Review: Black Bat #4
When Black Bat finds himself trapped by police who are determined to take him in “dead or alive”, he receives an assist from an unlikely source. Also, a look back at the night that Tony Quinn lost everything.
The modern day reinvention of The Black Bat rolls on this month in the fourth issue of the series written by Brian Buccellato with art by Ronan Cliquet. Mat Lopes provides colors and Rob Steen handles lettering. There’s been a lot of set up, so are things finally going full steam ahead?
The story opens two years in the past where Tony is given his ultimatum from the mob. He either cooperates with Snate’s wishes, or he suffers the consequences. Things are complicated further when Tony gets a call saying his sick father is in his final moments. Tony races to spend one final moment with his father as he evades the mob, but we know how that story turns out. We get one of the final pieces of backstory as we see how Tony lost his eyes. In the present, Black Bat is pinned down by a swat team with no real way out. Pinned against the wall with no escape in sight, can Tony escape? Will his mysterious benefactors let their investment get taken so easily?
Buccellato writes another great story. We see the final pieces of Tony’s backstory and how he found himself in such a predicament. As he works through his escape in the present, his goals are solidified and he reevaluates his mission statement as it were. With the most recent brush with the law, Tony figures out what he absolutely must do to be the vigilante hero he’s pretending to be. Buccellato almost reboots the series with the Black Bat’s baptism by fire. Cliquet’s art is sleek and eye popping as always. It seems the action is ramped up with each issue, and Cliquet rises to each challenge. He handles all the gun fighting in the issue very well. Lopes’ colors are still bright and electric, but things are more subdued in the flashback sections of the story than previous entries.
Bottom Line: Buccellato’s Black Bat has been a fantastic update for a great pulp hero. Things have been getting more action-packed with each issue, and an intriguing new development with Tony’s mysterious backers is laid out. Buccellato keeps things moving in a great new direction. 4/5