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Nightwing Vol. 2: Back to Blüdhaven (Rebirth) Paperback – June 20, 2017
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“Practically reaches out a hand and beckons the reader to come join Dick for this new phase of his life.”—IGN
“[NIGHTWING] is a bit special.”—Newsarama
About the Author
Tim Seeley is a comic book artist, writer and all around maker-upper. His past works include GRAYSON, Hack/Slash, Witchblade, Revival and G.I. JOE vs. The Transformers. He is currently writing NIGHTWING for DC Comics, as a part of DC Universe Rebirth.
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Dick moves to Bludhaven to rediscover himself, volunteering at a community center. There, he discovers that his supervisor, Shawn Tsang, is a former supervillain (Defacer), one whom he actually apprehended. As he patrols Bludhaven as Nightwing, Dick also runs into (and catches) another former Gotham villain (Gorilla Grimm). All of this leads to his discovery that there is a support group for former villains chased out of Gotham by Batman and Robin trying to go straight (an interesting concept). Over the course of this book, Nightwing attempts to uncover a deeper conspiracy and, with the help of the motley group of former villains, succeeds. Dick also finds himself in a complicated relationship with Shawn, and the final chapter of this volume addresses this.
Seeley is able to capture some of what makes Dick Grayson unique among the Bat-heroes: his humor and the sense of pleasure and sheer joy he takes in what he does. He has always been the balance to Batman's deep brooding and seriousness. The supporting characters have potential, but so far, they didn't really stand out. I'm curious to see how things progress with Shawn Tsang, though.
Seeley has done a fine job with Nightwing. However, I just found this collection to be okay. While he is getting back to some of the joy Dick has in being Nightwing, along with his sense of humor, this just didn't feel like a "deep" story. It's nice and fun, and there are some cute parts (Bludhaven attempting to use Nightwing's presence as a marketing gimmick). Overall, though, Nightwing Vol. 2: Back to Bludhaven was just a little better than average. I still really enjoy Nightwing and look forward to seeing where Seeley takes him. I would recommend this particular book to established fans, and I believe Nightwing's relocation to Bludhaven provides a nice jumping-on point for new readers.
I received a preview copy of this book from DC Comics and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Issues 10-14 is a five part story that has Dick moving to Blüdhaven in an attempt to get in touch with himself and find out who he really is and to enjoy a city where everything is black and white and he hoped to work in the light as a social worker. Unfortunately, it turns out not to be all that simple. As his boss is a former supervillainess and Blüdhaven has become a refuge for ex-minor villains seeking to turn over a new leaf who go by the name the Run Offs. In addition to that, there’s a series of murders that the Run Offs are being framed for. Overall, this story’s got solid characters, a good mystery, and also some nice character work for Dick.
Issue 15 features a new romance for Dick and focuses on its development . It’s counting down to the present and setitng up the next big storyline. I like the story and the way it just does focus on the relationship and insight into the characters without having to have those as elements jammed into an action story, even though its clearly set up for the next storyline. Given that there were already six issues in this trade, it’s probably reasonable to wonder if this shouldn’t have been included in the next trade, but that’s nitpicky.
Overall, Nightwing continues to be an enjoyable character driven series. This book manages to mine some good moments from what would normally be lesser characters including a battle with the infamous villain Orca. A solid installment.
***Disclosure: I Received a free digital c
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