This issue marks the first chapter to the final phase of Zero Year, the name being finally explained in this issue. Scott Snyder has done an amazing job with this yearlong story. What started off as a seemingly tiring gimmick, has turned into a beautiful story in terms of writing and art. With the finish line in sight, the tone and pacing of this series really increases in this issue. Bruce awakens to a broken city, with the Riddler at the helm. There is no going in or out of the city, Gotham PD has been seemingly dismantled, and the Batman has disappeared. This is the world Bruce wakes up to and this is the world Bruce is going to reclaim in the remainder of the arc and knowing Snyder, it is going to be a rollercoaster ride all the way till the end. Greg Capullo, with Danny Miki, continues to deliver beautiful work for this series. His art and styles has become wonderfully interwined with Snyder’s story. However, even more impressive in this issue, is FCO’s colors. His use of color in this issue, as well as those before it, is absolutely marvelous. 4.5/5
The constant battle for Gotham rages on as an old face returns to take back the city. Gotham, and the Bat-Universe in general, is known for its more outlandish villains, from Penguin, to Mr. Freeze, to Joker. However, one of the lesser known enemies of the Bat, is the Falcone family, whose power over the city once made them extremely formidable foes. This issue brings that family right back into the heart of Gotham and has made this series all the more worthwhile It will be fascinating to see what is in store for them as the series takes its course and it will be even more fascinating to see how Catwoman will tie in to everything, given her relationship with the family. On the flipside, the heroes of Gotham took a hit last issue with Gordon’s arrest and it doesn’t look like anything good will come of that any time soon. 4.5/5
With Roy trapped in outer space, Jason and Kory are forced to take drastic measures to save him. Given the three very distinct histories these characters have, it’s nice to see this book going in a direction that is not necessarily linked to the Bat-Universe. The series has had some other instances of this, such as when Kory’s sister whisked them all off to war, however for the most part this book has been an extension of the Bat-Universe. Now, that’s not exactly a bad thing, however considering Kory is an alien and Roy’s history is intertwined with Green Arrow’s, it would be great to see a bit of that incorporated into the series. Will Pfeifer has done a great job of that with this arc, not only taking them into space, but also introducing established DC characters from other parts of the universe into the story. The issue is fast paced, filled with action, and is overall a good issue. 3/5
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