Batman And The Outsiders #1 Gets strong Reactions From Comics Creators

Article by Eric Lee

Batman And The Outsiders #1 recently debuted and has already gained some attention amongst some well know names is the comics industry. For those who have not read the issueBatman assembles a team of DC heroes to combat threats; the most recent – a new character named Kaliber – is a time-traveling, gun-totting cyborg. Many fans have pointed out how his resemblance to Cable, a character from Marvel’s X-Men comics. The similarities appear to be intentional.

Kaliber, from Batman And The Outsiders #1

On Twitter, Cable creator Rob Liefeld even chimed in about Kaliber’s inclusion.

However, not all creators were as receptiveBlack Lightning creator Tony Isabella blasted Batman And The Outsiders #1, claiming that it reduces Black Lightning’s role to a token black hero. Isabella took to Twitter to vent his frustrations.

Outsiders‘ writer Bryan Hill responded to the critique with some wisdom for fans.

Racial Representation on the Outsiders

It’s disappointing to see a creator like Tony Isabella dislike Outsiders, especially as his complaints are not completely warranted. Isabella believes that Black Lightning’s inclusion is due to tokenism. Tokenism is the practice of including racially diverse characters for the sole sake of gaining the appearance of diversity. In comics, this usually is seen as including one minority character on a team of Caucasian heroes. The most prominent example is Cyborg being in the Justice League in their recent film.

This is not the case with the Outsiders. In fact, the Outsiders’ roster is one of the most racially diverse rosters in comics currently. The team boasts of two Asian females (Katana and Orphan), two African American males (Signal and Black Lightning), and one Caucasian male (Batman). If anything, Batman is the token character here.

Regardless of how one feels about diversity representation, Dark Knight News encourages fans to pick up Batman And The Outsiders #1. You can read DKN’s review for the first issue here.


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Eric Lee

Eric Lee hails from San Francisco, California and has been one of the biggest fans of Batman since he was 2 years old when his dad showed him Tim Burton's 'Batman' on a fuzzy VHS. Currently, Eric is an avid comic book reader and writer and illustrator working on his own graphic novel. You can see his doodles at meeleeart.com.