It doesn’t feel like it was that long ago since Joshua Williamson started his run on Batman. But now after a seven-month run Williamson’s time on Batman is coming to a close. Given that Williamson is working on Dark Crisis its not surprising that his run is ending so soon. DC Comics obviously has big plans they want Williamson to lead as they build out the future of the DC Universe. So while it is sad that Williamson isn’t getting a longer run on Batman this was an enjoyable period for this series. Now let’s see how Williamson ends his run with Batman #124.
Writers: Joshua Williamson (Abyss Finale); G. Willow Wilson (Poison Ivy: Photosynthesis)
Artists: Howard Porter and Jorge Fornes (Abyss Finale); Dani (Poison Ivy: Photosynthesis)
Colorists: Tomeu Morey (Abyss Finale); Trish Mulvihill (Poison Ivy: Photosynthesis)
Oracle reviews recent information with Batman including Robin (Damian Wayne) and Talia Al Ghul going off the grid after the latter escaped the D.E.O. custody and Batman Inc. still searching for Lex Luthor’s fake Batmen. Oracle then gets a report about Abyss appearing in Badhnisia again.
Batman reveals he is already in Badhnisia. Batman investigates the abandoned LexCorp building. There he finds Abyss, who runs away as soon as being spotted. Batman is quick to catch Abyss and discovers that its actually Detective Cayha.
Detective Cayha reveals she is using Abyss identity to find and kill the person responsible for kidnapping her parents. Batman reveals that years before becoming Batman he finally confronted the man responsible for killing his parents but before fully crossing the line he made choice. Still focused on finding her parents, Detective Cayha says she has the information on the corrupt business man she’s been searching for.
Batman helps Abyss by quickly finding the person who kidnapped Cayha’s parents. The guy reveals that he killed Cayha’s parents. Hearing this Abyss beats the guy within an inch of his life. Batman does not stop Abyss, instead letting Detective Cayha decide whether she will cross the line or not.
The next day the police find where Cayha’s parents were buried and arrest the corrupt business responsible.
Detective Cayha asks Batman why he didn’t stop her. Batamn says that he knows and seen people in Cayha’s position so if he stopped her from crossing the line it wouldn’t have been the last time Cayha would feel that temptation.
Detective Cayha then asks if the offer to join Batman Inc. still stands. Batman gives Detective Cayha a device to contact Ghost-Maker with.
Detective Cayha then asks why Batman didn’t kill the man responsible for his parents death. Batman says when he had the chance he saw himself when staring into the dark during that moment. End of issue.
Batman #124 brings Joshua Williamson’s run full circle as he concludes the Abyss storyline that he started his run on this series with. Its not until reading Batman #124 that I realized that the Abyss storyline actually didn’t fully wrap up before the Shadow War crossover. Which made me glad that Williamson was able to go back and give that full conclusion so there aren’t any loose ends with the stories he was developing.
Focusing this aftermath issue from the Abyss storyline on Detective Cayha was a great play. For the entirety of the Abyss storyline Detective Cayha was a supporting player. But even when she had that role it did appear there was more to Detective Cayha that Williamson wanted to develop.
That is where Batman #124 comes in as Williamson fully dives into Detective Cayha. We already knew Detective Cayha was a great detective now as the fake Abyss we see that she has more of Batman in her. Getting into her backstory and what drove her to seek out justice as her origin story had some similarities to Batman that even Bruce Wayne recognized.
Bruce recognizing their similarities made the way he and Detective Cayha had a connection to each other even though they just met was well done. Drawing on the connection of criminals killing their parents made Bruce’s choice as Batman to not stop Detective Cayha from crossing the line a strong character moment for both.
For Bruce he understood that, as he says so directly later on, that getting involved would make it so Detective Cayha never could come to terms with the death of her parents. He’s seen this not just in himself but others he has mentored like Dick Grayson and Jason Todd. Taking away her sense of agency would mean hurt Detective Cayha in the long run.
For Detective Cayha we saw that at the end of the day she is a good person and isn’t someone that would cross that line when all was said and done. When faced with the opportunity Detective Cayha sense of justice took over so she didn’t kill the corrupt business man. Instead, she instinctively saw having the man responsible for her parents murder face justice was the right option. This was strong development that put over Detective Cayha as a character you want to see more of as now she becomes a member of Batman Inc.
The artwork for the main story of Batman #124 was a mixed bag. I don’t know what it is but I just am not a fan of Howard Porter’s art style. While Porter does work well when characters are in motion the artwork suffers in the character heavy moments when you need facial expressions to put a dramatic emphasis on the scene. It just doesn’t look great. Especially when we have Jorge Fornes in the flashback scene show how important strong character facial reactions are key in making a dramatic scene pop.
The “Photosynthesis” back-up story by G. Willow Wilson and Dani did its job in selling me on the new Poison Ivy mini-series. What I was particularly impressed with was that this back-up wasn’t simply a promotional tool that showed us part of the first issue of the Poison Ivy mini-series. Instead Wilson and Dani treated us to a complete story that acted as a true prelude to their new mini-series. They made you understand where Poison Ivy will be in her new mini-series and why you should be invested in reading it. That is definitely what they did for me as I originally did not have Poison Ivy on my pull list but now I do.
Batman #124 works well as a conclusion to Joshua Williamson run on this series. Williamson was able to wrap up all the loose ends with the Abyss storyline in a satisfying way. Along with the back-up story by G. Willow Wilson and Dani that does a great job selling the new Poison Ivy series Batman #124 is a solid read all around.
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 5 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6.5 Night Girls out of 10