Publisher: DC Comics
Released: January 25th 2017
Issues: Nightwing (Rebirth) 1-4, 7-8
Nightwing is one of those characters that has always intrigued me, yet I never seemed to get around to reading his solo series. I’ve decided that enough is enough, and that it was time to give his series a chance. It’s worth noting that this series (like many/all of the other Bat crusaders) is tried up pretty heavily with the New 52 plots started, as well as the Batman series and a handful of others (there are cameos all over the place). It’s still pretty easy to understand what has happened or is happening through context, so that’s something at least.
This series definitely takes a bit of time to get its feet off the ground. At first I just wasn’t finding myself immersed in the reading, becoming easily distracted by things going on around me. Once I got past the first two issues though I found myself becoming more and more invested in what was actually happening. So if you’re going to give this series a try, I strongly urge you to keep reading even if you’re not enjoying it right away.
I mentioned earlier that there are a lot of crossovers in this series, which really shouldn’t be surprising at all – Nightwing’s origin came from Batman after all. Both Bruce and Damien Wayne make significant appearances in this volume, as does an antagonist introduced in New 52; the Court of Owls )I personally loved the Court of Owls plotline, so I was more than thrilled to realize that Nightwing was going to be delving into that world a bit more). Alfred makes a couple of appearances (love him), as does Batgirl (love her as well, but her appearance has more to do with the plot than nostalgia).
While there were a lot of less than awesome parts to this volume (such as the slow start, the sometimes convoluted plot, etc), there’s a lot of good here as well. The cameos and the antagonists are a plus, but more importantly this series is starting to delve more into Grayson’s past and origins. They don’t have the fact that he’s Romani be a little tidbit to learn, but a major part of who he is and how he came to be the man he is today. His past keeps creeping up on him, again and again, so it’s really no surprise that this volume has a decent chunk of flashbacks as well (which are hit or miss, if you ask me).
The new character introduced for this series; Raptor, is an interesting one. He’s introduced as an employee of the Court of Owls (and thus a bad guy), only to be slowly revealed that he’s more of a grayscale character, only to have that reassessment also be incorrect. In a way he has character development and tension that Grayson doesn’t, so his addition to the series could prove useful. I do hope we see him again in future volumes.
On the whole this was a decent, if somewhat slow, start to the series. I hope it continues to pick up from here (like I said, the later issues were better). I love Nightwing (and by proxy Grayson) so I’m pretty excited to be spending time learning more about his character.