Sunday, 17 June 2018

The Brave And The Bold: Batman And Wonder Woman #4 - DC Comics

THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD: BATMAN AND WONDER WOMAN No. 4, July 2018
It is hard to imagine any reader of this twenty-two page periodical who didn’t desire a laboriously lengthy crash course in Irish mythology and the Battle of Moytura gleaning much in the way of entertainment from Issue Four of “The Brave And The Bold: Batman And Wonder Woman”. Indeed, as comic book adventures go, especially those teaming up two of “DC Comics” Trinity, Liam Sharp’s soberingly straightforward script arguably just consists of a publication-length conversion between the titular characters and Lady Ethne, which both proves to be a poor usage of two ordinarily dynamically-charged super-heroes, and also fails to actually progress the plot of an increasingly tired-looking mini-series.

Admittedly, the Derby-born writer’s narrative does eventually include a smidgeon of action, when the grieving queen discovers the caped crusaders have ‘desecrated’ her ancestor’s tomb and one of her sour-looking giant Fomorian guards lets loose an arrow at Wonder Woman; “For Tir Na Nog, and for freedom!” Yet such a brief, mere modicum of motion, comes far too late in the fable-telling to debatably energise the rest of this book’s lifeless litany, especially when it only lasts a couple of panels and quickly results in naught more than Batman showing the furious monarch that “it appears that somebody has stolen the Silver Arm of Nuada…”

Unfortunately however, in order to reach even this somewhat underwhelming cliff-hanger, this magazine’s audience must first have endured splash page after double-splash page of exposition from the formidably-tall Ethne, as she waxes lyrical on the historical heritage of her dead husband. This drawn-out, almost text-book commentary covering the invasion of Balor of the Evil Eye, as well as the legendary world’s decision “to cast a lasting spell of forgetfulness over all of Tir Nag Nog”, genuinely takes a considerable patience to peruse properly, and resultantly requires repeated readings before it’s scriptural-like story is finally understood.

Disappointingly, such a semi-religious recitation possibly wouldn’t have been so unbearable if Sharp hadn’t decided to pencil the trials and tribulations it exposes as single panel pieces. These pictures are undoubtedly pleasing to the eye, but lack any pulse-pounding life whatsoever, and in hindsight would perhaps have proved more ‘inspirational’ if they had been drawn as multiple fast-paced sequences, illustrating the actual battles and tragedy within a carousel of smaller sketches..?

‘First published on the "Dawn of Comics" website.'
Writer/Artist: Kevin Sharp, and Colors: Romulo Fajardo Jr.

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