May 16, 2010

DC Reviews: Batman #699

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Written by: Aron
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Batman #699
Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Tony Daniel
Art: Guillem March
Cover: Tony Daniel
Pages: 32
Price: US $2.99
Release: May 12, 2010


Riddle Me This – Part Two: A Means to an End

After chasing murder suspect Sebastian Blackspell at the end of last issue, Batman found a giggling, drooling Edward Nigma.  Someone had gassed him with a cheap version of Joker Toxin.  Not cool.  He’s now been taken out of the investigation as he is laid up, laughing, in a hospital bed.

Batman goes to Arkham to question Firefly.  All of the murder victims have been Firefly’s cell neighbors at one point or another.  Batman tells Firefly he’s busting him out, no strings attached.  Firefly wants no part of it.  He fears that he will be the next one to be killed.  Instead, Firefly decides to talk.  He tells Batman of a man named Blackspell the Magician.  Blackspell came to Firefly, Riddler (back in the day, before he went…insane), and other gentlemen who are now wearing toe tags.  Blackspell had a business proposition for them all.  The plan was to begin siphoning off money from Gotham’s kingpins.  It was going great.  They were in the money.  Then, all of a sudden, the Riddler went off his rocker and became a private investigator.  The group was finished.  Blackspell was all set to leave the country with the majority of the group’s money.  Firefly and the gang tried to stop him, but Blackspell did some magic on their asses and left for Paris.

Batman returns to Blackspell’s apartment, the scene of the most recent crime.  He’s not satisfied with it.  Something is different than all of the others.  This one was sloppy.  Batman finally catches on to the game.  He knows who’s really behind it all.  The answer may surprise you.  It certainly did me.  I was kind of bummed out, really.

Batman #699 is the end of a direction for one character.  It is also the end of Tony Daniel’s run as writer on the book.  It’s also the end of Guillem March’s dark and gritty art.  With issue #700 coming next month, Grant Morrison returns to writing and Tony Daniel will once again dazzle us with more than just his cover art, as he gets the interior.   Tony Daniel’s run was superb.  It took the book back to the murder mystery basics.  I’m no longer mad about the upcoming Grant Morrison story arc like I once was.  Beginning in #701, there will be a two-issue arc that is going to bridge the gap between Batman: R.I.P. and Final Crisis.  I hope the answers that we are finally going to get will be worth the wait and not full of the crazy psychobabble that is Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne.

I really hope you’ve been enjoying Tony Daniel’s run right along with me.  If not, I strongly suggest you go back and dig up all the back issues or grab the Trade Paperback if there is going to be one.

Aron White



  1. Billy

    The Jokers back?

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Comic Attack, Aron White. Aron White said: The shocking conclusion to Tony Daniel's "Riddle Me This"! #Batman #comics @DC_NATION […]

  3. Aron

    Not in this book.

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