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Batman Eternal #51

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By Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Ray Fawkes, Kyle Higgins, Tim Seeley, Alvaro Martinez, Raul Fernandez, June Chung

“I just saved four people’s lives. I think I have a broken rib, and my muscles are on fire…I’ve never hurt like this in my entire life. But I am not leaving.”

Harper’s words to Stephanie in this week’s issue of Batman Eternal. She’s turning out to be quite the addition to the Bat-family!

Gotham has been through a lot in this story, but it has plenty of birds willing to help the bat to keep it safe as James Tynion IV takes over scripting this week and shows us some of their efforts, as well as Batman’s current…situation.

With last week’s reveal of who has been behind Gotham’s chaos from the start Batman finds himself in a rather tight scenario, meaning he’s chained up to the Bat-signal. But by whom you ask? You should have been reading! But the reveal was unexpected (did anyone actually guess it?!) and this issue fleshes out some of the details as to how this master villain was able to plan this whole ordeal out (bad guys love to monologue).

On the artwork side of this week’s issue is Alvaro Martinez on pencils, Raul Fernandez on inks, and June Chung on colors. So many powerful scenes take place in this issue, and so many great panels make up these scenes, so let’s try to pick one…just one…having trouble narrowing it down…okay…wait no…all right this one works: A powerful page shows Bruce Wayne (Spoiler: He’s Batman! This whole time! Did NOT see that coming!) staring down his rival, his face cut and unshaved from weeks and weeks of constant fighting in Gotham. His rival holds his cowl in his hands in the panel below, taunting Bruce. In the last panel we see his rival holding the cowl over the edge of the building ready to let it go and let the world know Batman has been defeated. In the top panel Martinez packs the features of Bruce’s face with great details, as Fernandez and Chung amplify those details to show how battered Bruce has become. By this time he’s worn out, running on less than fumes, and ready to collapse, and yet…he keeps his chin up.

Batman has had everything taken from him, but when has that ever stopped him before?

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