There is a lot to like about a sweeping, thematic new take on the adventures of Dick Grayson that is visually arresting and emotionally engaging. The team that brought you the thrilling pre-Future State take on Suicide Squad is back at it again with Nightwing #78, and they get a lot of things right.
Let's get the very thin deficits out of the way. First, there is very little actual story here. From a character, standpoint feels like one of the most amazing first fifteen minutes of an hour-long superhero drama ever. However, that's all you get — no middle, no end, just a great warm-up. Second, there is a key plot element that brings an old friend back into Dick Grayson's life that is very much like things that have happened for the character in the past, and that's not so exciting.
Moving on from that, know that this is some of the best Dick Grayson characterization in years, with all of the derring-do of the Agent of SPYRAL era and all of the simple charm that created a legion of fans only partially looking at his butt. There are two fantastic sequences with the aforementioned old friend in two time periods that are again some of the best interactions between them.
Tom Taylor remains the king of characterization as his dialogue sparkles in virtually every panel. The visuals from Bruno Redondo, Adriano Lucas, and Wes Abbott — Taylor's partners in crime for the pre-Future State Suicide Squad— are in turns breathtaking and tugging on your heartstrings. The title sequence alone is a poster-worthy of booth displays (back when we had conventions) and bedroom walls with its spectacle and clarity. The new take on Blockbuster clearly owes a LOT to Krondon's portrayal of Tobias Whale, with less of a sense of humor and all of the sense of menace, adding in a nice hook towards Nightwing's past.
If this is an indication of a new direction, it's worth following, even if it starts the race a little slowly. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.
By Tom Taylor, Bruno Redondo
Nightwing is back — and his drive to keep Bludhaven safe has never been stronger! But his adopted city has elected a new mayor with the last name Zucco. When Nightwing enlists Batgirl's help in investigating the politician bearing the same name as the man who murdered his parents, she unearths details that will shock and fundamentally change the hero. The New York Times bestselling team of writer Tom Taylor (DCeased, Injustice) and artist Bruno Redondo (Injustice, Suicide Squad) are about to take Nightwing to the next stage of his evolution as a hero!
Nightwing’s got a brand new bag with some familiar contents as the team that revitalized Suicide Squad takes their show to Bludhaven.
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