Zero Month ends not with a whimper…but with a lightning crash!

Welcome to the final week of zero month! We’ve got a pretty small haul today, only four books, but I’m very excited about, er, two of them! Let’s just dive on in!

Excuse me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the origin of Batman Inc the entire Batman Inc series from before the reboot? Because, wow, yeah, this entire issue read like Batman Inc: The Director’s Cut. I like how Morrison made sure to let us know that the Black Glove storyline is still apparently canon, though, minus Tim Drake as Robin, if Lobdell is to be believed. Nightrunner made it into the New 52! And Dark Ranger/Squire is a thing. These are both very good ideas, in my eyes. Let’s not lose them somewhere along the way.

Tim Drake: The best goddamn thing to ever happen to the DC universe at large, you betcha! Scott Lobdell, you are making me want to vomit. I just…Tim figured out Batman’s identity on his own because he figured out who Robin was, when Dick was Robin. He took it upon himself to seek out Bruce after Jason died, because Batman needs a Robin. He wasn’t too busy for his family, they were too busy for him…until a tragic accident that left his mother dead and his father in a wheelchair. This is Tim Drake’s secret origin. He’s a smart kid whose boner for Batman got a little too hard to hide, so he pretty much forced his way into the Robin suit. Oh, I’m sorry, the Red Robin suit. Which is basically just the OYL, “these are his colors” Robin suit. So. His parents are in the Witness Protection Program, and he’s been adoptedish into the Batman family. Which means that “Tim Drake” probably isn’t even his real name. Oh, by the way, I’m going to pull something straight from the DC website: ” Plus: The beginnings of Skitter and Bunker.” They got one panel. One panel, which they shared, on the second to last page of the book. Lobdell, you’re fired. I’m firing you. Someone get Chuck Dixon on the line, we’ve got a lot of backtracking to do.

I’ve loved every issue of National Comics I’ve read, so far. Eternity was a new take on a character I knew and loved. Looker was a, pardon the pun, look into a character I’d never heard of, but liked anyway. Rose and Thorn, however, I knew pretty well, but didn’t always like. The original Thorn was a woman named Rose Canton, who was the first wife of Alan Scott and mother of his two children, Jenny-Lynn and Todd. She was actually a Golden Age Flash villain, which was pretty cool, and reading those stories was how I got to know her. I liked that version of Rose and Thorn, even though Rose ended up committing suicide so that Thorn couldn’t hurt anyone else. The most recent version of Rose and Thorn, pre-reboot, was a woman named Rhosyn Forrest, who developed a split personality in order to avenge her father’s murder. I dunno, I was more fond of the villain persona, myself. Then again, I also liked the Daredevil villain, Bloody Mary, so don’t judge me. This new version of Rose and Thorn seems like a combination of the first two. It’s Rose Canton again, but she’s after her father’s killer, like Rose Forrest was. This issue was really pushing the T rating it was given, pushing it as far as it would go. I wouldn’t personally recommend giving it to someone under 16, or anyone who is triggered by blood. All in all, it was a good issue in a good series, and I’d be very happy to see Rose and Thorn become an ongoing book.

I have exactly one complaint about Flash #0, and that is the use of the surname ‘West’ for the first criminal Flash catches. That’s not cool, Manapul. Not cool at all. In other news, I think Barry Allen is illegitimate. I mean, his mom is a redhead and his dad has dark hair, meanwhile, the “friend” of his mother’s that takes him in after her murder is blonde with blue eyes. I’m actually more invested in the secret life of Nora Allen than the story everyone knows. Lightning strikes through chemicals, hits a police scientist. Barry Allen becomes the fastest man alive. It’s a great story, a classic story. There’s no need to change it, because it’s perfect the way it is. Though, the fact that the Johns-created idea that Nora Allen was murdered during Barry’s childhood was a holdover from the DCU, it irks me. Because what’s the point? Why does Barry Allen need the same dead parent backstory that Bruce Wayne, Clark Kent, Hal Jordan, Arthur Curry, and countless other major characters within the DCU have? Sigh. Still, the origin of the Flash suit is awesome, both visually and in explanation, and it’s nice to see that a story with just Barry can still keep my attention. I feel justified in saving this comic for last, because it’s definitely the best one I’ve read this week.

And that was September! If you’ll excuse me, American Vampire volume 4 (as well as issues 28-31) are calling to me. Be sure to come back next week, because I’ll be tackling the newest issues of Animal Man, Swamp Thing, Green Lantern, and Earth-2!

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