SYNOPSIS: The Court of Owls are back, and they’ve conscripted Man-Bat to join their fight against Batman! And while Batman faces off against the attacks of the Court, Bruce Wayne continues to be roped into Ra’s al Ghul’s mysterious scheme. Batman is besieged on all sides in this penultimate chapter!
“The Offer, part two” finds the Gotham City Sirens under siege by the Court of Owls! Even with Ivy’s deadly botanicals, they don’t seem to be a match against undead soldiers! Fortunately, the Dynamic Duo swooshes in to lend a hand, reuniting Batman and Catwoman.
With the danger past, Batman recruits Ivy into analyzing Ra’s’ miracle seed. Meanwhile, Catwoman details her captivity under the Owls, as well as some of the other guests that were there. This puts Batman and Robin on the trail and gives Bruce some things to consider.
This time out, Ty Templeton and Norm Rapmund are joined on the art by Jacob Edgar. Their styles blend pretty seamlessly. Yes, it helps that they are capturing that BTAS feel, but their work compliments each other so well that the more casual eye might not notice the switch. Of course, the colors by Monica Kubina also help unify the visuals. They make a good team, with Ra’s looking sufficiently old and sick and the Court’s new threat looking suitably dangerous and scary, but still toeing the line that maybekindasorta this is for kids, too.
The story is a lot of fun, utilizing a large swath of the Caped Crusader’s supporting characters. We get to see Batman in action against the Court, investigate the fate of Man-Bat, and ponder the titular offer. Catwoman’s involvement complicates things slightly. I’d love to hear more of the mystery behind her missing time in captivity, but it looks like patience is required. We do get a nice back and forth between Selena and Talia. Robin has some fun moments, too. Even though he seems older, he still gets suitably grossed out by the grown-up stuff.
I wasn’t as blown away by this installment as much as the last, but it still offers a lot of enjoyment for the reader. It still feels weird to me that Gotham had actually been enjoying some tranquility before this arc, but it adds to the feeling that something is escalating here. If this is it for this title, I appreciate the amount of world-building they have been doing. With one issue to go, I have faith that they can bring everything together for a satisfying conclusion. – Javier E. Trujillo