Posts tagged ‘Whisper A’Daire’

Detective 750 – Batman cures Whisper A’Daire, and the Jacobian hears about the Moment


I took a ridiculous amount of screen shots for Detective 750 (Nov. 00), but I do like both stories in it.


Greg Rucka, Shawn Martinborough and Steve Mitchell are the team as Whisper A’Daire returns, catching up with the now one-eyed Abbot.  She gives him the serum to restore his powers, so Ra’s Al Ghul can make use of him again.


Batman has begin actively searching for Ra’s, and though he claims he is just catching up on his hunt for Whisper, Oracle knows this has to do with events from JLA – the Tower of Bable storyline, in which Talia stole Batman’s plans to use against the other members of the team, and Ra’s executed the plans, almost killing the other Leaguers.  Batman was expelled from the League shortly before the events in this story.


Ra’s has been searching for Talia, who split from him towards the end of Tower of Babel.  Whisper has found her, and Ra’s demands she be brought to him.


Talia is in Gotham, so it’s no surprise that Batman finds her as well, and there’s a rematch for Batman and Abbot.  Whisper shoots Talia before Batman takes her down, and Abbot flees with Al Ghul’s daughter. tec_750_006

And Ra’s is all angry at Talia, for betraying and deserting him, yet again.


Batman holds Whisper, and gets information by “torturing” her, pouring out all her serum. Love this page, so well done.


Batman also gives her the antidote, freeing her of her addiction, and removing her cobra tongue.


Silly Batman.  Whisper was not a victim of Ra’s, but a willing follower, and she returned to him, and is back on the cobra juice.  Everyone is gathered for Ra’s latest big evil destructive plot.  He orders Batman killed, but Talia begs to be allowed to plead with him.


Which, as always, leads to his escape. What makes me fascinated with this story is that Ra’s expects it, watches it.  He even gives up before Batman returns to attack, knowing that it is over, as it always is.  There is an odd fatalism to it. tec_750_011

There is an extra-length Jacobian story in this issue, by Gorfinkel, Johnson and Panosian.


The Jacobian hears about a hero from the past, the Moment, and the woman he tried to train as a sidekick.  He was about getting out of the moment, or into the moment.  Being of the moment and what it can free you to do.  Gorfinkel writes it all waaaay better than I do.


And this chapter is really fun, with the art altering to convey the different takes on reality that the Moment and the sidekick-turned-villainess can create.


And all the while reading it, one cannot help but feel there is a connection between these two characters, and the Jacobian and Leelee – which is confirmed by the art towards the end.  Gotta love parallel structure.

Detective 746 – Whisper A’Daire falls, and the Jacobian begins


Detective Comics gains a back-up series, after over a decade without one, in issue 746 (July 2000).


Rucka, Martinborough, Watkiss and Mitchell being this first Whisper A’Daire storyline to a close in this issue.  With Tzu dependent on her, Whisper becomes openly dismissive of the gangsters she has cultivated.  Never good to piss off those who your rise depended on.


Abbot confesses his failure to kill Batman, and for that gets punished with some cobra spit. That takes him pretty much out of the action, although he will return a few issues down the way, with only one good eye.


When Batman busts up Whisper’s attempt to get the Galante family hooked on her serum, she makes Tzu transform and fly her to safety.

Or at least, that’s the plan.  But Tzu has far more respect and regard for Batman, even though he is an enemy, and he lets Whisper drop, and turns himself in.  Whisper’s body is not found, just another shed skin, and she will be back in a few months.


This issue also sees the launch of an unusual detective strip, The Jacobian, by Jordan Gorfinkel, Jeff Johnson and Aaron Sowd.  We get little information about the hero in this first chapter, which begins mid-stream, as he races to find a kidnapped baby.


A cloaked sniper is causing him problems,  but turns out to be completely unrelated to the kidnapping case.  This is the tease for the bigger storyline.


The Jacobian relies on hunches, putting himself in “the moment,” and trusting that his actions will be right. In this case, he has to pick the correct infant out of a dozen or so, all gathered by his client’s bitter ex-wife, to show how the man neglects his kids.  Extreme parenting, but the Jacobian’s hunch proves correct.




Detective 745 – a creepy discovery in the bathtub


Greg Rucka, Shawn Martinborough, John Watkiss and Steve Mitchell work on Detective 745 (June 2000), which sees Whisper’s plans become clearer.


Bruce Wayne runs into Whisper A’Daire with the new mayor.  Having spotted a scale the last time he saw her, he notices the ones on the back of her neck, and takes on for analysis.  Batman will later discover that these are cobra scales. And even stranger, that Whisper is over 80 years old.


But that’s the kicker.  Whisper is out to hook Gotham’s mighty on an immortality serum, an addictive one, which will make those who take it her slaves.


Batman breaks into her apartment, and discovers a shed skin in the bathtub.


Meanwhile, Whisper is meeting with Tzu.  She promises him the immortality serum, but neglects to mention the transformation it will cause.

Detective 744 – Whisper A’Daire spits


A gang war erupts in Detective 744 (May 2000), by Rucka, Martinborough and Mitchell.


While Crown is looking for revenge for the bombing of the youth centre, Tzu’s wife gets murdered, and he blames rival gangs as well.


Whisper A’Daire presents herself to Tzu, offering to help against the other gangs.  This seems a bit less absurd after she sticks out a forked tongue and spits acid into the face of one of his men.


Batman meets with Commissioner Gordon, as well as Mackenzie Bock, getting his first taste of the rooftop Bat-Signal meetings.  All three men agree that the war is being provoked by a third party.  Batman does suspect Ra’s Al Ghul, but dismisses him as it not being his style.


Abbot rounds up members of the Escobedo family, being blamed for the murders of Tzu’s wife, which Abbot himself committed.  He kills them, as a show of “good faith” to the Tzu family, on behalf of him and Whisper.


Whisper confirms most of Batman’s suspicions, content in the cards she is holding, as Batman cannot see the endgame she is playing towards.



Detective 743 – Whisper A’Daire and Abbot debut


Ra’s Al Ghul sends two new agents to Gotham in Detective 743 (April 2000), Whisper A’Daire and Abbot, who will both play major roles for a while, as Rucka, Martinborough and Mitchell launch a complex storyline.


Whisper has been Ra’s acolyte, while it appears Abbot has been working for him longer.  With unspecified plans, and an even more mysterious potion they need to take, Ra’s Al Ghul sends Whisper and Abbot to Gotham to do his bidding.


Batman and the police have been extremely busy, as a variety of gangs are moving in to the newly opened Gotham, despite the best efforts to hold them back.


Rucks cleverly uses a briefing by Bock to introduce the heads of the five families that will be significant in this storyline: the Crowns, the Tzus, the Edcobedos, the Kosovs, and the Galantes.


Whisper runs into Bruce Wayne at a society function, as he endows a new library.  He notices as she works the room, meeting all the influential people. Barbara Gordon is also there, and grew suspicious of the woman as well.


Batman goes to investigate the youth centre built by Crown, and ponders on the accusation thrown at Bruce Wayne earlier, that building the library is not compensation for leaving Gotham.  But he is not so lost in thought that he does not notice Abbot (although he does not know who is at this point), who blows up the centre.

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