“Leaping Into The Light” – Part Three
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Bruno Redondo
Color Artist: Adriano Lucas
Letterer: Wes Abbott
Review by Steve J. Ray
Nightwing #80. I don’t really know what to say except that every member of this creative deserves a Knighthood, medals, accolades and free food for life. Nothing on this Earth is perfect, but this series comes pretty darned close. This is the comic for people who already love them, and the title that will also make brand new fans.
I love Dick Grayson, Barbara Gordon and Tim Drake… and I always have, but Tom Taylor’s reminding me exactly why I love them. The way these people speak, act, move and interact with each other is so real, and so heart-warming, that they feel like friends relatives and people we know. Yes, we still get action, spandex and super-powers, but this title has those as magical extras, not as the main focus.
The scene with Babs, Dick and the detectives is as well written (and illustrated) an exchange as you’ll ever see.
Bruno Redondo is an artist. This man blends a classic American comic-book style with Manga emotions, vintage European storytelling, and then he throws in some Ikea catalog chic for good measure. Yes, you read that right. This man’s layouts, pacing, paneling (or complete lack thereof), movement, body language and facial expressions are simply A+, outstanding, 10/10 gorgeous.
The aforementioned scene with Babs and Dick, the action set pieces featuring the dynamic duo of Nightwing and Robin, the escrima stick that turns into a bo-staff sequence… all of it is just, plain, awesome. I’ve read this comic three times in two days and drooled over the art even more. Adriano Lucas’ colors fit Bruno’s crisp, clean lines perfectly and every page is a joy to behold. Oh… and Dick Grayson’s coffee mug is the bomb.
I don’t care if you hate me, but Wes Abbott is every bit as awesome as everyone else working on this book. Lettering, like movie music, is frequently deemed as most successful when it doesn’t stand out and just enhances the visuals. Wes’ work does all of this, but dammit it stands out too… and it deserves to. From Haley barking to the inevitable sounds of violence, the lettering in this issue is simply ace.
Tim Drake is the best Robin. Hey, it’s not just me that thinks so, so do Tom Taylor and Dick Grayson… they can’t be wrong! Nightwing #80 is a joy from cover to cover and the kind of comic I’ll buy multiple copies of. One to read until it falls apart, one to lend out to entice people to buy it, and one with each different cover to bag, enshrine, frame and worship.
If you’re not reading Nightwing, then you’re missing out on something truly great.
Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment