as the Batmobile survives the plunge into the harbour with its impressive airbags.  Chitty Chitty Bang Bang would be impressed.

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Sarah Essen discovers that, as a parting gift from Mayor Krol, she has been ousted as Commissioner, and replaced with an incompetent.  The man barely has time to get behind his desk before Kitch and Bullock are bringing him crises.

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Essen heads straight for mayor-to-be Marion Grange, and makes a deal with her, that will see Jim Gordon returned to the Commisoner’s job.

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Poison Ivy, Mr. Veezey, Batman and Robin all head for the largest park not yet attacked, the obvious next target.  Poison Ivy uses her pheremones on the man, putting him under her spell quickly. He’s lucky Batman shows up so fast, Ivy was ready to kill.

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While Batman fends off Ivy’s advances, the man himself is grabbed my a mysterious costumed figure.  This person had appeared the previous month in Robin, also carting away a villain.  Who is he? Wait and find out.  Or look at my tags on this story.

Ivy gets captured, but is released (though not in this book) and used as an agent by Batman in Contagion, which starts the following month.

 

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