Future State: Dark Detective #1 review – a solid double-sized introduction broke bat

January 13, 2021
Jonathon Wilson 0
Comics
3.5

Summary

Future State: Dark Detective #1 explores the dire state of dystopian Gotham from two different perspectives in a solid double-sized issue.

3.5

Summary

Future State: Dark Detective #1 explores the dire state of dystopian Gotham from two different perspectives in a solid double-sized issue.

Future State continues apace this week, and while there’s a new Batman to be worrying about, writers Mariko Tamaki and Matthew Rosenberg, and artists Dan Mora, Jordie Bellaire, Carmine Di Giandomenico, and Antonio Fabela, are keeping abreast of the old one in Future State: Dark Detective #1. This stylish double-issue, which features a story about a newly broke and presumed-dead Bruce Wayne and another about Grifter teaming up with Luke Fox, aka Batwing, lends another couple of perspectives to dystopian Gotham City under the sway of the Magistrate and makes for another solid introduction.

Tamaki writes the Bruce Wayne tale, with characteristic brooding narration, but the clash of that dour style with the neon techno-future aesthetic of Mora and Bellaire’s art makes for a visual treat. Bruce is down on his luck, to say the least, having spent the last of the Wayne fortune to get his life-threatening injuries patched up by an anonymous backstreet doctor. His new ad-hoc suit is a fitting metaphor for this lo-fi reimagining of the character, left with only his wits and the remnants of his reputation to fight back against the Magistrate.

The Grifter story, written by Rosenberg and drawn by Di Giandomenico, is arguably better, at least as far as the rapidly-escalating action goes. There’s an odd-couple kind of banter between Grifter and Luke, a clash in perspectives and personalities from the tale preceding it, and a closer look at the still-thriving underworld of Gotham, which is flourishing despite the Magistrate’s interference. A highlight is the consistent back-and-forth patter between the contrasting leads.

All told, Future State: Dark Detective #1 really works as a pairing of different styles and attitudes, and makes for another strong introduction to a thus far very consistent Future State effort.

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