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Batman Eternal #21

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By Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Tim Seeley, Ray Fawkes, John Layman, Jason Fabok, Brad Anderson

“Gotham belongs to us, now.”

This issue of Batman Eternal takes everything you thought you knew about this story, and tells you you’re wrong. Okay, you may have had your suspicions, but now they’re confirmed. A lot of bad situations are brewing in Gotham, a lot of bad people with bad plans (actually well-planned plans, but you get what I’m trying to say) are making their way into the story or finally showing their true intentions, while Batman is left to run around searching for the answers and peace together this mystery before he loses his city.

James Tynion IV is on scripting this week for the story by Scott Snyder and himself as he places Alfred and Bard in the forefront of the story – offering them up to make another big reveal.

Alfred has been struggling to makes amends to his daughter Julia, and this issue brings that dynamic to another level, as he tries to explain what he’s been doing all this time something else comes between them, forcing him to reveal something Wayne might have some problems with.

Batman, the man who seemingly trusts no one on the planet other than Dick Grayson and Alfred Pennyworth tells Gordon’s replacement Jason Bard the same thing he tells most people “I don’t trust you.” This comes with some chilling aftermath as his suspicions lead the reader to consider whether or not we can trust him either.

Jason Fabok is on artwork this week with colors by Brad Anderson. The scene taking place in Gordon’s (now Bard’s) office shows Batman facing the new commissioner with evidence he claims can clear Gordon’s name. This scene takes place in the dark office, only a bit of light coming from a desk lamp illuminates the panels just enough. This scene works nicely when placed against the scene that follows, where Alfred sitting across from Julia in a similar confession type manner. Their scene however takes place next to the fireplace and is even brighter, with the orange fire in the background. Both scenes are met with discouraged facial expressions, and great detailing by Fabok. He depicts a brooding Dark Knight as well as an intense and confident Alfred. Anderson’s color work compliments well between these two scenes as well as many others throughout the issue.

This week we’re given more reveals and learn the true nature of some of the characters we’ve come to trust throughout this series. Who’s really been pulling the strings? Is this just the beginning? How can someone break a flash drive in their hand using their thumb? – Seriously, should I be doing thumb workouts?

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