By Ashley Gibbs
Well, this story arc has been a wild ride, for sure. Batman Beyond #11 marks the end of this particular story arc, concluding the fight between Terry and Damien -sadly it’s underwhelming. While I’ve enjoyed the story itself, the more I read, the more I was nagged with the logistics of it. The suit that Terry is wearing is dangerous and will push him to fight even if his body and mind can’t take it giving him an easy out as to why he’s fighting Damien and surviving in the first place. The suit robs Terry of his agency, until this issue of course where suddenly he has the power to overcome it. However, the story arc does a good job of introducing Damien into the Batman Beyond world, and this issue gives us a bit of closure as well.
Throughout these issues, my favorite moment was between Bruce and his biological son Damian. They have a rough relationship and him not taking the mantle of Batman waves a red flag. What I love about it all, however, is that throughout it all they still love each other despite both being very complicated people. Terry is just there because it’s his series and his battle with Damian, while packed full of adventure, doesn’t ring true as Damian is the much better fighter and Terry is just using the suit. While I loved the interpersonal drama, everything ends very neatly despite the stakes being so high. Terry manages to overcome the control of the suit by sheer willpower, and the world is saved. While I do enjoy a happy ending, I hoped these events would have lasting consequences.
I like the artwork in the issue. I always find it easier to discuss the story aspects to a comic than it’s artwork, I usually either like the style or I don’t and unless there are glaring issues I’m ok. That being said, this is a traditional American superhero comic style that you would expect from a DC comic. The men are strong and attractive and the fights full of action. Facial expressions are powerful and hold a lot of emotion, especially from Bruce and Damian. There is also great use of colors, especially reds and oranges when things are most tense. And of course, my personal favorite, dynamic panels that come in different sizes and positions keeping each page fresh.
Despite being underwhelmed with the conclusion of this story, Batman Beyond #11 and previous issues were fun to read because I am biased towards Damian Wayne and the drama he has with his father. While the superhero blow up the world storyline was fine, it seemed tacked on as the meat of the issue is Damian’s feelings about his father and Terry being the new Batman. If you’ve been following along with this arc then this is a good issue to grab, if you’re a fan of Batman and son as I am, it’s also a good read, but if you’re a fan of Terry, he doesn’t do much here at all. As a fan of the old TV show that shares the same name, I was a bit disappointed.
Batman Beyond #11
Writer: Dan Jurgens
Art: Bernard Chang
Colors: Marcelo Maiolo
Letters: Travis Lanham
Publisher: DC Comics