Review: Nightwing #111

“Iko” – Part One, and “The Son of Gray” – Part One
Writers: Tom Taylor and Michael W. Conrad
Artists: Sami Basri, Vicente Cifuentes, and Francesco Francavilla
Color Artists: Adriano Lucas and Francesco Francavilla
Letterer: Wes Abbott
Review by Steve J. Ray

After the incredible “Beast World” event, Nightwing #111 gives us a brand new chapter for Dick Grayson, by Tom Taylor, Sami Basri, Vicente Cifuentes, and the master of the hues, Adriano Lucas.

We’re also blessed with the first episode of a story giving us a look at one of Dick’s ancestors, in the eagerly awaited “The Son Of Gray”, by writer Michael W. Conrad and artist Francesco Francavilla.

The legend that is Wes Abbott brilliantly letters both tales.

Let me just say that the first five pages of this comic are absolutely fantastic. Tom Taylor is one of the hottest writers in comics today, and DC was smart getting to sign an exclusive contract. Iko Wahid’s tragedy, and the way Taylor links it to both Nightwing and Heartless, is nothing short of masterful.

Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson suffered the same childhood trauma, but the way Batman defers to Nightwing, respects him, and lets him take the lead in this issue is brilliantly handled. This is a Dynamic duo made of equals, even when Dick reveals that he’s been suffering from vertigo in recent weeks. The Dark Knight’s reaction is hilarious. I’m a big fan of stories that feature Nightwing and his sidekick, Batman!

I love Sami Basri’s art. While people may bemoan the fact that it’s been too long since Bruno Redondo’s work graced these pages, I’m never going to complain when a comic looks this good. Basri’s art, pacing, and storytelling are all pitch-perfect and wonderful. You can tell exactly what Dick, Babs, Bruce, Batman, Alfred, and Iko are feeling (Oh, Alfred… how I miss you).

Nightwing is brilliant with kids and will make a great dad, one day… just saying.

Back in November, I had the great fortune to sit down with the wonderful and hugely talented Michael W. Conrad. Not only is he an incredible writer, but he’s also one of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet. One of the things we spoke about was “The Son Of Gray” and the fact that he’ll be looking at Dick Grayson’s ancestors and their history with Gotham’s dark past.

To say that this first chapter has already grabbed my attention, thanks to Conrad’s script and Farncavilla’s extremely atmospheric art, would be a huge understatement. I’ve been waiting for this for two months and cannot wait to see how the story develops.

Conclusion

Nightwing #111 truly delivers on every front and is the perfect jumping-on-point for new readers, with two brand new stories. Once again we get an issue that gives fans great writing with wonderful artwork. This series has been on a roll for close to three years now, and with the momentous issue #113 (Legacy #300!) in just two months’ time, I’m sure that we ain’t seen nothing yet!

Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment


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