Talon #1

by BradBabendir on October 25, 2012

Gotham is crowded these days. Talon has a mighty task of somehow making itself relevant and worthwhile despite the fact that DC New 52 fans are already drowning in Gotham-centric material. If my count is correct, this is the around the 10th book from DC that currently involves batman or a character that is currently or formerly Gotham-centric.


That’s nearly one out of every five in the New 52. So, Talon has to answer a question that many other books do not, which is: why the hell does anyone care?


Scott Snyder (Batman, American Vampire) has the answer to that question. And it’s a pleasant one. Thanks to the recent crossover, Night of The Owls, in which a group of undead assassins from a group that has been trying to regulate Gotham since long before the Batman makes a play to take out all of Gotham’s well-to-do, including Bruce Wayne and the Mayor.


Snyder, the current writer for Batman, now gets to more thoroughly explore the power and reach of the Court through the eyes of former Talon, Calvin Rose. The #0 issue did a good, not great, job of letting readers in, allowing them to take a look at the court from the other side, as well as introducing them to the protagonist in the book.


In the #1 issue, as with the #0 issue, especially in a brand new series like this, the character is far more important than the plot. Snyder could have written the most complex, layered plot he’s ever conceived, and if I don’t care about the character, I’m not going to keep reading.


But Snyder knows that. And so he made me care about the character. He gave me no choice. He talks about Rose’s family, and the absolute urgency with which Rose must act. And that’s what makes this book good.


Because the plot kind of sucked. It was convoluted and illogical (even in a world with super-powered green rings and an Amazonian princess). The first half of the book, which was basically just things happening so that we could get where we needed to be, was pretty dumb, and there really isn’t another way to put it.


If the way the book ended was any indication, that shouldn’t be a problem. It seemed like it was just a way to put the two main characters in the same room together, and it did that, and hopefully we can all move on and pretend it never happened.


The art, by Guillem March, is good until it’s really bad. And there are really only two panels were it’s really bad, and they’re really the same type of panel. Basically, any time Rose has an angry face, March makes him look deformed and grotesque, and the rest of the time he looks like a pretty normal guy. I assume this will be remedied with more familiarity with the character.


Talon #1 is far from a perfect book and further from a perfect start, but it got the wheels turning for the series, and it did so quickly and while building a solid character base for readers to jump off of.


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