At the end of the last issue of Nightwing, Joker realized that the Nightwings running around Bludhaven were not the real Nightwing. They were imposters. Nightwing issue 70 gives us more insight into just what Joker is planning to do and why he wants the real Nightwing so badly.
Nightwing #70 begins with Ric Grayson returning to Bludhaven from Switzerland where he had confronted his doctor who was responsible for rewriting his memories. That was where we were first introduced to the “Identity Crystal” that Dr. Haas had used to plant his new memories.
We get to hear some of Ric’s inner dialogue and he is still struggling with his two sets of memories. He remembers being raised by William Cobb (Talon) to be an assassin and that is the set of memories that are most clear for him.
His second set of memories is more fragmented, but he thinks he was raised by Bruce Wayne and took the path of a hero because of Batman. Basically, Richard’s life right now is a constant conflict of memories and headaches.
The other Nightwings who took up the mantel after Dick Grayson was out of commission are debating whether they should still be going out at night as vigilantes when it’s really way too dangerous for them, especially after the Talons had gone after them.
However, one of the Nightwings, the one who recruited the rest of them, was still out on the streets, and he was about to be in for an unpleasant surprise. The issue ends with a cliffhanger that makes it look like things will be getting a lot harder for Ric very soon.
Overall, I enjoyed this issue of Nightwing. While I feel like not much actually happened to progress Ric’s story (He’s been lamenting about his conflicting memories for about 3 issues now!), a number of things were set up. What Joker is planning will directly affect Ric and quite possibly end the Nightwings for good.
I felt like a lot of the time being spent with the Nightwings took away from the more important aspects of the story such as what Joker was doing. Also, I would have liked to see Ric doing… well, more than grappling around Bludhaven talking about how he has to get to Bea because she is the only person he can trust.
Maybe it was the pacing or too much being put into one issue, but the story at least for now is still going in the direction I had hoped. Ric is trying to get his real memories back and he doesn’t want anyone trying to control him. But I do worry about what Joker is planning and if that will put off getting Dick Grayson and Nightwing back even farther. It will be interesting to see.
Sales for the Nightwing comic have been a little better lately and Nightwing issue 70 got a second printing before the first printing was even on the shelves. Whether it was speculation that Punchline would be in the issue (Spoiler: she’s not!) or because it’s the “Journey to… Joker War” I’m not sure.
Regardless it’s a very popular issue of the comic and was sold out in many locations. I had requested the issue from my local comic shop a month ago and was able to secure a copy for myself. But, for those who have missed out, a second printing will be in stores on April 1, 2020. It is available digitally right now.
Author: Jessica Rae
Jessica has a BA in music with an emphasis in voice and spends her day typesetting, editing, writing, and moderating webinars. Jessica primarily reviews anime and comic book series. She also offers insights on various movies, books, games, and other geeky topics.
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