Batman Eternal #14 Review

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Penguin wants to be King of the Jungle, Falcone's new empire crumbles, Jimbo's feeling quite humble, and Dr. Crane takes a slight tumble. In this fourteenth installment of DC's Batman weekly, Jason Bard seems to wrap up the whole gang war pretty handily. But will Batman's relationship with the "new Gordon" end before it begins? And what is Joker's Daughter up to in Arkham? And how many more pages is DC going to waste previewing other comics I'm only tangentially interested in at best? None of this and less is answered in this issue!

 

Bard makes his next moves in his plan to stop the gang war, and wow, are they big ones. First, he goes to the mayor with a taped conversation between Forbes and Falcone that implicates them both. He threatens to put Hady's head on the chopping block next if he doesn't cough up Falcone's whereabouts and leaves like a boss, implying he's still going to investigate the mayor. Hady says that Bard is like Gordon, but as we see later in the ish, Batman has his doubts. The second move he makes? He tips Penguin off to his location.
 

LIKE A BOSS.

 

Penguin is not happy about being on the run, and is driven to murderous rage when forced to shack up in a dime motel. He rants about Falcone's predecessor, Rex Calabrese, "The Lion", who, while supposedly dead, I'm convinced is this guy "Leo" that is in prison with Jim Gordon. Falcone took Calabrese's throne and Penguin kicked him off it for himself. Penguin insists that this is his time now, and he's not letting Falcone take Gotham back from him. So he personally confronts Falcone in his hidey-hole, out of personal honor and anger. Unfortunately for the villain patterned after my favorite animal, Bard and Vicki Vale come in, screwing over both kingpins, and they both get taken in.
 

I welcome our tuxeoed superiors.

 

Batman discovers that Bard tipped Penguin off, which while normally wouldn't be a problem, means that the deaths of those guards Cobblepot killed could have been prevented. Yikes, apparently Penguin killed twelve armed men! Damn. Of course, to Batman, this is practically like Bard killing those men himself, but as Bard sees it, sometimes tough decisions like that are necessary to protect the city. Will Batman be able to work with Bard after this? There will probably be an uneasy relationship that should be interesting, but let's hope Bard doesn't go off the deep end.
 

He's like a giant sack of potatoes!

 

It's too bad we only get two pages with Tim and Harper. I'm also somewhat curious as to what Joker's Daughter is up to, which is probably the first time those words have ever been put together in that order. Mostly I just want to see Corrigan/The Spectre in action. I couldn't care less about Joker's Daughter herself or Batwing. Come to think of it, though, isn't she in the new Suicide Squad? So what is she doing in this book? Does this take place before then?

 

The usual fan reaction.

 

Maybe we'd get to see a bit more if DC didn't insist on taking up so much space in the comic with things like their preview for the new Teen Titans book. Granted, it looks okay, I might check it out (it not being Lobdell is reason enough to celebrate), but frankly I prefer to have more Batman in this book. I mean, it was a good issue, but the man himself was barely in it.

 

Good on Jimbo for not making an escape, by the way.

 

NEXT: Red Robin and Bluebird!

 

- Penguin Truth
(2014)

 

Story: Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Script: James Tynion IV
Consulting Writers: Ray Fawkes, John Layman, & Tim Seeley
Art By: Jason Fabok
Colors By: Brad Anderson
Lettering By: Carlos M. Mangual
Cover By: Dustin Nguyen
Editor: Katie Kubert
Asst. Editor: Matt Humphreys
Group Editor: Mark Doyle
Batman Created By Bob K--AHAHAHAHA, NO. Batman Created By Bill Finger